Loyalty Program for a Jazz Band

by Robbie Schlosser · 15 comments

Thanks in advance for reading this article. I appreciate your interest and hope you get a few good ideas. I'd love to hear what you liked. Please write me a little COMMENT below. Start a conversation. Tell me what you think, and I'll reply. Promise.
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Loyalty Program?  Jazz Band?  Sure, that little plastic card works well for an airline, hotel, or auto rental company, but can I market my company — or you market yours — with an organized incentive effort?

What shall I call it?  “Frequent Wedding Discount”?  Shall we tell everyone “Please join our Loyalty Program.  Use our little rewards card whenever you book my band.  You’ll save 20% every time you get married.”?  Hmmm… I don’t think so!

But shall I send this message to a professional wedding planner, or an entertainment agency, or a secretary who plans frequent receptions for her company?  OK, getting warmer.  Keep reading.

On Facebook, I recently posted a Networking Tip: “Everyone you meet is a friend, colleague, or client, and often all three, so begin your relationship right. Follow up your first meeting with a hand-written note”.   I consider this a specific example of a more general rule.  “People like to do business with people they like.”

Does this apply to you, too?  I recently wrote about doing business networking with friends and growing my business through friends of friends.  I’m always finding more advice for Networking — online, in books, seminars — everywhere!  A friend of mine, Larry Brauner, recently posted an excellent list of 22 of his favorite networking tips.  It’s all about getting to like people, and getting people to like me.

In my opinion, the nature of my business calls for face-to-face relationships with people.  We’re not a nation-wide supermarket chain, selling everything to everybody.  Nor a regional clothing store, nor even a neighborhood mom-and-pop pizza shop.  Are you?

Magnolia Jazz Band in Fremont Easter Sunday Brunch 2011So for me, using a formal loyalty program seems wrong.  Too impersonal.  Much better to informally nourish my friendships with everyone I meet, especially professional colleagues.  Sooner or later, I’ll be a client of theirs, and they are potentially clients of mine.

Magnolia Jazz Band in Fremont Easter Sunday Brunch 2011Here we are entertaining at a lovely Easter Sunday Brunch last month.  We’re on the bandstand, way in the back.  See my bass?  First photo, an hour before we began playing.  Second, 2 hours later.  My iPhone gets lots of use these days.  I met lots of people that afternoon, and I’m sure to see a number of them again before long.

How do I manage this?  Whether I’m selling a service, a product, or an idea, I’ve followed several steps:

  • First, get a clear idea of who I am and what I’m offering,
  • Next, develop a clear idea of who I market to and what they want,
  • Next, develop ideas of what to say, and how to present them,
  • Next, use all the appropriate methods: face-to-face (on the job, coffee dates, meetings, networking events), telephone, email, snailmail, website, advertising, and social media channels.  Can you add to this list?
  • Next, follow up, follow up, follow up.
  • Finally, go back to step 1 and repeat.

Bottom line:  I’m deciding that a formal Loyalty Program doesn’t suit my business, though it might be ideal for you.  Either way, my simple list of marketing steps can save you time and effort.

Thanks for reading my blog.  If you get one or two good ideas, would you please
— LIKE this post (Click the “Like” button below),
— COMMENT (Write an interesting idea in the “Comment” box below),
— SHARE (Email a friend, or post on Facebook or Twitter – see links below),
— SUBSCRIBE to this blog for more of my thoughts (Click the “RSS” below).

The Magnolia Jazz Band entertains regularly at weddings and parties throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.  If you’re ever nearby, you’ll love catching us in action, seeing and hearing us create a great mood.  In the meantime, please join our Facebook “fans”, and you’ll get reminders for our public events.



Thanks for reading this article. I appreciate your interest and hope you get a few good ideas here. Got one or two? I'd love to hear what you liked. Please write me a little COMMENT below. Start a conversation -- I'll reply. Promise.

By the way, does a friend need help selecting wedding or party music? Do them a favor: EMAIL this article, or SHARE it on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.

And if you find my blog useful, please LIKE it, TWEET it, and SUBSCRIBE for more ideas. Use those cute little icons below.

Meanwhile, the Magnolia Jazz Band entertains at weddings and parties throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. If you are ever nearby, you’ll love catching us in action, seeing and hearing us create a great mood.

How can I help you? Call 408-245-9120 or use Robbie@MagnoliaJazz.com. Planning a celebration? Ask about our availability.

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Irene Turner

My business is also all about personal relationships and having the people know, trust, respect and like me. I too am not sure a formal loyalty program would work for my business, but incentives to clients to actually recommend me might. I will have to think about this Ron. Thanks for a juicy morsel to contemplate. Good marketing ideas are always appreciated!

Reply

Judy Stone-Goldman

I was getting a chuckle out of the idea of a loyalty program–for serial marrying/divorcing/marrying folks? I think you came to a good decision. :) Seriously, every event you give introduces you and your band to so many people–what a wonderful opportunity for the relationships you are cultivating. Music at events is so important, you are coming into people’s lives in a very dynamic way, which leaves lots of room for positive first connections.

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Judy Stone-Goldman

The Reflective Writer

“My cat owns me, my clutter stymies me, my writing frees
me. Word maven loves—and learns from—ordinary life.”

http://www.thereflectivewriter.com/blog/

Reply

Debbie

Hi Robbie – I think you should consider rewarding party planners/wedding planners etc. that book you frequently for events. Reward them with a gift certificate to a nice restaurant or something along those lines! Debbie

Reply

Anonymous

I like the analogy of the bird and squirrel going out and…looking for business in a sense. Interesting. At Cultural Care Au Pair we do have a repeat discount and referral program (where parents can earn $/gift cards for referring)…and it has been a hit. It works for us (just had one of my families ask me about it today!). I laughed about the multiple marriage offer…..yeah, that’s not going to work…lol! BUT, I do think you could incorporate an incentive to the wedding planners (as Debbie says)….what do others do? I’d be curious to find out if/how others are “rewarding”. Love how you manage your contacts…great advice. You must meet some really great and interesting people in your travels!

Rita Brennan Freay
ritabrennanfreay.com

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Maridel Bowes

I agree, Robbie, that the best loyalty is built by not only offering a service that reflects a genuine passion or gift, but by showing up as someone who is likeable, reliable and genuine. For me, the decision to hire a band would rest not only with the music but from the “vibe ” or energy of the people themselves. I think that other “loyalty programs” such as working with wedding planners can augment this, but never take the place of it. I also liked your program of clear actions–that shows loyalty to one’s business!

Reply

Pat Zahn

I do offer a “frequent buyers club” of sorts for my business as well as a referral program. In the past, most of my referrers have been customers, so the reward is
based on my product, I need to work on how to reward those who refer but
are not interested in that – I guess Starbucks is always welcome?! It does seem a little weird in your line of business. But, if you have someone who refers quite a bit, it seems a little gift with a thank you note might be appropriate.

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Jennifer Duchene

Robbie I think loyalty programs have their place. I offer referral gifts, and some of my clients do like the idea. I would love to hear more about you and your band. Tell me about the people you meet and some of the funny stories about the people you have serenaded to marriage or celebrations.
The best part of being in a business and networking is the amazing people I meet.

Jennifer Duchene
Home Makeover Mixtress blending lifestyle laughter and Diva Dens
http://LYShome.com

Reply

Yvonne Hall

I loved the twist today! Your headline made me think you really were considering a loyalty card! Loved the tongue in cheek path you lead us down and the awesome marketing tips. The one I’m working on most these days, and my weak point, follow up follow up follow up;)

Is that Iphone going to ever write and post a blog for you??? 😉

Yvonne Hall

http://www.yvonneelmhall.wordpress.com

Reply

Brandy Mychals

Hi Robbie,
Funny…I laughed at the 20% off for every time you get married! I agree with the comments that a referral incentive program might be a good idea for wedding planners and others in your industry. I know some wedding professionals I could connect you with. I’ll message you :-)
Brandy

Reply

Sho nutrition evolution

II agree! For my practice as well, grass-roots style works best. Word of mouth and inspiration. HAHA on a discount for marriage, makes sense in the modern world. Video clips via youtube is one of the best and free promotional tools around.

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Louise Edington

Hi Robbie – yes, I too giggled when you joked about the 20% off marriage. I do offer an affiliate program for my clients which is a loyalty program of sorts, since lifetime membership of Louise Edington’s Social Networking Coaching Club wouldn’t fit any kind of loyalty program. I do believe in rewarding loyalty though so I think Debbie’s idea is a good one.

Louise Edington

Fearless over Fifty

http://louiseeidngton.com

Reply

Susan Berland

What an interesting idea Robbie. I can see why it may not work for you. But it just might work for my business. I do look for repeat customers. I agree that creating the relationship first is key. People want to do business with people they know, like and trust. But adding that incentive in can be rewarding for both parties! I’m going to ruminate on that one!

Susan Berland

A Picture’s Worth

http://www.susan-berland.com

Reply

Alara Castell

Hi Robbie. I like your networking tip
“Everyone you meet is a friend, colleague, or client, and often all
three, so begin your relationship right. Follow up your first meeting
with a hand-written note.” I actually used to do this after I read the book Appreciation Marketing by Tommy Wyatt & Curtis Lewsey, but like some things it slipped through the cracks and I stopped. By the way great book if you are looking for a new marketing read. I’m definitely going to consider doing this again. Thanks. I also love how you know what is right for you instead of following the rest of the crowd. Awesome! Alara K. CastellYour Sassy Spiritual Guide

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Julie Labes

Rob…My friend is getting ready for her 4th marriage so perhaps your idea might work for her?? But I agree totally, loyalty programs are not for everyone and i think your view is much better suited to your business .I think face to face marketing probably works very well for your business as after events you will get to mix and mingle a little and talk about your business

Julie
Labes,…The Fierce over 50 feels much younger point and click junkie
loves to travel does not use a jogging stroller and before you ask this
is NOT my granddaughter..Woman

Reply

Jillian Todd

I think the loyalty program, tweaked a little, can definitely work for wedding planners, party companies, other vendors you work with regularly. You can definitely send little “gratitude gifts” to them each time they refer you, each time you get a booking from a referral, etc. I know someone who keeps a stack of different gift cards on her desk. Each time she receives a referral or books a job, she sends a card out to whomever referred her. People LOVE to do business with her. :) (Nope, it’s not me–yet–I need to be more organized!!)

Jillian

http://www.jilliantodd.com

Jillian Todd Portrait Couture

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