It is that time of year. Labor day is approaching fast, soon the leaves in the trees will begin to fall, football pools startup and the skiers get their gear out. We also know it is a great time for fun at the casino. We have a fall special we want you to know about.
If you signup for a new RewardsForce account before November 1st, 2012 we’ll knock off 25% of your bill for 6 months. RewardsForce wants to keep this winter warm with this slick deal. You can contact Jeremy to receive a virtual demo today at email@example.com or 206-552-9770.
Writing a newsletter to your customers seems straight forward, easier than cooking an omelet. However, most people struggle. They write boring, long drawn out, verbose newsletters that don’t really connect with their readers. Here are three easy tips to producing better newsletters.
Write your newsletters from your prospective and not that of a major corporation (I vs We). You want your readers to feel like you are their pal. You do want them to be your pal, right?
The goal is to build an emotional connection with the reader so that they feel like they have an “in” with your business. You need to be that “in.” The more loved the reader feels the more likely they are to pick your business over a competitor next time. Here are a couple other easy tips:
- Sign the letter from yourself at the bottom
- Address the recipient/reader by name when you can (Hello Jeremy)
- Have a conversation with the reader by asking engaging questions.
Craft a Good Subject
First off, stay away from words that will trigger spam filters such as “Cash”, “Free”, “Help.” Unfortunately those aren’t the only popular words that trigger spam filters, there are a bunch of words/phrases that you should be aware of otherwise your delightfully crafted newsletter will end up in a place that no one visits. A few other things to be cautious of are repeating characters such as the “!!!!!” or all caps “FREE MATCH PLAYS!!”
What makes a good subject line you ask? Well, the best thing you can do is be direct with your subject. A wise man once told me, “Tell them what you are going to tell them, tell them, and tell them what you told them.” By consuming something three times it increases the probability that it will stick to the reader. Your subject line should tell the reader what they are going to read in the body before they open the email. Here are some good examples.
- “Artisan Pasta to Die For” (www.foodzie.com)
- “Someone has to earn a 2012 WSOP seat, why not you?” (www.wsop.com)
- “3 Tips to Improve Your Social Media Measurement” (www.simplymeasured.com)
These were all great subjects because I knew what the email was about before I opened it.
Keep it Short by Using Visuals
Using visuals is a great way to keep a newsletter short. Let’s take a play from Apple’s playbook. They use very little text, basically just a headline, sub header and one line of copy to tell you when and how you can get a new iPad.
If you have more to say, why not use this as an opportunity to get the reader to visit your website? Foodzie and Apple both link back to pages on their site with more information about the product.
In ending, keep your newsletters simple. By being personable, crafting a good subject and using visuals where possible, you’ve made it easy on your reader to consume your message.
Today we are announcing the launch of our Mobile Marketing package, which bundles a new texting service with an automated concierge and customer service line. Together these features will revolutionize the way you communicate with your customers.
Send Text Messages to Customers
We have dedicated a lot of late night sessions to take the pain out of managing text campaigns and seamlessly integrating it with our player tracking system. From the dashboard, segment your customers, create your own custom message, attach a promotion and send. There isn’t a faster, more direct or more effective method of communicating with customers. It will completely change the way you think about sending promotions to customers.
Text Specific Customer Segments
The segmentation tool is designed to help organize and filter customers into groups based on demographics, tastes and preferences, level of play, or any combination of player tracking metrics. Easily save segments to use, track and analyze later. No longer are you restricted to generic promotions for the whole club, you can specifically target different types of players with various promotions.
Attach Coupons and Promotions
Create a promotion and the system will automatically generate a unique code for every member that receives the text. The customer presents the coupon onsite and the unique code prevents fraud and multiple redemptions. When entered or scanned into the iPad, the code is then verified and tracked. Texting is integrated with your existing promotions system, so attaching a coupon is as easy as drag and drop. From conception to execution, it only takes a few minutes for thousands of customers to have a promotion in hand.
Track Texting Performance
Use analytics to track who reads your texts and redeems them. Then compare campaigns to better increase performance and target your customers with the promotions that are most likely to increase visits. Know precisely your ROI and direct more promotions towards segments and channels with the highest success rates.
Offer Concierge Service to Your Customers
A concierge serves the customer service needs of guests and that’s precisely the goal of this new feature. With a single customer service line, allow your customers to call an automated system to check their rewards club points, your most recent promotions and events, check tournament information and add their name to poker wait lists. Offer the luxury of concierge with no added effort or manpower.
Call Concierge to Join Wait Lists
Give your players the ability to check and add themselves to wait lists for your poker room. This concierge service is integrated with our Poker Board feature, so when players are added to the wait list their names will appear both on the Poker Board’s wait list and notifies the tournament manager on the iPad.
