Incentive Travel Rewards are Making a Comeback

by: Nichole Gunn October 7, 2011

A report from the Incentive Marketing Association, published by the Incentive Travel Council (ITC), reveals that incentive travel rewards programs are picking up speed among businesses seeking to enhance both customer loyalty and employee performance.

Within the "Incentive Travel Recovering from Belly-flop" report is results of a Society of Travel Executives survey. This study found that over 80 percent of businesses intend to initiate travel incentives over the next few years. Businesses are using travel incentives as a motivational strategy.

ITC’s president Carol Wain explained, “It's a perfect time for corporations to get back to the grassroots value of incentives, particularly travel. Short, mid- or long-term, it's a proven and psychological fact that employees, channel partners, and customers respond better to the carrot; not the stick.”  She noted that businesses that gave up on travel as an incentive are now realizing their employees, who are the backbone of their business, are people, as well as an asset, who “want, need and deserve to be motivated, recognized, and rewarded."

Formed as a strategic group within the Incentive Marketing Association, the Incentive Travel Council conducts research and educates businesses about the advantages travel incentive initiatives hold. The ITC’s white paper researched SNF Group and DriveSavers finding that companies that implemented and continued travel incentive programs throughout the economic downturn saw positive results that were noteworthy.

Wain continued on to say, “The fact is that, right now-with the economy still in recovery-it is going to take a creative approach to solve issues and achieve department objectives." She went on to explain that companies are now seeing the correlation between lost opportunities, higher departure rates, and lower productivity, all resulting in lower profits, due to their choice to cancel or limit recognition and incentive programs. Those that keep their incentive initiatives are now beginning to charge them up again.

The Awards Network recently stated that sales and loyalty programs being offered has doubled since last year. Businesses seeking to implement an effective incentive program now have their choice of offerings.

Providers of “impact results and employee recognition programs,” Awards Network reports that companies seeking to enhance their sales and customer loyalty are heading to online-based programs that provide comprehensive packages beneficial to workers, customers, and the company.

Just about all employee incentive programs include sales contests and product training geared to boost all-around sales and reward incentive participants who help realize company goals.