case study
city of pacifica
community gift card program

How to reactivate a program that’s not performing as desired?

The City of Pacifica (population 38,000) needed to grow their existing Shop Local program, after an initial 8 month effort wasn’t producing local revenue on the scale the city had hoped for.


Engaged Merchants + Marketing Communications = Success

Local merchants create the value for a community card – if they’re not engaged, shoppers won’t be, either. But being a small business owner in America today is a hectic & chaotic existence, to say the least!

Helping Pacifica’s merchants meant addressing the real-world challenges they faced, like how to quickly & easily train new cashiers how to redeem cards in low-light environments (like a bar or restaurant).

  • solution

    CDA took a three-pronged approach to reactivating the program:

    First, local merchants were individually contacted during times of the week that were most convenient for their business, and then given incentives, information, and custom-created marketing materials to empower them to succeed.

    Second, a multimedia “card buying” campaign was launched across all marketing channels, designed like an eCommerce sales funnel to ensure shoppers were being given digital marketing and advertising content they could immediately click through to buy a card on impulse (before getting distracted by something else).

    Finally, a “card redemption” campaign was launched several weeks later, with businesses participating in a “shop local week.” Each merchant had special offers that incentivized shoppers to spend their gift cards – getting those funds circulating in the local economy as soon as possible!

  • services

    • Strategy
    • Branding & creative production
    • Merchant onboarding & communications
    • Merchant incentives program
    • Cashier support materials
    • Campaign development
    • PR & media relations
    • Social media
    • Hyperlocal advertising
    • Web presence updates
    • Pitch deck for sponsors

the results

  • 7x
    monthly transactions
  • 2x
    merchant sign ups
  • 2.5x
    card redemptions
  • 40+
    pieces of local PR coverage
  • 16x
    monthly spend on cards
monthly spend
"I can’t thank you enough for the wonderful work you are doing! Really making an impact and drawing more attention to our amazing little town!"
Kelly Corten
Business Owner, Pacifica CA
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