Catalina Marketing banks on tailored coupon system

Catalina Marketing Corp. is introducing to Japan a new marketing system it claims is more cost-effective than existing methods, officials of the U.S. consumer promotion company announced June 12.

Under the RegiMarketing system, a computer system installed by the company at no cost will issue supermarket customers discount coupons for products related to those they have purchased. Depending on the products promoted by the coupons, either the stores that supply them or the manufacturers which produce them will pay for the service. The system allows for not only cost-effective but also highly focused and flexible marketing, the company officials claimed.

According to the company’s report, the system is used in about 12,000 stores throughout the United States with over 10 million customers receiving the coupons. It also claimed that 11 percent of the system’s coupons are redeemed, compared to the 4.3 percent of direct mail coupons used by consumers and 2.5 percent of newspaper coupons.

Two major supermarket chains here, The Seiyu, Ltd. and Jusco Co., as well as 10 manufacturers have decided to sign deals with the company. “We are trying to bring a win-win-win situation for manufacturers, retailers as well as consumers,” said David Van Buskirk, president of Catalina Marketing International. The service fee in Japan is still undecided, but it is expected to be set at around 10 yen per coupon, officials said.