With so many loyalty programs now on the market, the benefits of offering a program are one thing, but getting customers to join is quite another. Getting word out to customers, ensuring it’s easy to sign up, and encouraging clients to use your program on a regular basis all go a long way to helping your program succeed.
Here are 3 key factors to consider when building your loyalty program:
1. Clearly define your goals and objectives
It is important to start out with clear program goals and objectives when developing your program strategy. What do you want to achieve? Of course you want customers to be loyal to your brand, but is that enough?
A loyalty program is a tool that will help you turn potential customers into active ones, and active customers into brand ambassadors. Clearly defined goals will help get you there. Start with basic goals like making your program profitable and increasing sales, but remember to think beyond that. Your loyalty goals must reflect your business objectives.
Here are a few examples of goals you may have:
- Re-engage with less active as well as inactive customers.
- Identify your most profitable clients in order to find common characteristics, then target customers with similar characteristics.
- Promote your referral program to your most active customers.
- Further personalize communications based on customer preferences and behaviour.
- Set up cross-sell offers to help increase sales.
Remember: Your loyalty program’s success depends on setting up clear goals from the start.
2. Outline the program structure with a mix of tangible and intangible rewards
The ideal loyalty program is about much more than just earning points, cashback, rewards, incentives, and personalized offers. Its ultimate goal is to capture data about your customers’ preferences, interests, and habits in order to capitalize on what you learn and personalize their experience further.
When deciding on your program’s structure, be sure to include a mix of tangible and intangible rewards. Points and rewards are all well and good, but adding elements of surprise and delight can help your program stand out from the pack. Offer rewards that they’ll appreciate and enjoy, personalized to their purchase behaviour. Take a look at all the ways you are in contact with customers, and be sure to include a few loyalty-related surprises.
Remember: Be creative but keep it simple. Your loyalty program needs to work smoothly, on a daily basis, across every sales channel.
3. Give your program a unique identity
First and foremost, your loyalty program must align with your brand and form a solid connection with customers. According to a 2018 survey by Bond Brand Loyalty, programs that establish positive emotional connections with members see 27% more of their membership increasing their spend with the brand.
As well, ensure your program reflects your brand’s visual identity, tone, and values. Give it a meaningful and memorable name, a logo that stands out, and plenty of visibility. The more your program stands out, the better it’s likely to perform. Be sure to include your program in all communications to customers; it must be part and parcel of your company’s DNA. Your customers are solicited by a multitude of loyalty programs throughout their purchase experiences. Your loyalty branding must stand out.
Remember that transparency is key. Communicate your program’s rules and conditions with clarity, and always honour your promises.
If retailers provide consumers with rewards and incentives in exchange for purchasing their goods and services, then those consumers are more likely to share information about their preferences and buying habits. Take advantage of this to create pertinent, personalized, long-standing, and profitable relationships between your brand and your customers.