As a retail marketing executive, you are likely familiar with the challenges of online marketing in today’s fast-paced digital landscape. Tightening budgets, decreasing returns on ad spend and the difficulties of attracting and retaining new customers can all make it difficult to stay competitive. However, there is an innovative approach to advertising and user acquisition that is gaining traction: incentivized marketing through offerwalls.
The past year has seen dramatic changes in the world of marketing, particularly in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Retailers have had to adapt quickly to the new normal of increased online shopping and decreased in-store foot traffic, which has rendered traditional marketing approaches less effective.
Incentivized marketing has emerged as a powerful tool for retailers looking to engage with customers and drive sales in this challenging environment. As companies move toward an omnichannel approach, adapting their marketing strategies becomes crucial. However, this transition can present a significant challenge for many businesses, as they may face various unanswered questions and uncertainties about the process.
So what is incentivized marketing? Put simply, it’s a promotional strategy that rewards customers for taking specific actions, such as downloading a mobile app, completing a sign-up process or making a purchase. The concept is appealing to humans, tapping into our inherent drive to earn rewards or attain prizes. Regardless of a company’s size, utilizing marketing incentives can lead to a substantial increase in sales for both small businesses and global brands.
By offering incentives such as discounts, loyalty points or other rewards, retailers can encourage customers to take action and create a sense of loyalty and engagement that is difficult to achieve through other means. In contrast to existing loyalty programs, it can incentivize individuals to become first-time customers, not just motivate existing ones to keep buying.
The focus has shifted from scale-first to performance-first, with an emphasis on creating deep and meaningful engagements rather than quick actions and rewards. The majority of campaign spending now goes toward cost-per-engagement campaigns, with click-to-install activity accounting for less than 5% of overall spending.
Incentivized marketing is a particularly effective alternative or complementary addition to traditional marketing approaches because it helps to build trust with customers. By providing tangible benefits in exchange for customer actions, retailers can demonstrate their commitment to customer satisfaction and create a positive relationship that drives repeat business or generates new business.
Moreover, the cost-per-action invoicing system provides retailers with the assurance that they will only be charged for fully completed offers, eliminating any wasted budgets or unsuccessful campaigns. This system is particularly advantageous for retail businesses that operate on thin profit margins, as it allows them to maximize cost efficiency and minimize unnecessary expenses.
According to the Incentive Marketing Association, the strategy can be explained through a popular equation in psychology: Ability x Motivation = Performance
While typically used in employment, this equation can also be applied to marketing. A customer may be inclined to buy from a particular brand due to its ability to produce high-quality products or deliver reliable service. By adding motivation or incentives, such as discount codes, sales can be increased. Providing rewards to users who watch ads can significantly improve the ad conversion rate. In fact, research has shown that users are 27% more likely to convert when offered a reward for watching an ad. This means that incentivizing users with rewards, such as discounts or free trials, can effectively boost their interest in a product or service being advertised, resulting in higher conversion rates.
With the advent of offerwalls, retailers can now incentivize users pre-purchase on a cost-per-action basis. This approach not only drives user engagement and acquisition but also helps retailers better understand their audience by collecting user data.
Retail businesses can benefit from a digital user acquisition strategy that offers low barriers to entry, such as a free mobile app with discounts on physical products. A multi-level incentivized marketing strategy can then provide loyalty points for downloading the app and completing the sign-up process, before providing additional points to use a provided discount at the physical location. The biggest benefit is the increasing percentage of mobile followers that turn into customers.
In summary, incentivized marketing is a highly effective tool for retail marketers looking to stay competitive in today’s digital landscape. By rewarding customers for their actions, retailers can build loyalty and engagement, boost customer satisfaction and increase sales. As marketing continues to evolve, incentivized marketing is likely to play an increasingly important role in the future of retail. If you’re looking for an innovative and effective way to engage your customers and drive sales, it’s time to consider incentivized marketing as a viable alternative.
Vincent Hahl is the dedicated Chief Operating Officer at Mobile Media Labs with experience in B2B Sales, Marketing and Branding. Hahl graduated from two of the best universities in Europe (EBS & ESADE) and started his career at Gartner, providing tech companies with the market insights required to take their business to the next level. Hahl leverages his experience with tech, retail, banking, consulting and real estate to build Mobile Media Labs into an industry-leading incentivized marketing player.