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BizReport : Loyalty Marketing : September 05, 2016

3 hacks that will improve loyalty programs

Loyalty programs can be difficult to build no matter how popular the brand attached. One expert shares three hacks that will help brands build bigger - and better - loyalty programs.

by Kristina Knight

First, leveraging other currencies

"With leveraged loyalty, merchants without established loyalty programs of their own can reward their patrons with points and miles from larger, more established programs," said Danielle Brown, VP of Marketing, Points. "For example, merchants can purchase points and miles from better-known programs like Marriott Rewards or Delta SkyMiles and then award them to their clients, loyal customers, and employees as as an incentive to reward their patronage. While it may seem counterintuitive to offer rewards in other programs, this tactic actually provides customers with more incentive to engage with a brand since they're able to collect rewards in globally-recognized programs or loyalty programs that they're already invested in."

Second, leveraging data and feedback

"An often-overlooked but cost-effective way to improve your loyalty program is to collect and mine feedback for relevant insights. You can do this by creating a survey that asks specific questions that relate to your brand and then offering rewards to your members as an incentive to complete the survey. Then use the feedback you've collected to personalize rewards, which will further improve the member experience. For example, an airline can conduct a survey to pinpoint and tailor the rewards that matter for their high-value members -- whether that's an upgrade to a roomier seat, a discount on the next flight, or even a complimentary bottle of wine for members who say they regularly order one," said Brown.

Third, make currency flexible

"When it comes to driving loyalty in the travel space, flexibility is the key to success. Many of today's loyalty programs are using flexibility to set themselves apart from their competitors and increase engagement within their programs," said Brown. "Programs should tap into industry trends and technologies that continue to push how members earn and burn their points and miles. One growing trend is the mobile wallet. Loyalty programs have a big opportunity to expand their presence, and ubiquity of their loyalty currencies, by integrating into growing mobile wallet platforms. By offering members the flexibility to earn and spend on a regular basis, it increases engagement within the program and in turn, impacts the bottom line."

Tags: flexible loyalty, loyalty marketing, loyalty program tips, Points

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