Monthly Archives: February 2013

Gordon Biersch Passport Rewards

Gordon Biersch Passport Rewards




This program has been around for a while. I recall joining this program back in 2009. Here’s a little background on the Gordon Biersch brand, from the company’s website:

What began over twenty years ago as a dream of bringing together fresh, handcrafted beer and made-from-scratch, world class cuisine – is today a reality at Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurants from coast to coast and across the Pacific to Hawaii and Taiwan.This dream of exceptional beer and delicious food became a reality on July 6, 1988 when the first Gordon Biersch opened in Palo Alto, California. Acquired by Big River Brewing Company in 1999, Gordon Biersch currently operates 33 restaurants in the United States, including Honolulu, Hawaii. Additionally, three Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurants operate in Taiwan. The Gordon Biersch heritage of superior beer, great food and good times are now being served up fresh daily.

Passport Rewards includes some of the expected in-restaurant reward options, but the program also includes the big-ticket reward options that are “aspirational.” A good way to keep big spenders engaged in the program – give them rewards to save for.

The Passport Rewards Program offers you even more ways to enjoy the Gordon Biersch experience.

  • $10 Welcome Value*
  • Invitations to Special “Member Only” Events
  • Birthday E-gifts Delivered Directly to Your Inbox
  • Special Double Point Offers

For every $1 you spend, you earn 1 Passport Point. Earn enough points and you can redeem them for rewards and prizes! The points you earn can be redeemed at anytime for rewards such as Gordon Biersch gift cards, brewer’s dinners, or a variety of fantasy vacations!

  • 100 Points — One Free Appetizer (up to $10 value) on your Passport Card
  • 200 Points — $15 Stored Value on your Passport Rewards Card
  • 350 Points — $25 Stored Value on your Passport Rewards Card
  • 500 Points — $50 Stored Value on your Passport Rewards Card
  • 750 Points — $80 Stored Value on your Passport Rewards Card

Stored Value Rewards are not valid for tax or gratuity and may not be combined with any other offer, discount, or prix fix meal. Stored Value Rewards are not available for cash or points if full value is not used. If a portion of the meal is paid for with a discount, gift certificate, or promotional gift card, Passport Points cannot be accrued for that portion of the check.

3000 Points — $300 Gift Certificate to L.L.Bean

* Enjoy a $300 gift certificate from L.L.Bean.

4000 Points — Brewer’s Dinner For Up To Ten People

Enjoy an all inclusive dinner package for up to ten people. Special entrees are prepared with our fresh brews and then perfectly paired to complement each course. Complimentary Brewery Tour is provided. *Event based upon restaurant availability. High volume nights (Thursday – Saturday) are blacked out unless approved by the restaurant’s General Manager.

6000 Points — Night On The Town For Two

Enjoy a special evening on the town, complements of Gordon Biersch. This package includes:

  • $100 Gift Card Reward for dinner at Gordon Biersch Brewery
  • All GBBRG Gift Card Rewards expire within one year from date of issuance. Gift Card Rewards are not valid for tax or gratuity and may not be combined with any other offer, discount, or prix fix meal. Gift Card Rewards are not available for cash or points if full value is not used.
  • One Night Hotel Stay For Two
  • Room and taxes are covered by GBBRG. All incidentals are sole responsibility of member. Accommodations determined by GBBRG based on availability. Double occupancy. All travel arrangements must be arranged 8-10 weeks prior to event.
  • Entertainment Tickets for Two
  • Entertainment Tickets are based on availability. Pre-determined selections may apply.

15,000 Points — Private Party Event For Up To 100 People

Enjoy an evening of fresh, handcrafted beer and premium made-from-scratch food…all served up in a fun and friendly atmosphere! This reward includes:

  • Private Party at Gordon Biersch
  • Private Party will be held in Private Dining Room based on availability. The party does not include tax or gratuity.

*Event based upon restaurant availability. High volume nights (Thursday – Saturday) are blacked out unless approved by the General Manager.

