The scheme, dubbed “Meerkat Movies” after the price comparison site’s brand character, will be available from 3 April for a year to anyone who buys a “qualifying” product or service, likely to include credit card switches and insurance bought through the site.
Customers wanting to take advantage of the offer will have to download the brand’s app.
The move appears to be an attempt to boost repeat site visits and loyalty in a promiscuous market whose major players have based their marketing strategies entirely on dominating share of voice using brand character-led advertising blitzes.
Although Comparethemarket has enjoyed a successful last couple of years – growing customer numbers and its product portfolio – there is little evidence of loyalty in the market. A 2013 report from Consumer Futures, now part of Citizens Advice, found 83% of price comparison customers visited multiple sites when hunting for the best deal.
Comparethemarket, which trails Moneysupermarket in site visits via desktop computers (according to Comscore) but claims it is “the most popular” when all customer touchpoints are accounted for, introduced a set of Meerkat toys to entice prospective and previous customers in 2011. Marketing director Mark Vile called the cinema offer the “biggest step change for the brand” since launching the toys and that the latest promotion “reinforces our commitment to rewarding our customers.”
Although EE claimed the number of customers taking up up the offer had been in decline in recent years when it announced it was axing its offer in December 2014, cinema chains and distributers will be relieved that trade body Cinema First has found a new partner.
Andy Edge, Odeon’s commercial director, says: “The cost of a trip to the cinema is often cited as one of the main reasons people can’t enjoy trips to the movies more often. Meerkat Movies 2 for 1 cinema tickets offer film lovers an amazing value deal to help break down this barrier.”
EE launched its new promotional offer, ‘Film Club’, earlier this week after the curtain came down on ‘Orange Wednesdays’ after 10 years. It has partnered with video streaming service, Wuaki.tv, to offer one movie per week for £1.