A surefire way to keep your employees enthused, motivated and hustling to bring you business is to have an employee contest. This is how it works:
On a voluntary basis, each of your employees, both full and part time, receives 50 special value cards. These cards entitle the bearer to a special savings or value added at your business. Be sure to include an expiration date on the card.
The card has a place for employees' signatures to authorize the offer. By using their signature on the value card your employee feels special and he or she is a valued part to the success of your business.
Once the value cards have been printed and handed out to all employees, then the contest begins. Their goal is to distribute these cards to family, friends, and acquaintances in their neighborhood. If a participant needs more than fifty cards, give them more.
- The cards are handed out to new customers only.
- Distribution of the cards must be done on the employee's own time.
- Distribution takes place beyond the perimeter of the parking lot.
Occasionally you will find an employee who might take advantage and break one of the rules. Now that is a no-no. You can deal with each situation in your own special way.
Tracking Results: Count the total number of cards redeemed. Whichever employee has the most cards redeemed is the winner; second place and so on.
Prizes: The prizes are essential to make this contest fun and motivate your employees to participate. Many of the prizes can be bartered with other area businesses, including car washes, CDs, movie passes, movie rentals, dinners, etc.
It is very important every active participant wins something even if only one card is redeemed. You could also have weekly winners and then at the end of the contest the Grand Prize Winner. The Grand Prize is usually something a little more valuable like a small color TV, boom box, or gift certificate valued in the $50 to $100 range. However, the most popular grand prize we've discovered generally is the least costly: a day off with pay.
The contest should last one month. Also, the cards should be passed out in the first week of the contest.
BizSmart Action Plan:
- Design a special value card, that offers a savings or value added to your business. This should be a little stronger value than a typical sale offer or coupon.
- Give each employee 50 special value cards they can pass out to their family and friends. (if some want more, give them more)
- Employees, on a voluntary basis, pass out these cards on their own time away from your business.
- Keep track of the value cards, but only show the rankings, not actual numbers, on a poster board in the back room so the employees can see where they stand in the contest.
- Have weekly prizes and a grand prize at the end of each month. Anyone who participates wins something.
- Repeat the contest six months later.
Jeff and Marc Slutsky are co-authors of five books including StreetFighting. They are executives of Street Fighter Marketing in Columbus, Ohio, which specializes in teaching how to promote, market, and increase sales without spending a lot of money. Jeff and his brother Marc have a variety of audio and video tapes. For further information contact Jeff or Marc at:
467 Waterbury Court
Columbus, OH 43230