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    Corner Pantry Seeks Loyalty

    Rewards program to launch in 30 Corner Pantry stores in September.

    COLUMBIA, S.C. -- At the 2002 nacs.tech show in Dallas earlier this year retailers pushed rewards programs as an effective marketing tool to recognize loyal convenience store customers and stay competitive with hypermarketers. Tucker Oil Co. heard the word and went to work.

    The Columbia, S.C.-based company signed a deal with Kansas City, Kan.-based Visible Results USA Inc. to use its GraphiCard loyalty card technology to tailor a rewards program for its 30 Corner Pantry convenience stores in South Carolina.

    "Our main goal is differentiation," said David Tucker, president of Corner Pantry, adding that he had been investigating the introduction of a loyalty program six months. "We will be the first oil marketer in our area to implement a major loyalty initiative that is not discount-based -- something that's difficult for our competition to match. The strength in this type of initiative is that we'll be building a strong, committed customer base, this will also protect us against future competitors entering the market."

    Tucker said Corner Pantry chose Visible Results' GraphiCard platform for a number of reasons, among them the unique appeal of the card medium and the flexibility to tailor the program to individual stores. "The ability for us to really understand and communicate to our customers as individuals was another a big factor in our decision," he said.

    Other Visible Results clients include Tesoro Petroleum Corp. and McDonalds Inc.

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