Using Offers, Coupons, Discounts and Deals to Drive Revenue and Customer Loyalty

Offers, coupons, discounts and deals. At some point in time a merchant will be faced with the decision of whether to offer discounts, if so, when and how much should the discounts be worth.

Offering discounts for your business can be a powerful weapon in your conversion arsenal, however, used haphazardly and you can do significant damage to your brand or worse, become unprofitable.

In this post, we’ll review some of the pros and cons of offering deals for your business, look at some of the most popular ways you can use discounts to drive conversions and, of course, how to most effectively use them.

Types of Offers

 There are several overall types of discounts and offers you have at your disposal. For the purpose of keeping things simple, we’ll refer to coupons, discount and deals all as offers. Let’s take a look at the most common:

  • Percentage Based Discount – The most popular way to offer discounts is percentage based discounts. This can include small incentive percentages like 5% or 10% off, larger discount to really drive sales like 20% and 25% or large percentages like 50%+ to liquidate merchandise that isn’t moving or old.

  • Dollar Value Discount – Offers that are based on a dollar value can be positioned as a credit. This makes people feel like they’re wasting money if they don’t use it. In some studies, redemption of dollar based offers vs. percentage based offers can be as much as 175% greater. Pair one of these with a minimum purchase to increase its impact. An easy trick to keep in mind when deciding between a percentage or fixed amount discount for a specific product is the rule of 100. If your item is less than $100.00, use a percentage discount, if higher, use a fixed amount discount. This is a psychological trigger that will result in the highest perceived value for your customers.

  • Free Shipping – if you sell online or have an ecommerce website, shipping costs are often cited as the number one reason for shopping cart abandonment. Offering free shipping is a great way to mitigate this and increase conversions. Use Free Shipping discounts in conjunction with a minimum purchase requirement to increase your average order value. You can also limit this discount type to specific areas or groups of customers in order to avoid cutting into your margins by excluding shipping rates over a certain amount.

  • Free Gift – A free gift with a purchase can be a great way to provide additional value to customer. If used strategically, it can also be used to increase average order size and/or to get rid of product that isn’t moving.

When and How to Use Offers

There are a hundred and one ways you can use sales, offers, discount and deals to drive customer acquisition and conversions:

Email/Newsletter Subscription Offer

As you probably already know, building an email list is extremely important for online retailers. By providing an offer in exchange for visitors emails address, not only do you increase the chance of a conversion, but you also get their email, providing you with the opportunity to market new products and offers to them in the future.

By building a “buyer list”, not only do you increase the likelihood of a conversion, you also capture the vistors email address whichwill give you the opportunity to market new products and offers to them in the future.

Weekly/Monthly Offers to Drive Sales and Meet Revenue Goals

These are traditional sales used to drive increased sales. Many times sales are used at the end of a month or quarter to increase revenues to meet projections and goals.

Referral Offers

People are much more likely to purchase from you if referred by a friend or family member. Use this to your advantage and use offers to encourage referrals. You can choose to give a deal to the person referring, the person being referred or both.

When and How to Use Offers

Minimum Purchase Discount

An offer based on the total value of a shopping cart is an effective upselling tactic to encourage customers to spend more, increasing your average order size. A strategic way to incorporate this into your business is to calculate your average order value for the previous few months and offer a discount or free shipping on all order 10-20% over your average order value. You can also offer minimum purchase discounts for specific collections and products. If there’s a particular collection you want customers to focus on, try adding a minimum purchase discount to incentivize customers.

When and How to Use Offers

Exclusive Social Offers

Exclusive offers on your social networks can be a great way to build a strong relationship with those that follow you as well as provide a reason for new people to follow and subscribe to your social channels, which will allow you to market to them in the future.

When and How to Use Offers

First Time Shopper Offer

Providing first time customers with an offer specifically tailored to them can rove to be just the thing to convert them into repeat, loyal, paying customers.

