Why join the 8-9 December Incentive Marketing Association Europe Ghent Meeting?

It is my pleasure as IMA Board member to invite you to attend the December Incentive Marketing Association Europe Members meeting. The focus of the event is to look at best practice in international incentive program deployment and have an academic insight on how technology and color can help attract and motivate the right employees. The meeting will be held at the stunning Opera, Ghent.

MAIN MEETING

Thursday 8 December, 1pm – 5.30pm, Ghent Opera

From 1pm tours of the Opera will commence with the meeting welcome at 2pm. The meeting will take place at the beautiful and historic Ghent Opera. Keynote speakers will take the stand and talk about thought-provoking, fascinating and notable topics, including:

  • How to launch an Award-Winning peer-to-peer Recognition Pg-lully-tomdhaenens-1rogramme?
  • How color and technology can play a part in attracting and motivating the right employees?
  • How does European consumer protection legislation influence incentive campaign development?
  • What can the Incentive Marketing industry learn from a globally operating Online Couponing & Deals start-up company?
  • Brexit panel discussion: How will the Brexit influence cross-border business for and with UK based incentive marketing companies?

Book Now, space is limited

DRINKS RECEPTION

Thursday 8 December, 6pm – 8pm, Ghent Great Butchers’ Hall

Kindly sponsored by SwingGroup and Touch Incent1990-2010_8ive Marketing, The drinks reception offers a great opportunity for industry professionals from across Europe to get to
gether informally and have a great chat and enjoy some traditional Belgian hospitality. The reception will take place at The Great Butchers’ Hall, a unique setting to enjoy all the goodies from East Flanders.

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NETWORKING EVENT & CITY TOUR

Friday 9 December, 10am – 2pm, Ghent: City of trade and taste

An (optional) but unforgetable City Tour on Friday 9th December hosted by SwingGroup with the collaboration of Discover Belgium.

The tour will take you around the sights of the city while presenting you the culinary boatdelights Ghent is famous for. A guided tour reveals the secrets of the wool trade wi
th the UK and the traditions of the middle Ages. A guided boat trip followed by a traditional dish (Ghent fish Waterzooi or Flemish beef stew) & desert will win you over. But pay attention as with the city quiz you might win extraordinary prizes to take home with you! Please note that there is a small charge for the tour.

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ACCOMMODATION

SwingGroup has secured a special accommodation rate with the front_marriott_ghentGhent Marriott Hotel, awarded Best Hotel in Belgium Award by Tripadvisor, the centrally located hotel is offering IMA Members meeting attendees a room rate of 129 euro per night single occupancy (additional 20euros for double), the rate includes breakfast, but excludes room tax. These exclusive rates are only available to book untll 16th November or until the rooms are fully booked.

More Info

About SwingGroup

I&MWinnerSwingGroup is a Benelux-based incentive marketing agency that specialises in B2B and B2B2C incentive and loyalty programs.  Its clients include BMW, Coca-Cola, Electrolux, GE, Insites, KBC, Philips, Q8, Samsung, Solucious, Tech Data, Thomas Cook, Truvo, USG, Unilever, Unilin, Vaillant, and others. It offers a comprehensive solution from set-up of an incentive platform, to supporting integrated communication, to fulfilment of the incentives (more than 300,000 gifts and 300 gift vouchers available in real time). The Motisha incentive management and reward platform, which was developed in-house, is the heart of business.

Contact information

Everaert Gunther – Managing Director – gunther@swinggroup.be – Tel: +32 50 50 24 64
http://www.swinggroup.euhttp://www.motisha.com
http://Linkedin.com/company/swinggrouphttp://be.linkedin.com/in/everaertgunther
Twitter: @swinggroup – @swinggift – @gunar2

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The main differences between an incentive and a reward programme

The challenge of any HR, Sales or Marketing department is how to motivate their employees or sales partners better. In order to reach the business objectives (faster) and to achieve the strategic company goals, which will help realise their long term vision and mission. Business objectives could be to increase customer loyalty, grow turnover, rise customer share of wallet, …

