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2007 Incentive Federation Study Tracks Growth of Incentive Marketplace
In addition to budget figures, the report looks at how merchandise and travel incentives are being used. According to the study, some 34% of U.S. companies overall used either travel or merchandise incentives last year, with 31% using merchandise and 10% making use of travel incentives. The average budget for travel incentives in 2006 was $164,271, with more than three-quarters of incentive travel end-users spending between $100,000 and $500,000. The typical budget for merchandise incentives was lower - $119,008 – and just under half of merchandise incentive users spent between $100,000 and $500,000.
Other highlights of the study:
More than half of the respondents in the Federation study also believe that spending for incentive travel will go up over the next two years, while 37% say it will at least stay the same. On the merchandise side, some 34% expect budgets, at minimum, to stay the same, while 59% expect budgets to increase.
"What's particularly exciting about the results - besides the dollar figure," says Frank Katusak, Incentive Federation board chairman, "is that incentive end-user executives view incentives as an investment rather than a cost because they can quickly and easily measure the financial return of these initiatives as compared to other types of business development programs."For a more detailed look at the "Federation Study 2007," click here.
Motivation Show Results Point to a Promising 2008
While those numbers were down somewhat from 2006, many exhibitors indicated that they got to see the decision-makers they wanted to see, and that the Motivation Show is still the best place at which to find and meet serious buyers. In addition, two new show offerings received very positive reviews.
"We are very pleased with the success of our new seminar series," says Donna Oldenberg, conference director. More than 600 paid registrants attended the new "Executive Leadership Series: Strategies to Motivate, Empower and Reward" – where end-users from companies like Microsoft, DHL, Gap, John Deere, and Red Roof Inn talked about best practices for improving employee performance and customer loyalty. "In fact," Oldenberg says, "more than two-thirds of the conference registrants were first-time attendees, indicating that this is what attracted them to the show."
Another successful innovation was "MotivationConnect," a suite of revolutionary web-based tools that matched attendees with the most relevant people, products, and events at the show. According to Peter Erickson, manager director of the show, "More than 3,600 registrants used the online portal an average of 2.6 times to plan their show participation. They conducted almost 14,000 searches and bookmarked companies, services, or products nearly 20,000 times."For additional information about the 2007 Motivation Show or for details about exhibiting or registering for the 2008 Motivation Show, go to www.motivationshow.com.
Promotional Products Drive Trade Show Traffic
A survey of show attendees found that more than 95% of respondents report using promotional products at their tradeshows and events, and nearly 72% say that promotional products are either "effective" or "extremely effective" in meeting their goals.
The most common uses for promotional products by tradeshow professionals include:
The three most commonly used promotional products used by tradeshow professionals include writing instruments; wearables – including t-shirts, golf shirts, and logoed shirts; and bags – primarily totebags.
Gift Cards Overtake Cash as an Employee Incentive
The study used an online survey to poll 501 decisionmakers at companies with more than 100 employees. It also found that the median incentive budget for respondents was $50,000 and that 33% expect to increase the share of their budget allocated to gift cards.
When respondents were asked to identify what influences purchasers most when selecting gift cards as incentives, the top choices were:
Performance recognition, cited by 88% of the all respondents, and sales incentives, cited by 64% of all respondents, are the most popular occasions for giving employee gift card incentives. And while volume discounts are highly preferred, many merchants have yet to provide programs to address this desire, according to the study. Less than half (48%) of gift card purchasers say they receive a discount off the face value of the incentive gift card.
According to Mark Herrington, president of First Data Prepaid Services, "The market potential for the use of business incentives continues to grow. Gift cards as incentives appeal to businesses because recipients can purchase what they want, the cards are easy to distribute, and they have a high perceived value among recipients."
For more information, visit www.firstdata.com.
Circle of Excellence Awards Showcase Results-Oriented Incentive Programs
The winning programs included:
For more details on each of these Circle of Excellence winners, visit the Incentive Performance Center at www.incentivecentral.org.
Reggie Awards Highlight 2008 Integrated Marketing Conference
This year's theme is "Accountability in Action!" and in addition to tackling top-of-mind issues for integrated marketers, the conference will feature breakout sessions on Shopper Marketing, Green Marketing, Interactive, Experiential, Entertainment and Marketing Law.
The REGGIE Awards Reception & Gala, a key component of the Annual Conference, will be taking place on April 9th, 2007. For further information please call the PMA at (212) 420-1100, or visit the PMA Web site at www.pmalink.org.If your company has been involved in creating an effective promotion marketing program, especially if it was part of an integrated marketing strategy to build brands, then you may have a shot at winning one of this year's REGGIE awards. The official deadline for entries is January 11, 2008. To enter your program, click here.
Promotional Products Expo Delivers Tools to Work Smarter, Not Harder
Ten different paid workshops will be offered this year. Each of these workshops is designed to allow time for an in-depth analysis of the subject matter. Topics will include guerilla marketing, financial planning, effective referral generation, niche marketing solutions and strategies for Web site success. In addition, luncheon sessions will allow attendees to learn and be inspired by industry influencers:
"These in-depth workshops provide an ideal venue for the peer-to-peer interaction that is essential to adult learning and that our members value," says Rick Merrill, PPAI director of professional development. "It is our hope that our members will leave The PPAI Expo 2008 having been challenged, pushed beyond their comfort zones and equipped with a renewed sense of confidence."
For information or to register for the PPAI Expo and workshops, go to www.theppaiexpo.org.
PMA Offers Help With Promotion Marketing Basics
End Users Want Fresh Ideas from Incentive Suppliers
The board members agreed their greatest challenge was convincing senior management incentive and recognition programs are not "a waste of money." Another key challenge they discussed was "motivating the middle," Renk says. "Moving the needle by just 1% can have dramatic positive impact on the bottom line. We need programs that will engage the average performer," end-users were reported to say. They also want new ideas. All were interested in how programs could be built around a charitable cause. And finally, says Renk, "They want their incentive suppliers to bring them innovative concepts for fresh programs."
Recognition and Rewards Are Only Part of the Performance Equation
But do recognition and rewards adequately address those issues? Rick Tate, senior managing partner for Impact Achievement Group Inc., a performance management company, suggests that in some cases they do not. He cautions that:
Research indicates that there are many more factors to consider regarding employee motivation, which erode the impact of recognition and rewards when they are missing, says Tate. In People Leave Managers…Not Organizations, Tate and co-author Dr. Julie White expose many motivational myths and ineffective morale-boosting methods traditionally thought to improve employee performance. The authors state that the primary motivation to perform comes from a work environment which allows employees to be productive, to achieve, and to participate in a meaningful manner.
PPAI MARKETShow in Orlando Focuses on Wearables
Research shows a growing number of decorated apparel professionals are selling promotional products, and access to products and education are significant factors in driving business growth. Additionally, PPAI's 2005 distributor survey states that many distributor members are active in providing goods and services outside of traditional promotional products, including embroidery and screen printing, both of which are core elements of the imprinted sportswear market.
With the co-located shows, promotional products suppliers will benefit by gaining access to those UPIC-qualified and -verified ISS attendees who will cross over to the PPAI MARKETShow floor. Likewise, PPAI tradeshow attendees will have access to the newest products, apparel and equipment showcased on the ISS exposition floor.
For more information about Promotional Products Association International (PPAI), visit the PPAI Web site at www.ppai.org; for information about PPAI's MARKETShow in Orlando, go to http://www.ppaimarketshows.com/.