Customer Loyalty Offers

Rewarding customer loyalty can help build an even stronger bond while also only providing discounts to customers that already spend money with you. It can be as simple as sending your best customers a personal email with a discount or credit, using an automated email marketing app to send out email offers when someone makes a certain number of purchases from you or implementing a customer loyalty program.

When and How to Use Offers


Offers and discounts may not be a good fit for all businesses (perhaps only a handful fall into that category, however, with a clear goal in mind, a firm understanding of the brand and some experimentation, you can most effectively utilize offers to meet your objectives, building customer loyalty and increasing revenues.

We welcome your feedback. Let us know what types of offers are working for your business and what types of marketing channels you’re having success with in promoting your offers.

Facebook But No Web(in)Site!

This weekend I spent the official kick off of summer at my areas local Ice Cream Festival. It’s an annual event and like many that you might attend anywhere in these United States,

With a sizable capacity for patience and an equally sizeable wad of cash, I joined my fellow festival goers in that most patriotic and American of Memorial Day traditions spending an insane amount of money on food and merchandise arguably most of which I could have made it comfortably through life without.

Be that as it may, and because it’s just what I do, when I happen upon a vendor that interest me either before or after speaking with them, it’s my custom pick up the vendor’s business card.

It may not come as a surprise to you (not me for sure) but the majority of them have all the information you’d expect to find on any business card. Name of the company, the owner, phone number and perhaps an email address (albeit in most cases a very unprofessional one like “”… yuk!) and of late I’m finding one more piece of info that signals the owner has lost all touch with reality!

Can you guess what that piece of information is? Well if you had your business thinking capon (straight) your first guess might be the company or business’s website.

If that was you guess, you’d expect to be right but unfortunately, your’re wrong and as it applies to any business card I pick up that’s doing, dead wrong!

If you’re not willing to reach your audience with Facebook ads, (yeah that means you have to pay money) then you can expect reach roughly 3% of your audience.

For example, if you have 5000 likes/fans on your Fanpage, you can expect to reach 150 of them with what ever you post to your page and hope it to show up thier news feed.

But what’s worse, if you believe that everyone that “likes’ your page and who is ow a so-called “Fan” will be interested in your message even though they see it you are sorely mistaken.

This is because there are any number of reason most of them irrelevant) why someone would actually click like on your page.

Do you really want to spend your time posting to such a small audience (free or not) that you can’t even be sure even give a hoot about you or what you’re brand is about?

Using Facebook as the sole marketing channel for your business without spending money on paid ads is a crap shoot. One you’re likely to lose if you don’t have a central base for marketing and branding your business. The central hub should be your company website.

2017 Stats: 10 Facts About the Importance of Small Business Websites Infographic

We recently opened up a dialog on our favorite new social media platform about the necessity for businesses (especially small ones) to have website.

Little did we know at the time but it turned out to be one of the most engaged posts on the site receiving over 2000 views, more than 125 responses and many likes and shares. Since then, nothing has change in our view .

If you have a business, and you want to “do business” in the 21st century, a website is not a luxury, it’s a must.

So what could be a better way for us to bolster and reinforce the facts?

How about our shiny new 2017 infographic that you can click on here to enlarge and lays out in concise terms why having a website is as important to your business as your phone!

Click anywhere on the infographic to enlarge.

Use These Latest SEO Strategies To Land On Page One

This post is an excerpt from our our report SEO Spy

One of the good things about SEO marketing as it has the ability of creating passive traffic. Which means, you’ll be getting traffic without having to actively be there. (we will see how in the next few

This seems like the ultimate choice especially for marketers who are on a shoestring budget. The essence of SEO marketing is that traffic generation relies on the optimization of web content to draw freetraffic through search engines such as the big “G” (Google).

Google is the biggest search engine in the world with millions of searches going on daily. By tapping into SEO, you will be swimming in loads of traffic.

