Are you stuck in a rut when it comes to ideas for attracting and retaining customers? Do you reward your workers with old-fashioned gift certificates? Your motives may be admirable, but your methodology lacks that certain spunk, that certain flooz.

Did I say Flooz?

Sure — as in, a new way to send gifts or rewards to customers or employees. By using the Internet, contractors can send gifts that actually mean something and ones that recipients can choose just for themselves.

It’s more high tech than including extra cash in a pay envelope, sending a gift certificate, or presenting a plaque, and nowadays, businesses are trying to stay current and give the impression that they are on the cutting edge of technology.

“A lot of businesses who use Flooz want brand expression and to show that they are hip,” said Jack Feuer, Flooz vice president of marketing. “Contractors will look cutting edge to homeowners, especially if they say ‘If you hire me for the job, I’ll send you a Flooz thank you.’”

The Flooz spokesperson, comedienne Whoopi Goldberg, appears on the company website (www.

“It’s a fun way of getting a gift certificate, especially if Whoopi delivers it via an e-mail,” added Feuer.

In a nutshell, here’s how Flooz works:

  • You can send Flooz gift dollars to anyone with an e-mail address.
  • Your recipient opens the e-mail, a gift from Flooz, with your personal message and/or a greeting card.
  • The recipient shops at any online store where Flooz gift dollars are accepted and purchases exactly what s/he wants.
  • You can also deliver Flooz in person.
  • Some of the 56 online stores recipients can shop at include Barnes &, Starbucks, Mrs. Fields, Restoration Hard-ware, Fogdog Sports, etc.

    “Flooz gives recipients a choice of where they want to spend the dollars,” added Feuer. “And companies have an alternative to giving cash, which recipients tend to spend on the wrong things, like paying bills.”

    Consumer Programs

    “Customer acquisition and retention is very important,” said Feuer. He stated that Flooz can be the cornerstone of a successful consumer promotion.

    Now consider the hvacr contracting business. If you are a residential service company, you can offer Flooz to customers who sign up for your clean and inspect program, or sign a maintenance agreement. If you are a commercial contractor, you can offer Flooz to customers as a thank you for giving you the winning bid, or just for no reason at all.

    Employee Recognition

    “Many times companies use gift certificates or cash as an incentive to reach a goal,” said Feuer. “Flooz versus cash is an easy sell. It’s a lot warmer than cold hard cash.”

    “Flooz is simple and cost-effective,” added Feuer. “There are no fees associated with this program. Corporations can set up an account, pay up front, and begin sending Flooz.

    “The account can be managed online — the program is customizable (e.g., a co-branded greeting card can be sent with each Flooz). If the recipient has a balance in their Flooz account, they also have the option of donating it to charity [via].”

    Publication date: 11/06/2000