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From Feedback to Rewards: How to Build a Loyalty Program that Resonates with Your Audience

Learn how to build a loyalty program that puts your audience first. We also discuss strategies for creating a customer experience that secures repeat...

Francesca Nicasio

Content Strategy Manager

Fact: Loyal customers are some of your most reliable income sources during uncertain times. 

We can see this in action in some of the top brands in the market.

Starbucks, for example, was one of the companies that quickly recovered after the Great Recession. Despite the economic downturn, Starbucks continued to invest in its loyalty program, enhancing its value proposition by offering free refills, free Wi-Fi, and special offers.

Or consider Sephora, which launched its rewards program, Beauty Insider, in 2007, and has since expanded and diversified the program to include personalized offers, exclusive events, and early access to new products. Today, the majority of Sephora’s sales come from Beauty Insider members

All this to say that rewards and loyalty programs can unlock lasting customer retention and revenue.

But there’s a catch: you’ll only achieve these benefits if your loyalty program stands out in an increasingly competitive landscape. 

In today’s crowded market, consumers are bombarded with them left and right. That’s why we’re big believers in customization—tailoring your program to meet your target audience’s preferences and needs.

In this article, you’ll learn how to build a loyalty program that puts your audience first. We also discuss strategies for creating a rewarding customer experience that secures repeat business.

 


 

Importance of customer insights in developing notable loyalty programs


Guesswork often influences strategies when developing loyalty programs. So before proceeding to launching or overhauling your loyalty program, make it a point to challenge your views.

Start with a hypothesis. Let’s say you assume your customers are motivated by discounts. Consider the variables that made you think this way. Is it based on sales performance? 

Next, look at your data and analyze your sales trends. What impact do discounts really have on your sales?

Maybe you discover that discounts do work, but not as much as they used to. Poring over customer insights may show you that many of your customers favor tangible freebies, such as complimentary samples.

In this instance, you may need to discard your original hypothesis. Markets adapt, and customer preferences shift. Use your assumptions as a framework, but refer to actual insights as you tailor your loyalty program accordingly.


Loyalty expert Rory Moss talks about getting data & survey results to customize your loyalty program and appeal to higher value customers.

 

Benefits of insight-driven customer loyalty programs

 

Learning to fine-tune your customer loyalty programs directly translates to concrete benefits for your business. These include.

  • Higher customer engagement. By basing loyalty programs on real insights, you can design initiatives that resonate with your customer base. They’ll feel a deeper connection with the tailored rewards and incentives. The more relevant you are, the better your customer relationships will be.
  • Better resource allocation. Insight-driven loyalty programs help your marketing team manage resources. You’ll avoid spending on generic incentives that may not align with customer expectations. Instead, you can direct the resources toward more enticing initiatives, maximizing the loyalty program’s long-term impact.

Customer insights ensure program success with strategic implementation. Here’s how to leverage this data to build customer loyalty programs that stand out and connect with your target demographic.

 

6 steps to develop a successful customer loyalty program

 

From getting customers on board to measuring performance, launching and managing loyalty programs take work. Follow these 6 steps below to start and gradually increase signups and engagement levels.

1. Conduct customer interviews

 

Shoppers stay loyal to brands that understand them. To get to know your customer base, conduct direct surveys and interviews. Talk to a sample of 10 to 20 customers in person or on the phone, varying between regulars and one time/new customers.

Regulars are the most engaged audience with repeat purchases. Use the interview to identify what they want from a loyalty program. 

One-time/new customers are not as engaged–at least not yet. Take the interview as an opportunity to learn their preferred incentives, offers, or experiences to keep them coming back

Keep the questions consistent across both groups to get a well-rounded perspective. Here’s a set of potential questions you can ask these individuals. 

