The 2012 Motivation Masters Finalists
By Leo Jakobson
November 12, 2012
The finalists of Incentive's
Motivation Masters Awards excelled in creating the best, most
effective, and creative incentive and engagement programs of
the year, showcasing what truly great incentives look like.
Category winners and the Grand Motivation Master will
be announced in the January/
February 2013 issue of Incentive
Engagement and Recognition
DATES: January 2011 to Present
New York-based Assurant is a provider of specialty insurance products in the U.S. and internationally. Last year, following a company-wide employee engagement survey that showed
a need for improved recognition, Assurant decided to act. Working with Anderson Performance Improvement, it launched the Assurant Commitment to Excellence (ACE) Recognition program, designed to reinforce a "One Assurant" commitment, boost employee
morale, and increase employee engagement, performance, and
retention through a flexible points-based program.
The program also includes e-cards as peer recognition tools, ACE
Awards, and scratch-and-win cards that award variable points.
RESULTS: Since the debut of ACE, Assurant has seen satisfaction survey scores grow by 6 percent. More than 7,000
e-cards have been sent, and points have been awarded more than
7,500 times. A full 70 percent of employees participated from the beginning - more than double
the initial expectations.
COMPANY: Meridian Credit Union
DATES: January 2010 to Present
As the largest credit union in Ontario, Canada, with some $8 billion in assets, Meridian firmly believes that having engaged employees leads to engaged credit union members,
ultimately driving profit and sustainable growth. In order to
increase its 1,200 employees' engagement and reinforce an
internal branding campaign, Meridian worked with San Francisco-based Achievers to
create the iApplaudu@Meridian reward and recognition program.
The points-based program allows employees to recognize
behaviors that match the company's brand promise and values,
either with non-monetary thank-you notes or with points that
can be redeemed from a catalog that includes brand-name
merchandise, gift cards, individual travel and experiential
awards, Groupon coupons, and charitable donations. The platform
is also used for sales incentive awards, employee referrals,
and service anniversaries.
RESULTS: Since the launch, the engagement score relative to
recognition has increased from 3.96 to 4.13 on a five-point
scale, with five as the highest, and the number of employees
who rated the company's recognition efforts a five out of five
rose from 44 to 51 percent.
Channel Sales Incentive Programs
DATES: July 1, 2010 to May 31, 2011
Australian building products manufacturer DuluxGroup came to
Melbourne-based incentive firm 212F Pty Ltd with a tough assignment: create a
channel sales program that will increase sales at all four of
DuluxGroup's brands at Danks, the country's leading hardware and garden retailer, even though Australia's hardware industry has experienced poor
growth and declining revenues for the past five years.
With a limited budget for an 11-month program that was actually
smaller than the budgets for some previous one-month
promotions, 212F created the DuluxGroup Danks All Stars
program, in which the 35 top-achieving store owners were taken
on a trip to Singapore and cruise through Asia. An aggressive
launch, featuring everything from teaser mailings of a toy
cruise ship to individual visits from DuluxGroup managers, was
paired with an easy-to-use web-based program with leader-board
rankings promotions and trip information. More than 400 of the
600 Danks stores participated.
RESULTS: The program delivered double-digit sales growth, and
increased market share in each of DuluxGroup's four brands in
Danks' stores, despite declining results in Australia's broader
independent hardware channel during that time.
COMPANY: Kimberly-Clark Professional
DATES: January 2011 to Present
Kimberly-Clark Professional turned to St. Louis-based Maritz
Motivation Solutions to create a channel sales and loyalty
program for its 8,000 distributor sales representatives (DSRs) who
resell its commercial washroom, industrial wiping, and safety
products - consumables with quick turnarounds and repurchase
periods. The program was meant to engage with and retain the
channel partners' loyalty; deliver and sustain high-margin
growth; and move away from cash special-payment incentives for
fast sales, among other things.
The result is the web-based KCPzone, also available via mobile
devices, which is a one-stop-shop for DSRs seeking marketing
materials to use with their own customers, product information
and training tools, and information about promotions. Rewards
include KCPzone-branded stored-value gift cards and points
earned for sales. Gamification tools, ranging from the
traditional leaderboard to virtual "badges" earned for learning
activities, can be redeemed for gift cards.