SEO is essentially the art of getting your page on the first page of Google for search terms relevant to your online niche business. Let’s say you are in the dog training niche… Hence, when people search for terms like “dog training tips” or “dog training guide”, you want your web page to appear on the first page of the search results – And that is what SEO is all about!…




How To Create A Birthday Club

In this blog post, we’ll discuss proven strategies that are working now in the restaurant and other industries that are helping business increase foot traffic, sales, and customer retention by upwards of 20%, following a simple 3-step system. Below this read you’ll want to check out the detailed case study on on how we helped a national franchise:

Generate 928 *new customer leads.
Reach 57,988 verifiable new customers.
Average 20% redemption rates for a direct response campaign.
Increased average ticket transaction by crafting a coupon campaign with a built in viral effect that caused customers to bring an average of 2-3 people with them to dine!

What Every Food and Personal Service Related Business Should Have

It’s the lowest hanging fruit and by far one of the most beneficial revenue boosters you could ever create for your business. You need a birthday club. Why? The most obvious reason to have a birthday club is to cater to the customers that love to celebrate their birthday, as your business becomes one of their destination spots.

Birthdays are the most popular occasion to paper oneself, seek entertainment or eat and dine out. It’s also one of the most common overlooked marketing systems many businesses fail to incorporate. In this short read, we will convey the importance of ‘why you need a birthday club’ for your business, the negatives of a birthday club, and the ‘Best system’ we’ve found to drive daily new customers and boost immediately revenue.

BIRTHDAY FACT:  According To The National Restaurant Association:

More than 70% of Americans eat out on their birthday.
Birthday guest spend an average of $78 per table.
The average birthday table is a party is 3-4 people.
Birthday customers are your highest valued customer per transaction.

4 Great Reasons To Have A Birthday Club:

1) GOODWILL: Patrons that visit with you on their birthday bring good will & upbeat energy to your establishment. It gives your service area happier tone!

2) GROUPS: Birthday guest seldom celebrate alone on their birthday and often times they brings groups of friends and family to celebrate with them. The average birthday entourage is 3-4 people.

3) LOW HANGING FRUIT: more than 70% of all americans pamper themselves, buy themseleve special occasion gifts and eat out on their birthday. Why not capitalize on what would be lost revenue?

4) REVENUE MULTIPLIER: The power of just one more visit can have a tremendous impact on your bottom line. Just think how having multiple customers that dine with you on a daily basis choosing to celebrate at your establishment instead of your competitor.

How To Create A Birthday Club

STEP 1:  Create a Compelling Offer

It’s important to make sure you have a compelling offer to incentivize your customers to patronize you on their special day versus your competitor. Take a restaurant for instance. A typical offer may involve providing a complimentary meal or dessert item to the birthday patron if they are accompanied with a paying guest.

STEP 2:  Design the Marketing Collateral

You will need to create marketing material to showcase your birthday club to existing guest encouraging them to sign up for your club. This can be post cards you send in the mail, business sized cards you provide to guest upon paying for a meal, or table tents with a call to action to join your birthday club.

STEP 3:  Autoresponder & Website

On the marketing collateral, you will need a destination for the guest to visit to sign up for your birthday club. This can be a simple one page website that is connected to a email auto responder that captures the customers information and automatically sends them their birthday offer upon the time of their birthday.

STEP 4:  Sign Up Form

You can also take more of a manual approach and provide sign up cards that capture all your customers pertinent information, in which you would then enter this information into a spreadsheet or a database program such as excel or google spreadsheets.

The Negatives Of Having A Birthday Club

Having a internal birthday club can have tremendous benefits for your business. However, its an additional responsibility that needs constant attention and management.

Unless you have an appointed staff to properly manage your birthday club, routinely enter new sign ups in to your database, track the responsiveness of your marketing, and keep your marketing collateral updated (which can get expensive), then having a birthday club can go south quick. For this reason is why we recommend you create a EXTERNAL birthday club compared to a INTERNAL birthday club.

In addition to the tedious work it requires to run an INTERNAL birthday club, a common concern we hear from business owners is the need to attract NEW customers and not just provide discounts and specials to existing customers who may already have intentions on celebrating their birthday with their business without having to provide a discount.