  • How often do you purchase from our store?
  • On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely are you to participate in our loyalty program?
  • What types of rewards or perks would motivate you to join the program? (e.g., discounts, freebies, cashback promos, special offers, exclusive event access, early access to sales)
  • How important is it for you to feel valued and rewarded for your loyalty to us?
  • Do you prefer tiered membership systems or ​​points-based loyalty programs? (i.e., point-based voucher amount vs. bronze, silver, and gold tiers with more valuable rewards as you progress)
  • How likely will you recommend us to others if we offer reward/referral programs?
  • Are there any specific products or categories you’d like to see in the loyalty program rewards?
  • What communication channels do you prefer to receive loyalty program updates and offers? (e.g., email, SMS, social media, in-store notifications)
  • How do you typically redeem loyalty rewards or benefits? (e.g., online, in-store, mobile app)
  • Would you be more likely to participate if the program offered early access to new product releases or exclusive benefits?
  • Do you have any concerns or reservations about joining a loyalty membership program?
  • How likely will you continue shopping at our store with vs. without a loyalty program?
  • What additional features or benefits do you want to see in our loyalty program?

Regular and one-time shoppers have distinct preferences, motivations, and expectations. Engage with both ends of the spectrum to know what drives each group from a 360-degree standpoint. 

Pro-tip: Gather contact details, such as email addresses and phone numbers, should you require a follow-up.

2. Collate survey and feedback responses

 

You can also use surveys to get more quantitative data on your customers. The goal here is to organize and analyze customer feedback to identify recurring patterns. 

You can do it in a formal, informal, or a hybrid approach.

Formal surveys are recommended for large-scale operations. Here are the approaches to implementing this method for a more thorough understanding of survey responses.

  • Use advanced software to categorize feedback systematically. For instance, you can implement customer feedback management platforms that tag and sort responses based on common themes.
  • Statistical analysis. If you have the resources, consider applying statistical methods to identify patterns quantitatively. It involves frequency calculation of particular keywords or sentiments expressed by customers.

Informal surveys are best for small businesses with limited resources. They’re more qualitative in nature and require first-hand assessment to understand your customers. 

  • Manual review. Evaluate customer comments, emails, or survey responses. The goal is to absorb the qualitative aspects that may be overlooked in strictly quantitative analysis.
  • Key learnings. As you review feedback, jot down a few bullet points that summarize key learnings. These could be recurring themes, noteworthy suggestions, or significant areas of concern raised by customers.

You can also combine formal and informal approaches (hybrid) to maximize both methods’ strengths. Doing so balances qualitative findings with objective insights in a more accessible yet scalable manner.

3. Review and act on the data

 

Knowing what appeals to new and existing customers helps ensure your loyalty program aligns with your overall brand identity. It helps craft your Unique Value Proposition (UVP), which you can use to reinforce your brand message and create a cohesive experience across all touchpoints.

Review the preferences and needs you’ve discovered from feedback responses. Then be sure to offer customers enticing rewards to meet those needs. 

Take Amazon Prime’s paid loyalty program, for example. Industry data shows that 71.8% of its loyalty program members find the $99 annual pricing worth it for all the shipping, shopping, streaming, and reading perks. 

How does Amazon know this? Simple. The company actively creates, distributes, and collects online survey responses.

amazon prime example

Not many businesses have the same resources as Amazon. But it doesn’t mean you don’t have enough data to analyze in your hands. 

Sports retailer TennisGear actively observes their database to understand customer behavior. They grow and keep it accurate through complete visibility across their sales channels and prompts that reminds staff to update or add customer information.

Maintaining a continuous feedback loop with your customers is key to creating a loyalty program that resonates. Send out regular surveys or perform ongoing database analysis to stay current with changing preferences and market trends.

Additional tip: Look at review sites and Google Reviews to draw information about what customers might appreciate seeing more in your programs.

4. Design and optimize the program based on feedback

 

Now that you know your rewards and incentives, optimize your program’s structure and mechanics to incentivize customers to spend more. 

