As I sat at my laptop this morning to write my column for you I looked around for some inspiration and saw Sergei looking back at me! Now who is Sergei I hear you ask? A college? A customer? Nope its none of these, it’s actually a stuffed MeerKat that sits on my Market Stall, his brother Yakov lives in my sons room and even Maiya has made it in to our martial bedroom on Mrs Cs dressing table. Now I know what you are thinking, how on earth can a load of stuffed Meerkats give you inspiration to write a column?
Well this family of Meerkats actually came from when I decided to review all of my energy bills in aim to save a few quid after watching my old mate Martin Lewis on his money saving expert programme, I decided to use compare the Meerkat or indeed compare the Market and as soon as I logged on I realised that the two companies were actually the same?! Bizarre marketing exercise although when you think about it was actually a stroke of genius, as the Meerkat or Market was what actually stuck in my head and prompted me to have a look at these guys first. I entered the site and was immediately made aware that if I took out any product after searching for it on “compare the meerkat” I would be rewarded with a free Meerkat! Well I like a bargain at the best of times but this was FREE! As a founder member of my local “owt for nowt” club I suddenly found myself looking at the family of Meerkats available before I had even found a new energy deal, needless to say that I ended up using “Compare the Meerkat/Market” whatever it is called time and time again until I had collected the whole family of Meerkats, in effect becoming the best kind of customer, a loyal one!
Whenever I go on the road I shy away from the usual Costa Coffee stops and always use Macdonalds drive through for my caffeine fix, why? Because I use my rewards cards and get my 6th Coffee free!
Mrs C uses the same local independent beauty parlour, candle shop and “Curvy girls clothes shop” for exactly the same reasons, she gets rewarded in the way of free stuff for repeat custom!
This is a win win situation for the traders and the customers, encouraging loyalty and repeat custom which really is the key to building a long lasting sustainable business.
It is much cheaper to retain customers rather than trying to recruit new ones, not only that it achieves happy customers which in turn want to shout from the roof tops about you creating the best form of advertising in the world “Word of mouth” and guess what? That is free too! Along with the accelerator to the rule, the mighty social media, which guess what? It’s free too!
As Sergei would say this really is “Simples” and the proof is in the pudding, the founder of “compare the meerkat” started the company in Great Britain and is truly convinced that he owes all of his £420 million fortune to Sergei and the meerkat family, you know what I would have to agree!
I personally believe that all rewards schemes work and are the key to moving a business forward, if you want to create a rewards scheme to suit YOUR business and more importantly YOUR customers please do get in touch! In fact I will put my money where my mouth is and for every enquiry I receive I will send one of my 2016 Calendars in the post, absolutely FREE!