20,000 Points — Weekend Getaway

Enjoy a weekend getaway in Las Vegas, Miami, San Diego, or Honolulu. This escape package includes:

3 Day/2 Night Stay for Two

  • Room and taxes are covered by GBBRG. All incidentals are sole responsibility of member. Accommodations determined by GBBRG based on availability. Double occupancy based on Availability.
  • Round trip air transportation for two.
  • $200 Gift Card Reward for dinner at Gordon Biersch
  • All GBBRG Gift Card Rewards expire within one year from date of issuance. Gift Card Rewards are not valid for tax or gratuity and may not be combined with any other offer, discount, or prix fix meal. Gift Card Rewards are not available for cash or points if full value is not used. All travel arrangements must be arranged 3 months prior to event.

25,000 Points — Great American Beer Festival

Enjoy a long getaway to the Great American Beer Festival in Denver, Colorado. This trip package includes:

5 Day/ 4 Night stay for two

  • Room and taxes are covered by GBBRG. All incidentals are sole responsibility of member. Accommodations determined by GBBRG based on availability. Double occupancy based on availability. All travel arrangements must be arranged 8-10 weeks prior to event.
  • Round trip air transportation for two.
  • $250 Gift Card Reward for dinner at Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant
  • All GBBRG Gift Card Rewards expire within one year from date of issuance. Gift Card Rewards are not valid for tax or gratuity and may not be combined with any other offer, discount, or prix fix meal. Gift Card Rewards are not available for cash or points if full value is not used.
  • Two tickets into the Great American Beer Festival

30,000 Points — Fantasy Vacation For Two

Enjoy a week long getaway to “Oktoberfest” in Munich, Germany. This prize package includes:

7 Day/ 6 Night stay for two

  • Room and taxes are covered by GBBRG. All incidentals are sole responsibility of member. Accommodations determined by GBBRG based on availability. Double occupancy based on availability. All travel arrangements must be arranged 8-10 months prior to event.
  • Round trip air transportation for two.

For more information, visit the program website.

List of Restaurant Loyalty Rewards Programs – February 27, 2013

Couple Dining and Enjoying Restaurant Loyalty Rewards

Our latest list of restaurant loyalty programs. What are we missing? Please comment, tweet us or contact us.

BJs Brewhouse Premier Rewards

California Tortilla Burrito Elito

Carmelo’s Rewards

Champps Americana MVP League

Charlie Brown’s Steakhouse Handshake Club

Cheese Burger in Paradise Board Club

Copeland’s of New Orleans Lagniappe Club

Cosi CosiCard

Dave and Busters Rewards

Davinci Group Frequent Diner Club

Dunkin’ Donuts

Del Frisco’s Steak House Rewards

Don Pablos Habeneros Club

Duffy’s Sports Grill MVP

El Pollo Loco My Loco Rewards

Erbert and Gerbert’s Sandwich Society

Farrelli’s Pizza Fire Club

Freebirds Fanatic Rewards

Gastronomy Frequent Diner

Genghis Grill Khan’s Reward Kard

Gordon Biersch Passport Rewards

Grotto Pizza Swirl Rewards

Hard Rock Rewards

HWY 55 Burgers

J.P. Licks Cow Card

Kabuki Japanese Restaurant Red Mask Club

Kings Family Restaurants Royal Rewards

Kobe Japanese Steakhouse Kobe Rewards

LaMotta’s Italian – Belly Rewards

Landry’s Select Club

Lettuce Entertain You Frequent Diner Club

Levy Restaurants

Louisville Originals

Max & Ermas Good Neighbor Rewards

Max Restaurant Group Max Vantage

McCormick & Schmicks Rewards

Mellow Mushroom Beer Club

MOGL

Morton’s The Steakhouse

My Loyal Family

Old Chicago World Beer Tour

Ox & Pen Chicago

Outback Steakhouse My Outback Rewards

P.F. Changs Warrior Rewards

Pacifica Seafood Rewards

Panera Bread My Panera

Papa Gino’s Rewards/D’Angelo’s Rewards

Papa Johns Papa Rewards

Parasole Restaurant Holdings Dining Club

Phillip’s Seafood Friend’s of Phillips

Pita Pit Pit Card

Pizza Ranch Rewards

Qdoba Rewards

Red Mango Club Mango

Red Robin Red Royalty

Restaurant.com Rewards

Restaurants America Frequent Diner

Restaurants Unlimited Eat, Drink & Earn

Rewards Network

Rock Rewards

Ruby’s Diner Jitterbug Club

Smokey Bones Bones Club

Specialty Restaurants Loyalty Club

My Starbucks Rewards

Stoney River Legendary Rewards

Sullivan’s Steakhouse Rewards

TGI Friday’s Gimme More Stripes

The Counter The List

The Palm 837 Club

Tumbleweed Tex Mex Grill My Tumble Bucks

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing allows online merchants to expand their reach through a network of affiliates who send buyers to the merchant website in exchange for a commission on sales. I consider this to have some tangential connection to coalition loyalty programs because some such programs have used the concepts and mechanisms associated with affiliate marketing to track member purchases at partner websites so that members of the coalition earn a currency based on their purchases.

