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Groupon ventures into grocery deals with Big Y

BY DSN STAFF

CHICAGO — Through a partnership with Incentive Targeting and HaloEffect, Big Y Foods will become the first grocery retailer to offer Groupon deals digitally loaded to shoppers’ loyalty cards, the companies announced.

Big Y’s first Groupon offer, distributed among Springfield, Mass., subscribers on June 7, was for a newly introduced Shellfish Grill Pack, including lobster tails, mussels, clams and other seafood suitable for grilling, which retails at $39.99 and is being offered at a 40% discount for $24.

For this test, a shopper purchases the Groupon and enters their Big Y Express Saving Club membership number, and the Shellfish Grill Pack deal is loaded electronically to the shopper’s loyalty card. When the shopper purchases the promoted products at a Big Y supermarket, the deal is credited automatically at checkout.

“As pioneers in loyalty cards for retail, we are excited to partner with Groupon and Incentive Targeting to test social buying with our shoppers,” said Michael D’Amour, VP sales and merchandising for Big Y Foods. “We anticipate that we will attract new customer interest as we explore new avenues in interactive customer marketing.”

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New Consumer Reports survey sheds light on poor customer service

BY Michael Johnsen

YONKERS, N.Y. — As evidenced by the 10% upswing in Better Business Bureau complaints over 2009, Consumer Reports will be sharing its survey around a consumer outcry of poor customer service in its July 2011 issue.

As many as 64% of respondents reported having left a store because of poor service. And 67% had hung up on customer service without having had their problem addressed, though not having an actual human to gripe to on the other end of the line when complaining about poor service was the No. 1 “dislike” in the report’s “Gripe-O-Meter” graphic. Additionally, more than 70% of survey respondents reported being “tremendously annoyed” when they couldn’t reach a human on the phone.

Most Americans fielding a customer service issue, however, would rather deal with the situation over the phone. Only 16% of Americans would prefer to deal with a customer-service problem in person — 20% favored the phone and 2% favored live chat.

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AmerisourceBergen CEO honored by HDMA with Nexus Award

BY Michael Johnsen

PHOENIX — The Center for Healthcare Supply Chain Research, the research foundation of the Healthcare Distribution Management Association, and Genentech on Tuesday honored AmerisourceBergen CEO David Yost with the 2011 Nexus Award for Lifetime Achievement.

The award — presented at HDMA’s annual Business & Leadership Conference — is the distribution industry’s highest recognition, honoring exceptional character, accomplishments and leadership in HDMA, the industry and the community.

“Dave embodies all of the attributes of the Nexus Award through his industry and community leadership,” HDMA president and CEO John Gray said. “Throughout his distinguished career he has been a tireless champion for distributors and the customers they serve, yet through all his success and accomplishment, has remained humble and dedicated to his family and community.”

Yost has dedicated nearly 40 years of service to the healthcare distribution industry. He began his career in 1974 as a salesman for a predecessor company of AmeriSource Health Corp. He served in a variety of operational, sales and executive capacities, eventually becoming chairman and CEO of AmeriSource, which merged with Bergen Brunswig Corp. in 2001 to form AmerisourceBergen — one of the largest wholesalers in the United States. During his tenure, Yost has led his company to No. 27 on the Fortune 500.

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