Posts Tagged ‘B2B gift cards’

Get Social with Employee Engagement

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

Social media has become and integral part of all of our lives, whether we like it or not. Using social media to engage employees can be a great tool, it’s become a staple for many Americans in their day to day routine and requires voluntary participation by definition. Here are four great ways to use social media to stimulate employee engagement, no matter your organizations size.

  1. Solicit Feedback: Use social tools to solicit feedback from your employees. It doesn’t have to be public or identifiable to any one employee. Sending out an anonymous survey where employees can track the results in real time can make them feel like their voice is being heard and gives you the chance to see where the majority public opinion lies.
  2. Respect Privacy: Not all employees are social, or will want to use social outlets for certain topics. For employees who aren’t comfortable using these channels, make sure you provide private outlets to engage in a way that works for them. No two employees will engage exactly the same way, listen to your people and give them what they want.
  3. Score Yourself: Set goals for employee engagement, and adjust your program as you go. If it falls flat in the first iteration, follow up with engaged employees offline and find out what’s going on. An employee engagement program can’t be successful without the employees’ buy in. Be flexible, make adjustments and optimize.
  4. Reward Participation: When employees engage in the program you’ve outlined, reward them! If one employee sees another get a gift card to a popular retailer like AutoZone, Crutchfield or CVS/pharmacy, it’s safe to assume the desired behavior will be repeated.

For more information on how to make your employee engagement program social, check out Incentive Magazine’s guide.

2013 Key Holiday Gift Card Trends

Wednesday, December 11th, 2013

The Retail Gift Card Association (RGCA) recently released their Holiday Gift Card Trend Tracker Survey results, and there are some great notes for our retail and merchant clients, and for our B2B gift card customers as well.

How are retailers approaching this year’s news that consumers will spend less during the holidays  this year than last? The RGCA states, “…despite the tight wallets, there is a silver lining for many retailers: retail gift cards.” They found in their survey that 73% of consumers will spend less this holiday shopping season, while 74% will buy and give at least one, and as many as five, gift cards as gifts.

GCP’s customers, B2B gift card buyers, purchase gift cards in bulk and can also be pleased with these trends. Whatever consumers are doing, B2B buyers will want to be aware of and follow suit.

Key Trends for Retail Gift Cards graphic

 

Whether you are a retailer looking for the latest gift card trends
or a B2B gift card buyer, you’ll want to
check out the RGCA’s Full White Paper and Report.

 

6 Misconceptions About eGift Cards

Wednesday, November 13th, 2013

At GiftCard Partners, we have been working hard to help gift card brands navigate the complicated eGifting technology landscape in their journey to offer eGift Cards. We’ve found that even though retailers accept that they will find new incremental gift card sales with early adoption, they have not rushed to do so. Forbes.com reports 70% of the retailers, recently evaluated in a CashStar study, now offer digital or “eGift cards”. This is up from 60% in 2011 and 40% in 2010. This is good news for consumers as we rely more and more on technology to organize our lives, but for retailers looking to offer eGift cards in the B2B marketplace; technology is a bit more complicated.

But let’s get back to the important questions retailers ask themselves of their gift card program when preparing to go digital…”should we offer eGift cards yet?” Or “should we be early adopters or should we wait for other retailers to figure it out”? Chain Store Age online offers us their Top 6 Misconceptions About eGift Cards and debunks them. Click to read on, the rebuttals, it will surprise you!

1. “eGift Cards will only cannibalize our existing gift card sales”
2. “Fraud in eGift Cards is too pervasive”
3. “Our IT department can build this internally”
4. “The technology is unproven”
5. “Customer adoption isn’t there yet”
6. “New hardware will be required in all stores”

If you are a retailer looking to “go digital” with your gift cards, Gift Card Partners can help with our RFP  Management service. We embrace the tricky work of renegotiating existing vendor relationships, and help retailers implementing new relationships, with: card supplies, processors, payment systems providers, and more.  >>Learn more about our Services Suite designed to improve your gift card program.

Retail Trends Shift Towards Corporate Gift Cards

Monday, November 11th, 2013

It’s no secret that corporate incentives are a hot topic for retailers and merchants this year, and adding fuel to that fire is the release of the Incentive Federation’s “Incentive Market Study” this week. The study showed that U.S. businesses are spending nearly $77 billion on employee rewards and incentives in the form of travel, merchandise and gift cards.

Corporate gift card programs are shifting to be an important retail trend, as B2B gift cards not only open up another avenue for incremental sales growth, but they also act as a catalyst for customer acquisition, brand growth and bulk buying.

As one of largest developers of corporate gift card programs, GiftCard Partners helps our clients navigate through this fast growing and high demanding corporate market. Interested in learning more about building your presence in with B2B customers? We’d love to hear from you!

Corporate Gift Cards: HOT topic for the 2013 Incentive Roundtable

Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

Incentive Magazine gathered professionals from across the motivation, recognition, travel, and rewards spectrum to come together for a discussion on the state of the incentive industry. Corporate gift cards, or, gift cards used in the corporate environment portion of the B2B marketplace was a hot topic!

In their interview, Incentive Magazine posed the question, “How is the gift card market doing?,” the panel had some interesting views on corporate gift card use.