So which type of motivational programme should you use to help achieve these company goals? Here are some main differences between an incentive and a reward programme which you have to take into account:

back_to_the_future

  1. Past or future?
    Besides a strong internal communication strategy, companies can reinforce this challenge with an incentive or reward programme. An incentive programme will help them achieve a future goal such as 95% customer satisfaction if they now are at 90%. A reward programme gives employees or partners an appreciation when a goal or a unique performance or event has been met.
  2. Points or non-points based?
    An match pointincentive programme is points based and a reward programme is non-points based. In the first case input on targets or KPI’s is required. Either input on KPI’s is being uploaded into an incentive platform (file or automated database connections) or the employee/sales partner fills in their own results in an online (preferably) standardised form. Targets always need to be quantifiable (e.g. customer satisfaction %, speed of picking up a customer call, the response rate on offers, …) and in line with the goals an employee or sales partner needs to achieve within his department or subsidiary. Logically sales driven employees or partners will have more sales related targets than e.g. somebody from accounting.
    A reward programme is less complex and has a shorter duration period (e.g. end-of-yeargift, quality label earned, years of service, …).  It doesn’t need a regular update of results and can also be organized quite fast. Mostly people only log in once into an incentive platform, choose an incentive and log out again.
  3. Cash or non-cash?Wolf-of-Wallstreet-585x370
    The advantage of both type of programmes is that the motivational and psychological effect lasts longer than purely rewarding with cash. Once people receive money on their bank account, they mostly have already forgotten about it.

My experience is that Sales and Marketing Directors use incentive programmes more than HR directors. For the latter we mostly role out Reward programmes due to the simplicity of them and the easy link with important milestones that a person has achieved.

More info?

Check out the ‘How to set up a successful incentive programme?‘ presentation to help reach business objectives better and faster with hands-on tips and tricks on:

  • improving performance
  • motivational models
  • incentive programme design models
  • successful steps and key challenges
  • incentive programme possibilities.

About SwingGroup

I&MWinnerSwingGroup is a Benelux-based incentive marketing agency that specialises in B2B and B2B2C incentive and loyalty programs.  Its clients include BMW, Coca-Cola, Electrolux, GE, Insites, KBC, Philips, Q8, Samsung, Solucious, Tech Data, Thomas Cook, Truvo, USG, Unilever, Unilin, Vaillant, and others. It offers a comprehensive solution from set-up of an incentive platform, to supporting integrated communication, to fulfilment of the incentives (more than 300,000 gifts and 300 gift vouchers available in real time). The Motisha incentive management and reward platform, which was developed in-house, is the heart of business.

Contact information

Everaert Gunther – Managing Director – gunther@swinggroup.be – Tel: +32 50 50 24 64
http://www.swinggroup.euhttp://www.motisha.com
http://Linkedin.com/company/swinggrouphttp://be.linkedin.com/in/everaertgunther
Twitter: @swinggroup – @swinggift – @gunar2

PRESS RELEASE: SwingGroup nominated in 3 categories at the Incentive & Motivation Awards 2015

Bruges, 23/03/15, SwingGroup, the Benelux market leader in online incentive and loyalty programs, was pleased to see two of its incentive and loyalty programs, powered by the Motisha Software, being nominated in three different categories at the Incentive and Motivation Awards. This prestigious event will take place Wednesday 22 April 2015, aboard the stunning Silver Sturgeon luxury river yacht on The River Thames, London.

About the Incentive and Motivation Awards (2015)

The Incentive & Motivation Awards Europe recognizes the best and most effective incentive and dealer channel programs, as well as motivational employee engagement solutions, and ground breaking innovative technical platforms. The event will be fun not too formal, thought provoking and inspiring. Ultimately an event that honours excellence and innovation across the industry.

Incentive and motivation awards 2015boot

About SwingGroup’s nominations

SwingGroup has been shortlisted in all three categories it entered for:

  • “Best use of technology in a motivation solution”
  • “Most improved business/workforce performance program”
  • “Most innovative channel incentive program”

“We’re very proud that an international jury recognized the added value of the Motisha incentive management platform for its customers.” says Gunther Everaert, Managing director of SwingGroup.

A first program which was submitted by SwingGroup was TD Boomerang, aBenelux channel incentive program for Tech Data, the global leading IT-channel distributor. Its goal was to easily develop and manage Tech Data’s own umbrella incentive campaign, together with additional vendor incentive campaigns at the same time, in order to seize maximum market opportunities.

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A second submitted incentive program was KBC Vipping which rewards KBC’s top clients for their loyalty. KBC currently ranks as one of the top (-3) banking and insurance groups in Belgium, with Central Europe as its second core market.

kbc

In these two incentive incentive programs have we not only maximized customer retention and increased customer lifetime value but also significantly lowered the total cost of ownership. It would be great that the win we realize for our customers would eventually lead to a win at the Incentive and Motivation awards”  Gunther Everaert ends of with.

