In a world where businesses are continually trying to come up with new and exciting ways to keep their existing customers, Rewards Culture has emerged as a leading tool designed to build lasting brand loyalty.
Discounts, cash-back opportunities and stacks of those 3.5” by 2” loyalty cards stuffed into the back of your wallet; these were the traditional methods used to get customers coming back for repeat purchases.
But a lot has changed in the past few years and emerging technologies have created a highly competitive market that give smaller, more adaptable businesses an edge with their customers. These Reward Schemes are more relevant and engaging than ever and have the consumer asking why they should stay with a brand that has delivered their service perfectly fine, but different brands can give me something a little extra. Unsurprisingly, figures by Supercard Black have shown that clients who use their rewards as part of their retention strategy are showing a 33% increase in customer loyalty.
In the past, organisations have been fishing in the same pond for the same customer. Techniques used to acquire or retain their customers, such as discounts, can be detrimental to the value of the brand. Cash-back options don’t require any loyalty, and offering vouchers are not ideal for customers who had no intention of returning in the first place.
As a business owner, how do you break through all the white noise that consumers have to deal with and offer them something they can’t get just anywhere?
Despite the plethora of information, offers, advertising and content, customers are still looking for new and innovative ways to get more for their money. And these ways are not always about the product or even the company they are buying from. Sometimes it is about showing you have done your research on the customer. For example, rather than a generic voucher for the next purchase, offer rewards that incorporate into their lifestyle.
It is essential to know that the Rewards Culture is not just about the rewards. Aside from giving away discounted experiences and products, education has proven to be just as effective; giving customers the tools to become well-informed, conscious consumers.
2.Engaged customers are customers that will keep coming back.
There is a reason why social media influencers make so much money. They engage with consumers in a way that big organisations have never been able to do. Influencers use their social media followings to build interest in the products and will then pass rewards onto their audience on behalf of the company. There is an initial cost that comes with acquiring new customers, so finding ways to retain existing customers is always at the forefront of every business owner’s mind.
One of the main benefits of the Rewards Culture is that every person who is part of the scheme essentially becomes an influencer. So the more valuable and meaningful the reward, the more they will want to talk about it to other people.
3.People don’t like feeling sold to – so offer them something more than a product. Offer them an experience.
When asked to think about all the things that remember from our own day, it doesn’t come down to the products that are bought, or even the price. It comes down to how something made us feel, and this is what creates a lasting impression. Consumers are more aware of their buying power and have reshaped what it means to be ‘brand loyal’. To remain relevant,
business owners will need to look outside the box if they want to capture any emerging markets. To do this means looking more holistically at the customer to translate desired behaviours into tangible rewards their customers can use.
Take Supercard Black as an example. With their rewards schemes, they provide their customers with savings from some of the UK’s most iconic brands. They understand the products British consumers are using and are tailoring their strategies to create rewards that will be used regularly and influence spending habits. Gone are the days where the stagnant loyalty card gets swallowed up in the back of the wallet. We are looking at an age where the balance of power is shifting between consumers and businesses. By understanding the full benefits of loyalty programs, companies can get the competitive edge needed to thrive in this changing landscape.
Jaime Fisher – Supercard