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Posted by Emily Collins on May 30, 2014
Consumers and marketers don't always see eye to eye when it comes to customer loyalty programs. Consumers tell us they enroll in programs for the points, discounts, and savings, while companies tell us boosting customer engagement is a top goal for their loyalty programs. Sixty-seven percent of consumers consider themselves active in programs they join, yet the marketers who run loyalty programs report that only 16% of customers are active program participants. Regardless of which camp you fall into, one thing is clear: a program is only as strong as the members who participate in it. And, the value exchange a program creates is central to attracting members today and getting them to come back tomorrow, next month, and next year.
But, choosing program benefits can create some anxiety. Marketers need a mix of rewards that satisfies consumers' desire for savings while encouraging deeper engagement, and acknowledging/recognizing customer value. Forrester clients often ask me questions like "What can we offer besides points?," and "How do we make customers feel valued?." The short answer is that there are a lot of options that have varying objectives for the customer:
To help, I recently published a report that maps out the pros and cons of 16 different benefit types including loyalty currency, enhanced customer service, experiential rewards, surprise and delight, and status tiers (subscription required). Whether you're auditing your current mix, or looking to start fresh, be sure to follow the ABC's of program benefits.
How did you determine your ideal reward mix? What are the challenges you face when it comes to identifying and delivering rewards? I'd love to hear your perspective and thoughts on this topic. Feel free to reach out to me via email, on Twitter, or request an inquiry.