What customer loyalty rewards program campaign strategies work the best? The answer could depend on the industry your retail business falls under. We surveyed loyalty strategists across industries to find out the best campaign ideas and how those ideas can be applied to the most popular retail sectors.
If you're looking for ways to pump excitement into your loyalty rewards program, or even if you've recently launched your program, here are 5 campaign ideas to get your marketing strategy on the right track.
GET YOUR EMPLOYEES INVOLVED!
Your cashiers, sales staff, managers, and associates are the frontline employees who interface with customers all day long. We probably don't have to tell you that motivated, passionate, and enthusiastic employees on your sales team are one of the greatest assets your retail business has. Employee sales incentives have existed since the dawn of commerce, and there's a reason for that. By rewarding your employees after each sale they make, you effectively motivate them to continue selling. Did you know that by offering your employees incentives for promoting your loyalty program, you can just as effectively motivate them to tell customers about the latest campaign? Choose a loyalty rewards program that offers employee incentive rewards that will benefit your employees every time they enroll a new member. Then, try one of the campaign ideas for your industry from the list below.
● Restaurants, Bars, & Coffee Shops—Try enrollment incentives where each server who signs up at least 10 new loyalty members within a month will receive a $15 gift card.
● Salons, Barbershops, & Tattoo Parlors—Get stylists and ink artists to promote your loyalty program to their clients by holding an internal contest wherein whoever enrolls the most customers during a fixed period will receive the reward of being featured on the Homepage of your website.
● Convenience Stores & Gas Stations—Does your loyalty program come with Teams Incentives? Permit your cashiers to add customers to their loyalty teams upon sign up. When cashiers know that they'll receive greater and greater rewards as they build up their loyalty teams, they will be eager to tell customers about the program and enroll as many interested customers as possible.
● Gyms, Fitness Centers, & Yoga Studios—Motivate your personal trainers and class instructors to sign gym members up for your loyalty program by permitting your fitness personnel to offer sign up discounts to members for enrolling in the rewards program.
● Pet Supply Stores, Kennels, & Animal Shelter, Rescue, and Adoption Organizations— Your employees will be all the more enthusiastic to promote your loyalty program if there's a fun reward in it for them, such as gifting them pet food, a pet toy, or some other product in exchange for signing up at least 15 new loyalty members per month.
● Clothing Retailers, Office Supply Stores, & Other Brick-and-Mortar Businesses—Nothing motivates sales staff like a little healthy competition. Try gamifying your loyalty enrollment campaign by using a scoreboard in the breakroom. Whoever signs up the most customers in a month wins a highly desired prize.
NO PAPER, NO PLASTIC, GO GREEN!
Decades ago, the first customer loyalty rewards programs started with paper punch cards and a simple marketing strategy—buy ten, get the next one "free". Back then, retailers across industries jumped on the paper punch card bandwagon and stuck with it until rewards programs evolved to use plastic scan cards and slightly more dynamic rewards structures. The classic "points" systems emerged next, and consumers enjoyed the benefits that went along with racking up rewards points and redeeming them for desirable goods. Points-based rewards structures are still popular to this day. But what isn't popular are the paper punch cards and plastic scan cards of yesteryear. Today's average consumer uses roughly seven mobile apps on a daily basis. Mobile apps are engaging, convenient, and best of all, way better for the environment than paper and plastic. By launching a mobile app to host your loyalty program, you will meet your customers’ needs and expectations. Mobile app loyalty programs offer a wider range of campaign options. Check out the campaign ideas for your industry from the list below.
● Restaurants, Bars, & Coffee Shops—Loyalty mobile apps can be used for in-app ordering, delivery, and pickup, especially when bonus points are doled out to reward specific actions, like curbside pickup.
● Salons, Barbershops, & Tattoo Parlors—Through your loyalty app, use a tiered rewards structure that enables members to "unlock" video content and augmented reality experiences as rewards. The rewards content could include styling videos, timelapse tattoo sessions, or even virtual makeovers.
