MELROSE PARK, Ill. (FNS) -- Perishable departments at Jewel Food Stores, based here, are putting the chain's frequent-shopper card to work target-marketing shopper segments in an aggressive effort to boost sales.
According to chain sources, the focus on perishables is now a strong component of Jewel's frequent-shopper program, beginning as the shopper receives a Jewel Preferred Card, along with two key-ring versions.
Accompanying the new cards are two high-value coupons -- one for photo processing, the other for fresh foods purchases, such as a $2 coupon for produce bought at the chain's FarmStand department.
Like other frequent-shopper cards, the scannable Jewel Preferred Card allows shoppers to become eligible to redeem extra values and capture savings at the point of sale.
Jewel-Osco actively tracks customer purchases and preferences, building a database of its customers.
"With our database, we can do everything," said Nancy Chagares, vice president for the chain's bakery, Chef's Kitchen and floral merchandising.
How Jewel-Osco uses the program to build perishable sales is by first identifying existing perishable customers, then providing special offers through a direct mail effort to those who meet specific criteria.
"The value of our targeted-marketing program is that we target what the customer wants," said Karen Ramos, chain spokeswoman. "It's a most effectual use of our marketing dollars."
One past effort identified mid-range floral customers, who then received special offers that encouraged them to increase their purchases in Jewel floral departments.
In addition, specific Preferred Card programs are crossing traditional department lines.
Shoppers identified as bake-shop customers, for instance, are cross-referenced to determine if they also patronize the deli. In some cases, Chagares said, customers purchase from the bakery only and don't shop at the deli. In these instances, the chain mails them a high-value deli coupon as an incentive to shop the deli.