Would you like to know if SwingGroup wins these awards? Follow this blog or stay updated through SwingGroup’s social media channels.

About SwingGroup

SwingGroup is a Benelux-based incentive marketing agency that specialises in B2B and B2B2C incentive and loyalty programs.  Its clients include BMW, Coca-Cola, Electrolux, GE, Insites, KBC, Philips, Q8, Samsung, Solucious, Tech Data, Thomas Cook, Truvo, USG, Unilever, Unilin, Vaillant, and others. It offers a comprehensive solution from set-up of an incentive platform, to supporting integrated communication, to fulfilment of the incentives (more than 300,000 gifts and 300 (electronic) gift vouchers available in real time). The Motisha incentive management platform, which was developed in-house, is the heart of business.

Contact information

Everaert Gunther – Managing Director – gunther@swinggroup.be – Tel: +32 50 50 24 64
http://www.swinggroup.euhttp://www.motisha.com
http://Linkedin.com/company/swinggrouphttp://be.linkedin.com/in/everaertgunther
Twitter: @swinggroup – @swinggift – @gunar2

The future of employee incentives

In times of crisis firms strive to make optimal use of their resources, without running the risk of demotivating employees or, worse still, losing them. Which trends will firms continue to offer a competitive advantage in these turbulent times?

No-one wants to be just like all the others

Alongside the trend of providing staff members with a customised extra-legal package, as far as employee incentives are concerned people are increasingly on the lookout for personalised incentives. This is why more and more firms are choosing to abandon the uniformity incentive, where the difference between the psychological value (often the retail price) and the purchase value (dependent on the purchased volume) fails to counterbalance the potentially demotivating effect for the employee. Are you sure that you as a firm are not also giving out the message that you see all your employees as one and the same?

A single supplier offers insufficient options

In order to minimise this effect while nonetheless bringing in sufficient yield, firms often allow employees to select from a range provided by one single supplier, which could be via a webshop for more rapid interaction. At first glance this seems a good idea. But all too often the firm is bound to the partner’s suppliers, meaning the range is more limited and the employees often can’t choose from the latest models or product versions. After all, the partner has often purchased (large) volumes to maximise both its margin and that of the client. Correct economic short term logic, but is this really wise in the long-term? And what would be a better alternative? The answer is simple.

Customised motivation via a dynamic incentive marketplace

Let employees in a dynamic incentive marketplace choose from a varied range of incentives from different suppliers and this upon every occasion, whether it be staff benefits (marriage, birth, length of service, end of year, retirement) or incentive programmes for employees (sales incentives, quality improvement, idea management). All of this tailor-made to both the employee and the firm and accessible 7 days a week via computer, smartphone or tablet. Work where possible with digital incentives such as digital vouchers, online reservations, e-tickets or virtual prepaid gift cards. This real time remuneration increases not just the employee experience, but also lowers the costs of shipment and internal follow-up, important factors to take into consideration for the firm.

Bind employees to your firm more strongly

Firms which demonstrate their appreciation of their employees via a real time incentive platform with a personalised range, while keeping the costs well under control, build up a unique advantage as regards employer branding and retention management. This is the way in which we at SwingGroup, Benelux, leader in incentive marketing for 8 years now, are providing a helping hand and which increasing numbers of firms with the challenges of tomorrow are signing up to.

How can we help you strategically anchor the talent in your organisation?

Inspirational greetings

Gunther Everaert
Managing Director
SwingGroup

http://www.swinggroup.eu – http://www.motisha.com

Gunther EveraertGunther Everaert is the Managing Director and Founder of SwingGroup, the incentive marketing market leader in Benelux. He has strategically advised and developed integrated incentive marketing solutions for Fortune 500 clients such as BMW, Coca-Cola, GE, Philips and Unilever.  He has spoken at trendsetting conferences such as Digital Marketing First and HRM Masterclass e-recruitment, given interviews on Belgian national radio and is a regular guest lecturer at Ghent university.

Fresh opportunities in the New Year

Dear partner

2012 was a year in which a lot of firms groaned under the toughest economic crisis in years. 2013 will undoubtedly be a successful year in which we face up to numerous challenges together.

Resilience creates opportunities

Yet I have the impression that we are all in it together. How can this be deduced? From a number of factors. President Obama’s re-election means he can continue to repair the American economy. Thanks to the ECB Europe has once again created stability on the financial markets. European politicians have a quiet desire to keep everyone on board: ‘Exit with the Grexit’. But it is mainly local tales which inspire me and which make it clear that the resilience of our employers is creating new opportunities.