● Convenience Stores & Gas Stations—Tap-and-go is a mobile app feature that has added even more speed and convenience to shopping. Patrons of convenience stores place a high premium on getting what they need quickly. Offering a mobile app as part of your loyalty program will help serve their need for speed and efficiency.
● Gyms, Fitness Centers, & Yoga Studios—Fitness enthusiasts are known for working out with their smartphone nearby, if for no other reason than to listen to music while they workout. By providing a mobile app extension to your loyalty program, your loyalty program deals will literally be in the palms of your members' hands.
● Pet Supply Stores, Kennels, & Animal Shelter, Rescue, and Adoption Organizations— The real-time media sharing capabilities of mobile apps are unparalleled, which is great for loyalty program engagement. Offer rewards incentives that include "unlocking" photos, videos, and other fun content relevant to adorable animals.
● Clothing Retailers, Office Supply Stores, & Other Brick-and-Mortar Businesses—The biggest success clothing, office supply, and other brick-and-mortar retailers experience stems from the fact that they sell essential goods that must be replenished regularly, whether it's socks, envelopes, or dish soap. Make your loyalty members aware of sudden bulk sales discounts with mobile app push notification campaigns.
GET SOCIAL & SHARE YOUR PROGRAM ONLINE!
Social media has become one of the most powerful and effective marketing tools in existence for businesses all over the world regardless of their industry. The coolest thing about using social media for retail marketing, including loyalty program marketing, is that the social platforms still manage to retain their personal, "social", online communication purposes. Social media marketing isn't a passing trend, either. There are many benefits to launching social media marketing campaigns in connection with your loyalty rewards program. Offer bonus points to your loyalty members to reward them for completing specific actions on social media, such as tagging your handle, using your hashtags, or otherwise plugging your retail brand on social media. Check out our list of industry tips to help refine your campaign ideas.
● Restaurants, Bars, & Coffee Shops—Invent a hashtag and offer bonus points to any loyalty member who uses your hashtag while "sharing on social media" a photo of the meal, coffee, or cocktail they got at your establishment.
● Salons, Barbershops, & Tattoo Parlors—To promote your salon, barbershop, or tattoo parlor on social media, offer your loyalty members bonus rewards points for allowing you to video record their appointment and post a "before" and "after", or "timelapse" of the transformation.
● Convenience Stores & Gas Stations—Think social media can't benefit convenience stores and gas stations? Think again! Design a social media campaign with the goal of enrolling new members into your loyalty program. You can offer rewards points for members who "share" and "repost" your posts.
● Gyms, Fitness Centers, & Yoga Studios—Gym goers are no strangers to snapping a selfie or two in-between sets, and you can capitalize on this by offering rewards points for loyalty members who tag your handle on social media. Ask them to also use a hashtag that plugs your gym's loyalty program, too!
● Pet Supply Stores, Kennels, & Animal Shelter, Rescue, and Adoption Organizations— For animal shelters, social media has been a great tool to place rescue pets in good homes. Kennels that board dogs have used social media DM to send short video clips of their customers' boarded dogs. And pet retailers have promoted their supplies on social media. Taking social media integration one step further by adding CTAs to your loyalty program is a must.
● Clothing Retailers, Office Supply Stores, & Other Brick-and-Mortar Businesses—Try offering bonus rewards in exchange for loyalty members posting on social media about the items or merchandise that they redeemed their points for.
MEASURE ENGAGEMENT & ANALYZE CAMPAIGNS!
As your loyalty members engage with your rewards program, the program software collects valuable customer data, including purchase histories, browsing histories, wishlist items, and so much more. If you're not in the habit of regularly reviewing your loyalty members' program activity, it's time to start logging into the program dashboard and analyzing the program engagement. The biggest insights you can derive from doing this will essentially show you who your customers really are and what they really want from your business. The reason we're including this kind of data analysis on our list of loyalty campaign ideas is because designing personalized loyalty rewards campaigns for your segmented customer groups will yield the highest engagement of any campaign idea out there. For specific campaign personalization strategies for your industry, use our list below.
