Using promotional strategies to connect with stakeholders
A Connexions Card case study

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Page 2: Stakeholders

Connexions Card imageEvery business organisation has people or groups who have an interest in what it does. These are 'stakeholders'. It matters to these groups what happens with a business and how it happens. Like all businesses, the Connexions Card has a number of different stakeholders, each with differing needs. Promotional messages about Connexions Card must register with each one.

Whilst the benefit of holding a Connexions Card applies to young people, to reach them means communicating with learning centres. These are the first stakeholder group. Learning centres are the schools, colleges or work based trainers who provide learning. Collectively it is important that teaching professionals understand how the Connexions Card could be an incentive for their young people. The aim is that young people will be motivated to attend their learning centre and be more likely to reach their full potential.

Connexions cardholders are able to earn points which are then exchanged for a wide range of rewards such as study guides, stationery, fashion accessories, money-off vouchers, books and travel tickets. This means that Connexions Card must have a number of reward partners. These businesses are prepared to offer suitably attractive rewards. Companies like BSM, Pentel, Orange, Letts and Arriva all offer rewards.

Another benefit from the Card is the discounts a cardholder gets. This means that some businesses are discount partners. Many high street names offer discounts to cardholders including: Topshop & Topman, Blockbuster, Miss Selfridge, Hollywood Bowl and Silverscreen.

Collectively, these business partners are a second group of stakeholders. Their interest is that the Connexions Card succeeds and brings young people to them, as customers. There are good PR opportunities involved in being associated with good causes. They have a stake in the success of the Card.

The most important stakeholders are young people (aged 16-19) themselves. They must know why the Connexions Card is a great thing to have. The Card must make itself well known. It must keep in touch.

To promote the Connexions Card to its target market and to various stakeholder groups, a number of methods are used. Some of these are said to be 'below-the-line', others 'above-the-line'.

  • Below-the-line - Non-media advertising or promotion when no commission has been paid to the advertising agency. Includes direct mail, point of sale displays, giveaways.
  • Above-the-line - Advertising for which a payment is made and for which commission is paid to the advertising agency.

The Connexions Card team employs a combination of methods, mainly below-the-line, keeping it in direct control.

Connexions Card | Using promotional strategies to connect with stakeholders