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Online and offline loyalty programs: what to use and how to measure

Online and offline loyalty programs : what are their advantages, what tools can we use to create an efficient loyalty program and how do we measure them ?

Online and offline loyalty programs: what to use and how to measure

Credit Photo : VectorStock

What's the point of a loyalty program? These programs make it possible to collect valuable information on customers, their mode of consumption and purchases to better target their tastes and the promotional offers and marketing campaigns likely to attract and interest the different customer profiles that rub shoulders with the brand.

The advantages obtained through loyalty programs, therefore, allow better loyalty of customers who decide to buy for the price, the commitment, the overall experience or even for the values shared (product quality, made in France) by the brand. In addition, the value of a loyal customer brings in 10 times more than a new customer, because his attachment to the brand directly influences his behaviour and his commitment to purchase.

There are two types of loyalty programs: the so-called "online" one that emerged with the arrival of the internet, this tool is focused on digital marketing via emails or social networks and the "offline" one that brings together more traditional marketing techniques, such as the press, television or postal advertisements.

Loyalty tools

    The best strategy is to combine the various online and offline loyalty tools to effectively make the customer experience a "Wow", a pledge of loyalty. They must meet the requirements of the pillars of loyalty: creation of an emotional bond between the brand and the customer, creating and maintaining a relationship of trust, satisfy the customer through personalisation, in particular, to influence their purchasing behaviour. That corresponds to the most used strategy: Inbound Marketing. It consists of prioritising customer relations, content strategy and optimising conversions. It must also adapt to the customer life cycle.

•    The customer database (CRM):

This is a valuable investment, but it is the tool par excellence to retain up to 40% of customers. The centralisation of data makes it possible to deepen its knowledge of its customers by identifying the typology of customers, their motivations, and their modes of operation. Similarly, to define the standard profile of the ideal customer, and personalise the customer relationship.

•    O2O (Online to Offline):

Streamlining the customers' journey by providing functionalities on the brand's website that makes it possible to link with the brand's stores to optimise services and the customer experience. This results in the "Click and Collect" or making a withdrawal from a point-of-sale of the product reserved on the internet and the possibility of knowing the availability of a product in store.

•    The mobile loyalty card:

Loyalty programs have been modernised, with dematerialisation, which makes it easier to register and use them, in particular, via applications that allow the centralisation of the different cards on your phone. As a result, it is possible to use its offers and rewards at any time without forgetting and, therefore, increase the frequency of purchases and collect purchase information (RFM analysis: Recency, frequency, amount) to better target customer expectations and needs.

•    Federate customers via social networks:

Each generation has its favourite social networks to focus on those that interest the brand in relation to its typical customer profile. They make it possible to create a close link with the brand and influence their purchasing behaviour. However, care must be taken with the format and frequency of the content made available as well as knowing how to manage interactions and comments. This type of support responds to specific rules.

•    Content Strategy:

Deliver the right content at the right time on the right channel (contextualisation) while considering the customer relationship history (personalisation) that prompts the customer to download content or subscribe to engage them in action (call-to-action).

•    Self-care:

Availability of the help service accessible to customers at their request to accompany and guide them in their purchase. They take the form of online assistance, FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) or video tutorials. They significantly improve the quality of customer service.

•    The Satisfaction Questionnaire:

This is an essential tool to assess customer satisfaction and improve the quality of service with each interaction. You have to know how to balance your questioning so that it is sufficiently relevant without being too long or difficult to answer in order to maximise the number of answers and deduce a guideline for improvement.

•    Personalisation at the heart of loyalty for customers with or without loyalty cards:

Even though the loyalty card is a very good tool, 58% of French people do not feel privileged by having one. It is, therefore, necessary to find other devices for the consumer who goes to the store and who, therefore, wants more recognition than the one who buys on the internet. This can result in the analysis of the products viewed and put in the basket, and the number of visits to the store to do "web retargeting" (targeted advertisements during web browsing). Or that the customer receives a welcome message when entering the store notifying him of the availability of a product in his size that has similarities or matches his latest purchases. With the consumer's consent, it is possible to create real added value between their behaviour on the internet, on the brand's application and their checkout.

How to create your loyalty program?


    Depending on the objectives that the brand wishes to achieve and the promises offered by the loyalty card, several levers are available to define it:

•    The transactional level:

Developing turnover via discounts, vouchers, and cash-back.

•    The service level:

Services dedicated to members such as free delivery.

•    The relational level:

Maintaining the customer relationship via personalised newsletters, and satisfaction surveys.

•    The engagement level:

Creating an emotional bond with the brand by sharing values, their opinions or testing customers.

In addition, this program must measure key points:

•    Customer Retention Rate:

Measures customer loyalty and helps define if the loyalty program is performing as the rate increases.

•    Reverse Churn Rate:

Measures the number of customers who purchase additional services or products.

•    Net Promoter Score:

Indicates customer satisfaction and, by extension, the degree of recommendation.

•    Customer Effort Score:

Measures the actual experience through how difficult or easy the customer managed to resolve their request.