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Rewards & Recognition (December 2010)

News Briefs

Maritz Devises New Formula for Next Generation Loyalty Programs

Barry Kirk, Vice President of Strategic Consulting at Maritz, says that the world of commerce is evolving at lightning speed. The channels, the products and even consumers, themselves, are constantly changing. However, one aspect of commerce has failed to keep up with the current pace of commerce: the loyalty program. Kirk outlines the problems these static programs create and points to opportunities in a new white paper, Earn, Burn and Yearn: A New Paradigm for Loyalty Marketing. The white paper notes that modern loyalty programs must begin to differentiate themselves from the traditional model, primarily because the rewards given by most loyalty programs offer far less competitive advantage in the age of the internet and global commerce. According to Kirk, different consumers are loyal to brands for different reasons – it's not always a bare-bones economic decision. One-size-fits-all programs no longer satisfy consumers. Therefore, loyalty marketers' approaches must adapt to multiple consumer personas when designing their programs. Access the whitepaper at: @@http://www.maritz.com/White-Papers/New-Paradigm-For-Loyalty.aspx

Foot Locker

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Survey Shows Digital Gift Cards Impact Brand Loyalty, Image

Incentive magazine reports that retailers who don't offer a digital gift card option could be doing themselves a disservice. That's the implication based on the results of the 2010 Pre-Holiday Online Shopper Gift Card Survey released this week by incentive and digital gifting company CashStar. Key findings of the survey reveal that 70% of online shoppers will shop at another brand if a retailer doesn't offer an eGift card option for last-minute purchases, while 83% of respondents say that if their favorite retailer offered a digital gift card, it would improve their image of that retailer. Additional Findings:

  • Incentive offers are strongly desired: 89% would be more likely to purchase a gift card if they were given an incentive, such as a "give one, get one" offer.
  • Demand for personalization remains key: More than half of respondents (52%) say they decided against purchasing a traditional gift card in the past because they felt it wasn't a personal enough gift. In addition, although two-thirds of respondents say adding advanced personalization features isn't important, 34% expressed interest in such an option.
  • Increased giving of gift cards: 54% plan to give a gift card as a gift in 2010, compared to 46% in 2009, with three-quarters of those respondents planning to give between two and five gift cards. 
  • Green alternatives: 60% of respondents are more likely to purchase online gift cards because they're better for the environment than petroleum-based plastic cards, up four percentage points from 2009.

For more on the survey, go to @@http://www.cashstar.com/news/


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PPAI Expo Presents 'brand.' – The Incentive Pavilion

Since 2009, the Promotional Products industry's premier tradeshow has played host to the industry's premier incentives showcase – 'brand.' From January 10-14, 2011, both the PPAI Expo and 'brand.' will once again deliver the one thing that makes them a "can't miss" event year after year: Bringing attendees face-to-face with renowned retail companies and the latest in branded products. PPAI's 'brand.' gives Promotional Products distributors an all-access pass to this lucrative market, allowing them to meet face-to-face with the most sought-after factory representatives, see the latest branded products and learn how to add incentives to their current offerings. For more information, go to @@http://theppaiexpo.com/

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All Star Employees Help to Outfit Barracks for Returning Soldiers

Employees of All Star Incentive Marketing recently participated in "Operation Upgrade," an initiative to welcome returning U.S. soldiers from Afghanistan with a comfortable stay in their home barracks at Fort Hood, TX. The goal of Operation Upgrade is to welcome every returning soldier in the Army's 20th Engineer Battalion, currently deployed in Kandahar, with personal amenities including wash cloth, bath towel, shower curtain, shower mat and toiletries. They aim to outfit each barracks room with sheets, pillow case, pillow, blanket, garbage can, paper/plastic plates, utensils, cups and personal snacks and soft drinks. The Battalion expects 200 soldiers will stay in these barracks for several weeks upon their return. All Star employees, organized by Ashlee Haag, sister of a soldier with the 20th, and All Star's Social Responsibility Team leader, quickly mobilized and delivered seven boxes of supplies to the Operation. The effort symbolizes All Star's vision of corporate responsibility, which is that when people are healthy, trusted, supported and meaningfully engaged, they are empowered to make their best contributions. To learn more about All Star Incentive Marketing visit @@http://www.incentiveusa.com/.

Bass Pro Shops

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2011 IRF Invitational to be Held in Vegas

The Incentive Research Foundation (IRF) has announced that its 18th Annual Incentive Invitational will be held April 27 through May 1, 2011, at ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. The IRF Invitational brings together top incentive buyers and corporate decision makers, along with incentive professionals from leading travel organizations around the world, for a host of business networking events and educational seminars. In addition to ARIA Resort and Casino, co-hosts in 2011 include The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, Wynn/Encore, The Venetian Palazzo Resort Hotel Casinos, Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority, AWG Inc. (Alan Waxler Group), Destinations by Design, USA Hosts, MGM Resorts Events, JW Marriott Las Vegas, Maverick Aviation, Richard Petty Driving Experience, and other destination hosts and sponsors in Las Vegas. For more information on the 18th Annual Incentive Invitational, go to @@http://invitational.theirf.org/ or contact the Opus Group at 305-234-1077 for information on participating as a sponsor or hosted buyer attendee.

