01 April 1998

INTERACTIVE KIOSKS are on trial in thirteen J Sainsbury stores. The kiosk pilot, which presents customers with targeted offers, links with the supermarket’s Rewards loyalty scheme - with cardholders able to receive special updates on the scheme, plus personalised promotions, free recipes and vouchers. The kiosks also provide customised information to shoppers about current in-store promotions run jointly with brand owners, who can use the facility for specific objectives such as driving sales of premium products or larger pack sizes. The concept, in widespread use in the USA, is seen as a potentially cost-effective alternative to direct mail and other traditional means of targeting customers. If successful, it will be rolled-out across all Sainsbury stores nationwide and, says director of customer relations Mike Con-nelly, could eventually influence customers’ buying behaviour before they start to shop.