Affiliate marketing is a bit mysterious and below the radar if you haven’t done any work in the space, whether on the merchant side or one the affiliate side. If you examine online retailers, you’ll find that a larger percentage have affiliate marketing programs. These programs are enabled and powered by affiliate networks such as CJ (formerly known as Commission Junction), Linkshare, Avantlink, Shareasale and others.

Some examples of merchants using affiliate marketing include:

1-800 Lighting
Bedding Style
Carolina Rustica
Discount Filter Store
Goedekers
Modern Bathroom
Pet Care Supplies
Reeds Jewelers
Safety Glasses USA
Brooks Running
eBags

A VISUAL OF AFFILIATE MARKETING



How Affiliate Marketing Works




METHODS OF PROMOTING MERCHANTS

Merchants will provide visual ads in a variety of typical sizes for website and affiliates may use those in various places on their website, directing traffic to the merchant. The links providing tracking through a redirect so that affiliates can see how many clicks they are generating and ultimately how much sales they are generating and commissions they are earning.

AD EXAMPLES

DATA FEEDS

For more advanced affiliates, some merchants provide large “data feeds” with all of their products, descriptions, images and links that take the visitor directly to the product page on the merchant’s website.

BASIC EXAMPLES

For instance, a list of some links that go to simple pages illustrating how a data feed may be deployed.

From 1-800-Lighting

2 Thousand Degrees |
Access Lighting |
Alternating Current |
Ambience |
American Brass and Crystal |
Artcraft |
Arteriors Home |
Artistic Lighting |
Bailey Street |
Batalion |
Butler Specialty |
Capital Lighting |
Casablanca |
Chelsea House |
Cooper Classics |
Corbett Lighting |
Craftmade |
Crystorama |
CSL Lighting |
Currey and Company |
Cyan Design |
Dale Tiffany |
Designers Fountain |
Dimond Lighting |
Dolan Designs |
EGLO Lighting |
Elan |
Elegant Lighting |
ELK Lighting |
Emerson |
ET2 Lighting |
Eurofase Lighting |
Fanimation |
Fine Art Lamps |
Forecast |
Framburg |
Frederick Cooper |
Fredrick Ramond |
Geometrix by Schonbek |
Golden Lighting |
HGTV |
Hinkley Lighting |
Holtkotter |
Home Solutions |
Howard Elliott |
Hudson Valley |
Hunter Fan |
James R Moder |
Jonathan Adler |
Justice Design Group |
Kathy Ireland Home |
Kendal Lighting |
Kenroy Home |
Kichler |
Koncept |
Kovacs |
Landmark Lighting |
Laura Ashley Home |
LBL Lighting |
Lite Source |
Liv Lighting |
Livex Lighting |
Maxim Lighting |
Metropolitan |
Minka Aire |
Minka Lavery |
Modern Fan Company |
Modern Forms |
Monte Carlo |
Murray Feiss |
Norwell |
Nuvo Lighting |
Oggetti Luce |
Pacific Coast Lighting |
Period Arts Fan Company |
Philips Luminaires |
PLC Lighting |
Progress Lighting |
Quoizel |
Quorum International |
Robert Abbey |
Savoy House |
Schonbek |
Sea Gull Lighting |
Sonneman |
Sterling Industries |
Steven and Chris |
Stylicon |
Swarovski |
Tech Lighting |
Thomas Lighting |
Thomasville Lighting |
Tommy Bahama |
Trend Lighting |
Troy Lighting |
Trump Home |
Uttermost |
Van Teal |
Vanilla Ice Lighting |
Varaluz |
WAC Lighting |
Waterford Lighting |
Wildwood |
Wilmette Lighting Company |

