Loyalty and rewards programs can be beneficial to both businesses and consumers. For the business, it can help build rapport with their customers, find out additional information about their customers, increasesales and, well, build and reward loyalty. For the consumer, loyalty programs often mean they can receive special discounts or other perks for their favorite businesses.
Know Your Customers
Before ordering loyalty program cards, you need to ask yourself a few basic questions to define the goals of your program.
Who are your customers?
It’s important to think about the different types of customers you currently have and create profiles for them. Think about their demographics, interests and purchasing habits. You’ll especially want to look at the characteristics and needs of the customers that frequent your business most often and those that make the most profitable purchases.
Which customers would you like to cultivate a relationship with?
Once you’ve thought about your customers, you’ll want to determine which customer types you want to cultivate the relationship with. Are you interested in rewarding your most loyal customers or are you looking to increase loyalty among fair-weather customers?
What type of customer information do you hope to attain?
Knowledge is power and knowing more information about your customers will help you solve their problems, offer products and services that meet their needs and better market your business. Make a list of questions based on the information you’d like to gain about your customers and their needs. Just don’t go overboard. Nobody wants to answer 20 questions to sign up for a loyalty program!
Loyalty Reward Ideas
Once you know your customers and which customer types you would like to reach, you need to decide what loyalty rewards or incentives you’re going to offer as part of your program. Here are three ideas to get you started, but be creative and develop rewards that fit your customers and your business!
Instead of requiring your customers to rack up points or visits, which can sometimes take a long time, surprise them with rewards throughout the year. Nothing would feel better than stopping in at your local salon for a pedicure and being surprised with a free bottle of nailpolish or goody bag with product samples.
Create Customer Levels or Tiers
Set different tiered levels for your rewards program such as platinum, gold, silver and bronze and let your customers work up to increased rewards. At a coffee shop, you could start off with dollar off rewards at the bronze level and work up to free coffee for a week for your platinum level highly loyal customers.
Put the Customer in Charge
For your “high-rolling” best customers, let them feel like they’re a part of your business make a business decision. If you own a fashion boutique, each month you could let one loyal customer pick a sale. It could be a one day sale on purses, or accessories or anything with the color green in it. For an ice cream shop, you could let the customer create a their own sundae, name it after tham and feature it for one week during the month.
The most important things to remember when designing your loyalty program are to make it unique to your business and customers and make it easy. If you want customers to participate, it needs to be something they’re interested in and easy to participate in. The more unique and fun you make the program, the more they’ll want to participate.
Guest blog post by Jeff Fullmer of Plastek Cards. Plastek Cards specializes in manutfacturing a wide-range of plastic cards including gift cards, loyalty cards, key cards, smart cards, ID cards and the list goes on!