As retailers scratch their heads on how to combat this poor consumer sentiment, retail marketing program provider TCC Global has come up with a possible idea for Australian retailers seeking that boost and it involves the popular ‘Angry Birds’ app.

TCC has secured the global licence for loyalty promotions in the grocery, convenience and petrol retail category for Angry Birds, the hugely successful mobile video game franchise that includes Angry Birds, Angry Birds Seasons and Angry Birds Rio.

The app recently passed a milestone of more than 300 million downloads worldwide across a range of platforms since launching in December 2009.  In Australia alone, the download rate exceeded 8.6 million, enough for 40 per cent of the population.

Alastair Macdonald, TCC regional director, Australasia, said the Angry Birds franchise said as shoppers are more discerning, an engaging loyalty promotion still wins when it comes to driving shopper demand.

“We’re working with Angry Birds creator and franchise-owner, Finland-based Rovio Mobile, to develop a range of reward products including mugs, plush toys, figurines and other collectables that can be used in purpose-built retail loyalty promotions,” he said.

“Angry Birds has real traction in the market right now and retail loyalty promotions built around the franchise are sure to find favour with kids, teenagers and adults alike. It’s the largest mobile game app the world has seen so far, and so TCC’s multi-year promotional licensing rights to Angry Birds will give Aussie retailers a real edge for 2012.”

The company has already seen this strategy succeed in Europe where recent consumer research from Germany showed that loyalty promotions are successful because consumers find an excuse to shop when there is a chance to collect something unqiue from a specific store.

Macdonald said it’s the ‘community of taking part’ that attracts shoppers to loyalty programs; to collect something desirable and become part of a ‘community of collectors’ has greater resonance than ever, as people increasingly interact and communicate via social media and the web.

“Being part of something bigger, like a ‘collectable collective’, creates a conversation – whether it be online or in the real world. Kids, teenagers and adults really respond to that. They can participate in a loyalty program and become part of the dialogue,” he said.

“That’s why we’re confident the Angry Birds franchise will have as much traction here in Australia as it has elsewhere in the world. It bridges the gap between online and real worlds. Our Angry Birds promotions will become a tangible manifestation of a virtual phenomenon and that is sure to make a positive, measurable difference within our client’s business.”

Each program is customised to the retailer's objectives. TCC looks at its data to get an understanding of shopper profile, demographics, average visit frequency, average spend, what their best customers spend, and then designs a program specific to their goals.

"We set the spend level to get the reward so it stretches their existing spend," Macdonald said, noting the programs can typically generate a five per cent increase in sales year over year.