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REVENUE WILL COME WHEN YOU FOCUS ON ADDING VALUE TO YOUR CUSTOMERS WITHIN YOUR ECOSYSTEM
We were introduced a very cute mini-app within the Alipay ecosystem, called Ant Forest “蚂蚁森林”.
Users of Alipay are rewarded for making small, environmentally friendly decisions in their daily lives through “green energy” points, and those points can be redeemed to plant trees in areas of the country in need of vegetation!
So as users, we can collect green energy points through various activities like taking the bus, not accepting receipts, cycle with the e-bike, or walking thousands of steps. The Alipay app will then identify all of these usage within the ecosystem to be energy saving activities, therefore providing you with even more points! When you have collected sufficiently, you will then be able to purchase a tree virtually and plant it at a dessert of your choice.
With this crazy initiative, Alipay users have apparently planted 100M trees in China! What started out as a pet project among internal team members of Alibaba, has become a full fledged working solution that can benefit the country.
One of the participants asked the Ant Forest team, how does Alibaba earn money from it? The answer was pretty simple. By building value added services that can benefit mankind, this project indirectly encourages more usage of the Alipay app. This will then translate to a higher transaction rate for Alipay which eventually would benefit the group in a whole.
Alibaba has continuously surprised me with new facts everyday on how their company is run by a strong culture of helping and giving back to the community.
I would end this post with a powerful quote from an Ant Forest user which was shared by our facilitator, Chandee.
“I may never see the tree which I have grown, but I believe one day I will breathe the air which it has flown”
Read more on what happened along the journey thus far :