In 1965, American families began clipping coupons en masse and marketers realized how coupons convert prospects, upsell customers, and encourage brand loyalty. In 1990, the internet begat the era of online coupons, making it easier than ever for subscription-based and other businesses to reach an online audiences with their promotions.

Unfortunately, the same technology also made it easy for clever bargain hunters and their friends to abuse the system, posting a coupon codes online for anybody to find and use. As a result, many marketers worry about the potential unintended economic impact of using online coupons to promote their products and services, despite their manifold benefits.  

But, by creating each coupon with its own unique code, merchants take control of their campaigns and tailor their delivery and promotion to specific segments and even specific people. Recurly provides a powerful bulk unique coupon generator that enables marketers to create, manage and measure the results of large-scale campaigns with unique codes which can be used for things like segmented email campaigns, refer-a-friend social recommendations, and printed coupons given away at tradeshows and in-store.  

As discussed in our previous blogs in this series (available here), Recurly’s coupon function provides a powerful means to design and implement marketing campaigns to attract, convert, retain, and reclaim customers. And the more targeted a campaign is, the more effective it’s likely to be. With bulk unique coupons, a marketer has more control, and prospects are made to feel special and valued by receiving a unique coupon sent individually to them, rather than a mass coupon distributed widely.

From awareness to engagement

The typical marketing funnel starts with generating awareness. Prospects then move through the funnel, gathering information and becoming more engaged, until they convert and become paying customers. From the marketer’s standpoint, campaigns go from being broadly targeted at the top of the funnel to being more segmented and targeted at different groups of prospects at different stages in their customer journey.

Bulk unique coupons allow the marketer to create more targeted campaigns based on what they have come to know about different groups of customers and prospects or even high-value individuals. A well designed, highly targeted campaign can be very effective but also very difficult to manage and implement. But with Recurly, the process is straightforward.  

Using the bulk unique coupon feature in Recurly, merchants send different coupons to different segments, based on that group’s progress through the funnel and other attributes. Unlike broadly based campaigns that are promoted widely, via social media and other channels, the bulk unique coupons function gives the subscription business greater control. For example, they can limit how many people receive the coupon, and with unique codes, the coupon can only be redeemed once per person. Merchants can deliver their codes and feel confident that the campaign’s total discount amount is limited by what they have allowed in Recurly. Additionally, unique codes can be delivered across different channels and at different times, and this data can be tracked to see how that variability affects redemption, since the delivery and redemption is 1 to 1.

More control, better analytics

Marketing teams also have a greater ability to track how the coupon performs and generate more granular analytics, for example, time from delivery to redemption. They can run A/B split tests to track the effectiveness of different offers. And because the delivery is individual (usually via email), it feels like a more personalized offer – because it is!

Another way bulk unique coupons can be used is for refer-a-friend programs. These types of coupons are often sent via email to customers or advertised via in-app messages. These campaigns are very effective because they provide the recipient with social proof from someone the recipient knows while supporting the brand and cutting through the noise of competing advertising.

Refer-a-friend campaigns allow for a different way to leverage discounts, as the approach is more personal and targeted and requires action from the customer (sharing the code or codes with specific friends) who may also receive a discount when the coupon is redeemed. Campaigns like this are particularly suited to brands that view discounts as diluting their brand value and want to use them in a more discreet way. This feature is also well suited to partnership deals.

Thousands of codes generated in seconds

In the past, marketers who wanted to create bulk unique coupons had to enlist the help of developers. Not with Recurly. Our merchants generate thousands of unique coupon codes in seconds without any developer assistance. Simply create the coupon and download the unique codes that Recurly generates. Upload the codes to your email marketing tool, and use mail merge tags to send a unique code to each email address in your database or in the defined segment. Track coupon redemptions in Recurly.

Not your mother’s coupons

Consumers have come a long way from the days of clipping coupons from the Sunday paper. And as the technology and tactics related to coupon campaigns have evolved, the effectiveness of these campaigns has only improved. Changes to how coupons are created and distributed has given marketers the ability to develop far more targeted campaigns that are extremely effective in converting prospects, upselling customers, and encouraging brand loyalty.

Want to learn more about Recurly’s coupon function? Talk to a Recurly expert at (844) 732-8759.