What We Do
VCG's integrated approach to promotional risk management means you have more time to focus on communicating and successfully implementing your campaign.
We help to ensure the smooth delivery of your promotion to consumers by project managing all of the essential support services on your behalf - at no extra cost.
GLOBAL NETWORK, LOCAL FEEL
Operating across global markets, VCG have offices in 6 countries: UK, Spain, South Africa, Canada, Australia and USA and have worked for clients in 26 countries.
Online & SMS
Our involvement in online promotions is growing at a phenomenal rate. We can take care of the secure delivery, management and administration of promotional microsites and, if required, provide a complete creative treatment for each site. All of these services are included within the VCG Fixed Fee.
Our SMS service is included in our Fixed Fee and covers all types of text activity - from textbacks to premium rate messaging.
We manage the complete set-up and ongoing handling of text services. We can also supply short codes and data files of Unique Reference Numbers.
Our banking services include the provision of branded letter cheques. These are used, for example, to pay consumers who are entitled to a refund as part of a guarantee promotion, or who claim back the purchase price and postage costs in a 'Try Me Free' offer.
As part of our tailor-made approach to risk management, we usually recommend and manage a package of services and carefully chosen service providers. Clients can either use the partners we recommend, or they can opt for their own suppliers.
We handle the provision of secure barcodes for coupon promotions. We also have accounts with all the major coupon clearance houses, such as Valassis and RMI.
As part of our integrated risk management service, we automatically capture all consumer information from applications. This data is provided direct to the client and we do not retain or use it in any way ourselves. This is clearly stated in our contract with each client.
We provide a full handling and fulfilment service in association with leading handling houses in the UK, Ireland and across Europe. Because of our many years of experience, we know which handling specialists are best for particular types of promotions at the best rates.
New and faster technologies are making the handling process much more efficient, including the ability to track individual consumer applications. We take full advantage of the latest technology to help reduce costs and save you money.
Saving your time by taking care of Customer Service on your behalf is a key part of our Fixed Fee package.
And when we're dealing directly with consumers - whether it's by mail or a telephone hotline - we never forget that we're the interface between your brand and your customer.
Odds Based Games
This type of promotion is a great way to capitalise on a sporting event, or any happening in which odds dictate an outcome. For Carling, consumers were provided with an outcome of a World Cup football match via SMS, and if that result came true, they won a cash prize. With Walkers we tapped into the English obsession with the weather (particularly the rain!) and consumers could play an online game to guess when and where it would rain, winning cash if their guess came true. Both of these offered a simple yet interactive way for consumers to engage with the brands, and win prizes.
Consumers or trade customers collect points when making purchases and can redeem the points for rewards.
When Anchor Butter launched its Great Rewards Round Up campaign, VCG's Fixed Fee solution covered 100% of the financial risk of purchasing the promotional rewards, managing stock and over-redemption.
Designed to combat increased price promotion in the Butter, Spreads and Margarines sector, the campaign recruited new users and rewarded loyal Anchor customers by offering added value in the form of free gifts.
Consumers could 'round up' escaped cows by collecting 'cow codes' inside specially marked promotional packs of Anchor butter and Anchor Spreadable. The codes were entered online in exchange for 'cows' (points) that were redeemable against a choice of free products, ranging from cool cotton shopping bags to cow print breakfast trays. The bigger the 'herd' of cows collected, the bigger the reward.
Consumers can win a prize by ranking a number of product statements in order of importance.
Chrysler set out to increase the number of test drives of its latest models by mailing a targeted promotional offer to a database of 100,000 potential purchasers.
Recipients were given a chance to win a Chrysler 300C by ranking 10 quality statements in the same order as an independent judging panel. They then had to take their entries to their local distributor who arranged for them to test drive any new Chrysler.
Although the number of test drives exceeded Chrysler's target, the total cost of the promotion was protected by a VCG Fixed Fee. VCG was also responsible for organising an independent panel to judge the entries received.
Game Card Promotions
Consumers receive a promotional gamecard and peel a panel to reveal symbols underneath. If the symbols match, they can claim a free gift or cash.