Choose between non-tiered and tiered programs. Non-tiered appeals to a broad audience, whereas a tiered point system suits a diverse customer base with varying spending levels.

Balance the program’s exclusivity and inclusivity if you opt for the latter. Introduce exclusive high-value perks for top-tier loyalty cardholders (e.g., premium rewards, VIP events) and accessible rewards for those in lower tiers (e.g., birthday discounts).

Lastly, decide if your customers prefer simple or gamified types of loyalty programs. Gamification adds interactive elements but often requires more resources in terms of design, development, and ongoing management. 

In Sephora’s Beauty Insider Challenges, for instance, members must first complete a series of tasks to earn rewards. Some tasks don’t involve a purchase but require active engagement. The first challenges include checking out online, picking up orders in-store, signing up for text alerts, and trying Sephora’s in-store shade-matching tool.

If you’re still testing the waters, a straightforward loyalty program can be equally lucrative. 

Melbourne-based fashion label ALPHA60 exemplifies this with a simple earn-and-redeem model: spend a thousand dollars, earn a thousand points, and receive a $50 voucher.

ALPHA60’s Brand Strategist, Kelvin, explained that ALPHA60 customers prefer simplicity. Just by understanding this tendency led to the brand enjoying a high repeat purchase rate.

Alpha60 earn options


Find what works best for your audience, and consistently seek feedback for future adjustments if needed.

 

5. Make communication personalized wherever possible

 

Before you roll out the loyalty program, establish customer-centric communication channels. Identify where they prefer to receive updates and redeem rewards. Do they prefer traditional in-store redemption like punch cards or through handy technology like an app or a digital card?

If customers raise concerns or suggestions, acknowledge and address these in your response. Show that you value their input and actively strive to improve their experience.

A one-size-fits-all approach in communication may alienate customers who seek tailored interactions. Don’t lose your regulars to more attentive competitors. Pay attention to customer behavior when launching or announcing loyalty program updates.

 

6. Choose technology to run the loyalty program

 

Invest in user-friendly technology to simplify the implementation process. It’ll help your staff to adjust fast, minimizing the learning curve and likelihood of errors.

Loyalty program software like Marsello features seamless integration with ecommerce and POS systems (e.g., Shopify, WooCommerce, Bigcommerce, and Lightspeed) to leverage data analytics.

Syncing in-store and online transactions generates insights to help you deliver consistent loyalty experiences. It’s a hands-off process you can leverage to offer custom-tailored promotions, point earning, and reward redemption across all platforms.

With the right tools, tracking your loyalty program’s performance becomes easy. Take note of the key metrics and indicators to measure in the next section.

How to Measure Your Program’s Success

 

Define key performance indicators (KPIs) that align with your goals to gauge initial success. Some KPIs to consider are customer retention, referral rates, average order values (including credit card transactions), and customer lifetime value. These metrics measure the program’s overall contribution to your revenue stream.

Tracking KPIs is more efficient with Marsello’s dashboards and automated reporting. These tools feature real-time updates with charts, graphs, and other visual elements to interpret complex data patterns. You can also set up predefined schedules to receive detailed reports.

scottys-makeup-and-beauty-insights-dashboard

Invest in technology to keep your efforts on track. Let your staff focus on refining your marketing strategy rather than spending significant hours on data gathering and reporting.

 

Streamlining Loyalty Programs with Marsello

 

The best customer loyalty program prioritizes the customer experience. So, rather than rushing to launch your rewards or loyalty program, take time to solicit shopper insights, analyze data, design a responsive program, personalize communication, and use technology wisely.

Loyalty programs shouldn’t remain static. Keep ongoing customer engagement by regularly evaluating and updating your program.

If you’re ready to reward customers on their next purchase, start with Marsello’s free trial. Build your loyalty program today while synchronizing your omnichannel strategy.

