Friday, June 21, 2013

Would you like more training?

Please contact our office if you would like to schedule an online training session to go over the tools in your dashboard. Your password protected dashboard is packed full of reports and marketing tools. We want to make sure you fully understand and are able to utilize all of them!

To schedule your training or if you have any questions about the program, please contact:

Lisa Bernstein
Client Manager

Monday, June 17, 2013

New Mailing Address - Please Note!

PowerCard/Eat Local has a new mailing address. This is for all correspondence including completed registration forms. The new address is:

PO Box 2709
Wilmington, NC 28402

Please contact our support team with any questions.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Loyalty programs vs. Daily Deals - Article

Try loyalty programs if deal fatigue sets in

Fickle restaurant customers go crazy for one-off deals, yet traditional loyalty programs can still attract lots of business.

Full-service operators know that short-term specials and deals will give their restaurants a temporary revenue boost. But findings from a new study indicate that restaurants can use tried-and-true customer loyalty programs to build and retain a customer base without relying on costly dollars-off promotions.

Restaurant loyalty program consulting firm Loyalogy commissioned this research. Its 50-question online survey of households having incomes of $75,000 and above drew 1,124 responses.  Here’s what the study, titled LoyaltyPlus, found:

• Consumers estimate a restaurant rewards programs would increase their visit rate to a particular restaurant by an average of 35 percent.

• Nearly two-thirds of consumers (65 percent) report they would recommend a restaurant more to others if that restaurant offered an appealing rewards program.

• Four out of five consumers prefer a rewards program with a clearly defined proposition in which they earn points for rewards than a program built solely on periodic, surprise free items.

• Consumers desire a simple reward program enrollment process in the restaurant and would prefer to supply additional information online after they have left the restaurant.

• Although consumer wallets are bulging with plastic cards, 60 percent of respondents stated that they don’t mind carrying a membership card for a rewards program if it’s necessary.

•  While only 10 percent of respondents have paid a fee to join a restaurant rewards program, fully 50 percent state they would be willing to do so if the program offered adequate value.

• A single rewards program membership covering multiple restaurant brands has significant appeal to consumers.  Some 73 percent of respondents agreed they would like to have one rewards program membership that was honored at multiple restaurant chains.

“The LoyaltyPulse study provides clear evidence directly from consumers regarding the effectiveness of restaurant rewards programs and the value associated with using the rewards program data to tailor and target guest e-mail communication,” says Dennis Duffy, Loyalogy president.

Some readers may be surprised to learn that in an era when social media marketing delivers a torrent of restaurant deal offers to potential diners’ email inboxes each day, 10 percent of customers still pay actual money to join a restaurant loyalty program. And fully half said they would consider doing so in the future.

What’s the attraction for the customer? Typically, a new loyalty program member gets an immediate credit for the amount of his or her membership fee. For example, a customer who forks over $25 to purchase a membership in Landry’s Select Club (Morton’s, McCormick and Schmick’s and other Landry’s brands) get an immediate $25 reward with the promise of many more to come.

For its part, the restaurant gets, at no dollar cost, a new customer likely to return to acquire those future rewards. Of note: Fee-payers are the customers you want. The study found that “among those consumers who dine for business (either business exclusively or business and pleasure), nearly one in four have paid a fee to join a restaurant rewards program (22 percent).”

These are the kinds of customers most full-service restaurants are dying to attract. If half-off daily deals or short-term value-priced specials have lost some of their marketing oomph for your restaurant, you may wish to revisit loyalty programs. The LoyaltyPulse study is telling us they’re ready to make a comeback.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Serving Up Rewards!

Here's a fantastic article about one of the Originals Groups we work with!

Serving up rewards: Louisville Originals' card offers points for dining

Originally begun as a marketing consortium of local independent restaurants that sold gift certificates online every three months, the Louisville Originals program is now best known for its rewards program that enters its fifth year giving 22,554 cardholders credits at member eateries.

“I think we were very hopeful” that the local marketing program would take off, board secretary Kerry DeMuth said, “but you have no way of knowing in these types of things.”

While Louisville Originals has gift certificate programs as well, “I think the rewards (card) programs would be, by far and away, the most popular with customers,” said Siobhan Reidy, an Originals co-founder who owns the Irish Rover restaurants with her husband Michael Reidy.

For every dollar spent at one of the restaurants, card holders get one point. At 150 points, card holders gt a $10 gift certificate — maintained on the card — to use at any of the restaurants. Double points are offered the first Tuesday of the month. There is a 500 point cap for any one visit and no more than $100 in credits can be redeemed by any one person in a visit.

Cards also can be used in other cities at selected restaurants,
Besides the reward program, the Louisville Originals sells a limited number of discount gift certificates at its website, once every three months, some of which are snatched up with in minutes and nearly all of which are gone within a day. The next such sale is Jan. 15.

Louisville Originals also sells gift cards, which are available online, at ValuMarket stores and downtown at the Louisville Visitors Center. In 2010 and 2011, $296,000 was put on the cards each year and DeMuth said she hopes the group passed $300,000 last year.

It’s also popular with restaurant owners, she said. “We see a good percentage of our sales on any given night coming from rewards customers.”

Last year, Louisville Originals, which was founded in 2005, added Bluegrass Brewing Co., bringing its membership to 28 restaurants that now have 37 locations.

“It was always founded on the idea of finding ways to market ourselves more effectively, more efficiently, to kind of band together and hopefully get more marketing power in the way that the chains have the marketing power that an independent can’t afford,” Siobhan Reidy said.

Membership has varied, running roughly from between 35 and 50 locations, but organizers say that has stabilized around 40. DeMuth said two or three new restaurants could be added by month’s end.
DeMuth said the rewards card, which can be obtained at member restaurants and is operated by a vendor, benefited from the base recognition and loyalty that the Louisville Originals had built up before for the program started.

“We thought we’d only sell them at Christmas time,” she said.