We’ll show you exactly how we’re helping restaurants achieve dramatic growth in a manner we’re certain you’ve never seen.

You’ll learn exactly how we’re helping businesses:

  • Drive a steady flow of daily new customers.
  • Increase customer retention by upwards of 30%
  • Achieve 20-30% offer and coupon redemption rates(very high!)
  • Have ongoing visibility and exposure cheaper than traditional advertising, but more effective.

Report: How to Keep Your Marketing Efforts Relevant in 2017

“Two years ago, my former employer moved its headquarters for the first time in decades. As I left our old building on moving day, I marveled at the overflowing recycle bins and donation boxes brimming with service plaques, trophies, file racks, and outdated technology. All obsolete. All left behind. It dawned on me that here was the perfect metaphor for the massive changes taking place in marketing.”  — Heather Rim, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, AECOM

Marketing, like other fields disrupted by the digital economy, is changing at lightning speed. As Heather Rim’s story from the 2017 Relevance Report suggests, gone are the days when we as marketers could focus on one advertising medium to drive success for our business. And it’s clear that what we’ve valued as practitioners and what we’ve defined as best practices will continue to shift as we move into the New Year.

To keep us on our toes, the USC Center for Public Relations, in partnership with Humana, Meltwater and Golin, has released the 2017 Relevance Report, a forecast of topics that will impact society, business and marketing communications in the coming year. We read the report for you and have compiled our favorite extended quotes on a variety of topics from marketing thought leaders:

Topic No. 1. On maintaining relevance as a brand…

Relevance and staying power go hand-in-hand. Because audiences are bombarded with messaging 24/7, your efforts must offer value to a targeted group in order to succeed. Big payoffs come when relevance can be sustained over time.

Caroline Dettman, Chief Creative and Community Officer, Golin

Audiences deal with 9,000 messages, ads, warnings and bits of information each day. Relevance is what attracts and keeps people paying attention to a brand, and moves them to engage. As brand marketers, we should all be obsessed with relevance. We should be asking ourselves these three questions:

  1. Is my brand relevant or irrelevant?
  2. What does being “relevant” actually mean (and why should I care)?
  3. Why should we care?

At first glance, being “relevant” sounds fleeting. Like being “hot” or “famous.” But great brands and people stay relevant for a long time. And they work at it every day, which is why it’s the single most important brand measurement there is.

Relevance + time = $$$

[There are several] dimensions that consistently drive brand relevance like distinctive, effective, purposeful, provocative and welcoming. These ‘building blocks’ of relevance combine in different ways and to different degrees to create unique “Relevance Fingerprints” for every brand and category. [Now] we can pinpoint what makes a brand or a category relevant – and act upon it.

Topic No. 2: On the rise of video and VR as marketing media…

Because the way that our audiences consume content is changing so rapidly, it’s important that marketers focus on creating authentic, engaging and truly immersive brand experiences. Video and VR can help.

Cindy Gordon, Vice President Corporate Affairs, Nintendo of America

As a marketing medium, video has amped up consumer conversion and click-throughs by a minimum of 80%, it’s created a new tier of mega influencers with millions of followers and its mobile variant is jumping by orders of magnitude in volume and views.

And if a picture is worth a thousand words, one minute of video is worth 1.8 million, according to one analyst’s estimate on video’s impact.

Marketers have gotten the message. In 2016, video ad spending exceeded $5.5 billion and video ads will account for more than one-third of online ad budgets. If brands don’t raise the bar in creating real-time, unpolished, and authentic moments in their live streaming efforts, they will pay a painful price with clear-eyed video viewers.

Heather Rim, AECOM

Our marketers are reimagining how internal and external stakeholders interact with our brand story.

We see VR as a powerful way to help people experience, and more importantly, personalize our promise to deliver a better world. We’re shifting away from perfectly crafted one-way messages and static media, and inviting people to join us in virtual worlds and create their own storylines with us. In our new office in central London, United Kingdom, for example, we’ve introduced a virtual reality experience that allows guests to interact with 3D holograms of our projects through our main lobby window using a lightweight headset. Just a few months earlier the solution would have been a beautiful glossy brochure, or a formal welcome video at the front desk.

