The other day I was buying something at Pick n’ Pay and the cashier asked me if I had a loyalty card. I buy books a lot at Exclusive Books and I every time the assistant asks if I have a club card or something like that. I’m sure if I had those cards, I would have saved a lot.
However for me you can’t buy loyalty with discounts, if you are to reward loyalty, you reward it by good and exceptional service. If I want a book and it is not available in your branch (or in the country for that matter), and as Exclusive Books you are able to order it from anywhere in the world and get it to me. That’s what will make me loyal.
A loyalty card is a piece of plastic. Most loyalty programs are plastic. They do nothing more than replace traditional paper coupons with electronic coupons. Why would that generate loyalty?”
Why, indeed? When a loyalty program is done right, it transforms a business by using data to target offers to customers based on what is relevant to each individual.
Businesses that introduce loyalty programs needs to understand that they can’t expect consumers to be loyal to them unless they are loyal to their consumers.
Sending a customer a “Dear Valued Customer” letters shows that you are not loyal to your customers, if they were really valued you would call them by their name or surname “Dear Rre. Mashobadieata.”
More often loyalty programs are just bureaucratic. Just because it’s the bureaucratic thing to do does not mean it’s going to work. In fact, the opposite is usually true.
All real loyalty programs start in the same place: creating an experience or a product that is its own reward.
We are loyal because it makes us feel good, not because we are being bribed with discounts after certain purchases.
No amount of loyalty card and discounts can replace shoddy service. You cannot buy (or sell) loyalty, you earn it consistently over time through providing good service.