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Looking Ahead: Start Planning For Reopening With Great Incentive Offers

Updated: May 26, 2021

This blog is intended to help you prepare for the day when mandated pandemic restrictions are lightened and all businesses can begin to fully reopen.

To start, here are four tried-and-true formats for incentives that are proven to generate results:

Direct Discounts

An easy promotion for customers to understand, direct discounts on products or services can either be a percentage saving (“Get 15% off any pair of blue jeans”) or a set dollar amount (“Save $10 on a deluxe spa treatment”).


Offer customers a bonus item or service at no additional charge when they purchase a specified product. Consumers love to get something for nothing, and you can combine products or services to create unique offers your competitors don’t have.

Generally, the giveaway item is a loss-leader: the real margins are made in selling the intended item at full price. Select a bonus item that complements the original purchase: “Receive a free set of snow tires with the purchase of a new car.”

Value/Service Added

A variation is to bundle a full-priced item with a related service at little to no extra cost: “Buy a new vehicle and receive one year of free service.”

Pairing a full-price item with a free service the customer would normally pay for creates a compelling incentive to buy.

Buy One, Get One (BOGO)

Popular with consumers, BOGO is attractive for high-frequency items because it creates a sense of urgency. It also works well for admission-based businesses — once a customer is through the gate, you can likely sell them other items such as food. But, BOGO can cut into margins and may cost more than you will make.

Identifying the Rewards program incentives that work best for your business may involve some trial and error. Track each promotion to evaluate customer response — and to support your advertising buying decisions. Pro tip: running offers in one channel at a time makes it easier to determine where your sales are coming from.

BOOM delivers a fully managed and affordable Member Rewards and Loyalty platform that helps retail brands in multiple sectors connect with more than 120,000 consumer Members from some of Canada's top employers, unions and professional organizations.

If you’d like to learn more about BOOM, click here.

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