 


 

Join a community of 5,000+ retailers building sales with Marsello's customer loyalty software

 

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Read more: 7 Steps To Building A Profitable Loyalty & Rewards Program

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    Ways to Incentivize your Customers for Referring Your Brand

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    Learn how to increase revenue and reward your loyalty program customers with referral program designed to encourage engagement and attract new customers.

    Looking for a way to increase revenue and reward your loyalty program customers? Referral program incentives are the answer! 

    A referral program, also known as an affiliate program, encourages existing customers to share your brand with their friends in exchange for loyalty points or rewards. They work because people are as much as 4x more likely to make a purchase when referred by a friend. 

    Keep reading to find out how a referral program works, why they are so effective, and the steps you need to take to successfully run a referral program in your own business.




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    How does a referral program work


    Retail referral programs reward existing loyal customers for bringing new customers to your brand. 

    They work by incentivizing existing customers to tell their friends about your business by offering them points, discounts, or other rewards in return. Referral rewards programs also make the ‘KnowLike Trust’ (KLT) factor easier because loyal customers reduce barriers on your behalf and their positive relationships with your store and subsequent promotion of it help their referred friends to feel confident and inclined to shop.

    If you set it up correctly, it is a win-win-win strategy for growing your business.

    Firstly, your existing loyal customers see instant benefits because when they refer new customers, those referred shoppers use a unique customer code tied to your original customer. In return for each successful referral (tracked by their unique customer code) they receive tangible rewards. 

    Secondly, the new customers reap the rewards. They receive rewards or discounts for their purchase, as well as a good retail recommendation from someone they know and trust. 

    Lastly, your business sees huge growth in revenue and in customer loyalty. Did you know that referred customers are actually much more likely to stick around too? Let’s dive into why referral marketing is an important addition to your marketing strategy.

     

    Why is it important to choose referral incentives


    Customer referral programs are one of the best forms of marketing you can run. The numbers speak for themselves:

        • Customers acquired through referral programs have a 37% higher retention rate.
        • In general, referred customers increase profits by about 16%.
        • Referral programs mean that loyal customers are marketing your brand for you – 83% of customers trust recommendations from people they know. 
        • 65% of a company’s revenue comes from existing customers, so incentivizing loyal customers will always be beneficial to your bottom line. 

    Not only this, but a referral program also encourages new customers to sign up. This means that instead of losing potential sales, you can target your marketing and follow up on abandoned carts to increase conversions. 

    Creating a rewards program is worth the investment!

     

    3 steps to choosing your rewards incentives

     

    No matter what referral incentives you choose, there is one question to keep in mind: “are we giving our customers the best possible experience?”

    Yes, you benefit greatly from referred customers (they have a lifetime value of about 25% more than other customers). However, your referral incentives should always have the customer experience at the center.  

    Whether your incentive structure rewards existing customers, new customers, or both, this step-by-step guide will show you which structure is best for your brand.  

        • Step 1: Choose the right incentive structure 
        • Step 2: Choose the type of reward you want to give 
        • Step 3: Set the terms and conditions of your referral program. 

    Step 1: Choose the right incentive structure

    Your incentive structure will depend on your business and customer experience goals. 

    Integrated loyalty programs are one of the easiest ways to set up referral incentives. This allows for several different referral programs: 

        1. Incentives for your existing customers (one-sided incentive)
        2. Incentives for the new customer when they sign up (one-sided incentive)
        3. Incentives for both existing and new customers (two-sided incentives)

    Let's explore these in a little more detail:

    1. One-sided incentives for existing customers

    The first incentive structure is rewarding the customer that refers people to you. 

    Rewarding your existing loyal customers is always a successful marketing strategy. With a loyalty points program, you can easily award customers points when they refer friends to your brand. 

    For example, Bulo Shoes’ loyalty program lets customers earn points even when they’re not making a purchase. Customers are encouraged to share Bulo’s channels on social media, complete their profile and follow Bulo on social media so they can earn points that they can spend in-store.

