I think I know you. How often do you spend over your daily budget to buy that mid-morning snack, or the “healthy” fruit after lunch, or that yogurt for your evening commute? And I bet you don’t think a lot about how much you spend on those things. After all, these additional costs to your daily budget are marginal.
You’re not alone. Almost everyone waives away spending smaller amounts of money. Researchers identify this behavior as the denomination effect. It explains how we are more willing to spend the smaller bills than the larger ones. You are more likely to save a sh.500 note than a sh.100 note. This goes against the advice we are always told of saving “little by little.” Sorry Stella Mwangi, looks like haba, haba haijazi kibaba (ahh, nice song).
Denomination effect also explains why we refuse to take coins and old notes as change. Not only do perceive them as having lesser value but we also consider them more easily replaceable. This presents a problem in building discipline to save money. Saving is not sexy but it’s the basis of financial success.
This behavior makes it difficult to track money. When was the last time you faithfully collected all your coins? Lucky for you and I, we have M-Pesa that makes this worry past tense. We are so good at tracking cash on M-Pesa that we have a joke for it. It goes, what type of Kenyan are you? 500, 527, 530, 550? Since M-Pesa enables you to keep money from your immediate access, you don’t even have to work at being a disciplined saver. Talk about being savvy.
Not to mention the fact that we enjoy other benefits of M-Pesa like convenience and safety. But one thing has been missing all this time. One of the gains of digital money or mobile money is being rewarded, in some way, when you spend on something. Safaricom finally caught up on this with the Maisha Ni M-Pesa Tu promotion.
We deserve it, as Mr. Lopokoiyit says. He is the director of financial services at Safaricom. “We began this promotion to reward out customers for their loyalty over the last 11 years to recognize them for their contribution in making M-Pesa the most successful mobile money service in the world.”
How does it work?
Maisha Ni M-Pesa Tu promo is simple. You get 10 points for every sh.100 M-Pesa transaction above sh.100. All your common transactions qualify, whether it’s sending and receiving money or purchases via paybill and buy goods platforms. To check your points just dial *444*0#.
The points give you the opportunity to win daily and weekly prizes in the form of data, SMS, airtime and money. You could win sh.10,000 or sh.5000. Even M-Pesa agents are eligible for prizes in the Maisha Ni M-Pesa Tu promo. Every cash deposit equals a point for an M-Pesa agent towards winning float money.
“But I never win these things,” of course not with that attitude. Actually, with enough points you stand to win 1 of 5 apartments. They were originally 7 but 2 already have winners or owners, to be precise.
The first was won by James Njagi. He is an artisan at Gikomba market and a man with a young family.
The second winner was Eric Lindernberg. He is South African and an interior design consultant.
I do hope you are the next winner. The Maisha Ni M-Pesa Tu promotion ends on 26th August. I secretly have more hope I beat you to the next house to be won. WInners are contacted through the number 0722 000 000.
How many points do you have right now? No, I will not share a screenshot of how many points I have.