Every time shoppers spent more than £10 at Tesco during the run-up to the FIFA World Cup, they received a 'peel and reveal' Love Football/Hate Football gamecard.
They peeled either the 'Love Football' or 'Hate Football' panel to find out if they had won one of many football or non-football prizes, ranging from money-off coupons to prizes provided by major World Cup sponsors.
Tesco distributed millions of gamecards to its customers. The financial risk was fully protected by a VCG fixed fee which also covered the cost of a Freephone customer service number printed on every gamecard.
Scratch Card Promotions
Consumers receive a promotional scratchcard and scratch off panels to reveal symbols. If the symbols match, they can claim a free gift or cash.
Reckitt Benckiser chose VCG's Fixed Fee protection to cover the cost of a major scratchcard campaign which ran on special promotional packs of Finish dishwasher tablets.
The scratchcards featured a three-panel reveal. One of the promotional packs contained three matching symbols which entitled the recipient to claim a £100,000 prize, while 50 packs contained a £1000 prize. All gamecards also carried a selection of self-adhesive movie character stickers.
Text & Win Promotions
Consumers enter by sending a text message to a shortcode number, sometimes with a special code found on promotional packs.
Carling picked the VCG team to play in defence when it kicked off a 'Love Football' text-to-win promotion aimed at the on-trade and off-trade.
The promotion ran during the six weeks of the FIFA World Cup. Purchasers of cans and pints of Carling texted a special code and received a World Cup match forecast result. If their forecast result matched the actual game result, they were able to claim a reward of up to £50.
With millions of winning codes distributed via ring pulls, bottle caps and gamecards, the defensive strengths of VCG's Fixed Fee squad helped to protect a Carling own goal – and protecting the total financial liability.
Instant Win Promotions
Consumers are given a chance to win a prize, and are notified immediately whether they have or haven't won.
SCA ran a major on-pack promotion on Bounty household towels brand Bounty and took advantage of the VCG Fixed Fee to protect its entire budget for the campaign – including a £5 million prize fund.
Every 'Clean Up with Bounty' pack contained a unique 8–digit code which generated an electronic 'scratchcard' when purchasers logged on to a dedicated website. They could 'clean up' by 'scrubbing' three of six 'dirty' squares on the card. If the three values matched, players instantly won the cash amount shown in each square.
Every card gave players a guaranteed chance of winning at least £10, with a one in twenty chance of claiming a £100,000 jackpot. Every player automatically received a downloadable '50p off next purchase' coupon.
Consumers receive a free sample of the product being promoted when they send in a wrapper from a rival brand.
Pepsico launched a cereal bar 'Amnesty' to promote its Quaker Oat Bar brand and took advantage of VCG's handling and fulfilment service as well as a VCG Fixed Fee to cover 100% of its financial liability.
Consumers are offered a full refund if they don't agree with a product quality statement made by the brand being promoted.
Premier Foods ran an on–pack Taste Guarantee promotion on Hovis bread when its Soft White loaf came under threat from new soft white bread variants from rival bakers.
Under the banner Irresistibly soft or your dough back, the promotion was designed to support the claim that Hovis's Soft White loaf was the softest of them all. Consumers who didn't agree could claim a refund by mailing in a token.
Win a Million Promotions
Vimto Soft Drinks gave consumers a chance to win a £1m prize in an on–pack text and win promotion and protected its total financial liability with a tailor–made Fixed Fee package from VCG.
Purchasers of promotional bottles of Vimto texted a unique code printed on the back of each label. Each label could be worth £10 and all entrants were automatically entered into a free draw to win one of ten places at a special 'Vimto Millionaire' event.
At the event, the ten contestants competed in an eliminator game for the chance to win the £1m prize. The eventual winner was asked to select one of 100 envelopes – with only one envelope containing the £1m prize. Unknown to the contestants, the other 99 envelopes each contained a cheque for £5000, so that they wouldn't be too disappointed if they didn't win the £1m, all covered by the VCG Fixed Fee.
Consumers receive a promotional coupon that they can use as part or full payment, or to secure a discount, at the point of purchase.
To promote its Coke Zero brand, Coca–Cola delivered 40p off coupons to consumers via a major door–drop campaign. The coupons could be redeemed against purchases of 2 litre bottles, 6 x 330ml multipacks and 10 X 330ml multipacks of Coke Zero.
