Recap: Highlights of Promotions in 2014

It’s been a busy year for SCA Promotions so far and this June, we surpassed the $185 million mark for total cash and prizes paid out on promotions since 1986. We have enjoyed working with our clients on a myriad of contests helping each one achieve their objectives. Here is a recap of some of our client’s exciting promotions so far this year.

For the second year in a row, SCA’s clients scored big around the Big Game. During Seattle’s second-half opening kickoff return for a touchdown in February, many of our clients and their customers jumped to their feet in celebration, but not for the score. Thanks to SCA’s promotional risk coverage, companies ran promotions leading up to the Big Game with incentives for their customers. If a touchdown was scored on either half’s opening kickoff, SCA Promotions would pay out the prizes or award businesses the money so they could refund their customer’s previous purchases. A total of $400,000 in purchases was returned to both Furniture Mart and Baillio’s store customers. Hutcheson Ford was able to refund the purchase cost of cars bought within the promotional period, which created a flurry of excitement in the area. These types of high-visibility promotions are a great way to drive customers to retailers in all industries.

In Tennessee, a successful half-court shot netted a winner at a Middle Tennessee State University basketball game. Local store Tigermarket, radio station 104.5 The Zone, and Mountain Dew partnered to launch the half-time promotion. Throughout the season, fans and customers had a chance to win $10,000 at the school’s home basketball games. One student drained his half-court shot, sending him home with big money. The sponsors loved the incremental sales and higher profits during the length of the promotion. It was a win-win for everyone!

One long-time client of SCA Promotions continues to see amazing results. MacDonald Auto Group in Sydney, Nova Scotia most recently used hockey shot promotions during local hockey games, in conjunction with a local radio station and sponsor Scotia Bank. Two fans who had never held a hockey stick scored from center ice, shooting the puck through a target to win $10,000 each. A few nights later, a fan won a brand new F-150 truck by shooting the puck from face-off dot to face-off dot diagonally across the ice. At the end of the season, SCA Promotions awarded $55,000 in cash and prizes on behalf of MacDonald Auto Group. It’s not hard to see why the auto dealer keeps returning to SCA Promotions for prize coverage. These types of promotions have significantly increased awareness for MacDonald Auto Group, causing sales to increase from 125 new car sales a year to more than 1,000.

Legendary annual golf tournament, The Byron Nelson, put SCA’s PrizePad™ to use to bolster their attendee database. On the tee box were many golfing greats, but Byron Nelson officials wanted the information of the fans in attendance. Loaded onto Apple iPads, the PrizePad program allowed representatives to roam the grounds freely, letting visitors play games on the device for a chance to win a prize in exchange for entering their information. The initiative netted thousands of names and emails, and a staggering 85% of those opted in for future communications. This information will give Byron Nelson officials an advantage as they seek to expand the event in coming years.

One restaurant wanted to bolster their slow mid-week sales. With SCA, Chicken Bones Bar & Grill offered a dice roll promotion during their slow weekday nights. Patrons rolled six large dice for a chance at prizes, including a new car from a local dealership, which was parked outside. To win the big prize, six Chicken Bones logos had to be rolled, and US Army Sargent Job Ramirez did just that. He drove home in his Dodge Charger, paid for by SCA. Chicken Bones loved the promotion and results so much that we are implementing even more promotions during 2014.

If you would like to generate excitement about your company locally, or even nationally, our promotions are a perfect fit. With more than 30 years of experience, we tap into our database to discover what your customers will engage with most. Prize coverage allows you to offer tantalizing prizes for a fraction of what it would cost you out of pocket. Contact us today to begin building your perfect promotion.

Why Should My Promotion Use Promotional Risk Coverage?

When it comes to launching a promotion, every company has broad goals that typically focus on customer acquisition, brand awareness, and product sales. The specifics of the promotion – the mechanism of entry and the incentive – are what make you stand out in a competitive marketing landscape and leave an impression with your target audience. The impact of your promotion is limited only by your creativity and the resources to get the promotion off the ground. While creativity has no bounds, your budget certainly does, which can potentially limit the incentives you can offer your customers.

The challenge for companies and marketers is finding a ‘carrot’ that resonates with consumers. In a media-saturated marketplace, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to stand out from the crowd. Offering cash and other grand prizes is a great way to start, but after designing an amazing promotion, the budget might not allow for an attention-grabbing prize.

