Using Rewards and Incentives to Communicate with Customers During COVID-19

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Springtime is in full bloom now and with the new spring growth, comes other signs that life moves on—even in this new strange world. Neighbors greet you as they head out to mow the lawn just like every year, only now they might be wearing masks or bandanas over their noses and mouths. This might be the way things will be for the foreseeable future and so, the world adjusts.

Just as the grass grows and we make a small change to continue to cut it, so now do businesses continue to look for ways to connect with customers and members during this time of social distancing. We’ll still do it—it just might be a little different. We adjust.

We’re Still Here

Entertainment® has been around since the 1960s, helping families save money with our enormous database of discounts; providing a way for merchants to drive business; and giving corporations effective ways to engage customers. We continue to be there, with the Entertainment Book and Entertainment mobile app, helping people to spend less on things they do every day and supporting local business.

We are doing what we’ve always done, but in new ways. We go forward now, adapt, and help our partners as they change and adjust to new ways of doing business.

People Still Need Pizza

Our country has been hard-hit by this Coronavirus pandemic and it will take a long time to dig out.  People have been staying in and subsisting on crock pot and pressure cooker food at home for so long and now every cell in their being starts to demand pizza or sushi as a way to get back to normal.

Anecdotal Facebook polls show that most people have been getting take-out or delivery from restaurants about once or twice a week. Some people might be reluctant to use discounts with businesses who are struggling to keep doors open, but sometimes a discount might make the difference between ordering from a restaurant and eating at home. It is enabling people to order food more frequently and give very generous gratuities. Changing up the monotony of life this new more distanced world, even in small ways, begins to take on more importance for everyone.

Whether people are ordering in or stepping tentatively into newly reopened, socially distanced businesses, discounts you offer your customers can provide help to families that need it and the extra traffic driven to merchants will be valued and appreciated.

A Discount Never Felt So Good

Now is a great time to communicate with your customers and members that they are important to you. Recognizing their belt-tightening and providing them with ways to further stretch their dollars is an impactful way to create needed engagement. Giving them a way to save money will help them to spend more with their neighborhood merchants and support their local economy.

Regardless of your industry or the demographics of your customers, discounts will be a meaningful reward or incentive. Your communications won’t just say that you understand and appreciate what they are going through—it will enable you to truly illustrate that and do something that actually helps their situation.

Entertainment is Built on Community

Community support and outreach has always been a part of Entertainment’s DNA. We’ve assisted every type of group in raising money–marching bands, church groups, the Boy Scouts—you name it. We have done that by creating money-saving products and memberships that help communities out. We support the groups and the merchants and the people who use our coupons. We have the best discounts in the industry—many BOGOs and up to 50% off, plus we have coverage in 98% of the US and large areas of Canada.

The community support aspect of Entertainment’s local discount programs cannot be overstated—especially now. Many people who are not essential workers, but still have jobs and are able to work from home feel the urge to do something to contribute. Ordering carryout and safely purchasing from open businesses has been one way that people have been stepping up to do their small part to help their community. Supporting small local businesses has been a rallying cry echoed in every community in North America. Enabling a family to do that even one extra time when maybe they wouldn’t have otherwise is very powerful.

Stepping Out to See the New Landscape…and Picking Up the Pieces

It feels as though the world has been hit by random tornados as the virus blows through different cities and communities, wreaking havoc. Many businesses have struggled to weather the storm of this lock-down till they can open back up. Some of our business partners have been affected adversely and now it’s as if we’re emerging after a violent storm to see what is still standing and then making our way around to try to assist if we can.

This is a tenuous time for many businesses. We’re taking the pulse of our partners and reaching out to new merchants every day. We still have lots of great content available–and we’re adding at a higher rate than last year. We’ve added 2,000 new offers just in the last two weeks!

And now we offer our B2B clients more than just coupons—we offer hope. We offer hope to our merchants in the form of driving more traffic to a struggling business; and we give our corporate partners hope that can be shared with customers—hope that we’ll all get out of the house and back to real life eventually. Our discount solutions can become little sparks in the economy—bright, tiny glimmers of optimism and promise for a better future that you can provide when reaching out to your customers.

Our Teams are Fully Staffed and ON IT

We’ve got all hands on deck for getting in contact with our current merchants to see how they’ve weathered the storm and to help them advertise that they are still open for business—whether they are fully open or open just for takeout and delivery. We have some merchant relationships going back decades so these are not just businesses to us—these are people we’ve worked with for years and genuinely care about. We want to help them now as much as we can.

We are also busy signing new merchants who now might need the extra exposure our programs can provide to help keep them in business. Entertainment, under our new Afin Technologies umbrella, has been growing exponentially since late 2019. We had just hired entire new groups of salespeople right before this happened and now, they are laser-focused on signing hundreds of new local offers all over the US and Canada. It’s tough out there now, but the bold improvements we made and new employees we added early in 2020 have enabled us to increase our merchant pool at a rate that is 21% higher than it was in 2019.

In addition to our local offer programs, we have chains and national merchants who are part of our network and we have teams working with them through this as well. They are there to serve their communities in new ways too with curbside pickup and touchless delivery. They are an integral part of our portfolio for the unique programs we build each client.

We Care – Stay Safe

We have just developed a new addition to current programs, free to our clients, called wecare-staysafe.com.  It is a site that provides deals from national merchants, but also offers a collection of interesting ways to enrich life at home. It provides a wide assortment of online learning opportunities and experiences—like virtual museum tours, a broad range of free learning for adults and children, wildlife live-cam sites from around the world, online food delivery options and even virtual roller coaster rides! It’s a fun bonus we created especially for our clients to inspire their customers and members during this socially distanced time.

Entertainment Can Assist in Countless Ways

Companies are all in the process of figuring out how best to communicate to customers through these changes. It’s an ongoing process that continues to evolve as the situation moves day by day.

Let Entertainment work with you to develop a customer engagement program that is unique for your business and your objectives. We can help you to create something that will resonate with your customers and provide value to them.

This is what we’ve been doing for decades. We are experts. There are very few companies out there doing what we do and of the ones you can find, we are the ones who do it most effectively. We are proud to be the original and the most trusted discount network.

We’re here. We’re adjusting as we move forward. We’re staffed up and ready to work with you, advise you and support you. Contact us so we can tell you more.

 

Learn more about Entertainment® Rewards & Incentives.