From Discount Filter Store

3M |
3M Purification, Inc |
Amana |
Aprilaire |
Aqua Fresh |
Aquamira Technologies |
Aqua-Pure |
Aquatec |
ARCHETYPE LTD |
Aries |
Axeon |
Better Water Industries |
BevGuard |
Body Glove |
Bojie Tech |
Bosch |
Brita |
Brondell |
Built NY |
Calgon |
Camco Manufacturing |
Clack |
Claris |
Crystal Quest |
Culligan |
Cuno |
Daewoo |
Digiflow |
Duracell |
EcoWater |
EK USA |
Electrolux |
Emerson |
Everpure |
Fairey Industrial Ceramics |
Filmtec |
Filtrex |
Fisher & Paykel |
Flojet |
Frigidaire |
GE |
GE Osmonics |
Geocel |
Golden Ventures |
Good Water Warehouse |
H2O International |
Haier |
Halsey Taylor |
Harmsco |
HM Digital |
Home Revolution |
Honeywell |
Hoshizaki |
Hydrologic |
Hydronix |
Hydros Bottle |
Hydrotech |
Ice-O-Matic |
Inline Water Filters |
Innova |
Instapure |
Jarden |
Joneca Corporation |
Jura |
Katadyn |
Klean Kanteen |
Kohler |
KX Technologies |
LG |
Liebherr |
Liquatec |
Magic American |
Manitowoc |
Maytag |
MicroFilter |
Moen |
National Testing Laboratories |
Northgate Distribution |
Nubo Bottle |
OmniFilter |
Omnipure |
Pentair Water |
Pentek |
PetSafe |
Pleatco |
Pro Products |
Procter & Gamble |
Protect Plus |
PUR |
Pura |
Purolite |
QMP |
Rainshow’r |
ReplacementBrand |
Rusco |
Samsung |
Scotsman |
Sears |
Sensafe |
SerVaas Laboratories |
Seychelle |
Silver Lake Research |
Sprite Industries |
SteriPEN |
Sub-Zero |
Summit Brands |
Supco |
Superb |
Swift |
Tier1 |
TST Water |
Viking |
Viqua |
WaterBrick |
WaterSafe |
Watts |
Watts Flomatic |
Whirlpool |
Zero Technologies |

Loyalogy Unveils Loyalty Program Roadmap For Sagging Restaurant Sales

Restaurant Owner with a Big Idea

 

 

Asheville, NC, February 25, 2013 – Loyalogy, provider of loyalty program consulting and analysis services to the restaurant industry and publisher of the LoyaltyPulse research study on consumer attitudes about restaurant loyalty rewards programs, announced its Loyalty Program Roadmap for Sagging Restaurant Sales.

“Restaurant companies have been hit by a perfect storm of economic conditions causing a downturn in sales in early 2013.  This step-by-step, how-to guide helps restaurant companies with existing loyalty programs develop and implement successful promotions that leverage the data from their program,” said Dennis Duffy, President of Loyalogy.

The roadmap includes specific guidelines regarding how to analyze the data from a loyalty program and provides examples of the types of promotions most likely to generate incremental sales.  The roadmap is organized into five sections:

  1. Conduct a quick analysis of behavior among members of your customer loyalty program.
  2. Construct several offer ideas that provide extra motivation for loyalty program members to visit your restaurant instead of one of the other choices they have within your category.  Turn these ideas into limited-time promotions and select targeted members from the population of your loyalty program.
  3. Withhold a control group so you can determine the incremental sales generated by the programs.
  4. Implement the promotions and measure results against the control group daily.
  5. At the completion of the promotion, assess to determine the best performers.  Modify as necessary and incorporate periodic (not perpetual) promotions to enhance the effectiveness of your loyalty program in good times as well as bad times.

Read the complete roadmap report at the Loyalogy Website.

ABOUT LOYALOGY

Founded by Dennis Duffy, with more than twenty years of experience developing, managing and analyzing customer loyalty programs, Loyalogy provides loyalty program development, consulting, project management and database analysis services to restaurant companies.  Loyalogy is also the publisher of the LoyaltyPulse research study which finds that restaurant rewards programs may increase guest visits by as much as 35%.  For more information, visit www.loyalogy.com.

CONTACT

Dennis Duffy – President, Loyalogy, Inc. at 828-333-5860 or dennis@loyalogy.com.

View and Download the Complete LoyaltyPulse Restaurant Rewards Study

DOWNLOAD A PDF OF THE LOYALTYPULSE STUDY

Click here to download a PDF of the LoyaltyPulse Study.

