Premium Watch: Retailers Try to Get Prospects to Stores or Websites
Each year since 2005, the percentage of retail mailers using premiums has slipped in our Who's Mailing What! Archive. In fact, 2008 represented rock bottom, when only 10.2 percent of retailers put premium offers in their efforts, a full 36 percent drop from 2005. But through the first half of 2009, retailers are slowly getting back into the premium business, with an 11 percent increase since last year.
Among these recent new premiums are digital cameras (from Macy's), a diamond and pearl bracelet (from Helzberg Diamonds), a Burt's Bees kit (from Office Depot) and even a bag of russet potatoes (from Shop Rite). In fact, we're seeing more premium variety than ever because the intent is no longer only to drive prospective customers to the store, but equally to the retail website. URLs are more prominent in mail pieces, and the premiums are less geared toward what a customer would want to come to the store for (a facial) and more about a gift that's as attractive arriving in the mail (an MP3 player). And, especially during these leaner economic times, coupons remain omnipresent.
Arriving smack-dab in the middle of summer, Omaha Steaks sent a 5-1/2" x 8-1/2" self-mailer with its scrumptious premium offer right there in full color on the outer: "12 Free Burgers!" It tells the prospect to "shop the Omaha Steaks Store near you" in the big teaser line to get those burgers and includes some small personalized copy about the nearest stores (three are listed for this prospect), right there on the outer (Archive code #910-171626-0907).
Inside, many of Omaha Steaks' deals are listed, but the free-burgers premium gets the biggest mention again. Perfed to the bottom is the coupon for the 12 free burgers that has the offer spelled out: "... with purchase of $40 or more from this mailing!"