Loyalty just isn’t working.
While the statement may be a little sensationalist, to a large extent this is unfortunately true. In too many cases loyalty certainly isn’t working how it’s meant to.
Customers aren’t developing preferences for stores, aren’t redeeming loyalty points and are increasingly seeing loyalty as a chore rather than a privilege. Recent research from moneyexpert.com found that Britons are sitting on 4.25 billion pounds of unclaimed
loyalty points, while Pigsback.com announced that over a third of consumers were annoyed because they had too many loyalty cards to carry.
This isn’t how it was meant to be. Retailers were meant to be left with a legion of loyal customers spending more and continually coming back. But something appears to have gone terribly wrong. Retailers set up these reward programmes and for some reason
they simply aren’t enticing customers.
But it’s easy to see where things went wrong. Big companies have forgotten, or worse, never truly found out what their customers actually wanted from their loyalty programmes. Most loyalty programmes are far too insular in nature – customers are given a
card and expected to redeem their points on whatever the retailer dictates, like it or not. And it’s clear that many don’t like it one little bit.
Companies need to start finding out what customers want and working out how to give it to them.
With millions of loyalty points floating around unclaimed there is a perfect opportunity for a ‘loyalty saviour’ to step-in. By creating a loyalty marketplace where consumers can trade and swap loyalty points around to secure desirable rewards, life could
really be injected back into the traditional loyalty concept giving it back some of the marketing value to which it once laid claim.
Conventional, no-effort loyalty is dying a death and it’s up to those operating old-style loyalty programmes to change this. By letting consumers get what they really want they can get a bit closer what retailers have wanted all along:
True customer loyalty.