So, how can you offer a larger-than-life prize? By utilizing promotional risk coverage. Using nearly 30 years of past promotion data, SCA Promotions calculates the odds of a prize being won, and you only pay a percentage based on the odds, typically between 3-15%. If someone wins, SCA gives you the money to award the prize. We have covered billions of dollars in cash and prizes and paid out over $183 million, so you can rest assured that you will not have to pay the winner out of your pocket.

A promotion incorporating promotional risk coverage has been a concern for some companies, who are worried that their audience will only respond if a prize is guaranteed to be awarded. The lottery provides a fair reference for comparison, and studies show that consumers display the opposite behavior – in fact, their willingness to purchase lottery tickets swells as the jackpot grows, even though their odds of winning plummet. When the jackpot rises, the added attention draws consumers in.

On November 28th, 2012, the Powerball game offered a record jackpot of $580 million. 281 million tickets were sold for the chance to win this jackpot. Eleven days earlier, Powerball featured a $214 million jackpot and sold only 35 million tickets.

We won’t claim that your promotion will achieve hundreds of millions of responses, but time and time again we see that dangling a carrot motivates people to act – and the bigger the carrot, the greater the response. If you’re ready to see the traffic and sales that a promotion with prize coverage can create, contact us today.

By working with companies big and small, you can be sure that we have the tools to match the goals of your promotion. Your promotion will be customized for you, ensuring that you have a manageable fixed-cost promotion that targets your ideal customers. And, we do it all while leaving the majority of your budget for marketing the promotion, rather than paying for the grand prize.

Marketing in the Digital Age

The saying, “Things were simpler then…” elicits a vigorous nodding of heads from marketers. As technology advances, so does the complication of reaching target markets. With the advent of the Internet, mobile phones, wearable tech, and more, marketers can no longer create one TV commercial and reach their entire market. They must utilize all marketing channels in order to communicate in their consumers’ space.

On the other hand, these technology advances also put thousands of engagement options just a click away. Digital promotions have come of age as a means of engaging customers on the Internet, and these interactive promotions are a segment in which SCA Promotions offers proven solutions for brands and their agencies to stand out. Marketers love them because results are measurable and viral, while customers love them for the interactive game play and chance to instantly win big prizes. Companies are spending upwards of $22 billion on digital promotions annually. Isn’t it time for your message to be heard where your customers are listening most?

As of 2014, 90% of American adults have a cellphone or smart phone and 42% own a tablet. Nearly 80% of the American population uses the Internet. Given those stats, you can see why companies are spending as much as they are to be online – and not just with a static website. A digital promotion motivates customers in ways other web assets typically cannot by using a ‘play to win’ strategy. By tying in prizes to the promotion, you motivate potential customers to not only engage with your brand and product but also help you complete your marketing goals, which are typically lead capture, brand awareness and sales.

The difficulty for marketers is finding a prize that will entice visitors to click and respond to your marketing message. SCA Promotions offers the solution for marketers by housing not only the promotion concepts and know-how, but also providing prize coverage that allows large prizes to be offered for a fraction of the actual cost. Research shows that 72% of people prefer cash prizes. Other tangible prizes may not be the right color, style or just may not appeal to certain people. Cash is king!

SCA Promotions offers a variety of online promotional solutions designed to increase site traffic, generate leads, build your database, encourage customer loyalty, and create excitement around your brand. Whether it’s via Facebook, SMS, tablet promotions, or a custom online game, we will work with you or your agency to bring your vision to life. Our proprietary PromoEngine™ technology and cutting-edge digital promotions make it easy. It’s simple: plug in our existing turnkey games and prize coverage to your Web site or design a custom promotion from start to finish. With SCA you have peace of mind knowing that SCA guarantees security and a means to create secure, random, and auditable prize drawings.

If you’re ready to venture into digital promotions, or just want to take your promotion to the next level, contact us today.

$7 Million – The Cost of Not Having Prize Coverage

While this year’s football Big Game proved to be a one-sided affair between Seattle and Denver, many thrilling big plays gave fans the excitement that the scoreboard failed to provide. Each year, companies looking to tie their brand to the Big Game buzz turn to SCA to maximize their marketing budget with promotions designed to inspire action and reward customer behavior. And, reward we did!