I read the tale of a crane company from Adegem, the district where I grew up, with 40 employees that after the bankruptcy of one of its primary suppliers, saw fit to take it over itself. What is so special about this?  The firm in question is 10 times larger, has 400 employees and is located in … Poland. I read the story of a self-made market researcher who changed course after 15 years and took over a firm of a couple of employees, specialised in the production of … traditional pickles.

Passion and innovation

What excites me about these stories? The fact that these entrepreneurs passionately believe in their (new) product and also dare to invest in it. Why? Because they have a deep-rooted conviction that it can signify something unique for their clients and want to make a difference with it. On top of this you can sense that they remain loyal to the basic philosophy of the firm and as a consequence haven’t started panicking. I can sense the same spirit with all of SwingGroup’s employees and this motivates us to carry on creating added value for every client, every partner.

What can you expect from us in 2013?

Since last December we have been serving our clients from our atmospheric new location in Bruges. This has already led to numerous inspirational brainstorms with fascinating projects. In addition, we continue to invest in employees and since this week Stefanie is our new Incentive project coordinator for our partners. We are continuing to build on the strongest incentive software platform in Benelux and we hope to steadily roll this out further in Europe. As a result, this year we are looking in particular to the launch of the first projects in Germany with our partner Bonago (part of Burda Media group). Furthermore, our goal is to inform our stakeholders about inspiring incentive marketing solutions via as many channels as possible, so that their connections yield a maximum for their firm. Do you want to be the first to hear all the latest? Read our articles via this new blog or follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn. Or become a fan of our SwingGift Facebook page.

Your dreams shouldn’t be inaccessible. Here’s to you and your team making them come true in 2013! Inspirational greetings.

Gunther Everaert
Managing Director

http://www.swinggroup.eu – http://www.motisha.com

Gunther EveraertGunther Everaert is the Managing Director and Founder of SwingGroup, the incentive marketing market leader in Benelux. He has strategically advised and developed integrated incentive marketing solutions for Fortune 500 clients such as BMW, Coca-Cola, GE, Philips and Unilever.  He has spoken at trendsetting conferences such as Digital Marketing First and HRM Masterclass e-recruitment, given interviews on Belgian national radio and is a regular guest lecturer at Ghent university.

De toekomst van employee incentives

In tijden van crisis zoeken bedrijven hun middelen optimaal in te zetten, zonder het risico te lopen de medewerkers te demotiveren of erger nog te verliezen. Welke trends zullen bedrijven in deze woelige tijden een competitief voordeel blijven bieden?

Niemand is graag eenheidsworst

Naast de trend om personeelsleden een extralegaal pakket op maat aan te reiken, is men op het vlak van employee incentives meer en meer op zoek naar gepersonaliseerde incentives. Hierbij stapt het bedrijf vaker af van de eenheidsworstincentive, waarbij de win tussen de psychologische waarde (vaak de winkelprijs) en de aankoopwaarde (afhankelijk van het ingekochte volume) niet opweegt tegen het potentieel demotiverend effect bij de medewerker. Geef je als bedrijf immers zo niet het signaal dat je je medewerkers ook als eenheidsworst ziet?

Eén leverancier biedt onvoldoende keuzemogelijkheden

Om dit effect te minimaliseren maar toch nog voldoende win te halen, laten bedrijven medewerkers vaak uit een select aanbod kiezen bij één leverancier. Al dan niet via een webshop voor een vlotte interactie. Op het eerste zicht een goed idee. Maar al te vaak is het bedrijf gebonden aan de leveranciers van de partner, waardoor het aanbod beperkter is en de medewerkers vaak niet uit de laatste modellen of productversies kunnen kiezen. De partner heeft immers vaak (grote) volumes ingekocht om zowel zijn eigen marge als die voor de klant te maximaliseren. Terechte economische kortetermijnlogica, maar is dit wel verstandig op langere termijn? En wat is dan een beter alternatief? Het antwoord is eenvoudig.

Motivatie op maat via een dynamische incentive marktplaats

Laat medewerkers op een dynamische incentivemarktplaats kiezen uit een gevarieerd aanbod aan incentives van verschillende leveranciers en dit voor elke gelegenheid zoals personeelsbeloningen (huwelijk, geboorte, anciënniteit, eindejaar, pensionering) of incentiveprogramma’s voor medewerkers (verkoopincentives, kwaliteitsverbetering, idee management). Dit alles op maat van zowel de medewerker als het bedrijf en 7 op 7 toegankelijk via computer, smartphone of tablet. En werk hierbij indien mogelijk met digitale incentives zoals digibonnen, online reservaties, e-tickets of virtuele prepaid giftcards. Deze realtimebeloning verhoogt zo niet alleen de employee experience, maar verlaagt ook de kosten van verzending en interne opvolging voor het bedrijf gevoelig.

