Loyalty Do’s & Don’ts for 2016
from Colloquy 13 Jan 16 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
Getting loyalty and great customer engagement right is a tricky recipe. These tips can help:
1. Don’t be a “Stick in the mud”. Are you having fun? Are your members? Games, videos, interactive content, cartoons, funny social campaigns; there’s a whole world of ways to make loyalty more fun.
2. Do Mobile-ize. Smart-phones are practically an appendage for most of us. Every aspect of loyalty should be optimized for mobile. Many programs integrate mobile into some aspects – points notification or redemption, but fall short in other areas. And speaking of mobile: Why aren’t more employees in retail, hospitality & other industries equipped with Smart-phones & Tablets to easily access product information, offer demos & help customers find things?
3. Don’t assume “Silence is golden”. In fact, dis-satisfied customers who don’t speak up can cost a business dearly, in loyalty & revenue. Recent research by LoyaltyOne Consulting, Verde Group & the Wharton School found that a typical retailer puts 16% of revenue at risk from CX problems, and disgruntled consumers often stew in silence and exact their toll – not coming back, then bad-mouthing the company – later.
4. Don’t forget the old reliable. Stop acquiring loyalty members, just to build up the numbers. You probably have enough – and chances are good – you’re not creating meaningful relationships with them. Driving long-term retention of loyal members will lower your overall investment. And, surprise, you’ll naturally acquire new members through reputation, not costly incentives.
5. Do Dig deeper. Not all customer experience problems are equal – and just because a problem occurs more frequently – does not mean it has the biggest impact. Some issues have a higher correlation to loyalty behaviors. Put processes in place to better understand customers’ pain points, and measure & monitor risks.
6. Don’t get Brash. [till you get the Cash. LoL] There is so much more to learn about your customers and their journey. A recent study by IBM & Econsultancy found that only 22% of consumers say the average retailer understands them.
7. Do keep exploring Social Media. Sure, it’s a veritable tsunami of content, but the opportunities to connect with customers – existing & potential – and build loyalty & sales growth is pretty unbeatable. Both organic & paid social media initiatives are critical to any loyalty program these days.
8. Do get Personal. A one-size-fits-all approach in loyalty or customer experience is long gone. One-to-one personalization is the goal, acknowledging that no two customers are truly alike. Predictive tools & robust data analytics allow for hyper-personalized relationships.
9. Don’t go it Alone. Partnerships – whether co-branded credit cards, teaming up with complementary companies for short-term promotions or joining a formal coalition program – are the only way to create long-term, differentiated & meaningful value for customers. When it comes to loyalty, there truly is strength in numbers.
10. Do keep it Dynamic. And speaking of personalization, the ability to offer dynamic pricing continues to grow. Consider sending one-to-one, targeted offers to shoppers’ Smart-phones right in the aisle. Paired with iBeacon technology, these private offers allow on-the-fly adjustments based on demand, inventory, time of day, customer value & more.
11. Do “court” the mighty Millennials. Yes, you were once their age, but millennials aren’t simply you in a time warp. It’s crucial that marketers understand the needs of those born roughly between 1981 and 1997 – a unique breed with dramatically different ideas about consumerism & loyalty than other demographics.
12. Finally, don’t forget the old Accronymn: KISS Keep it simple, stupid. Getting loyalty right can be complicated, but everything needs to be seamless and simple on the customer’s end. Don’t over-complicate things or it’ll make it too much effort and you’ll lose them.
Comment: Anything you can add about Loyalty?