Boots to leverage Advantage Card

Boots is gearing up to launch a major direct marketing co-branding drive following an overhaul of its 16 million member customer loyalty database.


The drive will see the Boots Advantage Card compete with Tesco Clubcard and Nectar for the first time on fully targeted co-branded campaigns with health and beauty brands.

The high street chemist chain has recruited a new team to “ramp-up” its volume of co-branded campaigns with “the P&Gs and Unilevers of this world”, says head of loyalty Ruth Spencer.

Spencer, who became the retailer’s first loyalty director last year, says she wants to see a marked shift towards co-branded promotions with selected brands.

“Our direct marketing communications are significantly weighted towards Boots own brand campaigns and I want to see many more branded promotions than what we’re doing at the moment,” she says.

The move comes after Boots doubled its investment in its Advantage Card scheme and overhauled its database management. It also follows the retailer’s hiring of customer relationship management specialist agency Lida, which started work on new Boots campaigns in April.

Spencer says the investment and overhaul were necessary because, although the card is popular with customers, exploitation of the database and targeted marketing communications were “not as strong” as competitors.

She now claims to “know more about the health and beauty shopping habits of British women than anyone else in the country”.

“If you’re a mascara brand and you want to market a new variant to existing customers and prospects, I can now deliver the two groups, but ensure the second group aren’t those that are so loyal to a rival brand that it’s not worth contacting them, but deliver a group of regular mascara buyers which can then be followed up at a point we know they’ll be ready to buy again,” she says.

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