We have conducted two large gift card consumer surveys in Canada and France recently where we have asked questions related to consumers views on gift cards. Within these surveys we have asked questions related to digital gifting and whether consumers are interested in the application or not.
more >>> Digital Gift: The appetite is growing.
San Francisco Chronicle (press release)
Global Prepaid Exchangeestimates the Euro Zone gift card and voucher market for gifting and corporate incentives to be approximately €21.8 billion with the UK representing approximately 25% of the total market (€4.59 billion).
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It’s great to see that M&S are experimenting with location based communications with their consumers.
Marks & Spencer has signed up to O2’s geo-location based marketing service “You Are Here” to send targeted offers to shoppers near its stores.
via M&S joins O2 for location-based marketing | News | Marketing Week.
If this type of activity could be further enhanced by linking in money/spending power it would be enormously strong. Gift cards and voucher schemes, in fact many prepaid schemes, could benefit here; they know who has the money to spend and could user location based services to deliver that spending power to the retailer.
It’s incredible to think where we’ve come from. Seventy years ago the first voucher appeared on the high street in the form of a book token. Who could have predicted how the voucher and card industry would change and develop, becoming a currency for both everyday and business life, and who amongst us can predict what the future will look like for these ever-changing incentives?
Even in the past couple of years we’ve seen rapid development; the introduction of gift card centres, shops and stores; the beginning of e-vouchers and mobile phone technology, plus we’ve seen non-retailers (restaurants, experience companies) for the first time, emerge strongly into the marketplace alongside the traditional high-street retail vouchers and gift cards. Where to next – will paper totally disappear? Will new technology take over when traditional products have lost their way?
So, where is the market going? And, what will it look like in five or even 10 years time? Unfortunately none of us know all the answers to these questions and we can only begin to speculate. What I do know is that it is essential that the recipients of vouchers, e-vouchers, gift cards etc – whether they be consumers, customers or employees – get a product that they want, a product that excites, motivates and inspires them and one that is easy-to-use and flexible.
As voucher and card suppliers we need to keep this front of mind in everything we do. Ultimately, our aim is to keep the excitement and enjoyment alive and make the voucher and gift card industry buoyant for another 70 years – in whatever format that may be.
“Kevin Harrington, research and development director at Sodexo Pass – the company behind SayShopping vouchers and SayMotivation Pass – looks to the future of vouchers and gift cards.” – Sales Promotion.
Read the full feature.
Originally printed in Sales Promotion magazine September 2008 issue.