Who doesn’t want to save a few bucks and buy products during sales and discounts? Some customers wait for the holiday season and sales to purchase products at the best prices, particularly through loyalty programs. Some even use their loyalty points for these purchases. Did you know that 8% of loyalty program members buy gifts for their families and friends exclusively using points?
Most customers join a loyalty program and expect brands to give them the flexibility to use their points. But did you know that nearly 55% of customers are not active members of loyalty programs? They aren’t actively using the loyalty program to which they themselves have registered, probably because it’s not beneficial for them or because they don’t understand it.
But with more people looking to make purchases during the holidays, you need to consider this period as a great opportunity to expand and improve your loyalty program. You need to make sure that your loyal customers can make the most of the program and leverage it to save more on their holiday spendings.
This post will guide you with the most effective yet easy-to-implement holiday loyalty program ideas. This will help you to increase your sales as you’re heading into the holiday season.
But before that, let’s go through some tips to design a successful loyalty program.
Tips to Design a Successful Loyalty Program
Did you know that on an average, a customer is involved in 14 loyalty programs but is only active in seven? This means customers aren’t actively engaging in all of the loyalty programs they’ve signed up for. And what’s the point of setting up a loyalty program that your customers aren’t even using? You’ll end up wasting your time and resources for minimal benefits.
So, it’s crucial to design a loyalty program which customers can use easily. The key to design the best loyalty program is to keep it as simple as possible. Here are some essentials that you have to keep in mind.
1. Make It Easy to Understand, Join, and Use
You need to make the program easy to join and participate in. Make sure it’s fun and easy for your customers to understand how the program works. Keep your explanations short and to the point.
Eliminate all the unnecessary steps in the enrollment process for the program. Collect only the most essential information such as email address and customer name.
Always make sure that the program is easy to use. Don’t make the rules confusing or complicated like giving 3 points for every $45 spent. Keep it simple and give one point for every $1 spent.
It should be fun and easy for your customers to earn their points, as well as redeem them for free gifts and discounts. But even if you simplify the program, make sure you take precautions to prevent loyalty fraud. Other parties (hackers, employees, etc.) should not be able to make use of the points racked up by your customers.
2. Prepare a Clear Strategy for Your Holiday Customer Loyalty Plan
It’s very important to have a clear strategy for designing a great holiday customer loyalty plan. You need to analyze your existing customer data and find ideas that will motivate them to take action.
This will help you to design attractive rewards like discounts or coupons. Not only will these compel active members to participate, you could even get new customers to enroll as members.
3. Advertise Your Loyalty Program
What’s the point of having a loyalty program if people don’t even know about it? You need to spread the word and advertise your loyalty program effectively.
You can send emails or invite people to join via social platforms. Use content generated by your customers as social proof of how much people are enjoying the program.
Make sure you also have a strong and appealing call-to-action to drive more member sign-ups. It’s better to create a dedicated landing page for your loyalty program. And don’t forget to highlight the benefits and rewards upfront.
5 Effective and Creative Ideas for a Successful Holiday Loyalty Program
1. Create Special Rewards for Referrals
This program is a win-win deal for everyone involved in it. Loyal customers will get rewards, and brands get new customers. Your new customers get products at better prices and gain points through the program. The holiday season is the best time to implement a loyalty program to maximize your profits and expand your business.
You could send a promotional code to your loyal customers during the holidays and ask them to share it with their friends and family. This could be something like a special holiday gift for remaining loyal to your brand.
The best part of this strategy is it will work even if you don’t have any loyalty programs in place. All you need to do is talk about the referral program and its benefits to your customers. Brands like PlushBeds use this strategy during Black Friday.
2. Organize a Prize Draw for Your Loyalty Members
You can organize a prize draw and automatically enter your loyalty program members. You can also select members who have recently made a purchase at your store. Apart from winning discounts, this tactic is actually to give your loyal members a chance to win something big. And it also shows a nice gesture towards them.
The added advantage of this tactic is that it helps you generate awareness and create buzz around your loyalty program. This will also help you to get new customers and expand your business, in addition to pleasing your loyal customers.
UK retailer, John Lewis, uses this tactic very smartly and enters their loyal members automatically into the prize draw. And this gives their loyal members a chance to win something big and exciting.
3. Bonus Point Campaign
This program can work two ways – either you reward customers who purchase multiple times, or you highlight a specific product through which customers can earn multiple points. Your customers will be more than happy and thrilled to know that it’s now easy to earn multiple rewards.
Promote and talk about the special holiday rewards you are offering in all of your communications. Make sure to highlight the rewards where they’re clearly visible – on your homepage and on relevant product pages.
Your website should show appreciation towards the loyal members of your business. And make sure you offer them exclusive holiday discounts or offers which aren’t available to other customers.
This program also allows you to target certain high-value segments of customers. You can offer bonus point rewards to loyal customers who aren’t a part of the loyalty program and send them an invitation to enroll themselves for membership. Alternatively, you can target only the existing members of your program and offer them bonus point rewards.
For example, Zappos choose to implement the second strategy. They choose to target existing members and gave them access to the brand’s rewards sale. They implemented a triple point campaign for their existing loyal members along with an advanced shipping experience.
The hotel booking website, Kaligo, is offering double award miles on every hotel stay as a Black Friday special. This allows their registered members to earn more miles.
If you want to implement the same kind of loyalty program ensure to highlight the rewards right at the center of your website.
4. Create Special Offers to Exchange for Points
Generally, customers are very excited for Black Fridays as they can grab some wild discounts. Aside from your regular deals, you could even create special holiday offers that members can exchange for points.
The key to pulling this off is by making these offers exclusively available for loyalty program members, and only redeemable for points. This will help you create buzz around your program and motivate your members to spend more points to get the reward.
For example, MyCoke ran a program that offered an exciting reward. In this screenshot, you can see that the brand had a big “Flash Deal.” This deal enabled their Bronze level customers to buy a single-day ticket to select theme parks using 200 points.
5. Always Give First Preference to Your Customers
Obviously, you will have sales and offers during the holiday season. So, give your members the privilege to first access your exclusive sales. You can send personalized emails and/or messages to inform your loyal customers about the offers. They will appreciate the priority given to them, encouraging them to place even more value on the program.
It’ll give them more motivation to do business with you, meaning they’re likely to choose your products while holiday shopping. They might even talk about it with their personal networks, which could encourage more people to sign up for your loyalty program.
Final Thoughts: loyalty program ideas
The holiday season is knocking at your door and now you need to create a successful loyalty program. The main goal of your loyalty program is to increase sales. So keep the holidays in mind when designing or improving your incentives, rewards, and offers of your program.
Based on your research and sales goals, you’ll be able to discover which products or actions to focus on. These products or actions should be the highlight of your offers during this holiday season.
What type of loyalty program do you use for your business? Are you using a loyalty program which we haven’t mentioned? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
About the author:
Shane Barker is a digital marketing consultant for 15 years with an emphasis on Influencer Marketing in the last 5 years. He is specialized in sales funnels, targeted traffic and website conversions. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, Influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.