Craft a Compelling Marketing Campaign with Experience Gift Cards: Offer Memorable Experiences

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May 8, 2024

6 min read
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Craft a Compelling Marketing Campaign with Experience Gift Cards: Offer Memorable Experiences

Mother’s Day is celebrated in many countries in May, and as it approaches, it’s time to honor and celebrate the incredible women in our lives who have nurtured, cared for, and inspired us. Instead of traditional gifts like flowers or chocolates, why not enable your guests to gift experiences? With Zaui, tour operators have the perfect opportunity to offer gift cards that allow guests to create lasting memories with their loved ones. In this blog, we’ll explore how Zaui enables tour operators to set up and sell gift cards online, providing their guests with the opportunity to celebrate Mother’s Day in a truly special way. 

What are Experience Gift Cards?


Experience gift cards are a modern twist on traditional gift cards. Instead of purchasing a physical gift, these gift cards allow the recipient to enjoy a specific experience or activity. These experiences can range from a spa day, museum membership, a visit to national park , date night, food tour, pottery class, adventure activities like zip lining or skydiving, attraction tickets, travel experiences, and much more.

The idea behind experience gift cards is to give someone the gift of a memorable experience rather than a tangible object. It’s often seen as a way to provide an opportunity for your loved one to create lasting memories, try something new, or indulge in something they may not have otherwise considered.

Some experience gift cards come with a predetermined activity or package, while others offer a monetary value that can be used towards any experience offered by the company or platform issuing the gift card. 

Why Experience Gift Cards?

Gift Cards are gaining popularity among shoppers. By 2025, the e-gift card market is forecasted to reach a value of $506 billion, with 52% of consumers favoring gift cards over tangible presents. Experience gift certificates are also easier and faster to purchase than traditional gifts. During any holiday season, it’s not easy to find a good gift, especially for those on your list who have it all. Here’s where experiential gifts come in. Digital gift cards are often a favorite among last-minute gifters! That’s all about how your customers benefit from gift cards. And for you, offering the gift of experience to your customers is another source of revenue. From your potential customers to existing customers, might be interested in buying a gift card from you for their family and friends.

The recipients may tend to invite another person or upgrade their tour, which brings more revenue for you. Gift cards are also an effective tool for improving cash flow (even during the off-season), as well as encouraging customer loyalty and promoting your business. 

Gifting Experiences Simplified for Your Customers: How Gift Cards Work?

Zaui offers Experience Gift Cards that simplify holiday gifting by catering to a variety of interests, from snowshoe tours to whale watching. With Zaui’s online reservation system, customers can purchase gift cards tailored to a specific tour or activity or opt for a flexible denomination. Your website visitors can conveniently utilize the “Buy as a gift” feature to make their purchase, and for an added personal touch, they have the option to include a custom gift message and include personal information. To enhance flexibility for both purchasers and recipients, Zaui provides two types of Gift Cards.

Capabilities and Types of Gift Cards you can enable in Zaui

 

Open Gift Cards:

Open Gift Cards are versatile, as they can be applied to any goods or services offered by the company. They are issued as a dollar amount applicable to any goods and services of the issuing company. They are not restricted to a specific activity or service which makes it a great experience gift. The person purchasing the card doesn’t have to think a lot or get confused and can leave the choice to the recipient to choose whichever experience or tour they might be interested in. Setting up these gift cards is straightforward through the Zaui platform. By navigating to Settings > Online Booking > Portals, operators can configure custom amounts or preset denominations for their gift cards. This flexibility allows guests to choose the perfect gift value for their loved one. If you are interested in exploring how to set these up for your business, here’s a knowledge base article to help you through it.

 

A screenshot of Activity Gift Card feature on Zaui Online Booking System for tour operators

Activity Gift Cards:

For those looking to offer their family member or their  loved one a specific activities as gifts, Zaui also supports Activity Gift Cards. These gift cards are ideal for guests who want to give a great experience gift of a particular tour or attraction. By enabling Activity Gift Cards through the Zaui portal settings, operators can provide guests with a curated selection of activities to choose from. With options for selecting the number of passengers and activity type, guests can personalize their gift to suit the recipient’s preferences.

 

A screenshot of Gift Card feature on Zaui Online Reservation System for tour operators

Set up Expiry Dates:

While some regions have regulations regarding gift card expiry dates, Zaui provides flexibility for operators to configure expiry settings based on their business needs. Activity Gift Cards, for example, can be set to expire according to the operator’s preferences. By navigating to Settings > Company Info, operators can adjust the Online Gift Cards Expiry setting to ensure compliance with regional regulations while managing their gift card inventory effectively.

Incentivize holiday season purchasing: Reduce the cost of Activity Gift Cards during specific time periods:

Mother’s day or any other important holiday presents a prime opportunity for operators to drive gift card sales. Zaui offers strategies for reducing the cost of Activity Gift Cards to incentivize purchases during this time. By temporarily discounting prices or creating promotional offers, operators can attract gift shoppers and boost revenue.

Option to Print or Email the Gift Card:

When your customer buys a gift card, they can give it as a digital gift certificate to the recipient. The digital gift card, pre-populated with the personalized message, activity details, redemption code, and link, will be automatically forwarded to the recipient’s inbox. You can craft a standard gift card email template to suit every gifting occasion on the reservation system. The purchaser will also receive an email receipt for the order.

an example of Zaui gift certificates feature for tour and activity operators

You can also give customers the option to print out the activity gift card. Those who prefer the old-fashioned hard copies can simply print out the gift certificate and send it along with their holiday cards.

Easy & Flexible Redemption:

Since costs are covered, gift recipients looking to redeem their activity just need to click through from their email, select their desired date, and check out. 

Gift recipients can apply their Redemption Code (embedded in the email) during the booking process. 

If the recipient wants to add individuals or products when redeeming your tour, that’s also possible with the Zaui system. During the redemption process, the gift recipients can add extra members to the booking and pay the difference online or in person.

Evaluating Gift Card Numbers:

To determine whether the gift certificate strategy is successful, you need to be able to go through numbers and get reports. Zaui online reservation system lets you do that, and there are three ways of reporting on Gift Cards in Zaui. 

  • All Unredeemed Report: This report shows all gift cards in circulation that have yet to be used.
  • All Redeemed Report: This report shows all gift cards that have already been redeemed. 
  • All Expired Report: This report shows any gift card that is expired.

Jazz up Your Holiday Campaign with Gift Cards

Here are a few strategies to spice up your holiday campaigns with the Experience Gift Card feature.

Gift Card Campaigns: Promote gift cards on your website, social media and newsletters during the holidays. Shoppers are looking for that unique gift, and what better than to give the gift of experience.

Corporate and Charity Events: Experience Gift Cards are a thoughtful and attractive addition to corporate and charitable event gift basket draws and contests.

Gift Cards for Every Special Occasion: It’s not just for the holiday season. They are ideal for any gifting occasion you could think of– birthdays, anniversaries, and honeymoons! Highlight them on your website and promote them as the perfect gift for every occasion.

Final Word

Besides sprucing up seasonal campaigns, gift certificates can also help you drive revenue during the off-season. Another added advantage for tour and activity operators is that gift card recipients often spend more than the card’s face value. So, make sure you have gift cards added to your marketing strategy all year round, especially during the holiday season.

 If you want to know how Zaui can help you boost seasonal sales, increase advance or last-minute bookings and automate sales for repeat business during the holiday season and beyond, request a demo with us.

Additional Resources

  1. Setting up Online Gift Cards
  2. How to set up Gift Card Notifications
  3. How to reduce the cost of Activity Gift Cards to incentivize holiday season purchasing

 

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