Swimming, as a past time, can be a calming activity. However, in the competitive scene, it can get as heart-pumping as any sport out there. Good thing teams always have a swim coach. The swim coach is responsible for the success of the team and often in charge of fundraising efforts as well. As such, you need to keep your swim team motivated both in and out of the water – for winning meets and fundraising success.
Businesses must not only ensure that they continue to provide goods and services for their clients, but they should also make an attempt to show their appreciation to loyal, repeat customers.
When growing a company, you often focus on delivering new products, generating leads, and other activities on the business-side of the process. However, from the outside, this process can appear quite impersonal and cold to your customers. The goal becomes financial based and customers become a number on a spreadsheet.
If your customers feel like they are merely a means to an end (i.e. financial profit), then they will leave. It may not be immediately. Perhaps your product is fantastic, which may attract customers at first. But if they don’t feel appreciated, they will not stay, regardless of how fabulous or unique your product is. (more…)
What is a Loyalty Rewards Program? Companies offer a rewards program to customers who make regular purchases at their establishment. The loyalty program may provide customers with free merchandise, coupons, advance-release of new products, or other rewards.
The Loyalty Report 2017, in collaboration with VISA, studied the behaviors of over 28,000 North American consumers and found that the average consumer joins around 14 loyalty programs. However, in half of these programs, they simply join and then ignore the company, letting their membership card get lost in the stack of cards in their wallet. Meanwhile, companies waste time and money on a customer that could have been truly loyal, but just isn’t.
So how can a business ensure that they are in the other half of loyalty programs – the ones with which consumers regularly engage? Below are eight tips for building an effective loyalty rewards program that offers actual value for your customers.
One: Point System Loyalty Programs
Most companies simply use the point system program, since it’s easy to implement and easy to use. Customers receive points for purchases, which can be used for rewards. Rewards vary and can include a discount, a free product, or special treatment, for example. Plus, there are typical different levels, like 100 points earn customers one reward, but they can get a much better reward for 500 points.
Many companies lose customers by making the point system method too complicated. The system is so complex that customers don’t understand the relationship between earning points and receiving tangible rewards. If you do opt for the points system, keep it simple and make the conversions obvious.
Point system loyalty rewards programs don’t work for every type of business. It’s best for companies with frequent, short-term purchases, like grocery stores or gas stations.
Two: Tier System Loyalty Rewards
Some companies have trouble designing a loyalty program which offers a balance for consumers between rewards that they can attain and those they desire. A tiered system is an effective solution to this problem. It rewards a customer’s initial loyalty while encouraging future purchases.
In a tier system, new members enter the program on what is considered the baseline. They will immediately receive small rewards as a “thank you” for joining and an encouragement to continue in the program. As they continue to make purchases, these loyalty rewards members will move up to higher levels in the program, with each level offering more valuable rewards.
Sometimes loyalty members forget about their points and never actually redeem them. This often occurs when there is too long of a time between making purchases and receiving the rewards. Typically, this does not occur in a tier system loyalty program.
Tiered programs work best in high commitment, higher price-point businesses, such as airlines, hospitality businesses, and insurance companies.
Three: Savings Card Discount Program
A unique and relatively new loyalty rewards program is to offer your customers a savings card. With a customer appreciation card, you can reward the customers you select with the ability to save money throughout the year with a variety of discounts.
Discounts could include savings such as:
- Buy one get one free dining deals
- Up to 50% off at name brand stores
- Discounts on hotels and car rentals
- Free appetizers at major restaurants
- Buy one get one free movie and game rentals
These customer appreciation cards feature your company logo, allowing you to share your brand as you express your gratitude. Each card is active for a year, so your customers will have plenty of time to access discounts to restaurants, stores, and businesses. Many of the discounts are for locations that they visit regularly anyway. Customers have access to both local and national locales, both online and off.
