The Loyalty Report 2019 is recognised as the industry’s longest-standing and largest global study on customer engagement, loyalty attitudes, behaviours, drivers and disruption.

This is the 9th consecutive year this has been released bringing brands all the latest on loyalty. This time we’ve taken a look through it and discovered the best bits so you don’t have to.

Top Drivers of member satisfaction

Member satisfaction is key when running a loyalty programme. After all, loyalty programmes exist to enhance a brand’s relationship with its’ customers, make them feel special and keep them coming back. This report has discovered that the top 5 drivers of member satisfaction are:

  • It’s meets the customer’s needs
  • The customer enjoys participating
  • The programme makes the brand experience better
  • The programme is consistent with brand expectations
  • The Rewards and / or Benefits are appealing

Being part of a loyalty programme means customers are more likely to spend

79% of customers claim that loyalty programmes make them more likely to continue doing business with that brand. This is key. Once you can get customers to sign up to the programme it is proven that they are going to keep shopping with that company – but brands can’t take this for granted. They have to continue to interact and engage customers on a level which is expected.

Increase enjoyment through gamification

Second to the above point, gamification is key to increasing enjoyment. There can be a 1.7x uplift in enjoyment when this is used according to The Loyalty Report. Anything to improve the enjoyment and engagement with customers is key for a loyalty programme. For example, in the UK, British Gas launched a gamified element to their programme “British Gas Rewards” where customers helped Wilbur the Penguin to discover the Easter Eggs hidden.

Personalisation is key

Only 2 in 10 members are satisfied with the personalisation they receive in a loyalty programme. Meaning a whopping 80% expect more, something that brands should be looking at straight away. Brands just aren’t utilising the data that they collect from their customers effectively. Bond Brand Loyalty reports that if personalisation is done correctly it can have a 6.4x uplift in member satisfaction. Sephora’s Beauty Insider programme gets worldwide recognition for being fantastic at personalising towards individual customers. It suggests product recommendations for customers based on their previous purchases, age group, formulations and price. 

Gamification, gamification, gamification

8 in 10 loyalty programme members enjoy engaging with gamified mechanics when available. But only 56% of programmes make use of gamification. This is an important point for the future with the introduction of 5G in the UK in the next year or two – customers will be able to engage with content wherever they are. Brands should be capitalising on that customer availability as much as possible to build that relationship.

Partner with brands that can offer experiences

The use of partnerships within a loyalty programme is popular. Globally, 60% of customers are interested in them too which correlates with Mando-Connect’s whitepaper in association with YouGov “What the British think of Loyalty” where in the UK, the second most popular reason for joining a loyalty programme is to get discounts and rewards from partner brands (55%). Interestingly, 75% of members are more interested in the experience side that partners can provide as part of the programme. Brands should therefore look towards partners that can offer their customers experiences rather than a tangible reward. While this isn’t a loyalty programme partnership, last year Cadbury’s partnered with Merlin entertainment in an on-pack promotion to offer customers 2 for 1 discount tickets to their theme parks. These types of experiential rewards are becoming more common in the UK with customers delighting in the experience.

Redemption impact on satisfaction is decreasing

In the survey, it is reported that “84% of all members have made redemptions. And, there is a 1.6x uplift in satisfaction among redeemers versus non-redeemers”. Worryingly, the report indicates that the impact of redemption on satisfaction is actually decreasing. Again, meaning that brands really should be looking towards the more experiential side of rewarding customers. How can they differentiate from another brand? 

Gen Z and Millennials are the least satisfied

As Bond Brand Loyalty look to the future, they state that Gen Z and Young Millennials are those most influenced by loyalty programmes. However, they are the least satisfied too. These generations expect more from the programmes they are a member of – harking back to the personalisation requirement mentioned in point 3. We also explore what 18 – 24 year olds in the UK think of loyalty programmes here.

The Loyalty Report is as interesting as ever and offers some valuable insight. The studies and results may be global; but the sentiment and learnings can be applied anywhere. We at Mando-Connect are excited to see how partnerships and loyalty programme develop in the future. Customers (especially those in Gen Z and Millennials) want more personalisation, gamification and experience from those loyalty programmes that they are members of. Something that brands still need to work on.