The Loyalty Program Advantage

How Personalized Rewards Communications can Build Revenue and Retention

The retail world is still recovering from a difficult 2020 that saw brick and mortar business turn digital overnight and new acquisitions grind to a halt. While most brands were already preparing for the transition before COVID-19 struck, the dramatic shift to both eCommerce and a retention-heavy strategy left many brands reeling. As the uncertainty of last year leads to a return to normalcy in 2021, the organizations that invested in their rewards programs and loyal customers are in an enviable position to rebound from last year’s chaos.

In Movable Ink’s recent eBook, Retention in Luxury Retail: Launching an Impactful Luxury Loyalty Program, we outlined the uphill battle many brands face this year. With consumers “turning to the internet to find the best deals before making their purchases, and price being the driving force behind these decisions, loyalty is harder to maintain.” eCommerce is a double-edged sword, but one brands will rely on heavily this year. While online sales can cause a boom in new customers, it’s also much more difficult to retain them.  

The Role of Rewards Programs in Retention Strategy

eCommerce is a growing, but moving, target. As our eBook notes, “consumers have become more tech-savvy, taking the time to search the internet when making new purchases. The result is a more competitive landscape, where the value of customer loyalty is at an all-time high.”

Retention is at the forefront of every 2021 marketing strategy, making loyalty programs that communicate value to new and existing consumers an essential aspect of every consumer brands’ business model. Philosophy, the skincare and cosmetics company, has designed and fostered personalized customer rewards program that engages consumers, gamifies the process, and individualizes the experience. Their 1:1 loyalty emails offer gratitude to existing consumers while communicating a points structure that encourages repeat purchases.

Integrating Consumer Data into Personalized Communications

Philosophy wanted to leverage their existing rewards program to drive more sales and retention. That required building a sophisticated email campaign that went beyond the simple “first name” personalization, instead creating an automated monthly email with complex customer data. The creative graphics and lighthearted tone displayed individual information on a member’s rewards tier and the points needed to leap into the next tier.

The graphics were gamified with Philosophy integrating Movable Ink and customer loyalty platform, Crowd Twist, to create a “Gratitude Meter.” The meter was divided into three tiers based on points a shopper earned. The email then offered suggested items based on shopping habits that would help push a customer into the next tier of rewards.

Combining Sophisticated Consumer Data with Customer Advocacy

As noted in an Oracle blog post earlier this week, “The data collected in an omnichannel loyalty program helps retailers identify their most high-value customers and acknowledge them.” Philosophy’s reward communications reward consumers with the kind of recognition that goes a long way to build consumer advocacy. Their rewards program is a “Gratitude Scale” with tiers broken down into three levels: Optimistic, Confident, and Empowered.

Philosophy’s purpose-built, data-integrated emails combine innovative data usage with simple, powerful messaging that recognizes and appreciates consumer loyalty. As brands build their personalized emails and mobile messaging, it’s best to follow suit and translate complex data into compelling visuals that promote emotional connections.

Brands are now relying heavily on loyalty programs, mobile applications, eCommerce, and other data-driven tools to drive sales in a still-recovering economy. With digital solutions comes complex data that brands can employ for more sophisticated email and mobile message campaigns.

For more information on how Movable Ink can create visual experiences out of your loyalty data, request a demo today.