4 Loyalty Program Predictions for 2012
The New Year is often a time for people to make resolutions and commit to change. Individuals aren’t the only ones that make New Year resolutions, however. Successful businesses often take this time to assess what has worked in the past year, as well as what needs to be changed. One issue you may want to consider assessing for your business is your customer loyalty program.
Experts have come up with a number of predictions about customer loyalty programs for 2012. Not adapting your loyalty program for the future can mean the difference between staying ahead of your competition and being left behind. The following is a short list of some predictions about loyalty programs in the coming year.
1. More Loyalty Programs Will Go Mobile
Customer loyalty cards may have been handy years ago, but today, they are quickly becoming obsolete. They are too easy to lose and too easy to forget at home. Customers who forget or lose their loyalty cards are less likely to shop at your place of business.
The one thing that most consumers won’t forget when they leave home, however, is their mobile phone. To take advantage of this, some companies have already started to offer mobile customer loyalty programs. In doing so, these companies are able to send targeted money saving rewards and offers to their loyal customers. Consumers with smart phones can also check their available rewards and even cash in on their earned rewards.
2. Loyalty Programs Will Offer More Targeted Deals
Another major prediction about loyalty programs for 2012 is that they will become SKU based, or product based. With these types of loyalty programs, businesses are better able to keep track of their customers’ transactions. Every time a consumer uses a loyalty card, information about that consumer, as well as the types of products that he buys on a regular basis, can be stored.
SKU based loyalty programs allow businesses to send customers targeted advertisements and deals, depending on the items that they purchase every day or every month. Consumers who get targeted deals based on their wants and needs are generally more likely to shop at those businesses, simply because they are able to save money on their favorite goods by shopping there.
3. Loyalty Programs Will Have More of a Presence on Social Networking Sites
With the growing popularity of social networking sites, businesses are now able to connect with their customers like never before. They can now get an intimate look into what their customers want, need, and even think.
Since many consumers participate in some sort of social networking site, businesses in 2012 will most likely start to take advantage of this, if they haven’t already. For instance, “liking” or “following” a certain business or company on these types of sites may earn customers exclusive deals and rewards. Businesses can also get valuable insight from consumers on social networking sites by asking questions and offering polls.
4. The Popularity of Loyalty Programs Will Grow
Combined with the convenience that mobile programs offer, tough economic times may also contribute to the growing popularity of loyalty programs. In tight financial times, consumers often try to save money wherever they can. Consumers typically spend their hard earned money with businesses that offer them good deals. Offering a simple, targeted loyalty program in the New Year that saves customers money can help you hang on to your existing customer base, as well as add to it