Want more information about Mobile Marketing?
An effective e-mail marketing strategy uses great copy to interest readers, compelling promotions to bring them in and effective tracking to monitor success. So far our customers have loved using our e-mail system to send newsletters and setup automated e-mails, but across the board have been asking for a feature to attach promotions and comps. BAM! We’ve been listening! Introducing three new features that are going to help you e-mail like a boss!
Easily Send Coupons and Comps along with Marketing E-mails
It’s a simple as drag-and-drop. After you finish designing any marketing e-mail or smart send, just select and drag from a list of your coupon promotions to attach and send. Choose up to four coupons to feature on the bottom of your e-mail and allow your customers to print and redeem. Customers may also present the coupon on their mobile device.
Get Started Fast with Stock E-mail Templates
Not sure where to start with an e-mail? With this release we’ve included a selection of copy templates to help you get started setting up newsletters, promotional e-mails and smart sends. Use them just as they are or adjust them to fit with your brand message.
Track From Open to Redemption
After sending an e-mail campaign, track and analyze campaign performance. Each campaign tracks everything from who receives your e-mail to who redeems your coupons on-site. Analytics include recipients, bounces, opens, clicks and on-site redemptions. All coupons include a QR code unique to the recipient to ensure proper tracking and fraud protection. Use our analytics tools to determine the success of each of your campaigns.
Attach Coupons to Physical Mailers
If attaching and tracking coupons in E-Mails wasn’t enough, you can create unique coupons to send out to your customers through physical mailers and have the same sophisticated tracking that you receive when you send coupons through emails. Gone are the days worrying about counterfeit coupons and fraud. Our system tracks each unique coupon and validates it in the system at the time of use.
For more information, check out our plans and pricing.
Last week’s buzz was all about Apple’s release of iOS 5 and the new iPhone 4S. We’re pretty excited and in fact we were one of the first to try out the new iPhone 4S friday morning!
We thought we’d give you some highlights from the new iOS 5 and let you know how it will impact your RewardsForce system.
- Notifications – All notifications are now available by swiping down from the top of your iPad or iPhone. Quickly glance and see updates from new e-mails, texts, appointments, social media and apps.
- iMessage – A free messaging service that works between any iOS device (iPad, iPhone or iTouch). It includes the ability to instantly text and send photos or videos.
- Twitter Integration – Now tweet directly from Safari, Photos, Camera, YouTube, or Maps. No matter what app you are tweeting form, include your contacts names and link to any content you’d like. This dramatically reduces the difficulty of tweeting an article from the New York Times or updating your status.
- PC Free – With iOS 5, you no longer need a computer to own an iPad. All your activation and account settings are right on your device. You can now wirelessly setup your device and activate it right out of the box.
- iCloud Security – Once you’ve realized your iPad or iPhone has been misplaced or stolen, simply login to your iCloud account and view on a map where your device is. Send a message to your iPad or remotely wipe its apps and data to protect any information the device can access.
- Multitasking Gestures – a set of new moves and shortcuts that will help you navigate around even faster. Just use four of five fingers to swipe up and reveal the multitasking bar at the bottom; swipe right or left to switch between open apps and pinch the screen to return to the Home Screen. Also, a new optional split keyboard allows you to type with your thumbs.
Installing iOS 5 is a breeze and we will be offering a tutorial to interested clients. Look for our iOS 5 upgrade e-mail in the coming weeks. Check out Apple for more information about specific features. As always, feel free to contact me with any questions about the new operating system.
Last week we made our first appearance at the Global Gaming Expo in Las Vegas. The conference blends new technology, gaming and networking in a week full of events and seminars. It was great exposure for our iPad player tracking system and caught us up on the newest trends in rewards management and gaming operations.
Here are some of the highlights from G2E 2011:
Mobile – From in-room gaming to hospitality apps, using mobile devices like smart phones and iPads to make marketing and operations better is an emerging trend. From the casino’s perspective, tablets provide that ability for rewards club managers, hostesses and other employees to manage their operations from wherever they are. Instead of spending time on computers and at terminals they can instead walk the floor. For customers, it will soon be a way for them to play from anywhere, including pools to hotel rooms. Very quickly, Apple’s iPad will be a permanent fixture on the casino floor.
Marketing – The casino and entertainment industry has long used paper-based direct marketing to target customers with promotions. Slowly marketing teams have adopted multichannel communication strategies by incorporating both e-mail and text. This trend was evident at marketing talks and walking around consulting booths. As with mailers, tracking the performance of these tools is critical and so the use of QR codes was on full display. We’re excited to be on the cutting edge of these new tools and help develop the right technology to make them effective.
