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Biltmore House Ties Card-Linked Offers To Long-Term Sales And Loyalty

Many merchants are leveraging card-linked offers to connect with potential and existing customers, boost brand awareness and increase sales in target markets.

The Biltmore, an estate, hotel and spa based in Asheville, N.C., is driving new business through the OfferLink Local program from Cartera, a card-linked offer advertising network. Since March 2012, the Biltmore has generated more than $2 million in sales via the program and rewarded thousands of consumers nationwide, according to Donna Nickerson, National Sales Manager at the Biltmore.

“By participating in the Cartera OfferLink Local program, we’re able to reach some of the top spenders in our market,” Nickerson said in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. “The targeting capability allows us to reach card members in top loyalty programs along the east coast and surrounding nine states.”

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The Cartera OfferLink Local program was designed to help local merchants ensure incremental sales by creating unique offers that are connected to bank cards and loyalty programs. 

“Because of program breadth,” Nickerson said, “we are able to provide points, cash back and miles rewards to card members in whatever currency they care about most.” For example, The Biltmore can offer consumers free airline miles for making a room reservation or purchasing a spa service.

With the Cartera partnership, the Biltmore has connected with a variety of “notable loyalty programs that attract high-spending customers,” Nickerson stated. These loyalty programs include: American Airlines AAdvantage eShopping; Barclaycard Rewards Boost; Cabela’s Bonus Points Network; HigherOne’s OneRewards; IHG Priority Club Rewards; the United Airlines MileagePlus Shopping; USAA MemberShop; and US Airways Dividend Miles Storefront.

As of May 2013, the Biltmore has rewarded more than 13,000 card members via the OfferLink Local initiative. These consumers “are part of the Cartera network and have already opted in to earn miles, points and/or cash back,” Nickerson stated. “Using the program is similar to having access to an email list with millions of addresses for people who are geographically primed to visit our property, and who are open to hearing about our offers.”

While the Biltmore utilizes a variety of marketing channels, including TV, radio, print, social media and the web, card-linked offers enable the company to connect with consumers more directly, Nickerson explained. For example, Cartera promotes rewards and offers through a variety of shopping sites, as well as personalized emails.

The customized emails especially have proven to be successful for the Biltmore: a confirmation email allows Nickerson and her team to “communicate the value of the reward each consumer receives,” she said. “This is a nice touch that strengthens our brand reach, and also gives us an opportunity to personally thank our customers for making a reservation and staying with us.”

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