A customer loyalty program is, as its name suggests, a marketing tool that aims at maintaining customers of a product/service in the long term. Beyond loyalty, the programs also often aim to increase customers’ awareness about your brand. Loyalty programs are of considerable importance in generating brand preference and enhancing the engagement of your customers. At the heart of these systems, the lead role is played by the concept of rewarding. In this article, we will explore the different kinds of loyalty programs you can build for your business, and what tools are available for you to do so easily.
So how do you make sure you are putting enough value to your programs to keep your customers coming back and consuming more?
The different kinds of loyalty programs:
- The points program:
This is certainly the most commonly used loyalty program. The more customers spend money on your products or services, the more points they will earn which they will be able to transform into rewards once they reach a certain threshold. These rewards can be, for example, discounts or vouchers. This type of loyalty program is best suited for businesses encouraging frequent short-term purchases.
- The tier program:
This is also the most common loyalty through the gamification program. It allows you to find the perfect balance between the rewards you are proposing and the level of engagement of your customers. To put it simply, the loyalty of your customers is measured in “levels” that they can escalate by interacting more often with your brand. The higher the level, the better the rewards. This model is frequently used by airline companies or hotels.
- The paid program:
It might sound ironic to make your customers pay for their rewards, but if you use this model correctly it can actually be interesting both for you and your customers. To use it effectively, you should be able to identify your frequent buyers or identify the most common reasons your potential customers are abandoning their purchases. Based on that information, you can offer ‘VIP’ programs in return for a certain amount of money to grant its members discounts or free shipping monthly or yearly, for example.
- The value-based program:
Really understanding your customers means understanding their values and their behaviors, and sharing the same values as they can have a huge impact on brand loyalty. Depending on your industry, your customers may find more value in non-monetary rewards. While any company can offer promotional coupons and discount codes if they want, companies that can offer non-monetary rewards have a unique opportunity to connect with their audience. This can take the form of donations made to charities that matter to your customers.
- The gamification program:
Gamification-based loyalty programs refer to the process of applying the same mechanisms used in video games to keep engaging your customers. The main point is to transform actions that are usually perceived as boring and unpleasant into playful and enjoyable ones. This can be put to use by, for example, unlocking rewards such as vouchers or discounts for those of your customers that invite people to your website, or that accomplish any of the tasks that you suggest to them – the pool of opportunities is as large as you wish!
The advantages of using loyalty programs:
- Loyalty programs allow you to keep clients on the long-term:
By using a loyalty program, you multiply your chances of seeing your customers coming back which is ultimately any business’ main goal.
- Loyalty programs help you build a stronger relationship with your customers:
With a well-thought loyalty program, you will be able to bond on a deeper level with your customers and create a strong attachment to your brand.
- Loyalty programs create a great opportunity for CRM improvement:
A strong loyalty program is a great way for your business to gather precious information about your clients, which will allow you to improve your general CRM processes.
The tools to build a loyalty program for your business:
Aimed mainly at small and medium businesses, this could-based customer loyalty management solution allows you to issue points to your customers depending on how much money they spend on your products or depending on how often they check-in on your website. It also allows you to issue coupons and set-up predefined rewards. Goody also comes with customer management and marketing automation tools that will help you run and manage your campaigns by collecting and analyzing live data about your customers.
Afi is a solution that offers you a complete set of tools to help start engaging your customers effectively. Not only is it highly customizable and adaptable to your business’ needs, but it also offers you a simple and powerful way to build loyalty through gamification, through the creation of shopping clubs, by building a strong affiliation program and even by hitting the micro-influencer sphere!
LoopyLoyalty is mainly aimed at the creation of digital stamp cards. This is most relevant for physical businesses like restaurants, gyms or beauty salons to reward their loyal customers easily without spending hundreds of dollars on design and printing as it allows you to reward your customers remotely. It is perfectly integrated with Apple Wallet and Google Pay.
Talon also offers a suite complete toolkit that will help you build almost any largely customizable loyalty program. You can generate millions of coupons and even target them, build a point-based referral system, use customer data to issue discounts, and generally work towards a greater brand loyalty thanks to the many solutions they offer.