Free Gas Speeds Trip to Customers’ Wallets

Nov 25, 2002

By George Anderson

If discount gas drives consumer traffic to supermarkets, warehouse clubs, mass merchants etc., what type of spike will free gas deliver?

The Dallas Business Journal reports that grocery chains such as Kroger and Safeway are just two of the operators that are using the Fuel Rewards’ customer loyalty program. Fuel Rewards provides consumers with free gas coupons with the purchase of participating products from consumer goods manufacturers.

The program is currently available in 700 stores and Fuel Rewards is looking to grow that number to up to 5,000 locations by 2004.

The revenue model for the vendor depends on signing contracts with CPG companies to promote specific items. According to the Dallas Business Journal, “Fuel Rewards sells its promotional packages in four-week cycles. At any given time, the company is typically working with 30 to 40 manufacturers, who are promoting products in 50 to 60 categories.”

Moderator’s Comment: What is your assessment of Fuel
Rewards and other customer loyalty programs?

Most consumers know that there’s no such thing as a free
lunch or gallon of gas, for that matter. Still, if programs are available, they
will join because they know they will pay whether they take advantage of the
offers or not. [George
Anderson – Moderator

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