RESULTS: Within five months, sales claims from DSRs doubled and
they brought in new end-user clients that generated millions of
dollars in net volume for Kimberly-Clark Professional, despite
the turbulent economy. Other results include a 231-percent
increase in participating DSRs during 2011 and a 115-percent increase in 2012 through August 15; a 40-percent
increase in DSR sales claims for five consecutive quarters; and
157-percent growth in new business from 2011 to 2012; and a
COMPANY: Multibillion-dollar, multinational corporation
DATES: May 2011 to Present
An information technology products and services division of a
multibillion-dollar, multinational corporation with some 6,000
employees, which does business with a substantial percentage of
the Fortune 100 turned to Lewsiville, TX-based Parago to create
a global sales incentive program for its channel reseller
The goal was to create a consistent, company-branded program to
motivate and reward resellers in dozens of countries across 10
languages. A central management platform with standardized
incentive awards and communications, and the ability to fold in
educational modules, was required. It also had to be flexible
enough to support separate aims and program targets in
different countries, as wells as differing legal requirements.
Extensive back-end management was required.
RESULTS: The points-based program offers participating channel
companies' sales reps and sales engineers country-by-country
catalogs with merchandise and experiential rewards. When sales
are made by eligible but not enrolled companies, they are
automatically notified of the program and invited to join. The
program has garnered rave reviews and participating channel
partners have seen their revenues grow by substantial double
digits in its first six months.
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COMPANY: Huntington National Bank
DATES: May 2, 2011 to Oct. 31, 2011
When Columbus, OH-based Huntington National Bank wanted to create an incentive program
to open more business accounts and sell more credit products,
it turned to New Brunswick, NJ-based Dittman Incentive
Marketing, which created the Journey to the World Series
With a predominantly male target audience and a May-to-October program period coinciding with baseball season, Dittman created
a baseball-themed program with the goal of generating $500,000 in treasury revenues in line with the goals of the $57-billion regional financial institution's Optimizing
Customer Relationships program. Salespeople were divided into
competing regional teams seeking to hit the most "home runs"
(opening commercial accounts and selling certain credit
products, etc.), with each "run" winning redeemable points. The
most "runs" would win the "world series championship" and a
$2,000 gift card.
RESULTS: The program more than doubled the original goal of 20
home runs with a total of 42, and generated $1.2 million in
revenue, meeting 110 percent of the goal, for a 12-to-1 ROI.
COMPANY: M&T Bank
DATES: Jan. 28 to April 21, 2012
M&T Bank, a Fortune 1000 financial firm based in Buffalo,
NY, wanted to find out how much of the annual company-wide sales
goal set for its 250 financial advisors could be jammed into a
single 10-week period if employees were motivated by an aggressive, non-cash incentive program. M&T turned to
Minneapolis-based MotivAction to create the Super Silvers 21
program, which consisted of a two-week launch and information period, a five-week qualification and earning period, and a
three-week redemption period.
In previous years, only 20 to 25 percent of M&T Bank's financial advisors met their individual annual sales goal during the
year. To build and maintain momentum during the short program
window, MotivAction used game mechanics to build excitement,
creating a two-tier award program and requiring participants to
reach sales thresholds to get any award.
RESULTS: The M&T Super Silvers 21 program achieved nearly 200 percent of the program goal and met 95 percent of the sales
goal for the entire year during the five-week qualification and earning period. That meant $2.85 million of
incremental revenue and an ROI of 19 to 1. More than half of
M&T's financial advisors met or exceeded their sales goals,
almost doubling previous years' results.
COMPANY: Nycomed US
DATES: May 23 to 27, 2011
Pharmaceutical firm Nycomed US was looking for a European incentive trip that would "wow" 26 of its president's club
achievers who met or exceeded their sales goals, all on a
relatively tight budget. The firm, which has since been
purchased by Swiss multinational company Takeda Pharmaceutical Co., asked Willow Grove, PA-based Harith
Productions to create the Embrace the Emerald Isle program,
making the five-day trip as environmentally friendly and
sustainable as possible, and immersing winners in the culture
and history of Dublin.
RESULTS: The trip included locavore dining, and there were
signs of reduced carbon footprints in a variety of ways, from
QR codes replacing printed documents to selecting restaurants within walking distance. A
local TV personality/celebrity chef was brought in for a
cooking experience that focused on farm-to-fork cuisine. Irish
music and dance were incorporated at every turn. Historic
venues were used, and personal, bespoke touches were found
throughout the event to create a sales incentive trip that
truly exceeded expectations of even the veteran president's club attendees.