Here are a few incentive program ideas designed to change consumer banking behavior:

INCENTIVE PROGRAM IDEA #1 – Increase use of the bank’s debit or credit card

Program: Shop 5 times in December and get a $10 choice awards gift card.

Program Attributes: The bank offering this promotion benefits by re-engaging or more deeply engaging their customers with the use of their debit or credit card. The actions required are attainable and nearly immediate given the volume of shopping that occurs in December. The $10 gift card offer is a small nudge to use the bank’s specific card, rather than the other cards likely in the customer’s wallet.

INCENTIVE PROGRAM IDEA #2 – Increase Virtual Wallet Program Enrollment

Program: Promoted both at branch locations and via marketing communications channels, customers were incented to work with a personal banker to enroll in the bank’s digital banking program. Upon enrollment, customers selected a $25 gift card to a restaurant or leading retailer of their choice.

Program Attributes: Nudge for customer to become educated about the bank’s digital banking program and to enroll in this very beneficial program. The program increased the number of customers visiting the bank’s branches (and therefore increased customer engagement). The program also educated and increased the engagement of customers who had already visited branches and were notified of the program via in-bank signage or one of the bank’s team members.

INCENTIVE PROGRAM IDEA #3 – Increase Use of Bank’s Personal Banker Services

Program: Promoted at branch locations and via marketing communications channels, customers were offered a $25 “Dinner and a Movie” gift card after meeting with a financial adviser to do an initial assessment of the client’s financial position and to give them an overview of how the bank could help. By meeting with a personal banker/financial adviser, customers were then allowed to select a gift card from leading movie theaters and restaurants.

Program Attributes: Encouraged customers to do the right thing for their financial health, cross-sold products at the bank and deepened existing customer relationships. The “dinner and a movie” offer was catchy, promoted in an attention-getting manner and a great treat after the needed (and sometimes painful for customers) behavior of tending to financial health.

INCENTIVE PROGRAM IDEA #4 – Increase Deposits, CD, Loans, Lines of Credit Sales

Program: Promoting CD’s, lines of credit, deposits and other products at competitive rates is a great way to attract new customers and to start a relationship that can be built over time. It is also an effective way to cross-sell/upsell to existing customers. To capture even greater program interest, make customers feel great about their decisions and to attract positive press, a leading bank offered an “Operation Free Lunch” promotion. For every CD purchased during the promotional period, a $15 gift card for leading restaurant chains was donated to a military veteran as a way to thank that veteran for their service.

Program Attributes: The program was very simple, attracted new customers, provided a great cross-sell opportunity for existing customers and allowed all involved to feel very positive about the transaction and their association with the bank.

Parting thoughts…

Due to the many touch points banks have with their customers and the many different situations in which banking customers can be “nudged” to carry out a specific behavior that is beneficial to the bank, the banking sector is ripe for a multitude of “one action, one reward” incentive offers using gift cards. These incentive programs help banks to differentiate themselves, develop deeper relationships with existing customers, attract new customers, as well as many other possible objectives.

Finally, in addition to gift cards’ superior impact on customer behavior, gift cards can be purchased in a cost-efficient manner delivering greater incentive program ROI.

More information

For more information about changing customer behaviors and different ways to use gift card rewards to increase sales or change other customer behaviors, take a look at some of the other articles and papers available on our website: