Blockbuster Entertainment of Dallas is testing a customer loyalty program for its video stores in 10 U.S. cities and plans to roll it out nationally early next year, sources said.
Blockbuster representative Liz Greene confirmed the promotional program, but declined to discuss future plans. She identified the test cities as St. Louis, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Denver, Detroit, Chicago, San Francisco, San Diego and Sacramento, Calif.
To date, the client's advertising has involved primarily direct mail and in-store promotional pieces. Television and print most likely will be added to the mix when the program goes national, sources said.
Dallas-based Brierley & Partners helped launch the national test along with a "multitude of agencies" that Greene would not name.
W.B. Doner & Co. in Southfield, Mich., which recently won the creative portion of the client's $160 million account, is expected to handle national work as the program expands, sources said. Blockbuster declined to comment on which agencies would be used on the project in the future. Officials at both Brierley and Doner referred questions to the client.
Participating consumers in the test cities received a three-page direct mail piece recently, which included a letter explaining the program from Jim Notarnicola, Blockbuster's marketing chief, as well as a one-page survey. Questions mainly focused on their experiences with Blockbuster and the participants' video preferences.
The mailing includes the "Go home happy" tagline developed by Blockbuster's former agency, Young & Rubicam, New York.
Program participants, who pay a $10 membership fee, receive a free Blockbuster Favorites rental each month as well as a free rental after five paid rentals of movies and/or games. They also get a free Blockbuster Favorites rental with every paid movie or game rented Monday through Wednesday.