Posted by Stoner Bunting on January 11th, 2018
The “team of one” approach isn’t always easy when you’re responsible for your brand’s B2B gift card program. Yet even when you’re managing the program solo, you can build a profitable unit that delivers bottom line results for your brand.
Get to know the B2B gift card industry.
I had no idea there was so much to gift cards. It’s a statement we hear frequently from clients new to the industry. From promotional planning to payment operations to order fulfillment, there’s so much more to these B2B programs than many realize.
It can feel overwhelming to dive right in, especially when you’re juggling so many other responsibilities. Empower yourself by learning as much as possible about this surprisingly complex industry. Adding relevant newsletters, blogs, and white papers to your reading list is a smart way to stay connected.
Here are some of our Stoner Bunting Gift Card (SBGC) team’s go-to resources:
•Retail Gift Card Association (RGCA)
•Incentive Gift Card Council (IGGC)
•First Data (gift card processor)
•SmartBrief Retail (retail industry newsletter)
Organize to avoid lost opportunity.
Use an organizational system that keeps your sanity—and program—intact. Start with your brand’s sales and marketing stack for systems to track everything from promotions to projects to leads. If you’re not already leveraging a program, check out project management platforms, like Basecamp, Trello, Zoho, or others, to wrangle processes and stay on top of due dates, to-do’s, and other essentials.
Proactively manage buyer relationships.
The B2B gift card industry has taken giant leaps technologically, but success in the space is still firmly grounded in relationships. The top 20 B2B gift card buyers are managing around 300 brands, making it easy for your program to get lost in the shuffle.
The most successful program managers actively manage relationships and treat buyers like the valued customers they are. Stay connected through regular phone and email contact. In addition, old-school face time at industry events remains one of the top ways to build valuable relationships with B2B buyers. The result is often measured in better marketing placement and first access to valuable promotional opportunities. Learn more in B2B Gift Card Distribution: The Industry Relationships You Can’t Afford to Neglect.
Lean on your processor as a key partner.
If you outsource payment processing, leverage that relationship to grow your brand. Gift card processors are in a unique position to collect valuable analytics, like transactional data. Those numbers can help drive strategic decisions for your program. Additionally, payment processors drive costs, like swipe fees and card production, so it makes sense to build those relationships so you fully understand their role in your program.
Grow your team with outsourced B2B gift card experts.
Doing it alone isn’t always the right answer for you or your brand’s program. An outsourced B2B gift card services team is a cost-effective solution if:
•You struggle with stagnant sales.
•You lack the time to maintain critical B2B buyer relationships.
•You don’t know where to start when managing a gift card program.
•You don’t have the time or resources to give the program the attention it needs to be profitable.
SBGC offers extensive experience working with gift card program managers, many of them a team of one. Whether you need guidance developing strategy, making key buyer connections, or launching a new B2B program, our team works as an extension of yours.
Put our industry expertise, strategic insights, and extensive connections to work so you can build a profitable B2B gift card program.