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Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Campus Special application integrates MU, downtown Columbia

The application offers deals for restaurants downtown Columbia.


By downloading Campus Special, you can order a meal in the palm of your hands and receive discounts. This free app is available to all iPhone and Android users.

David Wettroth/Senior Staff Photographer

The nation’s largest college coupon book provider, known for its compact $100 bill faced booklets, has made life a little bit easier for Android and iPhone users on campus.

The new application, Campus Special, was released to first 40 then 150 universities nationwide Aug. 12.

Made up of five separate tabs, the application allows users to view featured restaurants near campus, place orders directly from his or her phone, browse daily deals and locate the vendors with help of the map tab.

“Our goal was to incorporate all of our services into one cohesive product,” Campus Special co-founder Joe Jacobs said in a news release. “What better way to do that than place our product in the one thing that students have with them at all times – their phone? They can now redeem their coupons and order food online straight through our mobile app.”

Loaded with exclusive deals and instant discounts, the application was introduced to MU by three Campus Special interns.

“Our team put a lot of work into creating the book,” Campus Special intern Sarah Stumpf said in an email. “The app is very beneficial to students like myself. It means that it is no longer necessary to constantly have the coupon book on you in order to save.”

Produced by interning MU students, the application helps students save money by providing a variety of deals to restaurants, shops and services around Columbia.

Gumby’s Pizza is the first restaurant featured on the application.

“We are really excited to be featured on Campus Special,” manager Noah Schmidt said. "We hope this helps further our goal of providing affordable pizza to inebriated patrons throughout Columbia."

Through Campus Special, Gumby’s is offering a free order of Pokey Stix to the first 1,000 students to download and order directly from the application.

Students can scroll down the food tab and instantly view the menu, pricing and contact information for their top eateries. The deals tab lists the name of the store, its exclusive deal for Campus Special and the vendor’s distance from the user’s exact location.

Campus Special is available at the App Store free of charge.

“We’re all about saving students money, so it wouldn’t make sense to charge them for a money saving app,” online sales manager Stephanie Scott said. “At this point the most popular feature is the map tab, because it’s capable of directing students to not only the best deals, but the closest (deals) as well.”

Scott said the application equips students with the same great deals from their coupon books without the worry of misplacing, forgetting or accidentally destroying the paper booklet.

Students are catching on to this new application, raising the download rate to one per minute, Scott said. Campus Special features a GPS deal finder, access to business contact information, ability to order from a phone and order memory to make subsequent orders more streamlined.

A student can order a specialized pizza from their phone while in a meeting and have his or her order ready for pick up by the time the meeting is over.

Freshman Katy Langeneckert said the application seems practical and she could see herself using it.

“I’ll probably download it because it has the same coupons but seems way more convenient,” she said.

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