Medewerkers sterker aan uw bedrijf binden

Bedrijven die via een incentiveplatform in real time met een persoonlijk aanbod, waarvan de kosten goed onder controle blijven, hun waardering tonen voor de medewerkers bouwen qua employer branding en retentiemanagement een uniek voordeel op. Dit is de weg waar we bij SwingGroup als Benelux-leider in incentivemarketing al 8 jaar aan helpen timmeren en waar bedrijven met de uitdagingen van morgen meer en meer op intekenen.

Hoe kunnen we u helpen het talent in uw organisatie strategisch te verankeren?

Gunther Everaert
Managing Director
SwingGroup

Nieuwe kansen in het nieuwe jaar

Beste partner

2012 was een jaar waar veel bedrijven kreunden onder de zwaarste economische crisis sinds tijden. 2013 wordt ongetwijfeld ook een bevochten jaar waarbij we samen tal van uitdagingen moeten aangaan.

Veerkracht creëert kansen

Toch heb ik het gevoel dat we er met z’n allen komen. Waaruit leid ik dit af? Uit een aantal zaken. Zo kan president Obama door zijn herverkiezing het herstel van de Amerikaanse economie verder uitbouwen. Heeft Europa dankzij de ECB terug stabiliteit gecreëerd op de financiële markten. Is er stilletjesaan de Europese politieke wil om iedereen aan boord te houden: ‘Exit met de Grexit’. Maar het zijn vooral lokale verhalen die me inspireren en waaruit blijkt dat de veerkracht van onze ondernemers nieuwe kansen creëert.

Zo las ik het verhaal van een kranenbedrijf met 40 werknemers uit mijn jeugdstreek Adegem dat na het faillisement van één van haar voornaamste leveranciers, niets anders kon dan deze zelf over te nemen. Wat is hier zo speciaal aan?  Het bedrijf in kwestie is 10 keer groter, telt 400 werknemers en is gevestigd in … Polen. Of las ik het verhaal van een selfmade marktonderzoeker die na 15 jaar het roer omgooit, een firma met een paar medewerkers overneemt,  gespecialiseerd in het maken van … artisanale pickles.

Passie en innovatie

Wat boeit me in deze verhalen? Het feit dat deze ondernemers met passie geloven in hun (nieuwe) product en ook hierin durven te investeren. Waarom? Omdat ze er rotsvast van overtuigd zijn iets unieks te kunnen betekenen voor hun klanten en hiermee het verschil te zullen maken. Bovendien voel je dat ze de basisfilosofie van het bedrijf trouw blijven en hierdoor geen paniekvoetbal spelen. Dezelfde spirit voel ik ook bij alle medewerkers van SwingGroup en dit stuwt ons voort om voor elke klant, elke partner, toegevoegde waarde te blijven creëren.

Wat mag u in 2013 van ons verwachten?

Vooreerst bedienen we onze klanten sinds afgelopen december vanuit onze nieuwe sfeervolle locatie in Brugge. Wat al tal van inspirerende brainstorms met boeiende projecten heeft opgeleverd. Bovendien blijven we investeren in medewerkers en staat sinds deze week Stefanie als nieuwe Incentive project coördinator voor onze partners klaar. Blijven we verder bouwen aan het sterkste incentive software platform in de Benelux en hebben we de ambitie om dit gestaag verder in Europa uit te rollen. We kijken hierbij dit jaar in het bijzonder naar de lancering van de eerste projecten in Duitsland met onze partner Bonago (onderdeel van Burda Media groep). Voorts stellen wij ons tot doel om onze stakeholders via zoveel mogelijk kanalen te informeren over inspirerende incentive marketing oplossingen om hun relaties maximaal voor hun bedrijf te laten renderen. Wilt u als eerste hiervan op de hoogte worden gebracht? Lees onze artikels via deze nieuwe blog of volg ons op Twitter en LinkedIn. Schrijf u in op onze electronische nieuwsbrief of word fan van onze SwingGift Facebook pagina.

Dromen zijn er om waar te maken. Realiseer ze in 2013 samen met uw team! Inspirerende groeten.

Gunther Everaert
Managing Director
SwingGroup