Will COVID vaccine promos take retail sales higher or just provide a short sugar rush?
Retailers and other companies are very keen to get employees and customers on the COVID-19 vaccine bandwagon with the hope of bringing their businesses back to some semblance of pre-pandemic normalcy. That has led to a variety of incentives designed to get the numbers of the vaccinated up and perhaps drive trial and repeat purchases along the way.
A wide variety of retailers and brands, including Aldi, Chobani, Darden Restaurants, Dollar General, Kroger, McDonald’s, Publix Target, Trader Joe’s and Tyson’s, have stepped up with offers of paid time off to encourage employees to get vaccinated against the virus.
A growing list of others, including Krispy Kreme and The Greenhouse of Walled Lake, a medical marijuana dispensary in Michigan, are now running promotions to reward customers who get vaccinated.
Krispy Kreme is giving away a free glazed doughnut to anyone who shows up at its shops with a COVID-19 vaccination card. Customers carrying proof of being vaccinated are eligible to receive a free doughnut “anytime, any day, even every day — through the remainder of 2021,” according to the company.
“We all want to get COVID-19 behind us as fast as possible and we want to support everyone doing their part to make the country safe by getting vaccinated as soon as the vaccine is available to them,” Dave Skena, Krispy Kreme chief marketing officer, said in a statement.
The doughnut chain said it would continue to support healthcare workers and those volunteering to administer vaccines by delivering free doughnuts to select vaccination centers around the country in the weeks to come.
Krispy Kreme lovers in Oakland County, MI, may find The Greenhouse of Walled Lake a logical destination after being vaccinated. The cannabis dispensary is offering one free pre-rolled UBaked joint to adults 21 or older who have a valid medical marijuana identification card and proof they received the COVID-19 vaccine. The program, Pot for Shots, runs through the end of the month.
“We’re all hoping that the COVID vaccine is the beginning of the end for this pandemic that has taken such a toll on our neighbors, our communities and our nation,” said a Greenhouse statement. “If you choose to get the COVID vaccine (we always support the freedom of choice) this is our way of saying ‘thank you’ for helping end this pandemic and getting us back to normal.”
- COVID-19 Vaccine Offer – Krispy Kreme
- Krispy Kreme Giving Free Doughnuts to Everyone Who Shows COVID-19 Vaccination Card – All Year Long – Krispy Kreme/Business Wire
- The Greenhouse of Walled Lake “Pot for Shots” sponsored by UBaked – Greenhouse of Walled Lake
- Will paying associates to get COVID-19 vaccines work for Dollar General and Trader Joe’s? – RetailWire
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you expect to see large numbers of promotional offers from retailers and brands around COVID-19 vaccinations? Will these be any more or less effective than typical promos, and are there any you have seen so far that stand out?