INDEPENDENT FREE PAPERS OF AMERICA

President's Message

President's Message Jane_Means.jpg

President's Column...

By Jane Means

Jotted By Jane

Would you please share your ideas on how to help all employees understand the value of patronizing advertisers?  It seems natural for sales reps to grasp the need of doing business with those who do business with us. But not all departments understand the concept as easily. 

We recently faced losing circulars to a new shared-mail competitor. (You may remember my column last month mentioned it.)  The advertiser who led the charge was a major grocery chain.

Many of us have our grocery shopping habits locked in place. We know which aisle to find items, we know the cashiers. There is no doubt that many of our employees patronized that large grocery chain.  Now, they are no longer an advertiser. 

What to do? Let’s face it. We want that grocery chain to decrease their sales; after all, they just deceased ours. We certainly would want our employees to change their shopping habits and make an extra effort to patronize advertisers. It’s time for drastic measures. We needed an idea to change shopping behavior.

So we put together a monthly grocery drawing for all our employees. We announced it in our company newsletter and remind employees to participate via posters hung throughout all our buildings. 

Every time an employee shops at our current grocery advertisers and spends at least $10 (not difficult to do that), he brings in the cash register receipt. For every $10 spent he gets a raffle ticket. (and Yes, if he turns in two receipts for $15 each, he ends up with 3 raffle tickets.) Anyone who turns in at least one $10 cash register receipt for EVERY grocery advertiser, we’ll double his raffle tickets.  

At the end of the month, we draw three winners. Two employees will receive $25 gift cards and one employee gets a $50 card. Each winner is able to select the gift card from her desired grocery store. 

We are tracking the number of employees who are participating, the number of receipts we receive in a month, and the total amount our employees are spending.

Our grocery advertisers love it! They appreciate our being a true partner with them. 

What are or have you done to encourage employees to patronize advertisers? Please share those ideas with us … we need all the help we can get!