Creating a loyalty program has numerous advantages for your business. By showing appreciation to repeat customers who continue purchasing your products, you will also attract new customers which makes growing your customer base by way of loyalty program more economical than many traditional approaches. If motivated in the right way, customers, both old and new, will buy your products which will result in an increase in sales and income.
Another benefit of a successful loyalty program is that you will gather valuable data on the likes and dislikes of your customers which you can then use as a tool to build a more efficient marketing strategy. Chances are your average customer is used to a brand having a loyalty program and they enjoy accumulating points and participating in games, which makes creating one even mandatory, to some extent. Now that the importance of having a loyalty program is determined, let’s take a look at how product branding reflects on loyalty programs.
Raising brand awareness
The loyalty program’s system can be as complex as you make it. However, it is advisable not to make it too complicated since people will not have the patience to persevere even if you offered them a life-time supply of your products as a reward. It’s best to have a clear points-based system which is logically related to different tiers and each tier is connected with a particular reward. Meaning, a transparent system is the best system.
When it comes to deciding on a reward for each tier, you can naturally go with a lot of things, but you will benefit the most from products with your brand on them. A product bearing your logo, your slogan, and your colors will imprint itself in customers’ consciousness and they will have no problem remembering your brand and praising it to other all the while raising awareness about it.
It often happens that brands spend all their creativity on devising a loyalty program so once they get to the reward, they just go with some common trinket. For instance, many customers will simply throw away the keychain they got because they probably don’t need it so it just sits on the table and collects dust. So, let’s now imagine a situation – a customer has devotedly participated in your loyalty program and has earned one of the rewards – what will you send that person in the hope it would be kept and utilized?
When sending branded products, it is best to make sure they’re something useful, such as a coffee-to-go mug, which customers will really use. In that way, you will show that you encourage their lifestyle habits, you know and appreciate your customers and you value their loyalty. With a useful everyday object, the customer will spend more time actually thinking about your brand and be further incentivized to go back to your store and buy your products.
Stimulating offline interest
Most companies concentrate solely on the digital aspect of their business and they completely disregard the power of offline marketing. They seem to forget that in this predominantly online world, people yearn for some personal and live experience which is not broadcasted into their room but which happens outside of their houses. The simplest solution is to organize an event and invite influencers and devoted customers to show your appreciation of them.
And as a special token of appreciation, you can prepare a small but practical gift for every guest that decides to show. It can be anything from an inverted umbrella, a pen that is also a mobile stand or a T-shirt, all bearing your logo, of course. You can put it in a creative package, such as a can, and make sure you prepare enough customized business cards to put in each of the packages. This creative gesture will inspire a digital response as well in the form of pictures and videos with branded gifts.
Organic word of mouth marketing
By using branded products for loyalty programs, you put out those products not just for the special customer that gets them, but for their closest friends, family, and loved ones to see. They will ask about the items, your customers will rave about your brand and how you went out of your way to surprise them for their birthday or other special occasion.
This kind of approach will result in them recommend you to their friends, family and even their local cashier. The right gift, regardless of its financial value, can go a long way in winning the hearts of present and future customers. In short, this is a perfect way to promote your brand with a simple item outside of your customer list and expand your lead generation efforts through your loyalty program.
Bonding with influencers
A new type of influencer has stepped out of the social media brewing pot and it has been gaining more power ever since – a regular person. Gone are the days of people looking up solely to celebrities and admiring their unattainable lifestyles and products they use. Nowadays, people are interested in more down-to-earth stories of self-made Instagram wonders, their lives, and their opinions.
When you have an existing relationship with an influencer and they regularly review and talk about your brand online, getting them a branded gift within your loyalty program is a great way to surprise them. That will, in turn, help you get more followers as well as deepen your bond with those influencers. Brand ambassadors are the lifeline of every brands’ marketing strategy.
Generating reviews and digital buzz
Sending a useful gift to your loyal customers, a branded one at that can be a great way to solicit feedback and see where you stand. You may have a smaller and devoted circle of customers but learning the preferences of a wider audience is a different ball game. So, this is a perfect opportunity to test new products and to see how you can change your current offer to make it more appealing to that wider audience.
Attach a simple note that says “here’s a gift from us to let you know we value your business – we’d also love to hear what you think of this necklace!” and add your customer support email or your google review page. That way, you’ll generate more buzz regarding new products that are just about to hit the shelves, get the reviews to see what your customers think about the product and then make changes to accommodate your customers’ needs and preferences.
Loyalty programs are a great way to boost customer retention but to gain new customers as well. A promise of a reward prompts interest in people regardless of whether they have tried your products earlier. By combining loyalty programs with branded products, you will cultivate an army of ambassadors who will gladly spread awareness about your brand.
This means that your marketing strategies will live beyond the channels you originally intended them to and will also be transferred by word of mouth. You should also use this offline effect, capture it and strengthen by organizing an event to which all your brand ambassadors will be invited. This is the right moment to show that there are real people standing behind a digital brand which will only reinforce the love they have towards your brand.