June 10, 2021

Customer Discounts and Incentives Drive Vaccination and Boost Brands


And the data shows that it's making a real impact on public health.

Savvy business leaders recognize that vaccines are the quickest path to reopening their businesses and revitalizing our economy. Companies are bringing customers back with discounts, raffles and other incentives tied to vaccination status. And the data shows these approaches don’t just boost business, they have a real impact on public health.

A vaccinated customer base is essential to stopping the spread of COVID-19 and makes it easier for businesses to stay open and operate safely. As hospitalizations continue to rise in communities with low vaccination rates, supporting vaccination efforts is a critical step in ensuring our friends and neighbors stay safe and our local economies remain open and thrive.

Last week, the White House announced a national Month of Action to reach 70% of adults with at least one vaccine dose by July 4th. As part of the effort, dozens of major companies and brands have announced incentive programs to encourage and reward customers who are vaccinated for COVID-19.

Businesses Take Action

  • CVS has launched a #OneStepCloser Sweepstakes that provides customers who get vaccinated at CVS pharmacies the chance to win one of more than 1,000 prizes – including free trips, tickets to live events, gift cards and more.
  • Target is offering $5 coupons to all customers who get vaccinated in their stores.
  • Spotify has launched a #SafeBeforeShows sweepstakes to win tickets to regional concerts.
  • Safeway and Albertsons are both offering 10% off grocery purchases to customers who get vaccinated for COVID-19 at an in-store pharmacy.
  • United Airlines’ #YourShotToFly program offers vaccinated customers a chance to win a year of free flights.
  • Match Group is offering dating "boosts" across their leading U.S. brands, including Tinder, Match, OkCupid and Hinge.
  • Professional sports leagues including Major League Baseball, Major League Soccer, the National Football League and NASCAR have created innovative vaccine incentives including free tickets, discounts on merchandise and sweepstakes to the most popular sporting events including the Super Bowl and the Daytona 500.
  • KinderCare, Learning Care Group, the YMCA and Bright Horizons are offering free childcare services to families getting vaccines.

Vaccine incentive programs are good for customer health and they are good for business. According to recent polling from Morning Consult:

  • 73% of consumers who received a COVID-19 vaccine said they’re likely to take advantage of rewards from local retailers.
  • 41% of consumers say vaccine incentives would make them feel more favorably toward a brand, compared to 42% saying it would have no effect and 17% who would view it negatively.

Do incentives work? Not on everyone, but for some who may still be on the fence about vaccines, incentives could help. Morning Consult found among certain groups of unvaccinated Americans, brand incentives would increase their likelihood of getting vaccinated.

Tips for Creating Customer Incentives

  1. Engage your marketing team. They’ll have creative ideas on how to connect vaccines to your customers and your business. And they will know how to leverage an approach with the media and the community you serve.
  2. Reach out to local officials. Local officials, including mayors, county commissioners or your governor may be interested in joining with you to announce your vaccine incentive program.
  3. Choose inspiring, empowering narratives around your incentives. Create hashtags and slogans that build on your brand values and celebrate vaccination.
  4. Align your customer and employee incentives.  If you are promoting vaccines to your customers, consider strategies that incentivize employees to get vaccinated. Keeping them healthy is also good for business.
  5. Make a commitment to the Month of Action. If you are a national brand, consider joining other major brands by adding your customer incentive program to the White House’s list. You can submit your company’s incentive using this contact form.