Savvy business owners know that customer loyalty programs are essential to the success of any business. Consumer expectations continue to grow as technology grows and improves; a simple punch card or even a plastic loyalty card is no longer enough to retain their business. The following four steps will help you build the quintessential loyalty experience from start to finish.
1. Analyze The Data
Many companies spend a large portion of their marketing budget to collect customer data. This information goes well beyond basic customer information and demographics. POS systems and SMS opt-ins allow managers to track a wealth of other information such as digital coupon redemption, average price points, geographical locations, purchasing habits and so on and so forth. Yet many companies do not take the time to analyze this data and use it to their advantage. In order to improve your loyalty program and allocate your future marketing budget, you need to analyze the data you collect to truly get to know them.
2. Personalize The Program
Once you have a clear picture of who your customers are, you can personalize an engaging program explained more in detail at The Pro Intern. For example, customers who have demonstrated a strong loyalty to a particular restaurant for lunch on weekdays can be targeted with text messages advertising lunch specials. In order to increase their patronage, however, you may want to offer an extra incentive for them to return to your restaurant for dinner on the weekend, whether it is seating in a VIP section or a free entrée. Similarly, landing page, apps, digital coupons and every other source of information should be tailored to a particular customer based on the information you collect.
3. Channel Convergence
We live in the age of technology; there is no doubt about that. There has been a rapid proliferation in the availability of advertising channels—from smartphones to social media. This is not to say that traditional methods such as direct mail and print advertising don’t still have their place in the marketing mix. Rather, they should be used to compliment other platforms. A print advertisement with a QR can make it more relevant, direct customers to another source of information such as a digital coupon and capture their data at the same time. A digital billboard can send an opt-in push notification to alert customers of specific promotions, etc.
Over 25 percent of customers already state that they prefer mobile marketing over traditional loyalty marketing techniques and this number is expected to increase exponentially. This comes as no surprise with the popularity of apps such as Passbook and mobile wallets such as Isis. Both allow customers to organize all of their digital coupons, loyalty card numbers, virtual gift cards and even tickets and passes in one convenient location. It is entirely too easy forget a coupon when you leave the house, but you typically won’t leave without your cell phone in your hand. Marketing is becoming more digital and using less paper. In fact, research has shown that mobile coupons have a redemption rate ten times that of printed coupons.