Car manufacturer Vauxhall has started to promote its new loyalty scheme, Vauxhall Rewards, with a direct marketing campaign aimed at getting customers to engage with the brand through the new programme.
Before the end of March, Vauxhall will send letters out to more than 50,000 car owners highlighting the scheme. It is also promoting the service to new customers both in dealerships and via email and through posts on Facebook.
The Vauxhall Rewards programme, which was set up and is run by Eclipse Marketing, offers customers the chance to take out either a pre-paid debit card or a credit card that they can use to make purchases and earn points to spend with Vauxhall, either on a new car, car accessories or maintenance costs.
The debit card can be used to earn points at around 70 shops and restaurants with users earning 3% on everything they spend in supermarkets and 5% everywhere else. The credit card can be used anywhere and users earn 3%, with 1 point equal to £1 to spend at Vauxhall dealerships.
Vauxhall’s strategic marketing programmes manager Sophie Thomas said the scheme is aimed at helping its customers cut down on motoring costs by maximising the rewards they get from their normal spending.
Thomas said Vauxhall hopes that the loyalty programme will lead to a further uplift in both new car sales and revenues.
"We firmly believe that the route to prosperity for the automotive sector in the UK is driven by forging stronger relationships with existing customers, and this solution delivers on that objective," she said.
Vauxhall will be able to see where its customers are in the car cycle, enabling it to tailor marketing messages to remind customers about services such as warranty renewals and help retail partners retain customers.
She added that there is also an opportunity to shorten replacement cycles as customers can save up points meaning they might be able to buy a new car sooner or upgrade the specifications of a new car.
Vauxhall has had no loyalty scheme since 2009, when its GM Card was cancelled after partner HSBC pulled out during the banking crisis. Thomas claimed there is no loyalty scheme like this is in the UK car market, meaning that much of its communication needs to focus on education.
The first priority is to get previous GM cardholders to move over to the new scheme, with Vauxhall using that database to tailor its marketing depending on whether customers are in the market for a new car or maintenance services.