Rio Grande Guardian sales representative Marco Solis meets with Humanize Technology’s Edwin Tuexi Amaro, David Vallejo Manzur, and Guillermo Nuñez at Cafe Grande in McAllen.

MCALLEN, RGV – In an attempt to lure Mexican shoppers back to the Rio Grande Valley, a technology firm from Ciudad Victoria is set to launch an innovative digital coupons application.

Chopney, which officially launches next month, is the name of the electronic coupons wallet and it has been designed and marketed by Humanize Technology, which has offices in Tamaulipas and the Valley.

“We have specifically designed Chopney for the Rio Grande Valley with the idea that local companies can improve their customer reach and knowledge, while at the same time acquire a tool to publish promos and discounts,” said David Vallejo Manzur, director of operations and creativity for Humanize Tech.

Humanize Tech has a website for its new product: The website lists the company’s ambitious goal for Chopney: “To become the most used electronic coupons wallet in the Rio Grande Valley by the end of 2018.”

Rio Grande Guardian sales representative Marco Solis met with three members of Humanize Tech at Café Grande in McAllen recently to learn more about Chopney. The three members were Vallejo, innovation and technology director Edwin Tuexi Amaro and marketing specialist Guillermo Nuñez, who runs the company’s Mission, Texas, office.

During the conversation, the topic of Mexican shoppers not visiting the Valley as frequently as they used to came up. Various explanations have been given, including violence in Reynosa, anti-Mexican rhetoric from President Trump, and the devaluation of the Peso. Humanize Tech directors said a digital coupon such as Chopney will help Valley stores promote themselves, not just to Valley shoppers but also those in Mexico.

“We see a need and an opportunity for Valley businesses to attract the Mexican tourist once more, through coupons and discounts. We are all about innovation,” Vallejo said. “Visiting the United States today is a complicated scenario with price, security, political topics all at play. But we see opportunities. Our desire is to strengthen trade and commerce along the U.S.-Mexico border, because that’s good for all of us. We are thinking regionally.”

Vallejo said Humanize Tech wants to take advantage of its marketing and technology expertise to help the region. “From our research, we have discovered that people from Mexico do want to visit the Valley, but there are certain things, like the economy, security and political issues that affect their decision. The principal topic is the economic issue. If the Valley continues offering discounts and special offers and good marketing, people will come back. We need to promote those necessities. We are interested in the success of Chopney because we love to innovate, but also there’s a personal interest in helping the Valley to develop and reinforce its commerce.”

Vallejo said marketing in Mexico is very different, even between different states. “So, we take advantage of our expertise to test our ideas in different markets. We make sure our work is backed with quantitative studies, with the aim of producing a satisfied customer. For example, City of Mercedes hired us for a campaign and we did different focus groups inside Monterrey. We found we had to use different vocabulary in our campaign.”

Keeping technology fresh

Asked to describe Chopney, Vallejo said: “It’s free app that offers coupons and discounts for people in Mexico and the Rio Grande Valley. It offers great advantages in that it is not invasive – it only reaches the people who want to be a part of it, those who register to participate. It is also very easy to use, offering an automatic and friendly process. And it can be adapted to suit the needs of the business or franchise. We can also offer an indirect benefit through our Facebook page. Through Facebook that we can offer different packages, and some of those have special discounts for a business in particular. This is the way we use the social media.”

Tuexi said coupons have obviously been around for a very long time. “We are just giving coupons a new face, a new accessibility point. Many people still cut out their coupons from the newspaper. With our coupons, everything will be inside the application. You will find everything. You will be able to decide what you want, and not have others deciding for you.”

Asked how Chopney helps companies, Vallejo said: “It is not just a coupon application, it is a marketing strategy for them. And they will have the feedback immediately. We feel, in today’s age, companies need something like this. The commitment is in the innovation, working with each customer on an individual basis. Technology gets old fast, and the key to keep it fresh, is to update it constantly.”

Asked how Chopney helps customers, Tuexi said: “It is important to highlight that local customers will not have a dependency on us. The idea is to allow them their own coupon administration. There is no longer a need to print the coupon received by e-mail. There is no need to cut out the coupon found in the newspaper or a magazine. We are looking at a paperless product, without the need to print a coupon. If the company already has a coupon mechanism, because it’s a franchise, the application adapts itself to the franchise coupons, so the store can scan the coupon from the app. On the other hand, if the company doesn’t have a mechanism, the application can help them to have one mechanism control by using a barcode, which is very modern and designed to help small business.”

“It is user-friendly, and a state of the art application,” said Nuñez.

Asked how unique Chopney is, Vallejo said: “There’s nothing similar in the Valley. There are coupon companies in the United States, but there’s nothing like this one. Some coupon companies send e-mails, others use text messages. What we think we have created is an app that caters to the real necessities of people in the Valley.”

Vallejo said Humanize’s plan is to officially launch Chopney in July. For the rest of June, he said, the application is free, giving the customer a chance to learn how to use it, and clarify any doubt they might have. He said Humanize can send a representative to explain everything about our product, if needed.

“We want people to get to know Chopney. We are pretty sure they will like it because there’s a personal interest for innovation development, and we want to show them this, to prove to them the multiple benefits for using the app. But, if you don’t like Chopney – which we don’t think will happen – you will be able to leave it.”

Asked if there were any other points Humanize Tech wanted to make, Vallejo said:

“We are very enthusiastic about our new product. We see an opportunity in the Valley to show that it is during the bad moments that opportunities grow. We are at an important moment right now where we can see people changing, the commerce users, the millennials that use the social media even more, so here’s the moment to adapt to that.

“Before, when we went shopping we sometimes did not know what we wanted. Right now, people buy products on the Internet, and they really know what they want. This is a step to comply with the new generation’s desires.”