Online Gaming – There’s been a lot of buzz around the closure of online poker sites like fulltiltpoker.com and PokerStars. For years the casino industry lobbied against online poker, but it is clear that the times have changed. G2E was littered with seminars and mini-conferences on the topic and the State of the Industry Keynote included a lively debate about online gaming led by Caesar’s Jan Jones.
G2E was a great experience, we learned a lot, made some great connections and, of course, had some time for fun…
We’re excited to announce that we will now be offering our customers the choice of three different product packages! Each of them are designed to take into consideration the varying sizes and needs of our customers. All of our packages include our signature iPad-based player tracking system and vary based on additional features.
Click the image to enlarge. Below are some highlights of each of our packages:
Player Tracking – Includes our iPad player tracking system, cage management, basic reports, and exportable customer information for mailers.
Advanced Marketing – Designed for casinos who are interested in mass marketing with e-mails, advanced reporting, and coupons. It includes advanced reporting and locations settings, so it is ideal for casinos with multiple locations.
Instant Marketing – This packages features the ability to communicate via texting / SMS with customers. It is currently in beta and will available upon request to interested casinos.
All of our current customers will be grandfathered into their existing packages and will see no service changes. For more details about individual packages check out our Plans Page and contact us for more information about what package is right for you!
So this week is kind of a light week for deployment. We have been working on cleaning up some loose ends and working towards some new features we are looking to deploy this month. Here is what we have deployed this week.
- Bug Fixes: Fixed a problem with points reports not allowing you to search for a person, introduced a fix and planning a better fix in the future. Fixed the comp scan screen lock up, causing the finish button to become unresponsive. Fixed the holding table logging, players will now have records of being in the casino but not at a table. Points will now be distributed based on very minute actions, previously you would get one point record for all activity in a session. Now you will get a point record for each individual action that earns the player points – allowing you to view a players earning history with much more detail. And many more.
- Export Points Report: You can now export the points report to be used in poker leader boards and reporting.
- Comps & Rewards: Added Comps & Rewards to the players transactions on the website to assist cage personell.
- Inactive Players: You can now reward & comp these players who are not sitting at a table.
- Magnetic Cards: You can now use magnetic cards with the iPad. We have had this for a while but recently finished testing.
The next 4 weeks will be exciting as we look to introduce some new poker & marketing features.
As is tradition, we wanted to reveal our new raffle system we finished up this past week along with a myriad of small fixes and improvements on our blog.
You can now print raffle tickets for physical drawings. The raffle works by logging into the iPad >> Click the Tools Drop Down >> Click Raffle. You’ll see a list of tables that you can use to select which tables to print tickets for. Once you select your tables, you can put in the number of tickets you want to print for each player at those tables, then click Print Selected. The raffles will be printed from the receipt printer you may use for your comps or rewards. You can also print individual tickets for players and write their name & contact information in the spot provided if they aren’t a member or just want to provide some players with extra tickets.
Registering a Player from Website
No more issues with registering a player from the website. Any player registered should seamlessly show up on the iPad when you need them.
Small Speed Improvements
We’ve been doing some query optimizations over the past week, increasing the speed at which you can access your data.
This is the moment you have been waiting for. A weekly release post. I know, I know, exciting right? We figured we should keep everyone up to date with the new and exciting features we release weekly. Without further delay, here is the release for August 31st, 2011.
You can now create reward vouchers to hand out to your cutomers. These vouchers can be printed directly from our system if you have printing enabled on your iPads. We define a voucher as a redeemable item, either through a POS or our system that costs a member some of their rewards points. You can create a voucher by logging into your account >> clicking on promote at the top main menu >> clicking on rewards in the left hand menu.
We are always looking for ways to distribute points to players that will incentivize them to do the things you want them to do. We have added a new points threshold mechanic that will distribute points to a player when they cross some line that you as a manager create. As an example, you could create a rule that says whenever a player buys in for more than $500 in a 1 day period, give him 500 bonus points. The buy in amount, period and amount of bonus points are customizable. The best part is you can have as many of these thresholds as you want.
You can now view the points you have distributed to players through our web site. Points can be looked at by transactions, player or by the rule itself. This report is beneficial for those running free roll tournaments based on points.
Among other things, we fixed a few bugs and added a few other small items. Here is a small taste of the list.
- Fixed a bunch of crashes related to scanning/finding players in the system.
- Added profile pictures to iPad search results/transaction history
- Added player picture cacheing on the ipad, so no more flickering and loading of images