The Modern Loyalty Program for Small Businesses


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Today's Blog Post:



The Modern Loyalty Program for Small Businesses

Loyalty programs have come a long way since the original Sperry & Hutchinson Green Stamp Program in 1986. The philosophy behind a loyalty program essentially centers around rewarding customers for simply being customers. By providing our loyal customers with rewards for engaging and purchasing from our business, we are incentivizing them to continue to buy from us, beyond the value of our products and services.

While 87% of consumers want a customer loyalty program, according to Entrepreneur, 77% of loyalty programs that focus on awards alone are failing within the first two years.

When executed correctly, Loyalty Programs offer incredible value to small businesses. Yet, only 34% of SMBs have a loyalty program.

Let?s explore:


  • 3 Example Loyalty Programs
  • The Value For Small Business
  • Why Loyalty Programs Fail
  • 5 Loyalty Program Management Software Options
Discussion Question:

Do any of your clients use Loyalty Programs? If so, are they effective?

Which Loyalty Program Software would you recommend?

What's your opinion of Loyalty Programs in general?

Personally, I have membership to a few programs, but honestly, for many of them, I sign up then forget about them. Except for Starbucks, I use that everyday.

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Linda Buquet

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Thanks Garrett, great topic!

"Yet, only 34% of SMBs have a loyalty program" - I'm a little surprised it's that high.

But I've often thought about the fact that it would be a good thing for many types of SMBs to offer. Think it could be a way to build - not only loyalty, but goodwill, maybe even get some links and probably most importantly get more word-of-mouth referrals from happy customers.
 
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Thank you for the reply Linda!

I think Loyalty programs have gotten a bad rap from a lot of people because they're not run correctly. People get frustrated when there are too many hurdles, or their rewards expire when they try to redeem them. I think many SMBs are also probably scared that they're too difficult to set up, but some of the newer platforms make is incredibly simple.

In terms of Local, I think a great strategy for a loyalty program would be to find complimentary local businesses and all team up to offer discounts across companies via loyalty programs. I believe there are some hyperlocal loyalty platforms that can easily facilitate that process. Eager to hear others' experiences.
 

Linda Buquet

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In terms of Local, I think a great strategy for a loyalty program would be to find complimentary local businesses and all team up to offer discounts across companies via loyalty programs. I believe there are some hyperlocal loyalty platforms that can easily facilitate that process. Eager to hear others' experiences.
Now that's a great idea and a WIN/WIN for all!
 
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Agreed! Think about this, what if you've connected with other local SMBs and all have discounted promotions on each others' loyalty programs. Then you hold an event together (with free entrance and rewards for members and the public). The resulting press could produce a ton of hyperlocal valuable links.

So much potential.
 

Linda Buquet

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Just discovered a great post at Moz by Miriam Ellis:
<a href="https://moz.com/blog/what-earns-loyalty-local-business-world">What Really Earns Loyalty in the Local Business World?</a>

h/t Mike Blumenthal on Twitter:
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Just discovered this from Miriam Ellis: What Really Earns Loyalty in the Local Business World? <a href="https://t.co/Mi7uNYwuQQ">https://t.co/Mi7uNYwuQQ</a> via <a href="https://twitter.com/Moz">@moz</a></p>— Mike Blumenthal (@mblumenthal) <a href="https://twitter.com/mblumenthal/status/735554926680678400">May 25, 2016</a></blockquote>
<script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
 

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