Your company reward program might be the best thing since sliced bread, it might provide countless rewards to your customer and it might have a diverse range of easily attainable rewards. It really might be the best reward program ever devised. However, without effective marketing of your reward program no-one will notice or care.
Marketing reward programs therefore needs to form an integral part of marketing and business strategy to ensure that our end product, the reward program itself, actually integrates well with our business.
Firstly then we can look at the best techniques for actually marketing the reward program starting with advertising. Advertising in store and through other media forms the core basis of much marketing and with your reward program this shouldn’t be any different. The supermarkets have all shown that media spend increases reward program reach and effectiveness and that marketing a reward program using traditional marketing avenues actually creates an increase in reward use. This means that advertising needs to be your primary role of promotion. Out of the two in store advertising is the most cost effective and will encourage people to sign up on the spot. In this instance we need to tailor our advertising so that we offer features like discounts, bonuses points or additional incentives that encourage people to participate.
Secondly we need to implement internal policy structures that increase the exposure of the reward program and directly encourage our customers to sign up. Whether your business is primarily conducted in store or via other forms of communication you still need to build loyalty on a point by point and case by case basis in order to effectively achieve growth. This needs to take the form of direct employee marketing of your reward program so that each employee targets every customer to encourage them to join the reward program. This marketing takes the form of listing the benefits or offering on the spot discounts and offers upon signing up.We need to constantly be reminding our customers of the benefits they can enjoy with our program.
Thirdly our reward programs need to remain fluid. This means that in essence they need to intermittently remind participants of their existence and to re-encourage profitable behavior. This takes the form generally of follow up communications – emails, newsletters etc. and it needs to be integrated within the program to at base level ensure people don’t forget. Sending out bi-monthly discount vouchers and other freebies will encourage more custom whilst making your customers feel valued.
Finally we need to be aware that much of the marketing involved in a marketing program should take place once the program is already in place and with the customers that have already joined our reward program. Reward programs offer us the opportunity to conduct market research and directly market to our customers. This lets us increase the focus and reach of a reward program and improve every facet of it throughout its lifetime.
We can develop clearer ideas of what people use the program for and what they want from it. The demographic information we collect from our customers in turn will enable us to identify demographics we have inadvertently excluded and demographics that we can target.