  • Gift card denominations are decreasing, being used more for a tool that rewards behavior, as micro rewards or incentives
  • Reward and incentive program participants are choosing gift cards over cash seven-to-one
  • Gift cards are outweighing other staple rewards like iPad bundles and travel vouchers, with 75-80% of recipients opting for the gift card

Read the full article from Incentive Magazine here.

GiftCard Partners U.S. Survey on Gift Card Usage On-Demand Webcast

Monday, October 28th, 2013

Please join GiftCard Partners (GCP) as we present results from a U.S. poll we commissioned with Shapiro Research to gain a pulse on gift card usage featuring Melina Balboni, vice president marketing and business development, GCP. Attendees will learn about:

  • Incidence and frequency of gift card receipt and redemption
  • New insight on how gift cards motivate store visits and purchases
  • Gift cards acquired through B2B channels, and
  • The answer to the all-important question: do gift cards generate incremental business for merchants?

Proud of New England, Proud of our Client – CVS Caremark

Wednesday, May 22nd, 2013

I’m a native Rhode Islander and proud that CVS hails from Little Rhodie. I’m also a Boston Lover, living in Boston proper and the suburbs for almost 20 years. I love seeing generosity for special support projects, but this one touches our hearts at GiftCard Partners with our headquarters located approximately ½ through the Boston Marathon Route. CVS/pharmacy is our client and we seek to represent the best of the best retailers in the U.S. to promote and sell their gift cards into the B2B market.

We are very proud of how our client has stepped up in support of the victims and families affected by the Boston bombings. CVS Caremark and CVS/pharmacy has donated over $750,000 to The One Fund Boston.

Proud to be local to this wonderful place and all the companies and people willing to help! Check out: CVS Caremark Donates Over $750,000 to The One Fund Boston Month-long in-store fundraising campaign in Boston-area CVS/pharmacy locations raises more than $650,000 to support victims of Boston Marathon attack CVS Caremark’s private foundation previously donated $100,000 to The One Fund Boston

Meeting the Challenge of the RIGHT Incentives for Employee Recognition

Wednesday, March 20th, 2013

An increasingly diverse and remote workforce brings many challenges to management teams when strategizing and coordinating employee programs such as employee recognition programs. Layer on that the need for employers to show their recognition of workplace diversity and appreciation for individualism, and the challenges multiply. This is why employers increasingly offer gift cards as incentives and rewards within employee recognition programs, as the recipients can redeem with their own choices.

The IGCC rounds it up well: “gift cards empower the recipient with the right to choose the item that most motivates himself or herself”.  Ceridian states that 8 out of 10 employees prefer gift cards over other incentives. This preference rewards for hard work they’ve done and motivates them to keep it up. The simplicity of gift cards has also helps management deliver programs quicker and with relevance and care to the participants. There is a significant time savings in the decision making process…..another important cost savings benefit of gift cards.

Also important; purchasing gift cards in bulk offers employers volume discounts. Learn more about how gift cards are used as corporate wellness incentives, healthcare program incentives, and loyalty rewards.









Corporate Wellness Programs – Impressive Results

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

HealthyAmericans.org reports some pretty impressive corporate wellness program successes, like:

  • For every workplace wellness dollar spend, health care costs fall by about $3.27
  • Productivity increases
  • Absenteeism costs fall by approximately $2.37

This knowledge has led to more than 90% of large employers to add at least 1 benefit to their package and more than 60% of smaller employers to do the same.

Since employees and their  dependents’ health is largely affected by at home and out-side of the office factors, the site’s article also reminds us that corporate wellness programs can only go so far.

Have you considered using this fact to promote health during off-working-hour times? You can do this by providing health and wellness incentives such as gift cards to healthy retailers and merchants, such as CVS/pharmacy, Whole Foods Market, GNC, and Boston Market, where families can get fast, yet well rounded meals.

Learn more about “healthy incentives” and get your workforce on a healthy track, in and out of the workplace.

Source and read more: Trust for America’s Health: Employee Wellness: Beyond 9-to-5





GCP’s Top B2B Gift Card Brand Goes Undercover to be the Best

Monday, February 11th, 2013

Undercover cooking talent and reality restaurant shows are on the top of Food Network, lifestyle networks and even major networks these days, and our client Boston Market is taking this opportunity to capture their service and operations issues in order to remain – THE BEST, while growing their brand.

GiftCard Partners prides itself in offering America’s top gift card brands to loyalty & rewards programs, health and wellness programs, and corporate incentive programs and we love to see our brands in action. Check out Boston Market’s Chief Brand Officer go undercover, to protect one of their core values – “Love to Serve”. This reality show is entirely entertaining and at times, shocking and sweet, as CBS.com’s Undercover Boss features Boston Market’s path to improve.

Watch the full episode and see a few lives change in big ways for each of the great employees featured.

On a personal & professional level; I find Sara Bittorf’s commitment to her marketing & brand protection responsibility very brave and really inspiring. Sara – You rock! Not just because we work with Boston Market, but you embody the commitment and risk that marketers need to take to protect the companies they care for and work hard for. Follow this show on Twitter @undercoverboss1 and follow Boston Market @bostonmarket