Incentives are a great way to motivate consumer behavior and to get them to repeat those actions. But, why? Companies know incentives work to increase acquisition, but there is little research into the real motivation behind the ‘why’. One explanation about why incentives are a great motivator in general from the best-seller Freakonomics.
“An incentive is simply a means of urging people to do more of a good thing and less of a bad thing. But most incentives don’t come about organically. Someone, an economist or a politician or a parent—has to invent them.”
Your company knows incentives work, but someone still has to create the promotional program and choose the actual incentives. So, the question then becomes not what motivates consumers but how do you capitalize on that motivation? Here are several key ways to try.
Find What Motivates Your Consumers
According to a recent research study from the University of Chicago, a key struggle for organizations looking to increase conversions, in regards to any incentive or rewards program is identifying which incentives to implement. This will also be a big factor in predicting the success of the initiative and what your company’s ROI on it will be. Since your consumers are typically a variety of cultural, socioeconomic, and geographic constituencies. This is important to consider when researching what motivates them since what motivates audience B is not necessarily going to be the same of audience A, and therefore your incentive program needs to correspond accordingly.
Motivate Your Consumers with Integrity
Once you finally decide what the actual incentives will be and the core motivation for each one, it is also important to make sure you are honest with your company’s customers and do not use promotions as a way to mislead them. For example, do not promise a customer who buys $X amount of a product a travel gift card for a 7-day trip to the Caribbean when what you are really offering is $150 off the purchase of a trip. Your customer may complete the initial sale but they will be upset over the inaccuracy of the incentive and this will hurt your company in the long-term.
Therefore, it is important to invest in an effective and genuine program and scam-proof your promotional strategy. Once your consumers are done with interacting with your company and go to use their incentive it must offer real value, not just empty promises.
Best Incentives that Motivate
If your company wants to either enter the incentive program business or increase conversions and up its game with your current strategies, it is also important to figure out what other companies have done that worked really well. You have to offer incentives that are practical for your consumers but also attractive. If your company’s customers are willing to change their consumer behavior, they will expect an appropriate reward.
Below are some successful ideas that can be used across industries:
- Provide unique experiences through travel gift cards.
- Offer multi-channel promotions, including print, text, social media, and email.
- Hold random drawings for exclusive gift cards during peak times, like the holidays.
- Explore the idea of limited time special offers for one-off testing experiences. This will help you identify areas of opportunity and to test if your consumer’s motivations are changing.
- Strategically message your consumers on different mediums and in public high-volume areas.
Things to Remember
It is really personalization and adding extra value that matter most with consumers. By thinking outside the box and offering customized incentives, your company can reinforce the idea that it cares about its customers and their satisfaction. Again, remember to stay honest and authentic with your audience since customers will catch on if the incentives do not have true value.
Regardless of what incentive program your company chooses or what the motivation, it’s clear that it should include offering gift cards, to your strategy.
Contact Mpell Promotions today to find out more!