Loyalty programs are a marketing tool for customer retention. They are about building brand equity, and increasing the lifetime value of your customers. The more you can grow your loyalty program, the better for your business. Of course one fundamental factor is creating a great loyalty offer but once you have settled on this you need to focus on building your program and getting your customers to sign up.
The Key to Building a Successful Loyalty Program
The key to building a successful loyalty program is in the onboarding, or getting the customers joined onto your program in the first place.
Once a customer is onboard your loyalty program, they have identified themselves as a “brand lover,” and provided permission for direct communication. The ability to communicate relevant information to your customer, allows you to build the relationship, and a preference towards your brand.
How Do I Sign Up Loyalty Customers?
The four most important factors to onboarding customers onto your loyalty program are:
Provide an immediate customer incentive to join
Prominent in-store signage
Promote your program through your customer communication channels
Staff buy-in and training
Provide the customer with an immediate incentive to join
Customers are 3 times more likely to register for a loyalty program and provide their details if they see an immediate benefit. Join our Loyalty Program today Receive XYZ.
The reward could be something for free, a discount, go into the draw to win a prize, be part of our birthday club etc. You are only limited by your imagination. It’s a simple call to action. The more attractive you can make the incentive, the better.
At Stamp Me, we are big believers in offering customers an upfront incentive to join your loyalty program. Why? Because among our clients, we have noticed that businesses which offer an upfront signup incentive build registrations three times faster than businesses which don’t.
However, Krispy Kreme has recently upped the ante. For a limited time only, customers who buy a dozen glazed donuts will receive another dozen glazed donuts for free when they sign up to My Sweet Rewards.
The second batch of glazed donuts don’t even need to be claimed at the time of registration – customers can come back and grab their free dozen donuts at a later date.
This promotion comes at a time when Krispy Kreme has expanded its menu to include a wide range of delicious new flavours, and adapts its POS methods in accordance with COVID-19 health and safety measures.
Not only does this limited time offer build hype and boost sales, but it’s a fine example of how a business can use a temporary promotion to lay the foundations of a long-term customer relationship… for nothing more than a few free donuts!
Prominent In-Store Signage
The incentive needs to be backed up with prominent signage in-store, particularly at point of sale and where customers congregate. Customers need to know about the offer and have it reinforced with marketing collateral to sign up to your program.
In-store displays (printed and digital), tear-offs that can be handed out at point of sale, on menus and receipts are all places you can promote your program.
Promote your Program through your Customer Communications
Provide a consistent message and promotion of your loyalty program through all your customer communication channels. This should include:
- Social Media: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc
- Email footers
- Marketing materials
Staff Buy-in & Training
Your staff, particularly the ones at the point of sale, are critical to the on-boarding process. They are the face of your business and should be supportive and willing to promote your loyalty program to your customer to help build your business. Staff shouldn’t be shy in promoting your program, particularly if they can communicate an immediate sign up incentive to the customer.
It’s important that your staff see the value in the program - if they do then they will be happy to tell the customer. If they don’t see the value - it won’t work.
Things you can do to promote it with your staff
Observe how successful companies run their loyalty programs and create a frame of reference for your staff. Next time you are at a major supermarket or Starbucks store observe how the cashier prompts every customer to sign up or use their loyalty program.
Major brands understand the importance of engaging every customer, and there is no reason why you can’t do the same thing to build your business. Ideally provide reference examples to your staff of some local brands that deliver great customer experience and give you employees something to strive for.
Discuss the program at your staff meetings and encourage staff to go through the process of signing up to the program so they understand how it works.
Incorporate information about your loyalty program in staff training program when they join your business.
Provide staff incentives for getting customers to sign up.