Savings card discount programs are beneficial because they allow you to offer a long-term token of appreciation to customers that you feel are truly loyal to your company. The rewards are numerous and extend across a variety of mediums, giving your customers the option of choosing which reward is best for them. Customers can use the card once a month or every day, making your business a constant reminder in their wallet.
This type of loyalty program is effective for small business owners, property managers, realtors, insurance agents, and accounting firms.
Four: VIP Benefits for an Upfront Fee
Loyalty rewards programs are meant to be a gift to customers in appreciation of their service. If this is the case, then why would you charge them to be in the program? Some loyalty rewards programs actually work best with a one-time (or sometimes an annual) fee, which allow customers to bypass certain barriers.
If you can uncover reasons that customers leave, you can prevent future instances through a fee-based program which addresses those obstacles. For instance, Amazon noticed that consumers were abandoning items in their shopping cart, typically after beginning the checkout process. They uncovered that this was most likely a result of consumers being unhappy with taxes and shipping prices. However, by using a loyalty program with an upfront fee, they were able to address this issue and develop a large following of loyal repeat consumers.
A VIP program with an upfront fee works best for organizations whose customers make frequent, repeat purchases. The fee offers VIP status, which can remove inconveniences such as shipping costs, long delivery times, or other problems. While Amazon has perfected this model in an ecommerce platform, it can effectively be applied for storefront businesses.
Five: Non-Monetary Programs
A company that has a good understanding of its customer base can make a huge difference while drawing in loyal customers. The idea of sharing the same values as a company can improve a customer’s interest in that organization.
The Harvard Business Review published a study by a Corporate executive Board (CeB) of 7000 consumers across the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia, stating that “Of those consumers who said that they had a strong brand relationship, 64% cited shared values as the primary reason.”
This type of loyalty program doesn’t work for all types of businesses, but in some cases, your customers may find more value in non-monetary programs. A company that can provide a program to the customer which projects specific, shared values can be successful. These customers typically respond best to receiving benefits other than those that come in dollars or discounts.
Six: Partner With Another Company
Companies often overlook the under-utilized, but highly effective option of strategic partnerships. You can’t just join forces with another company at random, but should research various other organizations in a variety of industries in addition to developing a deeper understanding of your customers.
For instance, a pizza place might partner with a video store or a local coffee shop might join forces with a book store. The idea is to offer co-branded discounts that mutually benefit both businesses as well as your customer. This type of marketing method shows that you are considering your customer’s needs and that you care about them.
As an added bonus, your brand will be exposed to new customers who shop at the company you partnered with. You will grow your network and increase loyalty among these new customers and your own regular consumers.
Seven: A Fun, Engaging Game
Turning your loyalty program into a game is a great way to interact with your customers while influencing both engagement and buying patterns. A gaming-style loyalty program, if well designed, can also solidify your brand’s image.
Some customers may perceive your game as a tease or a fake method of trying to gain business, like some other sweepstakes or contests. To prevent this, go over the top to ensure that your customers don’t feel like you’re trying to swindle them. Discuss your options with your company’s legal department and create attainable purchase requirements and odds.
Ideal execution is essential for this loyalty program option to be effective. Gaming rewards can be utilized by a whole range of companies and brands. If your customer base enjoys having fun and makes frequent purchases, then this type of loyalty program can improve engagement and increase buying activity.
Eight: Be Generous
Some customer loyalty programs are simply a scheme to encourage customers to buy more and more. Programs like these will eventually fail. However, if you are genuinely generous and actually reward your loyal customers, they will not only stay, but they will also spread the word to others.
Your customers shouldn’t have to spend a lot in order to receive cheap rewards or small discounts. Instead, wow your customers with rewards that they aren’t even expecting at purchase levels that are surprisingly close together. Show your appreciation in a tangible way and impress consumers with a loyalty program that they will want to join.
Building a loyalty rewards program can be done in a variety of ways. Regardless of which type of program you select, it is essential that you represent your brand in a positive manner and show your appreciation to your loyal consumers in a concrete way. Be careful not to appear as if you are conning customers in an attempt to get them to buy more. Instead, truly offer rewards in an honest and upfront manner to maintain your loyal clientele and earn the loyalty of even more consumers.