● Restaurants, Bars, & Coffee Shops—Every customer has a favorite meal, type of coffee, and alcoholic beverage! Launch a personalized loyalty campaign that offers an easy-to-attain "freebie favorite", such as rewarding a customer with their favorite cocktail so long as they earned a specific number of points in the past week.
● Salons, Barbershops, & Tattoo Parlors—People don't typically get their hair cut or endure tattoo sessions too frequently, but if you sell secondary products, you can incentivize your customers to purchase them regularly by assigning a generous number of rewards points to each product. Customers can then quickly rack up points and apply them towards the future services.
● Convenience Stores & Gas Stations—Analyze your loyalty program data to determine your top products, then launch promotional campaigns offering those products at a bulk discount rate. So long as the campaign runs for a very short length of time, you'll see a huge uptick in sales.
● Gyms, Fitness Centers, & Yoga Studios—The most valuable rewards fitness centers can offer are a free membership month or free personal training session. Structure a long-term rewards campaign that aims to give your most loyal, active members one big "freebie" like that every 18 months or so.
● Pet Supply Stores, Kennels, & Animal Shelter, Rescue, and Adoption Organizations— Loyalty program data can tell pet retailers a lot about what their customers like and also how their customers prefer to be contacted. You can improve program engagement simply by delivering your next loyalty campaign via the communication method they prefer best.
● Clothing Retailers, Office Supply Stores, & Other Brick-and-Mortar Businesses—Analyze program engagement to get as personal as possible for your next campaign. Depending on your loyalty program platform's CRM and automation capabilities, you can launch segmented campaigns that are so personalized, your members will think you're psychic!
SWITCH IT UP FOR FUN REWARDS!
As a retailer, you want your customers to choose your store for reasons that go beyond the latest sale you're offering. You want your shoppers to love your brand and rely on your products or services, which ultimately means that building relationships with your customers is important to you. A well-designed customer loyalty rewards program is an excellent marketing tool to foster customer relationships, and a key element in keeping member engagement high is to periodically switch up the fun. You can switch it up and keep your program fun and engaging by adding a new rewards structure, gamifying a pre-existing rewards tier, even hosting a VIP event for your most active loyalty members. Want a more specific idea than that? Check out our industry campaign ideas below.
● Restaurants, Bars, & Coffee Shops—Implement gamification to encourage "earn and burn" fun every time your customers order another round!
● Salons, Barbershops, & Tattoo Parlors—Launch several different kinds of rewards structures that will offer your clients both immediate freebie perks and long-term benefit rewards.
● Convenience Stores & Gas Stations—Keep loyalty member engagement high by regularly reaching out to your members on a consistent, but not too frequent, basis to tell them about fun new products.
● Gyms, Fitness Centers, & Yoga Studios—Offer online, or in-app, exclusive fitness videos as rewards that members won't find anywhere else!
● Pet Supply Stores, Kennels, & Animal Shelter, Rescue, and Adoption Organizations—Design loyalty campaigns around upcoming holidays to push seasonal sales and get customers to rack up points. Host an in-store holiday event as a "reward" that participating members can use their points to attend.
● Clothing Retailers, Office Supply Stores, & Other Brick-and-Mortar Businesses—Go "next level retail" by launching a Swag Shop as part of your rewards program. By offering exclusive products and merchandise that cannot be found at your store, you'll boost sales even while you sleep!
Believe it or not, this article only scratched the surface in terms of loyalty campaign ideas that can benefit retailers like you, no matter what industry your business belongs to.
If you would like personalized, hands-on assistance with launching a customer loyalty rewards program, then contact us today to speak with a loyalty strategist who has marketing experience in your industry—Restaurant Industry, Bars & Nightclubs, Coffee Shops, Salons & Barbershops, Tattoo Parlors, Convenience Stores & Gas Stations, Gyms & Fitness Centers, Pet Supply Stores & Pet Retailers, Clothing & Other Brick-and-Mortar Retailers, Office Supply Stores, Automotive Repair Shops, and everything in-between!
This article was written by Loyal-n-Save, an omni-channel customer loyalty solution for retailers looking to increase customer retention and new customer acquisition.