How can you build a loyalty programme that truly wows your customers?
Convenience retail has unique challenges and demands a unique approach in this digital age.
Watch this video to learn the “Three C’s for a Great Foundation” as well as Part 2 to learn the “Three E’s to Being Brilliant” in your convenience retail loyalty programme.
Interested in reading more? Check out the loyalty playbook’s chapters below:
Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 7: In-Store Excellence
Chapter 2: Customer Connection Cycle
Chapter 8: Rewarding With Stamps
Chapter 9: Rewarding With Points
Chapter 4: Recruiting Members
Chapter 10: Success with Subscriptions
Chapter 5: Engaging Your Members
Chapter 11: How to Effectively Analyse Your Loyalty Program
Chapter 6: Powerful Promotions
Chapter 12: Operating Your Loyalty Program Successfully
We love to share our knowledge! Explore the full Convenience Retail Loyalty Playbook by downloading it here
How to Wow (Part 1)
Defining your customer loyalty strategy is an essential step in building any successful business. Whether it’s a formal loyalty programme based on points, prizes, stamps or partnerships, or simply a mindset based on delighting customers, there’s no doubt that creating compelling customer relationships is more important than ever before. Given the daily challenges of running a store efficiently and profitably, this focus and mindset on loyalty can be lost, so in this article, we’re reviewing both the basics and key principles on how to go that extra mile, to show you ‘how to wow’ in the increasingly competitive world of convenience retail.
Three ‘C’s for a Great Foundation:
While an overall marketing strategy is focused on applying the ‘four P’s’ as key marketing principles, in loyalty marketing programmes, the ‘three C’s’ dominate. Without them, any loyalty programme will fail, as the entire purpose of a programme is create mutual value with customers, so each element is critical.
- Clear: Although this is perhaps the most obvious principle, it’s the one that most often fails. Simple ideas and genuine intentions are complicated by expectations that programmes will drive short-term profits but at the expense of long-term relationships. Loyalty is not a short-term campaign – it’s a long-term lever. Programmes can become overly promotional in nature, with customer data being targeted for extensive sales activities. Or in other cases, customers are simply not aware that a programme has been created to win their hearts! If sales staff and marketing executives are tasked exclusively with revenue objectives, the goal of building a longer-term loyal customer base can often be lost along the way. As Albert Einstein said “The definition of genius is taking the complex and making it simple.”. This first principle of a clear programme structure and benefit-led proposition MUST guide every campaign, otherwise your programme can become a concept that confuses rather than creates value.
- Compelling: My favourite definition of loyalty is described by the Harvard Business Review as “the willingness …to make an investment or personal sacrifice in order to strengthen a relationship” and this applies equally to merchants and customers. ONLY when a loyalty programme offers compelling benefits are customers willing to invest in the relationship. For brands, the challenge is to find the perfect balance of tangible and exciting rewards and recognition – equally important elements in the structure of a loyalty programme. The best programmes offer both functional AND emotional benefits that customers understand and appreciate. With compelling reasons to join, customer’s behaviour measurably changes and responds to our proposition.
- Consistent: Another frequent mistake made by loyalty programmes is the lack of relevant communications sent to members. Campaigns can be designed to educate, sell, or ‘surprise and delight’ but sometimes the most effective communications are those that simply say thanks. Effective communications are sent consistently over the long-term, long after internal stakeholders lose the initial excitement that accompanies a programme launch. The campaigns sent out in the weeks, months and years after the programme launches must of course continue to be relevant and personalised, while remembering that just because a campaign has been sent doesn’t mean it’s been seen or heard. It’s critical to engage consistently and respectfully across multiple channels if we expect to cut through our customer’s busy lives and connect. George Bernard Shaw famously reminds us that the “single biggest problem with communication is the illusion that it has taken place” – this basic problem affects many loyalty programmes as they try to consistently maintain an effective and engaging frequency and format for their campaigns long-term.
Click here if you’d like to access our detailed campaign guides on how-to create and execute great content for your members, segment-by-segment.
Liquid Barcodes is a leading global loyalty and digital marketing technology company specialising in the convenience store and foodservice industries. Our proprietary cloud-based technology platform allow retailers to create and manage their digital marketing campaigns with a proprietary process we call the “customer connection cycle’ to engage, promote and reward customers activities in real-time across digital and media channels.
How we do it:
We have developed the most advanced loyalty and digital marketing technology platform specifically for convenience store and foodservice retailers globally.
Retailers use our self-service dashboard to create and manage loyalty driven marketing campaigns that increase purchases with their existing customers, as well as effectively target and acquire new customers through partners or paid media channels.
One core component of live loyalty is gamification. We have gamified branding, loyalty and promotions. We believe this approach is essential in order to get customers’ attention and ultimately truly engage them with repeatable actions thereby winning their loyalty.
Check out some of our exciting/proven results here:
Chief Content Officer, Liquid Barcodes and Independent Loyalty Consultant
With over twenty-five years marketing experience, I specialise in loyalty marketing consulting, managing consumer loyalty propositions, strategy and operations. In addition to working with Liquid Barcodes, my clients have included Telefonica O2 Priority, Three Mobile, Electric Ireland, Allied Irish Bank and The Entertainer Group (UAE), as well as Avios – the global points currency for some of the world’s top airlines. I am also a former judge for the Loyalty Magazine Awards and host of the “Let’s Talk Loyalty” podcast.