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09/22/2021

County Market Sets the Bar for Engaged Rewards Programs

Midwest grocer partners with tcc to increase same-store sales and drive long-term loyalty
Marian Zboraj
Digital Editor
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County Market Sets the Bar for Engaged Rewards Programs
County Market combines rewards and digital games to drive shopper engagement.

County Market, a unit of Niemann Foods Inc., is taking a novel approach to enhancing the value of its personalized rewards program, MAX Value. With the help of tcc, a provider of loyalty programs for supermarkets and other retailers, County Market has alternated merchandise rewards for meeting set spending thresholds and a digital mobile game tied to the season.

“The combination of high value loyalty rewards and digital mobile games keeps us top-of-mind with customers and is showing real, quantifiable results. Today’s consumer has more options than ever and we have to keep it fresh to give them new reasons to shop our stores week after week,” ​said Ron Cook VP and director of marketing at Niemann Foods, operator of 39 County Market supermarkets in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa and Missouri.

For example, County Market recently launched its all-digital Company is Coming campaign, which runs through the holiday season and features MAX Value Card loyalty point redemption for a variety of MasterChef ovenware.

Just prior to the Company is Coming campaign, County Market ran the Take It Outside digital mobile game, which used the summer grilling season as the theme. The game motivated customers to visit an in-store seasonal merchandising display of grilling and outdoor dining products. Thousands of customers used their mobile phones to play the digital game every day to win daily prizes and enter a grand prize drawing for a Weber Grill. Daily prizes were redeemable in-store, which drove incremental traffic and allowed the retailer to build a database of digitally engaged customers.

Additionally, the winter and spring featured the Back to the Table campaign, which also featured MAX Value Card loyalty point redemption for a full range of KitchenAid cookware. The campaign was designed to retain the COVID-related sales increases as virus restrictions were lifted and consumers began to socialize again. Same store sales grew by 14.6%, while the customer trips increased and basket size rose 6.1%. MAX Value Card penetration increased 8.9% enabling County Market to identify more of its customers and bolster its personalization initiatives.

For the card-based campaigns and the game, County Market experienced a dramatic increase in social media activity, with hundreds of thousands of new engagements on Facebook and thousands of new Instagram followers.

For all its efforts, County Market was recently ranked number two on Newsweek's list of America's Best Loyalty Programs in the supermarket category.

“County Market is energizing its most important customers by pulsing in and out these fixed length rewards offerings. Each campaign builds on the success of the previous one and over time they are creating a super-engaged base of loyal customers. It’s a smart strategy and County Market has done a great job executing it,” said Dan Dmochowski, president of North America for tcc.

Tcc delivers tailor-made solutions which engage and reward loyal customers while driving sustainable growth to retailers and brands. Active in more than 70 countries worldwide, tcc global employs more than 600 people across 34 offices.

Meanwhile, more than 100 grocery, pet food, hardware, pharmacies and gas stations are part of the Niemann Foods Inc. family in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Wisconsin and Missouri.

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