Customer Communications Group: Five Tips to Kick-Start Established Loyalty Marketing Programs

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Recently Released Loyalty Marketing Self-Grader Shows Steps to Success

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After 3-4 years with their program, many loyalty marketers come to us when they want to take their program to the next level.

Customer Communications Group, (CCG) the full-service loyalty and marketing agency, shows marketers how to boost 3-4 year old loyalty marketing programs with specific insights and advice.

Businesses can gauge where they are and follow specific advice to crank up their loyalty marketing by starting with the CCG Loyalty Marketing Self-Assessment — a free, 5 minute self-quiz that grades loyalty marketing programs.

“After 3-4 years with their program, many loyalty marketers come to us when they want to take their program to the next level,” said Sandra Gudat, president & CEO of Customer Communications Group. “Most of the operational kinks have been worked out, but they are starting to see issues while they want to ramp up. Taking these five steps can help.”

1. Loyalty by the Numbers
If loyalty transactions are 26% – 50% of total store transactions — closer to the 50% — your program is tracking fairly typically for a 3 to 4 year old program. Closer to the 26% end of the range indicates a need to reevaluate the program value proposition and benefits to ensure they are relevant and enticing to customers. Loyalty transactions that are 51% – 75% of your total store transactions are just right at this stage. Closer to the 75% end of the range approaches “best in class” for this age program.

2.    Take it to the Top
Many retailers report that the top 25% of their customers represent around 70% of total sales — that’s a lot of revenue tied to a comparatively small group of customers. Do you have a strategy in place to recognize your best customers? It’s often a reliable route to increase sales and retention.

3.    Build a Path to Rewards
Stay on-message to customers that if they spend X, they will receive reward Y. Include customers’ account status, e.g. points needed for next reward. This is also the time to consider what additional customer-facing communications — such as FSIs, promotional emails and social media — can incorporate at least a simple description of the program.

4.    Keep it Alive
Are customer-facing associates stay motivated to present the program. There can be a slowdown of enthusiasm out in the field after an initial launch. One step might be to introduce a contest that rewards top stores. Also ensure that associate training continues to be offered and is updated, since it is likely that many associates today were not around when the program was first launched.

5.    Reaping the Right Rewards
If 0 - 20% of members earn the program’s primary reward within a 12-month period, members may find your program too restrictive and disengage. But if more than 50% of members earn the program’s primary reward within 12 months – barring a low cost primary reward – the loyalty program might be on its way to a negative return on investment. This may require transitioning to a different, lower-cost primary benefit or incorporate a high perceived value, but low cost, soft benefit.

Is your loyalty program best in class or merely so-so? How does it stack up to other retail loyalty programs? Discover strategies and steps to build loyalty specifically for your business and boost the bottom line; Take the CCG Loyalty Marketing Self-Assessment Here.

Customer Communications Group (CCG) is a full-service customer relationship marketing (CRM) agency that helps Fortune 2000 retailers and financial institutions improve their bottom line by improving their customer relationships, loyalty and retention.

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Jim McNulty
StandPoint Public Relations
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