Our complete sales incentive how-to guide packed with 70 pages of incentive tips, actionable advice, and industry research. This resource will guide you through progressive steps of incentive program design, administration, and measurement. Be sure to take advantage of the Planning & Design Worksheet you can use as a guide.

• Increase buy-in with new communication strategies
• Reduce the cost of your current programs
• Get creative and leave lasting impressions

Of course, we are ready to assist if you’re looking for incentive program experts! Feel free to contact us if you have any questions, or would like us to help bring bright ideas to your next program.



Program design is a mix of both science and art. The expertise of performance
improvement companies, or incentive companies, can be extremely worthwhile
at this step. They’ve seen good design — and bad design. They’ve seen similar incentives in similar industries for similar situations. “Best practices” is an overused phrase today, but incentive companies truly offer best practice expertise.

Three Program Types

Open-ended Programs – enable all people who achieve program goals to earn awards.

Advantage: Everyone has a chance to win based on individual performance.
Disadvantage: Uncertainty of final program cost.

Closed-ended Programs – have a pre-determined, limited number of award earners.

Advantage: Allocates a limited investment across an entire audience.
Disadvantage: Not all participants perceive an opportunity to earn awards.

Plateau Programs – provide awards at different levels of program achievement.

Advantage: Match performance with awards on an individual basis.
Disadvantage: More difficult to administer and track achievements.

Building Incentive Program Structure with Incentive Program How-To Guide



Behind the scenes of your incentive program lies the backbone of its long-term success. More than just a pretty web design, the technology infrastructure and databases supporting your incentive are vitally important to its smooth performance, engaging UX (user experience), and ease of maintenance.

Comprehensive technology solutions handle:

Design – both in creating a clear, enticing website for participants to use as well as program rules that are detailed and user-friendly.

Enrollment – registration and updating personal information is streamlined to allow participants a painless entry to the program and save hours of entry for incentive program managers.

Achievement – participants can earn points, submit achievement claim forms, and view their program status in an automated process with dynamic data entry to prevent invalid claims.

Award Shopping – digital awards catalogs provide details on what a participant can earn as well as handle shipping, point debiting, and history of transactions.

Support – proper terms & conditions are in place along with FAQs and a support line with a dedicated number to assist participants live.

Customization – support complex forms and scoring logic designed specifically for your incentive program, including branching claim forms, multipliers, point splitting, accelerators, or pre-qualifying conditions.



In today’s world, people are bombarded with information. Emails stuff inboxes
at the rate of 200+ per day. Users glance for a fraction of a nanosecond, with their index finger on the delete-key, rapidly clicking like a teenage video gamer. It’s vital that your promotional strategy not depend solely on a few emails; your message must break through the clutter.

Create a communications campaign:

Make a theme – a clever, attractive theme can go a long way. Tie it to your program goals. Use the natural attraction of the travel destination or awards for visual interest.

Send out a teaser – something that hints of events to come. It might be a small promotional item or a creative, visually-appealing email to pique interest.

Kickoff announcement – custom design a promotional flyer to generate excitement and share high-level details (incentive dates, eligible employees, program objectives, rules, and most importantly, the awards).

Monthly newsletters – electronic statements give detailed feedback on points, current ranking, and status; communicate messages from management, recognize winners, and announce new program information.

Giveaways – tangible, promotional items generate excitement and motivation for the incentive program. When an employee uses a practical item like a pen or mouse pad or is amused by a tactile toy like a stress ball, they are reminded of the incentive program.

    Start building legendary incentive programs!

    Download the full eBook to learn all 12.5 steps and how they make your incentive program effective and unforgettable.
    After you’ve had a chance to brush up, see how Brightspot can help you with your next incentive program!