Best Buy Opens Reward Zone Loyalty Program

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Best Buy Stores, Cincinnati, announced yesterday the national rollout of Reward Zone, a new loyalty program to recognize its best customers.


Available in all of Best Buy's 550 U.S. locations, Reward Zone is open to any shopper 13 or older. After paying a $9.99 annual fee, members get a Reward Zone membership card that credits them with 100 points for each dollar spent.


They also receive a 5,000-point enrollment bonus. Every time a member's balance reaches 12,500 points, a $5 award certificate redeemable for any Best Buy purchase over $10 is issued. Also, members earn bonus points for participating in activities such as signing up for an online newsletter, completing a survey or buying featured merchandise.


Frequency Marketing Inc. provides the technology platform, technical services, print fulfillment and ongoing program support for Reward Zone. The technology platform includes MemberNet, FMI's Web interface that lets Reward Zone members interact with the program online.


Print fulfillment includes welcome kits, quarterly statements and award certificates. Best Buy manages creative development and media buying through its existing vendors and runs member services using FMI's platform at its existing call centers.


Through the FMI MemberNet Web site, Best Buy plans to offer members benefits including sweepstakes, previews of upcoming CDs and movies, computer and video game demonstrations and product giveaways.


Using the FMI tools, these offers can be dynamically configured and targeted for specific groups or even individual members.


Planning began in April 2002 when Best Buy chose FMI, Cincinnati, to create a retail loyalty program. After a successful eight-month pilot in Southern California, FMI helped Best Buy plan the national rollout.


"We recognize the value of maintaining our core of frequent, repeat shoppers," said Mary Miller, Best Buy vice president of customer loyalty marketing. "Reward Zone fits into our corporate mission of 'customer centricity' and offers us a vehicle to tangibly reward customers for their continued patronage."


To promote Reward Zone, Best Buy is running a sweepstakes July 20-Aug. 23, giving away $25,000 daily. Customers get one entry into the sweepstakes for enrolling in Reward Zone and one entry for every additional transaction they make. Each day for 35 days, there will be a new drawing for $25,000.


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