Client retention through a loyalty programme
Retaining clients is a critical part of business success especially at a time when people have become more expectant of getting a superior service experience. With increasing competition, this has become even more challenging. A well-designed loyalty programme is therefore essential to help mitigate against the risk of customer churn. This is according to leading independent customer relationship management company, LoyaltyPlus.
‘A great loyalty programme needs to provide compelling rewards. This will entice clients to keep engagement with the business. Of course, the greatest benefits and reward will not matter if the programme is not easy to join and use. Clients need to understand how to earn and redeem rewards either through a user-friendly Web site or an app that helps build engagement,’ says Frik van der Westhuizen, Marketing Director at LoyaltyPlus.
Something that is central to these themes is to ensure the company provides excellent customer service. This is a crucial component for retention. While a loyalty programme can be used to reward clients for their loyalty, it will not work if they are unhappy with the service they receive. One of the ways to focus on the experience is to personalise the loyalty programme. Whether it is through targeted rewards, exclusive offers or personalised communication, clients feel more valued if they belief the brand is engaging directly with them.
‘Ultimately, a good loyalty programme must be regularly evaluated and updated to reflect market requirements and match those to customer needs. Remaining relevant and effective must be non-negotiable especially given how brand disloyal the environment has become. With peoples’ needs and preferences changing over time, a business must regularly assess the programme to keep it top of mind for the consumer,’ adds van der Westhuizen.
Of course, there are several challenges to consider when implementing a loyalty programme. To overcome these, organisations must take a strategic and well-thought-out approach. There might be resistance to change by clients who are hesitant to adopt a new programme if they are used to a different system. The brand must therefore educate users about the benefits of the programme and the positive impact it will have on their lives.
‘Integrating a loyalty programme with existing systems can also be potentially tricky, especially if the incumbent environment is outdated. To overcome this, businesses can work with a trusted vendor to integrate the loyalty programme. Effective data management becomes essential to gain the insights necessary to provide clients with the rewards and services they want,’ he says.
Measuring the success of a loyalty programme is vital to ensure it delivers on expectations and provides the organisation with the means to retain clients. To ensure its success, a company must set clear goals and metrics for the programme.