Getting customers isn’t easy under the best circumstances. Keeping them can be even harder. Sure, you can offer your customers the moon, but the first time anyone has a better offer, many customers–especially in these hard economic times–will head out to the better deal. Punchcard, meanwhile, hasn’t been on the market long, but as it’s closing in on profitability, and it wants to help you do likewise.
Punchcard, a free app on both Android and iOS, offers up a great way for you to buy your customers’ love in a more modern era. While many of us are familiar with “those value club cards”, slips of paper that you get punched every time you buy something or a certain dollar value of something leading to the point where you get something in return for all those punches, Punchcard looks to streamline that process and make it all available on a smartphone or tablet.
When a shopper uses Punchcard, they take a picture of their receipt to verify the purchase. And then, the verification is uploaded to Punchcard’s servers, and collected until a certain point defined by the business working with Punchcard is reached. Then Punchcard notifies the user about any rewards received as a result of Punchcard use.
There are better than 13 million businesses using Punchcard, and an as yet unknown amount of users. But one thing is quite clear: this represents a whole lot of people who are interested in buying things, the kind of things your small business may well already be selling. Advertising, marketing, crossing your fingers and hoping for good word of mouth, public relations, even an attempted publicity stunt or two to get the news blogs and the like in and talking–people have tried all of these, and as any marketer will tell you, it’s much more art than science. Not all art, of course, but even the best-designed campaign can still fall flat. Offering free stuff, however, is the kind of thing that transcends most any economy, because people always want it.
But free stuff alone isn’t all a good customer service program needs. Solid cloud-based telephony tools like auto attendants and toll-free numbers can help your customers reach who they need to speak to within your business and do so quickly.
An app like Punchcard may be the thing to help perk up business, but it won’t be the only thing, so it’s well worth considering as part of your standard marketing mix.