One of the greatest challenges brands face is to create an emotional connection with their audience – something that’s very challenging to achieve with even the most exquisitely designed communications or marketing materials. But when you literally immerse people in your brand story the potential for engagement rapidly unfolds.

At a recent campus recruitment event, for example, we created tremendous excitement by swapping out our standard brand video for a VR experience where potential employees could interact with a project they would actually get to work on if they were hired. And for the giveaway? No squeeze balls. Google-cardboard Goggles, of course.

Topic No. 3: On the importance of employee advocacy in defining your brand…

Modern audiences have a waning tolerance for corporate messaging. Instead, they prefer to digest similar messages via social media and employee shares or testimonials, making a push for employee advocacy all the more important in 2017. With an established employee advocacy program, you’ll build both internal and external confidence in your brand.

Bob Feldman, Co-founder, PulsePoint Group

“Company as publisher” is the new norm. Corporate reputation management has accelerated in importance, and traditional internal communications has given way to digital “employee activation” on social platforms.

[At] IBM, [a] new “employee cohort engagement expert” is responsible for defining, deeply understanding and engaging a cohort of employees. The expert defines their cohort based on data (role, employee type and observable behavior) and engages them through the content and channels that influence them most to believe, act and advocate for the company.

Corey duBrowa, Senior Vice President Global Communications, Starbucks

Faced with less trusted traditional media and more content in their social feeds, younger consumers are open to information from various content creators in a way they haven’t been before. Edelman’s 2016 Trust Report results show that when it comes to brands that young people follow, “companies that I use” and “employees of a company” outperform journalists and online personalities.

Topic No. 4: On what makes great content shine…

Above all else, content that educates your audiences is proven to be successful. Whereas we used to reserve creative messaging for the likes of our agencies, all marketers now have a responsibility to tell compelling stories across different mediums.

Corey duBrowa, Starbucks

[Audiences] are clear in what content they want to see from brands. The trust report shows there are four key factors that help content to break through:

  1. Informative/teaches consumers something new (87%)
  2. Connected/part of a video series (78%)
  3. Authentic/fits naturally with the company sponsoring it (76%)
  4. Validates/includes a personal story (74%).

Bob Feldman, PulsePoint Group

Creative directors used to be found mostly in ad agencies. No longer. Compelling storytelling, data visualization, long-form video, etc., are now essential tools.

On the emergence of storytelling and content on social media…

Companies and their marketers need to adapt to a world in which social media and content is king. The percentage of individuals who rely on social platforms for news and information will continue to rise, making the need for content marketing a priority for marketing organizations in 2017.

Corey DuBrowa, Starbucks

Communicators are storytellers at heart. We thrive in shaping stories with compelling characters, natural tension and memorable perspectives. In our best moments this content engages audiences and elicits an emotional response. But as the media landscape evolves at a rapid pace and a younger audience is consuming information very differently than that of previous generations, it’s clear that how we bring a story to life requires radical transformation.

Pew Research Center shows social sharing continuing to expand, with 51% of people globally using social media as a platform to send and share information.

At Starbucks, we’ve embraced and addressed [the] changing [media] landscape by putting more emphasis in developing our own content, and leveraging our owned channels as well as new platforms and partnerships to reach our most important audiences.

The essays featured in The Relevance Report are brief, thoughtful and cover a broad range of topics grouped within the following five categories: media, communications, technology, brand and people. They are designed to give audiences a preview of what the coming year will mean for the marcomms industry, for our society and for their careers. View the full report here.

For more nuggets of marketing wisdom and to keep up with trends in the rapidly changing media landscape, subscribe to the LinkedIn Marketing Solutions blog.

Security Alert!

A CRITICAL WARNING: Shared hosting services we formerly recommended to our clients have proven to be a security risk!

Delinda Vreeland CEO

As a small business owner and consultant I have become alarmed by reports of the rapid rise in security intrusions and attacks on corporate and private servers by a host of factions, some known, others suspected and still many others which remain obscure or completely unidentifiable.

I believe that not only do I have an obligation to my clients but to the small business community as a whole as to publicise ways that WordPress based sites are being attacked, measures we are taking to protect our clients and solutions you should also consider.

We offer a complete solution that cost less…

While you can find inexpensive hosting just about anywhere, when it comes to your business’s website, data and customer information, a low cost hosting account won’t seem like such a bargain when your site is compromised by a hacker. Back in 2015 that’s exactly what happened to us and believe me, it can happen to you.

Perhaps you have been keeping up with the latest headlines in the news or maybe you haven’t. In any case I guarantee that the illusion of value that inexpensive hosting provides will rapidly evaporate when they offer you their after the fact solution that should have been a proactive standard feature in the first place. I say this because it’s a safe bet that like many businesses operating a website, you are employing the services of a “shared hosting” provider.

It is this seemingly inexpensive type of hosting that represented the extreme danger we had been exposing our clients to until we wised up! Currently, a full 94% of our client’s have their websites hosted exclusively on (AWS) Amazon Web Services Cloud Hosting. That’s not a coincidence and in a minute I’m going to explain why. Right now I want to offer you the same opportunity that nearly all of our clients use for their website hosting.

I want to make sure that you are aware that that you can take advantage of the service that is protecting our clients from hackers, malware, email phishing and a host of other nasty attacks that are mowing down sites faster that a zero turn lawn mower.

I spend quite a bit of time sending out emails to local businesses in my area with the same message I am delivering here . Perhaps you’ve been a recipient but if you have not, you can learn more by reading our “White Paper” about the many types of cyber attack threats and why you should take advantage of our Security and Hosting Solutions.

We trust Amazon and you can trust us!

If you were the world’s largest online retailer could you afford to have your operation jeopardized by a cyber attack?

I think you will agree that the answer is definitely no but it’s also same reason that it makes sense to host your own business’s online assets with a company that understands how critical security is, what measures must be in place to prevent attacks and the dedication to ensuring that clients who trust them can rest easy knowing that they have the best service provider possible for the money they are spending.

No other system we’ve know of comes close to offering the total protection solution to keep websites safe from attack. I don’t say that to brag. I say it because it’s true. We simply will not provide our clients anything less than the best and for the immediate future, the first service we’re promoting to all potential new clients until we’ve reached as many as we possibly can.

You now have the oppourtunity to take advantage of the same professional grade hosting that companies world wide and that we provide to our clients and for our own web properties but without the traditionally difficult setup process typical of most AWS installations which represents a great saving in time and expense.

Of course the choice of web hosting and security services for your business is yours alone but if you decide to not take advantage of a the service that companies like BMW, Netflix, Dow Jones, Pinterest, Yelp and thousands more have chosen to protect their investments I can only tell you that cybercrime and hacking attacks are going to only get worse. You need to have something in place before the fact not after.

Wishing you good success!
Delinda Vreeland – CEO
Best WP Security

Lead Generation


The only business metric that counts is making sales… and to generate more sales you need to generate more leads.Your business need leads… but at what cost?Many business owners work with business directories websites because they promise many new leads at a “reasonable price.”With our Lead Generation services, we eliminate the need for expensive and time consuming in-house marketing campaigns or advertising plans.

And best of all, you don’t have to put money into marketing strategies that are hard to quantify.You don’t have to pay for advertising space or pay for clicks or pay for web page views.

You pay for genuine, qualified sales leads that drive sales and ring your phone!

You’re a leader in your industry, not a leader in advertising.Focus on doing what you do best and let us create an online presence for your company coordinated with an aggressive marketing lead generation plan.

Getting started is easy.

Give us a call at (740) 616-8577 or send us an email, and we’ll follow up with you and learn more about your business and your marketing goals. Together we will develop a plan that will move you towards the success you desire.