Unique Marketing Tool Supports Loyalty Card

No, thousands of Bloom shoppers have not caught a bad cold. So why did the Food Lion banner hand out free tissues? It was all part of a major marketing program for Bloom's new loyalty program, which provides a 1% rebate to those who spend $100 during promotional periods. A card that gives you 1% back is nothing to sneeze at, the tissue packs read. The retailer distributed 50,000 packages

SALISBURY, N.C. — No, thousands of Bloom shoppers have not caught a bad cold. So why did the Food Lion banner hand out free tissues?

It was all part of a major marketing program for Bloom's new “Breeze” loyalty program, which provides a 1% rebate to those who spend $100 during promotional periods.

“A card that gives you 1% back is nothing to sneeze at,” the tissue packs read.

The retailer distributed 50,000 packages of tissues in April to shoppers who signed up for Breeze, according AdPack USA, the New York-based marketing company that produced the campaign.

The promotion ran in 22 Bloom stores in Fredericksburg, Va., Charlotte, N.C., and Greenville, S.C.

“The campaign provided another way we could reinforce our messaging about the benefits of having a Breeze card,” said Bloom spokeswoman Karen Peterson.

Introduced last October, Breeze is described as a “customer rewards program” that provides surprise gifts, coupons and a 1% percent rebate on their purchases if they spend $100 in three months. A 1% rebate coupon, based on total purchases during the quarterly period, is mailed to the customer's address. Members have the option of donating their rebate to a local school or charity when they sign up.

Tissues are a valuable promotional tool because they provide repeat advertising exposure until the tissues are gone, said Steve Jacobs, president of AdPack USA, a division of Itochu International, a Japanese trading company.

“This allows Bloom to deliver a message that consumers will continue to have with them for several weeks,” Jacobs said.

While AdPack has run similar promotions in the financial and online retail markets, this is the first time it has worked with a traditional food retailer.