Sometimes we develop our own online and mobile products to test our ideas in the market. In 2007-2008, we launched BrainShopping – a fun shopping concept for women and a new form of online advertising. BrainShopping.nl was the only internet shop where visitors could pay with their brain – by winning an online puzzle or quiz. Forget credit cards, cattle, cowry shells and even whale’s teeth – brain was the only currency accepted at BrainShopping. In 2009, we sold BrainShopping to Sanoma Magazines.
The BrainShopping concept was created by The Concept Channel and realised by Novocortex in co-operation with Astronim. BrainShopping was developed as a fun shopping concept. Prizes ranged from a new book about Madonna to a city trip to Barcelona. Online quizes included questions like “What color was the Monica Lewinsky’s dress?” and “Where does the 2nd adoption child of Angelina Jolie come from?” But BrainShopping was more than just fun shopping, it was a new form of online advertising. Women, the core audience of BrainShopping, played online games to win prizes made available by advertisers. Online quizes and puzzles could be customized to advertised products. Players who didn’t win prizes received an e-mail with an invitation to visit an advertiser’s website.
The BrainShopping concept was tested in co-operation with Microsoft Network (MSN), Albert Heijn (the largest supermarket chain in the Netherlands) and Wehkamp (one of the largest online retailers in the Netherlands). Conversion on BrainShopping was very high – from 2 to 3,5%. For instance, Wehkamp got 3.000 new clients within 3 weeks via branded online games on BrainShopping. In the summer of 2009, The Concept Channel and Novocortex sold the BrainShopping concept to Sanoma Magazines, one of the major publishers of magazines and websites for women in the world.