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Mice Net : February 2009
upfront international CiEvEnts’ Know Your iBM prograM wins gloBal sitE award The global ‘Know Your IBM’ channel incentive program created by Australian-based event management specialist, CiEvents, late last year won a global SITE (Society of Incentive & Travel Executives based in Chicago) Crystal award – its second SITE award in three years. Thought to be one of the most geographically extensive and complex loyalty incentive programs of its kind in the world, KYI was awarded Most Effective Use of an Incentive Program for a Strategic Business Solution following its outstanding success. CiEvents developed and implemented KYI in 2004. The group was commissioned by IBM Corporation to boost the product knowledge and sales performance of IBM resellers and distributors across Australia and New Zealand. In 2005, the program received its first SITE Crystal Award for the Most Creative Use of an Incentive Program to Solve a Marketing Problem. The early success of the program saw it expand to 88 countries across 10 languages, by 2007, during which it exceeded key targets including: - a 33.9 per cent increase (compared with a 10 per cent target) in the number of participants who sold IBM products - a 48.01 per cent increase (compared with a 15 per cent target) in the number of education modules completed - an 18.15 per cent increase (compared with a 15 per cent target) in the number of active participants in the program - a 62 per cent increase (compared with a 25 per cent target) in KYI revenue - a 184.7 per cent increase (compared with a 100 per cent target) in the number of IBM products and services sold by program participants to end users. KYI comprises an online ‘learn and earn’ component to boost the market’s product knowledge, and a ‘sell and earn’ component providing a sales revenue incentive. Participants can combine points earned for selling and learning to receive incentive rewards contained in the program’s rewards catalogue. The program is strategically managed by CiEvents, while its sister corporate travel management brand, FCm Travel Solutions, provides a global network of customer service and reward fulfilment centres worldwide. Incentive rewards vary from country to country and have included group incentive trips to destinations including Ayers Rock, Phuket and Morocco. In Australia, an aspirational promotion offering a fully leased BMW for two years also resulted in very strong sales. CiEvents’ general manager relationship marketing and recipient of the award, David Cox (pictured above), said the company tackled a number of challenges that were rarely given to incentive marketing specialists. “The key challenge was to design and manage a truly global incentive program providing cost efficiencies, common processes and brand consistency. This required extensive customisation of the program at the country level to manage different language, cultural, operational and legislative needs,” Mr Cox said. “CiEvents also needed to formally assess the true impact of product learning on sales efficacy, on a global basis. The results of this study have become highly valuable to IBM and are now expected to make a wider contribution to marketing theory and practice worldwide. “KYI has helped differentiate IBM’s products and services from its competitor’s offerings, and increased its market share through innovative education, rewards that appeal to different cultures, and providing ‘cut through’ communication within each market. “No other global incentive marketing or loyalty marketing company currently offers such a wide geographical coverage and has created such a strong competitive advantage in the global incentive marketing arena.” mice.net 21