Are you looking for ways to keep customers active in your loyalty program? If yes, then it is important to reward your customers beyond discounts. A loyalty program should reward all things that add value not only to your business but also to the customers. Before looking at the ways to create value from a loyalty program, let’s look at what exactly a loyalty program is? Loyalty programs are structured marketing efforts that encourage shoppers to return to businesses where they frequently make purchases. The goal of these programs is to increase customer loyalty. These programs generally use the psychological principals of reciprocity, commitment and loss aversion to enhance the probability of customer loyalty. Some of the key incentives that come under loyalty programs include – additional discounts, free merchandise, advanced access to new products, etc.
With the advancement in technology and Internet usage, many businesses and products have become successful without ever investing in advertising. These days, various well-established businesses rely on word-of-mouth recommendations and have started to reward customers for their advocacy in addition to the traditional loyalty programs. For brands, customer’s action including referring friends, sharing posts, and creating content have become more and more important.
Facts about Customer Loyalty Programs
Here are some of the key facts related to loyalty programs, have a look:
- About 82% of companies agree that retention is cheaper than acquisition
- Around 75% of customers say that they favor businesses that offer rewards
- 58.7% of internet users believe that earning rewards and loyalty points is one of the most valued aspects of the shopping experience.
- 56% of customers stay loyal to brands that “get them”
- More than 70% of consumers are more likely to recommend a brand that offers a good loyalty program.
- Satisfied US customers share their positive experiences with 11 different people.
- About 65% of the company’s business comes from existing customers.
- Increasing customer retention by just 5% boost up profits by 25% to 95%
- Around 80% of businesses still rely on email marketing which helps in maintaining their client retention rate.
- The likelihood of selling to an existing customer is 60-70%
- About 95% of loyalty program members want to engage with their brand’s program through new and emerging technologies.
- About 75% of consumers anticipate brands to make more of a contribution to their well-being and quality of life.
- About 72% of US adults belong to at least one loyalty program.
- Around 87% of Americans are willing to have an assortment of details of their activity tracked in exchange for more personalized rewards and brand experiences.
- About 56% of businesses employ game mechanics in their loyalty programs.
- About 69% of US consumers say customer service is very important when it comes to their loyalty to a brand.
- Revenues for businesses that prioritize customer service raise 4-8% above the market.
How to Create Value from loyalty Programs?
Here are some of the key ways to add more value to your loyalty initiatives:
1. Gather Customer Data
The expectations of customers are quite high in relation to loyalty programs. Thus, it is important for a business or brand to demonstrate relevance. In order to strengthen the business-customers relationship and drive long-term loyalty, a brand must start gathering data from its customers over time in exchange for loyalty program points. Offering incentives like coupons, free samples, bonus points or extra discounts can also help to convince customers to share their personal information. The gathered data can be used to enhance your remarketing efforts.
2. Encourage social involvement
In today’s times, it is of utmost importance for businesses or brands to remain active on social media. Inviting or encouraging customers into your social sphere can help in building greater brand awareness. What you can do is, reward your customers for connecting their social accounts. You can even extend your brand outreach rewarding customers for social sharing that involves sharing your products or services, sharing social posts and other useful information about your brand on social media.
3. Build a community for your customers
Before trusting a brand, many customers prefer checking social media sites, forums, review sites, and more to know more about the brand. To create value, businesses can build their own community to encourage customer-to-customer interactions. Community forums can be added to encourage customers to communicate with one another and share their opinions on various topics related to your business. They may talk about their product or service experiences, or anything related to your business. Whether they leave negative or positive comments, you can respond to it in your way and deal with it accordingly.
4. Come up with Unique Rewards and Experiences
Apart from your general offers that are open to the public, come up with some unique offers for your loyal customers to add more value to your loyalty program. Customers, who are loyal to your brand, deserve special treatment and recognition. Try to introduce unique rewards and experiences that make them feel valued and appreciated. Invitation to VIP events, early access to sales or limited edition rewards, extra discounts, bonus points are some of the ideas that you can use to make your loyal customers feel more special and appreciated. This will further help to build greater brand affinity.
5. Consider partnering with another company
Strategic partnerships, also known as coalition programs can be really effective for retaining customers. By partnering with another company, you’ll be able to provide your customers with all-inclusive offers. However, it is important to choose your partner company carefully. Depending upon the type of business you are into; choose a company that’s relevant to your business. When you go a step beyond what your company alone can offer you are showing your customers that you value them and care about their requirements.
So these are some of the most effective ways to add value to your loyalty programs. In today’s era, there are plenty of great choices that are available in the market. As a result, the quality of product or service has become less impactful as compared to the quality of customer service and user recommendations. To keep your customers active and engaged in your loyalty initiatives, it’s vital to reward them for showing their loyalty towards your brand.