How Right Timing Can Make Your Incentive Schemes More Successful

Businesses often announce incentive schemes and referral gifts to their customers from time to time.  Having popular custom gifts as prizes will only make your job half done; you must choose the right timing for delivering these custom items to ensure the best results.


How to time it right?

Timing can be either immediate or delayed; you can even adopt a combination of these two to create a surprise element. If you are resorting to an immediate-timing incentive, your customers will get the gift for showing up early. It is something like the early bird gets the worm offer. Just being present in your stores the first will entitle them for gifts.

Untitled design

This strategy is a great way to enhance the willingness of your customers to participate in the promotion. The risk is that it may  not necessarily generate the sales you expect and you may end up with an increase in promotional cost.  So, make sure to calculate the cost and returns and set a realistic projection.  For instance, giving away hot pizza giveaways will make an instant timing promotion to promote your restaurant or grocery stores.

Untitled design (1)

 In the case of delayed-timing incentive, the target audience may have a call to action message to be performed or a task accomplished to get the gift. A great example for this is buy one get one free type offers. It requires the customers to buy one product to get that free second item.  In some other cases, the customers have to show up at your open house to enter your draw, which will require some commitment from the part of the customers though they are not mandated to purchase anything.

Untitled design

 When the cost of purchase is low, the strategy adopted should require multiple purchases before delivering the incentive. It works fine with items of low price points that are frequently purchased. However, with big-ticket items and durable goods like car or TV offering discounts on the first purchase will be a more feasible option.

You can even mix immediate and delayed timing strategies to ensure the best of both the worlds. Business acquisitions, bank mergers etc make great opportunities to try out a combo strategy. Hold an open house to familiarize customers with the new combined identity. The winning number can be sent to all the current customers and that is an immediate timing strategy. However the winner should come personally to see whether he holds a winning number. The feature of this delayed timing strategy is the commitment of visiting the bank.

The success rate of immediate or delayed timing will depend on the forecast on the rate of response. Try it to find what works the best for you!