Loyalty Program Roadmap for Sagging Restaurant Sales

Restaurant Owner with a Big Idea

A PERFECT STORM

A perfect storm of negative economic factors has caused a downturn in restaurant sales beginning mid-January 2013.  For restaurant companies with existing loyalty programs, this is the time to act deliberately and strategically to leverage the potential of the program to help weather the downturn.

Restaurant loyalty rewards programs are strategic, not merely tactical.  They create a tie-breaker in the mind of the consumer and generate incremental visits that consumer research shows may amount to a 35% (see the LoyaltyPulse Study).  As a byproduct of a loyalty program, restaurant companies accumulate transaction-level customer data that is of vital importance in understanding and influencing guest behavior.  It’s always important for companies to use this information wisely, but it’s especially important in a sales downturn as restaurant companies seek to:

  • Understand the composition of the sales downturn.
    • How much is a result of existing guests coming in fewer times?
    • How much is a result of existing guests coming in as much but spending less?
    • How much is a result of fewer new guests trying the restaurant for the first time?
    • Develop data-driven marketing tactics that increase sales among loyalty program members in a manner that is measureable.

DELIBERATE, MEANINGFUL AND MEASUREABLE ACTION

One of the best ways to address current guests is through an existing customer loyalty program.   Following is a roadmap for action:

  1. Conduct a quick analysis of behavior among members of your customer loyalty program.
  2. Construct several offer ideas that provide extra motivation for loyalty program members to visit your restaurant instead of one of the other choices they have within your category.  Turn these ideas into limited-time promotions and select targeted members from the population of your loyalty program.
  3. Withhold a control group so you can determine the incremental sales generated by the programs.
  4. Implement the promotions and measure results against the control group daily.
  5. At the completion of the promotions, assess to determine the best performing promotions.  Modify as necessary and incorporate periodic (not perpetual) promotions to enhance the effectiveness of your loyalty program in good times as well as bad times.

Targeted promotions conducted through a loyalty program are superior for several reasons.  [Note, this assumes the more traditional model of loyalty programs in which there is something such as points accumulated over time that convert to value, rather than programs that are based on periodic surprises.]

  • Promotions conducted through a loyalty program typically include offers that are built around the “currency” of the loyalty program (points or whatever you call the currency in your program).  Promotions that use this currency encourage more future visits because the more value a member accumulates, the greater motivation the member has to come back to reach the next reward.  It creates what is known as a “cost of defection.”  I lose something if I stop coming back.
  • Promotions conducted through a loyalty program typically do not include an immediate discount.  Instead they use the deferred value that is a principle of many loyalty programs.  Members must continue to visit to accumulate enough to reach rewards of value (or experience the previously described cost of defection).  This constitutes the tie-breaker characteristic of a loyalty program.  As consumers cut back and visit less, they still visit.  The restaurant that provides them with the great value gets a greater share of the visits from that consumer in the restaurant category.

STEP 1 – QUICK ANALYSIS

Companies with loyalty programs have the ability to examine guest-behavior in detail and understand customers far better than those without loyalty programs.  Unfortunately, many marketers fall into the classic trap of relying upon simple statistics that disguise the genuine diversity of your guest base.

Using averages to describe the behavior of a larger group of people (such as members of a loyalty program) can be a handy way to provide a sound bite metric (“our members come in about five times per year”).  However, averages are of no use in trying to understand unique groups and how best to encourage incremental visits from those groups.  Furthermore, averages lie.  Averages lead one to believe that most people come to your restaurant about the average number of times, when in fact very few come in the average number of times.  If the average is five visits per year, there are many who come in one, two or three times and quite a few who come in ten or more times.

The best way to understand the behavior of your loyalty program members is through segmentation analysis.  The best measure of what a guest will do in the future is what they have done in the past.  That is a fact.  If you haven’t conducted a segmentation analysis of your membership base on a regular basis, now is the time to do so; quickly and expeditiously.

Gather past guest visit transaction data from your loyalty program database.  At least six months but preferably one year.  No matter what loyalty technology platform you’re running on, there will be a way to get your hands on historical details of individual guest visit transactions.  At a minimum for a quick analysis you’ll need the following items for each guest visit:

  • Member number.  Every member of a loyalty program has some unique identification number within your system.
  • Transaction date.
  • Amount spent.
  • Member activation/enrollment date (the date upon which a member started participating in your loyalty program – used to understand those who are relatively new versus those who are more tenured).

