Local grocery retailer, Haggen, just completed a promotion built around Monopoly-branded game play. If my better-half is any indication, it is tremendously successful at making shopping fun and increasing visits. In short, when you shop you receive game pieces. These pieces are part coupon and part Monopoly game cards. So there’s an instant-win element as well as a ongoing game element. Collect the right combination of game cards as per the Monopoly game board layout and you can win life-changing prizes.
There have been many ways created to make your customers smile at checkout and/or on their way out the door. National retailers discovered that if you mark an item as $5.75 in the aisle but only charge $5.25 at checkout. The customer feels a “win.” For decades checkout tapes were scanned by customers to ensure they weren’t paying $9.75 for that $5.75 item. So seeing an “error” in the customers’ favor feels like a real win. How about when the checker says, “Oh there’s a coupon for this item,” and automatically pulls out a coupon for you instead of waiting to see if you have one? Win! Now the checkout staff are your new bestest friends.
Creating “thrill of the hunt” game-play around the shopping experience is not new. If you remember S&H Green Trading Stamps raise your hand. Yeah, it has been a while (ended in the 1980s). Customer reward and incentive programs have been used for a long time, especially visible with airlines and credit card companies as competitive features to their services. There was a even time when you could get a complete china plateware set for free, one piece at a time courtesy of your local gas station when filling up your tank.
Make the buying experience fun. Give the customer a win. Have fun doing it.