Tony O'Connor, Loyalty Expert
Tony O'Connor Loyalty Expert
6 minute Read • 10 Aug 2021

It's time to digitize your town council celebration

Town councils and local organisations love celebrating important times of the year. It might be a shopping festival or a town-lottery, but the general idea is always the same - to support local businesses by giving people a reason to get out and support their local community.

It's common practice all over the world, because they work so well, but now there's a way to make these feel-good promotions work even better - digitising them.

Running a digital promotion gives all parties involved - the council, businesses and customers - more control, better access and can provide commercial benefits long after the initial promotion has finished.

To get a better idea of how this can work, let's take a closer look at a very successful example...

 

How the Edam-Volendam council digitized their Christmas lottery

For many years, the Edam-Volendam council had run a successful regional Christmas Lottery aimed at increasing sales for regional businesses.

The premise was simple - when customers made a purchase of over €25 at participating stores, they were given a paper ticket with a lottery number. These numbers then went into the draw to win cash and other prizes. 

It was a successful, well-loved promotion… and then the global pandemic came along and made us all re-evaluate what we've been doing.

 

It’s time to go digital 

In spring 2020, during the first major Corona outbreak, the council met to discuss the upcoming Christmas Lottery. The unanimous decision was that a different approach was required. 

Interestingly, one of the positive aspects of the global pandemic has been the accelerated rate that people and businesses are embracing digital solutions. Video chat suddenly became a vital service and companies like Zoom seemed to materialise overnight.

The Edam-Volendam council agreed. It was time to consign the paper tickets to the dustbin of history and create a digital system that was capable of doing the same thing, without any need for printing and paper. 

Understandably a number of the council had questions. How exactly could they make this happen? Would it be more expensive? Would it fit within their budget? 

 

A journey of discovery

Upgrading to a digital system was not going to be easy.

The council required a system that was able to run in a range of very different physical locations and webshops. They also required this system to justify the initial outlay - and ideally offer something to businesses not just during the competition - but for the entire year.

A number of different corporate event agencies and specialised lottery companies were contacted, but none of them could deliver what the council were looking for. 

However some of the participating stores in Volendam had recently joined a digital loyalty platform called Piggy. After a positive initial meeting, it appeared that Piggy would allow them to achieve three key results:

  • Organise and run a 100% digital regional retail lottery 
  • Provide an ongoing loyalty program for all participating businesses
  • Future-proof their Christmas Lottery, while also being able to easily run additional promotions throughout the year.

 

Simplementation

As it turns out, implementing the Piggy system amongst the stores and webshops of Volendam was going to be incredibly simple. 

Piggy software works on all Android and Apple devices, so retailers had the choice of using an existing smartphone or tablet - or they could purchase a new one specifically for running the Piggy system in their store.  

The council also realised that they could use local companies to help the implementation run as smoothly as possible. 

Smile Computers organised a great deal on 125 Lenovo tablets and a local manufacturer called Tol Plaatwerk delivered their own customised device-holder proto-type, and began production.

Local design company Graphics Goed was consulted to provide digital designs that would ensure a single, unified identity for the Christmas Lottery. 

 

The advantages of going digital 

Not only did the new system comfortably come in under-budget - but it also provided a wide range of additional benefits - for companies and customers. 

With the previous model, customers would need to spend over €25 on individual purchases to receive a ticket in the draw. However with Piggy being a more sophisticated, digital platform, customers received a ticket for every €25 spent - regardless of how many individual purchases they made. 

Also, in order to enter the draw, customers had to register with Piggy, which only requires an email address and takes less than a minute. There are two ways to register:

  1. In-store, where you provide your email address and receive a swipe card.
  2. By downloading the Piggy App and registering with an email address. You can then use the App as a swipe card at participating outlets - or use the code in webshops.

Everyone’s a winner 

Despite the ongoing pandemic precautions, the Christmas lottery was a complete success. Local companies received a welcome boost in sales, and the number speak for themselves:

  • 13.500 participants
  • Over 112 participating stores
  • Solid platform for at least 4 new events throughout the year
  • Increase in overall spending increased by 16%

 

Ongoing loyalty

The Christmas lottery may be over, but the infrastructure is already in place for next year and the Piggy loyalty platform continues to help retailers drive sales and build loyalty.

Customers who registered during the Christmas period can still collect points and earn rewards at all of the participating retailers. These retailers have also built their own robust email mailing lists, so they can communicate with their customers through monthly newsletters, and one-off sales promotions.

If you think Piggy might benefit your local businesses or local council, make an appointment with one of our loyalty experts by clicking here.

 

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