Experiences for Prizes and Promotions

RedBalloon For Business

Giving the gift of brand awareness

Prizes and promos give rise to extra benefits when an experience is on offer.

When you decide you want to offer a prize or create an exciting promotion, immediately your mind turns to what the incentive should be. Ask yourself – what do people really want? Yes, most people could always do with a little more cash. But they don’t call it ‘cold hard cash’ for nothing. Cash delivers no real emotional connection. It might pay to think a little more creatively about what sorts of things people might like to receive. Because after almost 25 years’ experience, here at RedBalloon we’re convinced that using experiences as a prize or giveaway creates goodwill and recognition that goes far beyond the initial gesture.

Making memories that last forever

To find out more about this, we spoke to our B2B Sales Partner, Toby Giles. With us for over 11 years, he has seen first-hand just how successful using experience vouchers can be. “Hundreds of companies use RedBalloon every year,” he said, “Yes people want cash, but experiences are just so much more memorable and inspiring.” When someone receives an experience, there’s a whole world of emotion surrounding that. Gratitude. Happiness. Excitement. Anticipation. And that’s before they’ve even booked the camel ride/ skydive/ gourmet feast/ boutique getaway … (did we mention there are over 4000 great experiences to choose from?) When you give someone a voucher, you’re essentially giving them another great story in their life. And you’re giving the gift of what will become a happy memory. It’s why we love to focus on curating wonderful experiences, which resonate with people for many years.

Research backs up our ‘stories over stuff’ ethos. A University of Texas paper, aptly titled Spending on doing promotes more moment-to-moment happiness than spending on having, sent 2,635 adults out doing various things and measured their happiness levels throughout the day. Those simply buying material things were consistently less satisfied than their counterparts engaged in more experiential spending – going to restaurants, sporting matches and so on. The overall finding was that people derive much more happiness from their experiences than their possessions.

Toby believes that when companies are being seen to give away something that creates memories, that in turn creates really positive brand associations.

Why brands should harness the goodwill of experiential giving

The impact of giving a RedBalloon voucher in terms of brand recognition cannot be underestimated. When people see a company’s logo on the RedBalloon voucher they’ve just excitedly received, all of the great feelings associated with the gift become associated with that brand as well. It’s subliminal – but very powerful. And it’s one of the fastest ways you can think of to get people feeling extremely positively toward your brand. “If you’re running a promo, having that co-branding has been shown to go a long way in terms of brand recognition for the person who receives the voucher,” says Toby. “They’ll see it every time they look at it until they redeem it. People remember the brand that facilitated their experience.”

Dialling up the talkability factor…

When someone receives a voucher as a result of a prize or promotion, the first thing they’re likely to do is talk about it. They’ll tell everyone all about what they got, when they’ll be doing it, and most importantly who gave it to them (there’s that brand recognition once more). They’ll also show it. In this hyper-digital age, you can bet the experience you gift will be all over someone’s social media. Meaning, of course, that the brand goodwill just generates outward, like concentric ripples. As Richard Branson once said, “Branding demands commitment… striking chords with people to stir their emotions; and commitment to imagination.” “When people are sharing and discussing, it adds a lot of value rather than a cash prize or other sort of prize that may not have that level of talkability,” agrees Toby.

Little luxuries when it matters most

In straitened times like these, people simply aren’t spending as much, and certainly not on themselves. There’s a level of guilt associated with discretionary spending on ‘spoiling’ yourself. But when you give an experience as a prize, it allows recipients to cast off that sentiment. “It’s a luxury you can just go and enjoy without any guilt,” says Toby. Again, brands doing this get to be associated with the feel-good factor that can last several weeks or months, from the moment of opening the envelope right through to the experience itself.

Brand recognition-led prizes and promos made easy

If you’re thinking of running a promo, RedBalloon can help facilitate the entire project. We work with thousands of Australia’s best providers to offer an unparalleled breadth of amazing experiences you can give as prizes. We also get the buzz happening, supplying vibrant images that see people invested from the very start, and working with our providers to ensure a seamless experience. We feel it’s our job to make the logistics and fulfilment of giving vouchers super easy. Coming into Christmas, organising gifts for employees can be laborious and a bit of a minefield (often falling on the shoulders of one or two exasperated EAs or HR people). But it shouldn’t have to be this way. We can easily disseminate hundreds of gifts quickly and easily, either by email or tracked post, handling all fulfilment, and taking the pain out of the process. As Toby Giles says: “We work with so many companies looking to reward and recognise their employees. Having that co-branding on a voucher goes a long way. They’ll go off and use it, they’ll create memories and talk about it with friends and family. And it’s as simple as sending us a spreadsheet.”

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