Without a doubt, you feel very appreciative of the many loyal customers that continue to stand by your business. But how do you show that appreciation, making it clear to your customers? If you’re not currently doing anything in this regard or could do more, consider this. Could you create a loyalty program and offer discounts of some sort?
This has proven to be a wise move for many businesses, including some of the world’s most well-known brands. Check out what five of those brands are doing and see if you can’t come up with some loyalty discounts of your own.
Members of this rewards program accumulate points (or, more accurately, stars) that can be used to get free food and drinks. There are also other “instant” benefits including free in-store refills and exclusive invites to events. This is the most traditional, simplest model for a loyalty program—earn points and get free stuff that non-members don’t have access to.
Why does this work so well for Starbucks, which has upwards of 10 million rewards members?
For one thing, most people love freebies, especially when it comes to food and drinks. But there’s another reason. This loyalty program is app-based.
To earn points, customers have to either order or pay with the app. This has several benefits. Mainly, though, it yields information on consumer preferences such as go-to orders, preferred locations, and more. All of this information can be used to enhance customer experience going forward.
Whether you have an app built or use some simple punch cards, you can use this type of loyalty discount with great success.
Nike partners with several big brands that complement its offerings and align with its goal of helping athletes excel. In addition to perks from Nike itself such as member-exclusive products and experiences, members also get perks from its partners. This includes free trials and membership discounts.
Consumers tend to lean toward and stay loyal to the brands that offer them the most value. By offering double benefits in this way, Nike has strengthened the ties between members and the brand.
If you currently have partners or are considering a partnership, could you do something similar?
The North Face’s VIPeak Rewards Program uses a point system. Once members rack up enough points, they can, of course, redeem them to get new gear online and in-store.
But what makes this particular loyalty program so noteworthy is that it also provides a sort of discount on experiences. This includes branded experiences such as official events and even travel experiences. Given the target audience, this experiential approach has a strong appeal and serves to forge an even greater connection between brand and consumer.
If your customer base values experiences as much as they do products, you should consider incentivizing those experiences.
Sephora gives members access to limited edition products, in-store beauty services and classes, gift cards, and discounts. Like some of our other examples, Sephora also uses a point system for this purpose. However, it’s a bit more complex because it’s broken into three tiers.
The higher the tier, the more points members earn per dollar spent. Additionally, the higher the tier, the more benefits there are. So while there’s something for everyone, there’s also an incentive to reach the highest status—Rouge.
Could you offer varying discounts to your customers based on yearly spend like Sephora or some other criteria? Doing so could have a great impact on your customer’s brand loyalty.
Last but not least is Amazon, which faces stiff competition on account of major players like eBay and Walmart. Perhaps the primary way Amazon has made set itself apart from the herd and encouraged customer loyalty is by offering a very persuasive type of discount through Prime—free (and fast) shipping!
Like Amazon, you might have close competitors who offer similar products at similar price points. In that case, you need to find that one thing that will tip the scales in your favor. Mind you, Amazon has several selling points including Prime Music, Prime Video, and so on. But just one thing—if you choose wisely—can work for you.
Will you offer discounts on your products like Sephora? On experiences like The North Face? Could you partner with complementary businesses and organizations to extend a variety of perks to your customers like Nike?
As you decide don’t simply think about what you could offer; think about your customer base and what would bring value to them. That way, you can decide on a discount that will encourage continued customer loyalty.