In the beginning of 2008 the Tropenmuseum participated in a coupon action with ETOS one of the biggest drugstore companies in the Netherlands. For every 15 euro’s spend at ETOS you would get a coupon. With this coupon the second ticket at several theme parks (and a museum) would be free of charge. In three weeks there were 450.000 coupons distributed to customers of ETOS. Eventually several hundred spend there coupon at the Tropenmuseum.
Almost every week I am called by a company, or a PR company who is representing that company, if want to participate in a coupon action. Most of the time a company is searching for a nice offering for their customers. No money is exchanged between us and the company who offer the coupons. It is a so called barter deal. The benefit for us is extra exposure to that specific customer base. I turn down a lot of requests to participate. I have made some criteria to consider when asked to participate in coupon action:
- Brand strength of the company handing out the Coupons. Can this brand lift your own brand up or bring your brand down? Participating in a coupon action with a mom and pop store is probably not a good idea.
- Products/services the company offers. Heineken is a strong brand, but would we do coupons targeted at children if they would ask us?
- Reach of the coupon action. What is the size of the audience for this coupon action.
- Targetgroup. Is the target group extending beyond your normal customer base?
- Other companies who are joining in. If the coupon is valid for several other museums, theme parks or any other leisure activity are they on the same brand/value level as you.
- Can our staff handle anymore actions. All those coupons have to be checked at the cashier. To many actions drives them wild.
- Action conditions. Is it a small discount (20%) or a huge one (second ticket for free)
When you choose to participate I have also made a practical checklist to use when the coupons are designed. These items on this checklist are not always needed but choose wisely when you don’t put them on the coupon.
- Logo of your museum
- Picture of the museum/exhibition/event?
- Opening times
- Barcode/Action code
- End date of the action
- Action conditions
A final tip: Always approve the final design of the coupon.