The Right Mix of Loyalty Rewards can Drive Loyalty to New Levels

For members of airline and hotel loyalty programs, free flights and free nights are still the primary offer they gravitate toward. But for other industries, the rules are different.

In our 2018 consumer loyalty study conducted by research firm Leger, loyalty program members told us what gets them interested in joining and participating in a loyalty program. The answers vary by program type (e.g., retail, online retail, food & beverage, gym, bank, phone company, etc.), as well as by demographic. Key takeaways for us include:

  • To entice participation across age and income groups, a loyalty program has to offer a variety of rewards
  • For some types of programs, engagement is dependent upon the availability of lower-value, easily attainable rewards
  • Millennials are beginning to show a preference for digital redemption, particularly with online retailers
     

It’s important to remember that when considering your core demographic, you don’t cater to them to the exclusion of others. By offering a carefully selected mix of rewards, you can appeal to consumers across all age and income groups, and potentially move some of those “second best” customers into  the category of “most loyal.”

*Blackhawk Network proprietary data, 2017.

Choosing the Right Rewards—A Survey of Reward Preferences
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For food & beverage loyalty programs, offer rewards under $50—and even as little as $5—so members can earn rewards quickly that keep them coming back to your establishment.

For food & beverage loyalty programs, offer rewards under $50—and even as little as $5—so members can earn rewards quickly that keep them coming back to your establishment.

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Retail loyalty programs should offer digital rewards—particularly if your member base skews heavily toward Millennials.

Retail loyalty programs should offer digital rewards—particularly if your member base skews heavily toward Millennials.

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While Millennials exhibit a preference for prepaid cards, members of Gen X favor gift cards. Offering both ensures your program appeals to both groups.

While Millennials exhibit a preference for prepaid cards, members of Gen X favor gift cards. Offering both ensures your program appeals to both groups.

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Across all age groups—Boomers included—loyalty program members are more interested in redeeming points for gift cards and/or prepaid cards than for instant discounts.

Across all age groups—Boomers included—loyalty program members are more interested in redeeming points for gift cards and/or prepaid cards than for instant discounts.