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Writing for Diamond Crystal Salt


What do Operators Want?

A friend of mine who works for an agency and does marketing for a major foodservice manufacturer whose brands you have definitely heard of, told me some news the other day. On a recent rebate campaign that operators participated in, they were given a choice: Choose a cash (check) rebate or choose points redeemable for merchandise, from one of the popular reward programs.

Well, the results were eye-opening: The manufacturer received hundreds of operators who participated in the program and 100% of them chose cash over points.
Let me repeat that: ALL of them chose cash.

Now, allow me to state that I am not here to bash reward programs. They offer a great service that is a logical way to retain loyalty. However, as a foodservice marketer in a down economy where independents (who are most likely to participate) are struggling to survive – I am recommending to put money behind your own cash rebates, especially considering the very hefty fees to have your brand be a part of a rewards program.
This strategy makes a great deal of sense for a number of reasons. Consider:

  • The cost for manufacturers to be in a rewards program
  • Your marketing budgets are still lean
  • We are in a down economy
  • Operators NEED to save money
  • IFMA states they are turning to manufacturers for help
  • You can afford to provide a rebate to the independent segment – your most profitable segment
  • We have confirmed that nearly all operators would rather have cash back for their business

I mean, come on…this is a no-brainer.
The only question is how to administer an effective rebate program – one that achieves better results that you have ever experienced before. The old methods are not working well enough.

The answer to gaining new operators and retaining existing loyal ones is supplementing your offers with social media marketing! Using value-added content and engagement with operators will extend your reach, drive traffic, and and make your campaign work harder. You will be blown away with the results!
Common sense wins again!


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