Implementing a loyalty program is the newest trend for any big or small companies, letting a business thrive in less than no time. Most successful loyalty programs use the information provided by a customer’s buying and rewarded behavior to customize more relevant, intimate, or satisfying experiences or offers for every customer individually, which in turn helps to earn more and more of customers’ loyalty. When you will go through our earlier posts you will realize that your own implemented customer loyalty program’s economics and appropriateness depends largely on your client base that you serve.
With the rapid increase of such kind of programs, a consumer has become more knowledgeable and interconnected through various social media platforms, therefore implementing a good, customized loyalty program is very important. NextBee recommends five best loyalty program practices, which have helped all the companies that NextBee has worked with. These five recommendations are just a quick checklist; although it is very important to customize and personalize the below mentioned practices according to your business structure and policies.
1. Always strive to gain insight about a consumer: Any effective loyalty program will always offer a choice of services to know more about your client’s individual preferences. Giving reward points in return for reviews and completing surveys, or having a conversation with your clients and answering their inquiries can generate a lot of insights, which will help you to design personalized offers for your consumer base according to their individual preferences. For example, a financial service firm can improve their insights of a consumer’s investment perspective by offering a variety of rewards based on their short-term and lifetime behaviors. With the right mix of offers and rewards, you can encourage your consumers to specify their rewards in advance of redeeming the points they have earned, to gain even more insights about your consumer base earlier.
2. A successful program maintains specificity, which enables the participants to mix and match offers according to their preferences: Specified offerings are the best and practical way to allow for customer-driven personalization of any loyalty program without taking the extreme step of full personalization. The most important feature of this program is participant qualification which can be generated with simple tools and software, and consumers can be given a list of guided choices to opt from. Any sophisticated loyalty marketing approach offers different list of choices for different groups of consumers based on their purchase behavior and value – that means no two consumer will choose from the same list. For instance, a high valued customer may choose from additional redemption or alternative products, while a lower valued customer will might get the option for a service upgrade and so on. Moreover, this feature will allow the program to incorporate co-sponsors and partners seamlessly.
3. Accessibility is valued by customers: Consumers want a service program that can be attached to other programs to reap benefits. The more accessible your program is by other programs, the more attractive and beneficial it will be to your client base. Transferable rewards and points offer good flexibility for using the reward points that has been earned. The more consumer insight you gain, your rewards program will grow and expand into newer horizons without putting at risk your customer loyalty, since the hindrance to a customer’s converting will no longer be just economic, that is the value of rewards points earned; but of satisfaction without the need to make another business learn about their individual preferences. Transparency and accessibility are the key factors of any successful loyalty programs, and it depends on the brand on how it leads and reacts to it. For instance, many airlines allow their best customers to redeem the air miles and rewards points you issue for different prizes offered by your competitors. This will also allow you to get an insight on your customers’ preferences of using other airlines and will thus help you to create more personalized experience for your client base.
4. A loyalty program should not be managed around products, but around your client base: The organization of your program should be aligned around your specific sets of customers based on their value and buying behavior. According to that measure your marketing managers through the influence that they have on your client base’s behaviors within the different sets of groups you created earlier. This is the best and the most direct way to generate improvement in each customer group, and also to develop loyalty of each individual consumer in each segment.
5. Avoid complex program structure; simplicity is the best way to go: To make your program more engaging for your customers; try to have fewer rules and restrictions. With the data collected about each customer, use it to narrow down your offers and rewards with the help of customization; so that you can deliver consistently. Raising your customers’ expectations by publicizing high value redemptions which are not readily available, will do more harm than good. If your delivery is not reliable, and is not according to what you promised, your brand’s credibility can be damaged along with the trust of your consumers.