Coca–Cola protected itself against over-redemption and malredemption by having its total financial liability including all retailer clearance costs underwritten by a VCG Fixed Fee.
With consumer participation in coupon promotions increasing dramatically, more than 30% of VCG's workload is now devoted to managing the growing risks associated with the redemption of promotional coupons.
Free for Every Reader Promotions
Consumers are invited to redeem a Free Product Coupon printed in their daily newspaper.
Cadbury teamed up with The Sun to offer its estimated 7.7 million readers a free bar of Cadbury's Dairy Milk and chose a Fixed Fee package from VCG to guarantee that the promotional costs (coupon face value plus retailer clearance costs) would not exceed the agreed fee ... no matter how many responses were generated.
The tie–in involved a flash on the front cover of The Sun, a full-page feature inside the newspaper, and a cut-out coupon which readers could redeem at any Cadbury's Dairy Milk stockist.
One of the original founder partners of VCG over six years ago, Sean has a wealth of experience in the Fixed Fee industry. Immediately prior to starting VCG Sean spent a number of years running his own show at an agency specialising in consumer promotions and before that was Client Services Director at another agency. Sean is a devoted West Ham United supporter and therefore can often be seen on a Monday morning cursing the previous SaturdayÕs result!
Our numbers man! Richard did his five years accountancy sentence at Pricewaterhouse Coopers before qualifying as ACA in 1997. He then Òfound himselfÓ in the Fixed Fee industry quickly accelerating to Finance Director before becoming a founder partner of VCG in 2004. Still harbours some loyalty to Southampton FC after spending several years on the South cost at university, now a busy father of two young girls.
Client Services Director
Joined VCG in 2006 after a 10-year career in account management and brand planning at senior levels within Billington Cartmell and Touchdown Marketing. Brings a wealth of experience and understanding of the promotions and agency worlds. Married with two young girls, Ed enjoys the challenge of managing a busy female household as well as adding his weight to the growing VCG client base.
Over 20 years of experience agency side, during which time he was a regular buyer of Fixed Fee, Rupert has been involved across the disciplines of sales promotion at senior levels and has a wealth of experience both in risk assessment and planning. A Nottingham lad at heart - he still has a statue of Brian Clough on his mantelpiece - now living in West London he now has divided loyalties between Fulham FC and his sonÕs school football team (that he now coaches).
Began my journey into the fixed fee business back in 2003 as a humble account manager, over the years I have experienced some highs and lows. But have amassed a wealth of knowledge on predicting redemptions rates, but just as importantly a deep understanding of the challenges from the client’s point of view. The secret to a successful career in our business is marrying these two elements together.
When not doing this, it walking the dog, or my garden/cooking – this year’s chilli jam is a case in point!
Ben has a wide experience in almost 6 years of risk business as well as 20 years of experience in marketing in example working for agencies but also brands like Sony and many more, including developing and overseeing tons of sales promotions . He lives in Hamburg, Germany but truly feels „home everywhere in the world“, highly interested in other people, cultures and business. He holds a pilot license and just loves aerobatics – so he knows a lot about risks and how to calculate them as he is still alive and always landed safely so far.
A lynch pin to VCG`s back room machine, Jackie has been with VCG for over 5 years now. On top of providing vital back up on the administration side, Jackie has a fairly hectic domestic schedule with two young daughters (and a husband!) to look after.
Heather is the newest member of the team having started in May 2014. She assists Jordan with administration and operations and Jackie with financial admin. She also loves changing her hair colour, every week is different!
VCG The PromoRisk People Limited
2 Marchmont Gate, Maxted Road
Tel: +44 (0) 1442 848 188
Company Registration No. 4888860
VCG PromoRisk Pty Limited
Level 26, 44 Market Street
VCG PromoRisk Inc.
60 Atlantic Ave, Suite 200
VCG The PromoRisk People Limited
Raimundo Fernandez Villaverde 28
VCG PromoRisk (Pty) Limited
7th Floor Mandela Rhodes Place
Cnr Wale and Burg Street
Cape Town 8001