Make Reward Programs Work for your Business
When customers choose and remember your brand first, that’s loyalty. When they can’t imagine their lives without it, that’s advocacy.
Reward programs exist solely to engage clients into going back to a specific brand or store for more with promising prizes, discounts and free merchandise that makes them feel special and acknowledged. After all, they do spend their valuable time and money- which in turn makes them think twice before buying from someone else.
How Do Loyalty Programs Work?
Usually people are awarded points for a number of purchases, those points are then exchanged for values, or rewards. But you don’t necessarily have to award points just keeping track of a number of purchases or giving exclusive access to something special after a specific purchase is made (under certain criteria, over x amount, in a specific time window, before or after some season, etc.) is essentially a rewards program.
However, most of these popular marketing strategies are based on subscriptions, they either give regular customers a card where they can accumulate said points and later exchange those points for prizes or discounts.
This is where everything can go wrong, companies need to have a specific list of the items or rewards the company can afford to give away that will please participants or repeat customers. People don’t like being surprised when it comes to a reward program, leave those for anniversary events -most of the time they are looking forward to having enough points to exchange for a particular prize that satisfies their needs and taste.
How to make customers stick to reward programs?
- Create a specific set of clear goals they can achieve in a few simple steps.
- Decide what counts and what doesn’t to accumulating points, for example, purchasing more products of a specific brand or spending more than a certain amount of money, let’s say for each $5 they get 100 points.
- Communicate the rules clearly to staff and clients.
- Comply with those rules. Many businesses find that when many people get the necessary points to claim rewards they are in over their heads!
- Make sure what you spend on rewards is compensated by what you are getting back from your customers, be it referrals, repeat purchases, moving backed-up inventory, etc.
- Keep track along with the customer, digitally or by hand.
Encourages consumers into expending those extra bucks in your store, in order to get those extra points to exchange for that latte or cappuccino machine they want.
Using creativity can also help in consolidating your customer loyalty program. There has been a good rate of success in the past with companies and stores that have offered out of the box rewards, such as a convenience store that offer an all you can grab in 20 seconds for 500 points, etc.
Get Started With Your Own Reward Program:
If you’re on a Budget, start small:
- Claim or add your business to Foursquare and offer rewards for walk-ins, mayors and badge lovers. Don’t know what that means? Head over to Foursquare for business and check it out yourself. Also for brands.
- Not techy? Order a Dry Erase Vinyl Board and set up the rewards on the board, if customers are down with it add names to show who’s in the lead. Make it a BIG deal when somebody wins.
- Print company T-Shirts or Pin-back Buttons with an “Ask Me How” campaign -get people excited! Try, “YOU Can Win an iPad -Ask Me How!”
- Use Yard Signs creatively around the store or on the street to get people to walk in as well.
- Super techy? Try modern apps, Facebook contests, Rewards for Retweets and QR Codes!
Hve a big bugdet?
Order custom plastic cards (like the credit cards or hotel key ones)* and give them out to those who sign up and look for a system or mobile app to handle your entire reward system with software. Think ourside the box!
Which ever reward program you decide to implement, it’s essential that you adapt it to your company and offer prizes according to your buyers likes, dislikes and needs, instead of trying to use someone else’s strategy.
Let us know how your loyalty program is working for you, we’d love to hear from you.
If you’re interested in plastic cards like that, contact us for a custom quote, we got your back,
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