Given the many ways customer loyalty can help your business, it is understandable why businesses are increasingly investing in ways to enhance loyalty. Not only can loyal customers be your best source of word-of-mouth marketing to help acquire new customers, but they also make repeated purchases over time and thus improve their customer lifetime value.
Despite the clear business incentives, many businesses struggle to design and deliver an engaging loyalty experience. A common misunderstanding is that businesses cannot afford to provide a loyalty experience because they cannot support a rewards program.
Loyalty experiences ≠ rewards programs
Whereas a rewards program allows users to earn and redeem points, a loyalty experience can be any enhanced experience for a loyal customer. For example, a hair salon can provide a loyalty experience by remembering a customer’s name, primary stylist, natural hair texture, preferred hairstyles, and where you went for your last vacation - all without distributing a punch card to get your sixth haircut free.
Although value propositions, loyalty objectives, user interactions, and services may differ across businesses, WillowTree believes all businesses should approach loyalty from the same perspective: the end customer’s. By adopting a customer-centric approach to understand behaviors, thoughts, and feelings, businesses will be better positioned to identify opportunities to provide an engaging digital loyalty experience.
Through partnerships across various industries including retail, consumer product goods, media and hospitality, WillowTree has discovered key themes to consider in order to design an engaging loyalty experience - whether point-based or not:
- Know Me - Customer Recognition
- Tell Me - Transparency
- Let Me - Empowerment
- Value Me - Reward Loyalty
Stay tuned: Each of these four key customer needs will be explored in further detail in future posts.
With loyalty becoming an increasingly significant competitive advantage among businesses, it is never too early to consider how your business can provide engaging loyalty experiences to customers. Contact us and let us know how we can help improve your loyalty program.