Altria's Digital Trade Program Reaches Additional Retailers

The Tier 3 incentive directly impacts an estimated 10 to 15 percent of convenience store sales.
Danielle Romano
Managing Editor
Danielle Romano profile picture
NRS_tobacco merchant_Altria DTP

RICHMOND, Va. — Altria Group Inc. is expanding its Altria Digital Trade Program (DTP) and Altria Personalization Plus (P+) offerings through collaborations with National Retail Solutions (NRS) and BandyWorks.

Retailers participating in NRS's Tobacco Scan Program for just $29.95 will be eligible for Altria's Tier 3 and P+ program, presenting them with a unique value proposition without the need for additional costs, according to NRS, which operates a point-of-sale terminal-based platform and NRS PAY credit card processing services for small and mid-size independent retailers. NRS currently has more than 26,000 active terminals nationwide. 

[Read more: Altria Files Complaint Against Juul Labs With International Trade Commission]

Once enrolled in Automatic Promotions and Tier 3 with Altria through NRS, retailers only need to accept their monthly promotions, with NRS overseeing the rest.

"What sets NRS apart is our commitment to streamline the retail process. By managing the Altria Tier 3/P+ Program internally, we're ensuring our retailers do not face the hassle of coordinating with multiple vendors," said Elie Y. Katz, CEO of National Retail Solutions. "Our goal is simple: Let our retailers focus on their business, and we'll handle the complexities."

The Altria DTP has a multitiered incentive structure, each offering escalating benefits to participating retailers:

  • Tier 1 includes scan data with incentives per tobacco transaction, as well as consistent loyalty ID incentives for repeat customers.
  • Tier 2 includes all of Tier 1 plus retail digital coupons and unbranded communications.
  • Tier 3 includes all of Tier 1 and Tier 2, plus electronic age and identity verification (EAIV), branded Altria product offers, in-app marketing campaigns and additional data-sharing incentives.
  • P+ includes all of Tier 1, Tier, 2 and Tier 3, plus personalized offer targeting. 

"The ability for our retailers to stack their incentive payments and promotions through Altria's DTP is a game-changer. We're talking about maximizing profits while delivering unparalleled customer experiences. It's a win-win," commented James Bleemer, vice president of NRS sales.

Additionally, BandyWorks is offering Altria's DTP Tier 3 and P+, and will support the latter's capability through BandyWorks' own loyalty program, as well as retailers' programs. 

The BandyWorks Tier 3 and P+ offering includes: Altria Multi-Unit and Loyalty Offers; EAIV; Responsibly Branded Altria Product Offers; In-App Marketing Campaigns; Data-Sharing Incentives; and ATC 21+ Personalized Offer Targeting (P+).

Key points of difference with the BandyWorks capability include:

  • P+ in addition to Tiers 1 through 3;
  • Can work into existing store loyalty programs; and
  • If there is no loyalty program, BandyWorks can provide one through its Quik Loyalty.

Altria DTP's Tier 3 directly impacts an estimated 10 to 15 percent of convenience store sales, according to BandyWorks.

"Cost covering incentives are currently available to retailers for early participation including loyalty usage, customer opt-in and co-branding opportunities. This, along with increased sales and traffic, will drive thousands in additional dollars for qualified retailers," said Mason Cowan, BandyWorks' director of managed services. "The BandyWorks Tier 3 offering includes new DTP reporting requirements to achieve full funding."

Providing tobacco loyalty and meeting the tiered levels of Altria's digital transformation requires a complex technology solution with on-going support to keep promotions on track and certified. Retailers can use Quik Loyalty and be running in days, according to the company. If retailers already have a loyalty system in place, BandyWorks can integrate the data to allow marketing teams to focus on loyalty while the company takes care of the tobacco processing.

Based in Colonial Heights, Va., BandyWorks is a family-owned company that focuses convenience store customers’ growth by managing data analytics so clients can better manage their growth.

Richmond-based Altria's Vision is to responsibly lead the transition of adult smokers to a smoke-free future. The company is Moving Beyond Smoking, leading the way in moving adult smokers away from cigarettes by taking action to transition millions to potentially less harmful choices  believing it is a substantial opportunity for adult tobacco consumers, Altria's businesses and society.

Altria's wholly owned subsidiaries include leading manufacturers of both combustible and smoke-free products. In combustibles, it owns Philip Morris USA Inc. and John Middleton Co. Its smoke-free portfolio includes ownership of U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Co. LLC, Helix Innovations LLC and NJOY LLC.

Additionally, Altria has a majority-owned joint venture, Horizon Innovations LLC, for the U.S. marketing and commercialization of heated tobacco stick products and, through a separate agreement, has the exclusive U.S. commercialization rights to the IQOS Tobacco Heating System and Marlboro HeatSticks through April 2024.

The company's equity investments include Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV and Cronos Group Inc.

The brand portfolios of Altria's tobacco operating companies include Marlboro, Black & Mild, Copenhagen, Skoal, on! and NJOY.