There are many ways to show gratitude towards your valued customers and supportive members. You could give them a branded t-shirt, mug, or thank-you card, but such a simple item can cost your business or association more money than desired. Also, those items don’t have a strong ROI. So, what can you give that’s meaningful, has a good ROI, and is a win-win? A Fastlane Customer Appreciation Card or a Membership Discount Card. These cards are packed with discounts and leave your customers and members feeling happy and rewarded. (more…)
Property Managers love lease renewals and work hard at securing and maintaining long-term tenants because they want to avoid low-vacancy rates and high turnover, so it’s essential that they work on building a stable and successful business where tenants will want to renew their lease. But recently, renewal rates have been declining this is, in part, due to the apartment industry boom (post-recession). New multifamily units are on the rise, and apartment complexes are being built at a fast rate. While that means more housing options for tenants, it means more competition for your property managers. With so many multifamily units out there it’s easy for tenants to venture on and relocate.
A good way to avoid your tenants wandering off is to promote and work on your relationship with them, as well as tenant/tenant relationships. As a property manager, you’re busy managing other multifamily units, it’s hard to build one-on-one relations with each tenant, knowing that, some property managers will organize small events and get-togethers at their complexes because it is a great way to form relations and bring residents together. If you’re managing multiple complexes, hosting events can get expensive, and that might not be an out of pocket expense you want to make. Property managers build relations and show appreciate other ways, too. There are a variety of inexpensive ways to show your appreciation to your tenants, but I’ll get to that a little later. (more…)
Once you’ve got your nonprofit up and running, you may be unsure of where to turn to get noticed for fundraising purposes. If you have not accessed the power of the internet in your quest to draw awareness to your cause, then you are missing out on a big piece of the puzzle.
Building an online presence does not need to be difficult. It takes a little technical knowledge as well as patience and dedication. However, if you are not focusing your efforts in the right direction, you could be wasting time – and money.
There are three main ways on which you should be concentrating to get your nonprofit website noticed:
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
- Social Media
The swim coach is responsible for the success of the team and often in charge of fundraising efforts as well. As such, you need to keep your swim team motivated both in and out of the water – for winning meets and fundraising success.
Motivation In The Water
While it may seem difficult to motivate your team to stay on top of their grades, practice schedules, and fundraising tasks, it is possible to successfully do so. Try following these tips to motivate your team while they are in the water for a better performance. (more…)
Flip ‘em, tear ‘em, and save lots of cash!
Our new 84 merchant ticket book die arrives May 1st, and it’s going to be our largest ticket book yet!
Fastlane Fundraising, powered by Electro Image LLC, is the only supplier who has (5) convenient sized merchant ticket books. Now you can choose between 16, 48, 60, 72, and 84 count ticket books – talk about savings!
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Campaign managers, fundraising coordinators, and volunteers all work to help raise funds to support their chosen political candidate.
During a campaign, candidates must deal with numerous expenses, both foreseen and unexpected. Expenses may be minor, like gas money for the bus or a budget for merchandise, or it may run into the hundreds or thousands of dollars for things like political events, debates, stump speeches, and rallies. The cost often depends on the size of the venue and the expectations for the number of people in the crowd. Of course, the more constituents, the better, but that merely increases the costs. Local political races rely a great deal on the generosity of the community.
Track and Field is a fun and active outdoor sport which encourages improved physical fitness for all of its participants. Just like other sports, track and field come with its own costs and expenses, including uniforms, equipment, and transportation needs. There are many different ways to raise funds to support track and field groups within a school system or city.
- Consider holding a “rat race” through a maze or winding through a park or city streets
- Sponsor a mouse trap car racing event where participants build and race vehicles made out of mouse traps
- Hold a tortoise and the hare racing event where revelers come out to support the animals in a live-action race to the finish line