June 9, 2012 marks (essentially) the second month of Imaginary Wars Gaming and Hobbies being open for business!
I decided back before opening the business that I would have a “soft” opening (that is, opening for business with little fan fare or hoopla) and then do some sort of grand opening event a little further down the road. This weekend is officially “a little further down the road” for the store, and we’re having a bit of a sale to celebrate! Obviously, because I’ll need to restock any I sell, the deals won’t be anything crazy like everything half price BUT there will be a store-wide deal and a few more product-specific deals–plus cake! And popcorn!
To make the whole weekend feel a little more event-ish, we decided to also showcase some of the games we specialise in AND we’re running a Warhammer 40,000 tournament in the store all day on the Sunday of the weekend.
While some of the product lines I was hoping to have in stock for the grand opening have not arrived for the weekend, one of my other goals for the weekend was to have the store’s points program (the “Imaginary Dollars Points Program”) up and running….which it is!
I decided a while ago that I wanted to have a loyalty program–and one that would not too hard to take advantage of nor too insignificant for customers to care about. A points program that would then reward loyal buyers with free money to spend in the store as they pleased was the direction I decided to go.
Now, because things written on the internet are written in ink (and not pencil), I’m going to avoid giving too much specifics here–you’ll have to come to the store to get all the nitty gritty! (This is also because if we have to make any tweaks further down the road, I don’t want this post to create the potential of causing any confusion with how the program works.)
The points program will basically reward customers with ten (10) points per dollar spent (before sales taxes) and once they’ve accumulated enough points past specific benchmarks, the free money portion of the program kicks in! Again, because there may be some tweaks to the system down the way, I’m abstaining from giving actual in numbers–suffice it to say that we set up our program with the aim of it becoming only more generous in the future…it all depends on the volume of products we sell.
So when you spend money you get points; that part is simple. When a customer first purchases something and signs up for the program (which is free), they’ll also gain a fairly hefty bonus amount of points to help them get to the first benchmark that much quicker. We also have points generated whenever players help build our gaming community IE: whenever people participate in the store’s regular games nights and whenever they attend any of the store’s larger events (such as the in-store 40k tournament this weekend), they will also earn some reward points–not a ton mind you but enough to show that we appreciate the effort. The last way bonus points are earned (for now) are for when people spread the word about us: when people bring in a friend who has never shopped at the store before (and who makes a purchase) points are given to BOTH people as a thank you for the referral. (Yes that means the fellow who does the referring will earn points that day even if he doesn’t spend money; and yes, that means the new customer will get bonus points for both signing up in the system for his first purchase and bonus points for being referred to the store!)
Once enough points are accumulated to hit the first benchmark, ten “Imaginary Dollars” are then available for the customer to spend in the store as they please. As points accumulate and further benchmarks are reached, the amount of Imaginary Dollars increases–all the way up to the point where 100 Imaginary Dollars are rewarded…which is the ceiling of the program. Once you’re at $100.00 no more points can be accumulated until you’ve claimed (rightfully) your reward.
Points are also given to those who do mail-order purchases with the store (did I mention that we offer FREE SHIPPING to all destinations inside Alberta?).
Points are earned on a basis of 10 points per dollar spent, and bonus points are given for:
-Making your first purchase at the store.
-Referring a friend who then makes a purchase at the store.
-Having a friend refer you to the store…and then making a purchase.
-Participating in scheduled games nights at the store.
-Participating in the store’s larger events.
With that I’m signing off. I’m actually doing this post as a way to procrastinate getting some in-store flyers made up…and it’s high time I got them finished!