SCA Promotions paid out more than $800,000 in cash, prizes and rebates to our clients’ fans and customers for big plays that occurred during the Big Game, including an interception and the second half opening kickoff returned for a touchdown. We were excited about the success of these promotions, and our clients were even more excited to have us as a safety net with prize coverage.

Prize coverage ensures that regardless of the prize amount or value, your marketing budget won’t be on the hook for covering the payout. Your financial responsibility is only the predetermined fixed fee with companies like SCA, which is a fraction of the overall amount. For budget-conscious marketing executives and directors, prize coverage is the ideal solution for small and large promotions. However, not everyone chooses this route.

A Houston furniture store owner decided to forgo prize coverage for his promotion – a decision that cost him $7 million. He offered his customers who spent more than $6,000 in the two weeks leading up to the game a full refund on their purchase if Seattle won.

Fortunately for the customers and the business owner, he had the funds to back up his promotion, but many companies don’t have that type of financial flexibility. Think about the money this furniture owner could have saved using prize coverage.

In the short and long term, these promotions have proven to create buzz around the brand, bring more traffic into stores, motivate customers to make a purchase now, and build brand loyalty. Furniture Mart in northern Colorado experienced the same payoffs after its Big Game promotion. For the second year in a row, the company ran a promotion with SCA in which customers would receive full refunds if a kickoff was returned for a touchdown. Furniture Mart refunded its customers their purchases.

The difference between Furniture Mart and the Houston furniture store was prize coverage. Furniture Mart received all the residual benefits of a promotion at a fraction of the cost. No risk—all the reward. “Securing promotional risk coverage is the way to go,” said a representative for Furniture Mart. “It allows us to sit back and enjoy the game hoping for a big win for our store and customers.”

Want to learn more about using prize coverage for your next promotion? Contact SCA and speak directly to one of our reps to discuss options and next steps.

5 Things to Remember When Promoting Around Sporting Events

By: Julie Davis

Brands and retailers usually shy away from running promotions around events that are licensed like the Olympics or World Cup. While the owners of these events do protect their licensing rights vigorously, that doesn’t mean a promotion can’t take advantage of an event as long as they don’t infringe on any licensed material. Here are five important things to remember:

  1. Too many times, business owners let their own likes and loyalties drive their sponsorship decisions. Just because you’re a big motor sports fan doesn’t mean it will appeal to your 25-year-old, female customer. Check the demographics and make sure the sporting event fits your target customer. Not sure where to find the info? Ask your local media rep.
  2. Skill-based promotions are the first thing most people think of when tying into a sporting event but, that doesn’t have to be the case. Thinking outside the box can build a creative, engaging promotion that is fun for the consumer and drives traffic for your location. For example, have sports fans take a selfie at the game with the scoreboard in the background. Text the photo to enter for the chance to instantly win the Grand Prize and smaller guaranteed prizes. Entrants each receive a store coupon via return text good immediately after the game, which will drive traffic and sales.
  3. Especially with college sports teams, sponsors aren’t sure what they can and cannot legally use. For example, describing the University of Texas as simply “Texas” is ok. Using “The Texas Longhorns”, “University of Texas” or “UT” is not ok. For the upcoming world soccer competition it’s pretty easy. Country names and flags are ok, player names are ok, game results and stats are public record. Using video and photos that you don’t have the broadcast rights to is not ok. If you’re unsure, spend $1000-$1500 in advance for a legal opinion on licensing rights and save yourself tens of thousands later.
  4. Every promotion needs clear, concise rules that include how the promotion works, the promotion dates, who is eligible, how you win, the prizes and their retail values, odds of winning, and how to claim your prize.
  5. Sports fans live on social media, so make sure you use it to advertise your promotion in addition to traditional media. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and others are vital to spreading the word about your sports promotion. If you are a team sponsor, ask the team to post it on their website and send an email blast out to their fan groups. Fan groups are a great source of viral marketing.

Promotions are a great way to spotlight your product or business, and sporting events allow you take advantage of the consumers’ interest and enthusiasm. Just make sure to cover all your bases and your promotion will be a homerun!

Julie Davis is a Sr. Account Manager with SCA Promotions in Dallas, TX. Julie has over 25 years experience in Advertising and Promotions working with clients on local, regional and national programs.

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