There are many other data elements you might use in a more comprehensive segmentation analysis, but these are adequate for a quick analysis under the pressure of sagging sales.  Summarize visits and spending by member over the past year.  Group into segments based upon common-sense visit counts.  If you’ve heard of ‘deciles’ – set that concept aside.  Grouping members into ten equally-size segments (equal either by counts or spending) is a method used in ancient direct marketing efforts, but visit segmentation in a restaurant setting must make common sense and have fewer segments.

Shoot for 4-6 segments and think about a simple way to organize.  The example used here applies to a casual-dining restaurant and has a higher frequency and lower spend per visit than a fine dining restaurant (those differences represent a subject for a much longer examination than may be accomplished here).  The principles of segmentation apply regardless of the type of restaurant and its associated visit frequency and average check, but the numbers can be quite different.  This is just one example for the purposes of this exercise.  The decisions you make may vary, but this provides an example of the methodology which combines some analytics with common sense and the ever-present principle of “let’s not over-think this.”

Consider this approach to grouping the segments:

  • Those with just one visit.  This will be a large group.  It’s a classic challenge in loyalty programs to get those with one visit to have the second visit, the third and so forth.
  • Those with “a few” visits.  These might be newer members ramping up, or those who come in less that once per quarter.
  • Those who come in with more regularity, but not necessarily “regulars.”  Quarterly or more, but far short of monthly.
  • Those who appear to have a pattern for more frequent than quarterly, but the pattern is not quite monthly.
  • Those whose pattern of frequency appears to be monthly or more frequent.

Using some fictitious data, the segmentation grid might look like this.  Note we’ve included a simple letter code to identify each segment so that it’s easier to refer to later in this roadmap.

Restaurant Loyalty Program Segmentation Example

This single-page summary of member behavior can, by itself, be eye-opening if you haven’t conducted such analysis on your program in the past.  The more important characteristic of such a segmentation model is its ability to help you break down the challenge into smaller pieces.  There are no silver bullets in marketing, although many still seek the single big idea that will catapult them to success or pull them out of a crisis.  Real success comes from a comprehensive array of strategies and tactics that are measured and continually improved.  Measurement ensures a method to your madness and helps you avoid the old saying, “I don’t know where we’re going, but we’re making good time.”

STEP 2 – CREATE OFFERS AND DEFINE TARGETED RECIPIENTS

So what do we do with these groups?  We construct promotional offers that are in the context of the loyalty program.  The natural approach for restaurant operators during times of sagging sales is to create menu-item based promotions combined with discounts to drive traffic.  Such promotions are important for attracting new guests (loyalty programs rarely attract new guests, but instead engage those new guests after they have experienced the restaurant for the first time).

Here’s what we might want to do with these groups:

  • Segments A and B (lower frequency).  Let’s present these groups with a strong, but short-term offer.  Double points on all purchases for 30 days.
  • Segments C, D and E (higher frequency).  Let’s present these groups with an offer that is not quite as strong, but with a longer duration.  A 50% bonus on all purchases for 60 days.

The double point bonus for the lower frequency segments helps to get those guests more engaged and potentially build a strong pattern for the future.  The 50% bonus for the more frequent guests who are already engaged with the program encourages those members to consolidate as many of their casual-dining visits with your restaurant versus the other competitors that are in their consideration set.  In tough economic times that create sagging restaurant sales, consumers seek maximum value.  These promotions create maximum value.

These promotions are not broadcast to your entire customer base.  They are delivered via e-mail directly to each selected member.  The offer is not made public; it’s presented as “an exclusive, limited-time offer for you”.  The mechanical process of awarding the bonuses is something configured within your loyalty program technology platform.  Assuming you are operating within a platform that has the expected functionality in today’s loyalty landscape, this shouldn’t be a terribly complicated configuration process.

STEP 3 – WITHHOLD A CONTROL GROUP

How can we determine how well this works?  Use the time-tested process employed with scientific experiments and many marketing programs: a control group.  A control group is a randomly-selected group, extracted from a larger group.  Those who are selected to receive the offer are considered the “test group” while those who are withheld at random and do not receive the offer are considered the “control group.”  While analyzing the performance of the program, the test group is compared to the control group.  The only difference between the two is that one group received the offer while the other group did not.  Therefore, any difference between the behaviors of the two groups may be conclusively attributed to the promotion itself.

