It's important for marketers to be truly in touch with the target audiences they aim to serve. While turnkey marketing solutions may be a strong choice in some situations, many contexts require a more customized approach if loyalty is to be established and maintained. In fact, the more highly tailored a rewards program is, the more likely that customers will take advantage of its benefits and that they will return to the business that provided them as a result.
The changing face of loyalty
As competition heats up in the business world, companies cannot afford to stop short of going the extra mile when it comes to implementing innovative, best-of-breed rewards solutions. According to Luxury Link, Mark Johnson, CEO of Loyalty 360, has explained some of the trends that have been shaping the loyalty realm in the past several years, and many of them point toward the need to go above and beyond what customers expect to surprise and delight them.
The source reported that Johnson emphasized that more so now than ever before, customers want to be seen as individuals. While developing a sense of each client's personality and interests seems like a major challenge, it is essential that companies prioritize listening to cultivate a better understanding of what their client base truly needs and wants. To this end, the news provider noted that an IBM study found that 88 percent of CEOs feel that "getting closer to the customer" should be among their primary focus over the next several years. Doing so may be able to help a business differentiate itself from competitors by honoring customers' uniqueness in every interaction, from the moment they are first in touch to beyond the time of purchase. Every encounter is another chance for the company to "respond to guests as individuals," and successfully doing so is sure to inspire loyalty.
Hospitality Technology noted that one strong example of a personalized loyalty program is the Earl of Sandwich Restaurant, which recently implemented a branded mobile app to reward and engage clients. The source explained that the Earl's Rewards program allows customers to earn and track points in real-time. The virtual punch card is POS-integrated so that guests always know how many loyalty points they've racked up and additionally, the app empowers word-of-mouth marketing. Rewards can be earned by sharing restaurant reviews on social networking websites and extra points can be accrued by recommending the Earl of Sandwich to friends.
However, the most added value comes from how the restaurant has chosen to customize the benefits of using the app. The news source said that all offers are customized according to each customer's preferences and purchase history, so the rewards each person receives are sure to be relevant to him or her. This is a special touch that helps guests save money while showing them they are more than just a number.
Using a private-label, customized loyalty program featuring discounts and coupons allows customers to save on the things they really want and need. These programs can feature offers based on your customer demographics and preferences. Consumers are eager to find businesses that can offer them more than just a standard loyalty program: They want to feel as if they are cared about by the company. By providing important value-added rewards, organizations of all kinds can drive meaningful engagement over the long term.