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Insights from ESM Rewards & Recognition e-News

Engagement Event Returns $2 for Every Dollar Spent

The Enterprise Engagement Alliance (EEA) recently announced that research measuring the return on investment (ROI) of an annual meeting of healthcare insurance brokers that stressed training, relationship-building and networking opportunities found the sponsoring company enjoyed a return of almost $2 for every $1 invested in the program. Initial results reported in March revealed that the program had a profound impact on the way brokers thought and felt about the company, its products and its people. Part 1 of the report, The 'ROI in Channel Partner' Conferences – A Case Study, noted that the annual gathering translated into higher sales, performance and engagement among those who attended. Part 2 of the report examines the actual change in sales of Allsante, Inc.* products among program participants, summarizing the ROI the company achieved from the event. EEA analysis of the methodologies and findings reveals that Allsante earned significant ROI from its annual event. "After all variables were accounted for, a highly credible and conservative estimate of 190% ROI was arrived at," says Allan Schweyer, Chairman of the EEA. "In other words, the company enjoyed a return of almost $2 for every $1 it invested in the first six months following the event, and our researchers say it's likely that the returns, if calculated after another six months have passed, will be even greater." Parts 1 and 2 of the study, The 'ROI in Channel Partner' Conferences – A Case Study, can be downloaded at @@http://www.enterpriseengagement.org/

* The company in this report is referred to as "Allsante, Inc." at the firm's request, due to competitive reasons.

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In the Next Issue of Engagement Strategies Magazine

The November/December issue of Engagement Strategies Magazine is in the mail! Here's a look at what you'll find inside:

'Don't Ever Underestimate the Power of People'

In this revealing Q&A, White Castle owner Dave Rife talks about how his experience on the TV show Undercover Boss helped him discover how the old truths about engagement still apply. To make sure you get your copy of Engagement Strategies Magazine, go to @@http://www.enterpriseengagement.org/account/login/ and update your subscription today! Or click here to read article online.

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Novo Nordisk Launch Engages Younger Salespeople

"It's a totally different environment from when I sold back in the 1990s," says Jamie Jones, Novo Nordisk Sales Director. "So we wanted to pay attention to those Generation X and Generation Y salespeople to make sure we had a program that encouraged behavior and offered rewards consistent with how those people think. Read more >>

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News From Selling Communications Inc.

Whitepaper Connects Engagement with Economic Recovery

One of the greatest opportunities to increase corporate profits – and subsequently boost the economy – lies in motivating workforces to improve performance, drive greater customer engagement and ultimately increase revenue, according to a new report from the Enterprise Engagement Alliance (EEA) and the Human Capital Institute (HCI). The Enterprise Engagement Alliance is a coalition of companies and associations dedicated to promoting the importance of engagement, founded  last year by the Human Capital Institute, Peppers & Rogers Group, 1to1® Media and Selling Communications, Inc. Entitled The Economics of Engagement, the report provides a comprehensive analysis of research in the field of Enterprise Engagement and offers how-to information on benchmarking tools that can quantitatively measure the benefits of employee and customer engagement. These measurement tools are critical to demonstrate the bottom-line impact of enterprise engagement, both to corporations and to the economy as a whole, using financial language that senior executives, investors and economists are accustomed to. "One of the most encouraging findings of this report is the revelation that vast reserves of overall performance potential are essentially hiding in plain sight," says Bruce Bolger of the Enterprise Engagement Alliance. "Engaging the people that companies deal with on a day-to-day basis – both internally and externally – in a comprehensive, compelling and connected way will create a result that is more than just the sum of its parts. Naturally, as with any such investment, the return needs to be demonstrated to decision makers, and there's a growing body of evidence in the engagement arena that does just that." For a copy of the report, click here

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About Selling Communications Inc.

Selling Communications, Inc. is a fully integrated, target marketing, media and technology agency that improves results for clients by focusing on the people who matter most. We can help your business grow and save you money by targeting key prospects, getting their permission and strategically integrating your marketing and sales communications with the specific audiences most likely to affect your business performance.

Take advantage of these SCI services to improve your business development:

For more information on Selling Communications, its products and services, contact Jim Kilmetis at 914-591-7600, ext. 229 or send an e-mail to .

Tapping new customers, and keeping those you already have, costs less than you'd imagine...

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