Here’s an example of a matrix that includes the counts in the test groups and the control groups.  We have used 25% as the control group percentage.  Decisions about control group size are often made with a combination of statistics to determine margin of error for comparisons, combined with a dose of pragmatism.

Restaurant Loyalty Program Test and Control Group Matrix Example

STEP 4 – IMPLEMENT AND MEASURE

Once you have the mechanical process of handling the bonus points configured in your loyalty program technology platform and you have the language and creative content developed for your targeted e-mails, you’re ready to finalize the selection of your test and control groups and get this deployed.  Once the promotions have been deployed, measure regularly rather than waiting until the promotions have completed.  A daily review is not uncommon.

Now is the time to elaborate on the process of comparing the results of the test and control groups.  If the two are the same size, it’s relatively easy.  Just compare total visits and total spending from one to another and you’re done.  However, it’s often the case that the two are not the same size, so we should explain the nuance of making such comparisons.

Because in this case the control group is smaller than the test group, the spending and visits for the control group must be normalized.  The normalization process takes the rate of spending and visits in the control group and extrapolates those rates as if the control was the same size as the test group.

  • Take the total spending and visits in the control group and divide by the size (number of members) of the control group.  This yields spending per member and visits per member in the control group.
  • Multiply the control group spending per member and visits per member by the size (number of members) in the test group.  This yields the extrapolated total spending and total visits as if the control group was the same size as the test group.

Restaurant Loyalty Program Test versus Control Analysis Example

STEP 5 – PROMOTION COMPLETION: ASSESS, QUANTIFY AND LEARN

Once the promotional period has completed, conduct a final review seven days after the conclusion.  In this final review, break down the test and control evaluation among the five different segments (A, B, C, D and E).  Analyze the seven days after the end of the promotion because it is not uncommon to experience a “halo effect,” describing the phenomenon in which the test outperforms the control group for a short period after the conclusion of the promotion.  Promotions such as these will almost always generate incremental sales; it’s just a question of how much incremental sales.  A typical range to expect is 5% to 15%.  One additional element of cost to include in your final analysis is the cost of the extra points.  If, for instance, your program has what appears to be a “face value” rewards percentage of 10% (you earn one point per dollar and 100 points converts to a $10 reward; 200 points converts to $20, etc.) and your food cost is 30%, then for planning purposes you can assume that a point has a $.03 (that’s three cents) cost value.  NOTE: the face value of a point is $.10 (ten cents) because in this example 100 points = $10, so one point = $.10 (ten cents).  But the actual cost is the food cost percentage.  Using 30% in this example, 30% of $.10 (ten cents) is $.03 (three cents).

You’ll learn a great deal from this test.  The most important thing you’ll learn is how to go through the process from analysis through planning and execution and measurement.  This can be done quickly these days.  It shouldn’t take months to get something going; more like a couple of weeks.  Once you’re proficient at this it will be second nature and you should test promotions periodically in a quest to outperform the last great promotion you ran.  The key is to not execute these promotions on a predictable schedule.

ABOUT CHECK-LEVEL DETAIL

If you have check-level detail data (each individual item on the check) that is accessible through your loyalty platform, you may be tempted to develop a highly individualized approach to this.  Proceed with caution.  If you are more advanced in your analytic and marketing efforts, you may find success with this.  However, when you’re in the early stages of developing your proficiency with the analytics, planning, execution and measurement it’s best to keep it relatively simple.  Once you have benchmarked the incremental spending you experience with the relatively simple approach and decide to put your toe in the water and try something more complicated using check detail, you’ll have a point of comparison.  Does the more complicated approach generate a better return?  If so, does the incremental return adequately compensate for the additional resource (time, money) consumption associated with the more complicated approach?

SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT ON THE TERM ‘LOYALTY’

Some may read this and say “that’s not real loyalty – that’s just transactional loyalty.”  There’s quite a bit of this discussion that goes on with many of the people who operate in the conceptual loyalty space.  I’ve seen plenty written and I’ve heard plenty of speeches that state idealistic beliefs about the relationship between a brand and its customers.  Some describe a level of loyalty that a husband has towards his wife or that a German shepherd has towards its person.  Granted, there are some who absolutely love a company they do business with.  Those are the rare customers that are ambassadors of a brand and spread the word but they do not by themselves make up a population that can come close to supporting that business.  For the lion’s share of customers, a brand satisfies a need for them in a manner that develops into a positive feeling about the brand, but that brand, in most cases, gets a share of that customer’s spending rather than all of that customer’s spending.  That is very much the case in the restaurant business.  And that’s the reality of the application of loyalty marketing in the restaurant business.  That’s a fact.

P.F. Chang’s Warrior Card

P.F. Chang's Mobile Loyalty App




The Warrior Card loyalty/rewards program offered by P.F. Chang’s China Bistro falls into the category of “surprise and delight” as described by the company itself. First, a little background on the brand itself, from the company’s website:

At P.F. Chang’s we are committed to providing you with an exceptional dining experience every time you walk through our doors. Each dish on our menu is prepared to order using the freshest and highest quality ingredients.

At P.F. Chang’s you are surrounded by a unique environment combining influences of Chinese and American cultures. A panoramic, hand-painted mural depicting 12th century China, is visible from the main dining room and commands attention as the restaurant’s centerpiece, while several terra-cotta warriors stand guard.

Our majestic 11 ft. tall horses grace the entrance to many of our restaurants. The horse symbolizes the original Forbidden City in China, which was built for China’s first emperor Qin Shi Huangdi.

These elements showcase the cuisine and create a stylish, comfortable, upbeat dining experience for our guests.

And some facts about the program, which is integrated with a mobile app to make it easy to order online and ensure credit for your Warrior Card program participation:

BACKGROUND

The spirit of Warrior® Rewards is to thank you for choosing P.F. Chang’s and provide you, the guest, with rewards that will surprise and delight.

How does Warrior® Rewards work?

The Warrior Rewards® program allows you to receive Rewards for dining with us. These Rewards may not be identified to you in advance.

There are a few ways you can participate in Warrior® Rewards.

  • Get a plastic Warrior® Rewards card at any participating P.F. Chang’s location in the Continental United States. In order to receive Rewards, you must register your card online here. When you visit us simply present your plastic card to your server and they will swipe it and you’ll receive credit for that visit.
  • Get a plastic Warrior® Rewards card as mentioned above, but instead of giving the actual card to your server to swipe, you can tell them the card number.
  • Sign up for Warrior® Rewards on our website or from our Mobile App. If you participate this way you will use the phone number registered to your account as your account ID and provide that to your server when you dine with us. You will also be issued a virtual card number, which you can see when you login to your account. If you want to jot that number down and present that to your server you are welcome to do so. All options, when presented to your server, will allow you to get credit for your visit.

For more information on the P.F. Chang’s Warrior card program, visit the program website. For more information on P.F. Chang’s, visit the company website.

Pizza Ranch Rewards

Ranch Rewards




Pizza Ranch, with more than 170 locations across the Midwestern United States offers its ‘Ranch Rewards’ program.

Ranch Rewards® gives you points for every dollar you spend on qualifying food and beverages at participating Pizza Ranch® locations. Here’s the skinny on how it works:

  • Points are rounded up or down to the nearest dollar. Let’s say you had a fabulous time at Pizza Ranch® and spent $24.50; you’d receive 25 Ranch Rewards® points with that purchase.
  • When you accumulate 75 points we automatically convert those points to a $5.00 reward on your Ranch Rewards® card.
  • Rewards may be redeemed at any participating Pizza Ranch® location and can be used in conjunction with most other deals we offer.
  • As a special bonus, Ranch Rewards® members automatically receive a $5 birthday bonus added to their card the Monday prior to their birthday. The birthday bonus will expire 30 days after being issued.

Learn more about this program at the Ranch Rewards Website.  Learn more about the company at the Pizza Ranch Website.

WHAT’S HAPPENING RIGHT NOW AT PIZZA RANCH


Restaurant.com Selects Badgeville to Reward Customer Loyalty Using Gamification



Restaurant.com Selects Badgeville to Reward Customer Loyalty Using Gamification (via PR Newswire)

Nation’s largest dining deals site launches new rewards program powered by the #1 gamification platform to increase social loyalty REDWOOD CITY, Calif. and ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill., Feb. 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Badgeville, the #1 gamification platform, and Restaurant.com, the nation’s largest dining…

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