350,000 merchants didn’t just show up and join our discount network overnight.

No, building the nation’s largest private discount network has been a 30 year labor of love for those of us here at Access. And Partnership Marketing is the group driving that process.

Access Partnership Marketing is the division responsible for managing our merchant network, from acquisition to retention and offer management. They’re the ones responsible for making sure the merchants’ needs are met, while also helping them create profitable offers that will drive new business.

Here are the five most important things to know about our Partnership Marketing division:New Call-to-action

Access has spent a lot of time on this blog talking about discount programs because, well, it’s kind of our thing. We’ve talked about what a discount program can do for a business as well as what ingredients go into a program that people will use and love. They’re a tremendous way to bring in new customers and build incremental revenue.

I want to address the merchants, the businesses who provide the meat for discount programs. For the most part, these restaurants, retailers and service providers are just trying to grow their customer base while also continuing great value and service to the people already in their stores.

Merchants get calls and sales pitches all day long on marketing services: Coupon distributors, daily deals, text messaging campaigns, loyalty programs, direct mail pieces, and on and on and on. Sorting through the mess is an impossible task, but necessary if they want to keep their businesses open.

I can provide some help at discerning the differences between discount programs. After 30 years in the space we’ve seen the good, the bad and the scammy in this industry. Here are some warning signs of someone who’s simply looking to take merchants for a ride:

Posted by Dave Bona on Jan 28, 2015 8:30:00 AM

So you’re finally going to do it.

You, business owner, are prepared to run a coupon. It’s surely going to bring in lots of new customers and give your business the jumpstart it needs.

Over the course of my years working with merchants on coupon campaigns, I’ve found one common, recurring question: How can a coupon can help me connect with the right person at the right time?

In other words, the merchant wants to know how to connect to people who aren’t a current customer, at a time when that person is looking to make a purchase.

That isn’t just an issue with coupons, it’s really the key to overall business success, right? If we had a formula to get in front of the right person at the right time we’d all be billionaires.

As the purveyors of the nation’s largest private discount program, we’re frequently asked why so many merchants participate in our network. It’s a fair question, and there are many answers. If I had to peg it down to one reason, bringing our merchant partners incremental business (or customers they wouldn’t get on their own) is one of the primary drivers of participation and it also fuels the overall offer value.

Another key point: if you notice, when we refer to the network we often include the word “private,” which as we’ve pointed out, is one of the hallmarks of an effective discount program. Clients and prospective clients obviously can access our content any time, as well as our members. The general public, however, is kept out. (You're welcome to contact us anytime if you're interested in learning about who's in our network)

Posted by Dave Bona on Mar 3, 2014 2:45:00 AM

We've made the claim that coupons can work for just about any business, as long as the deals are created with specific goals and audiences in mind. Mom-and-pop shops, regional chains, national retailers and yes, high-end brands.

That's right, even high-end brands can - and do - use deals to entice the right crowd to shop at their establishments. In fact, Access has helped many of these brands craft offers, but more on that in a moment.

Here's one thing many people don't realize: rich people love coupons. Households making over $100,000 are twice as likely to use coupons as those earning under $35,000. College graduates are also twice as likely to use coupons as those who did not graduate from high school. In fact, studies show that the less a household earns, the less likely they are to use coupons.

More than any other brands in the universe, high-end brands are very specific (even secretive) about their offers, but they're just like any other business in the world in this: they still need people to walk in the door and make purchases.

Here are three simple lessons Access has learned from high-end brands in our efforts to craft offers that drive the specific results they were looking for:

//