    Bulo Shoe's eCommerce loyalty widget earn options

    2. One-sided incentives for the new customer

    You could also set up a one-sided incentive that rewards the new customer. 

    This could look like:

        • A discount for their first purchase
        • Automatically earning points when they sign up to your loyalty club 
        • A free shipping discount for first purchases only 

    As a referral program, this might look like giving loyal customers discount codes to share with their friends. For example, you could let people share a code for free shipping on their first purchase with you.

    One-sided incentives might work for extremely loyal customers, however, it will always work best when you reward existing customers for their efforts. This particular structure works better with influencers who are already receiving incentives in other ways (e.g. Use Code AMANDA10 for 10% off).

    3. Two-sided referral incentives: rewarding both customers


    Rewarding both customers is the best option for optimum referral program results. This is the standard program for Marsello referral programs

    In this setup, you reward your existing customers for bringing in referrals, as well as making a great first impression on your new customers. This strategy is win-win-win.

    Step 2: Choose the type of reward you want to give


    Now that you know who you are rewarding, you need to choose what you are going to offer them. 

    The best referral incentives both encourage existing customers to rave about your brand as well as boost your sales and brand image. 

    1. Discounts

    When an existing customer refers a new person, sweeten the deal by offering a referral discount off their first purchase. This gives them a positive first experience and lets them try out your brand without committing at full price. 

    An example of a referral discount is the successful jewelry and women’s wear brand, Katie Waltman. They have a two-sided incentive structure. 

    The team at Katie Waltman has not only boosted customer retention with their generous loyalty program, but they've also added a referral program for their customers. The referred friend is incentivized with 10% off their first order and the existing customer earns 200 points when their referred friend makes their first purchase. 

    Katie Waltman's eCommerce loyalty widget showing earn options of loyalty members

    As a result of their creative loyalty program marketing, Katie Waltman has seen 100% customer engagement rate with their omnichannel loyalty program, and a 75% reward redemption rate!

    2. Cash / Cash-back

    Another referral award is a cash-back program. This more closely resembles an affiliate or commission program than a loyalty rewards program. 

    In this setup, customers get a cash reward or percentage of the new customer’s purchase. For example, customers could get $5 every time someone uses their unique code for a purchase of $30 or more. 

    For an effective cash-back program, you need to make sure that the minimum purchase amount is more than the cash-back reward. 

    Take another look at Katie Waltman’s loyalty program!

    The KW loyalty offering includes a “5% back on all purchases for creating an account.” With an offer like this, Katie Waltman not only incentivizes customers to join their loyalty program, they really make it worth the customer’s journey from window shopper to a loyal customer. 

    3. Store credit

    Earning store credit or loyalty points is a great way to reward customer referrals. That way loyal customers can enjoy your brand even more, and money keeps coming back into your business. 

    NZ streetwear brand, Federation +, is a great example of using customer referrals to earn store points. 

    With a customer referral program in place, Federation + encourages their current customers to refer friends and earn loyalty points as they do so. This way, the brand grows their customer database, while also improving customer loyalty. 

    Federation's online store loyalty widget pop-up

    4. Gift cards

    Gift card rewards are similar to store credit incentives. 

    A study from First Data shows that on average, U.S. consumers spend around $59 more than the value of a gift card. You could give gift cards to either the new customer,  your existing customer (as a referral reward), or both!  

    Combined with a loyalty program, automatic upselling, and investment in customer experience, gift card rewards can be an effective way to boost your average cart value (as well as rewarding referrals). 

    6. Free subscription period

    Offering a free or reduced subscription lets new customers “try before they buy”. This is most effective for businesses that have a long-lifetime or recurring product. Crealunch is a good example, where customers would be buying meals on an ongoing basis. 

    Once they have crossed the threshold, your automatic email marketing can step in and keep them convinced! 

    Step 3: Set the conditions for your referral program


    The last step for effectively incentivizing referrals is to establish parameters. You don’t want to accidentally encourage referral program abuse or suddenly be out of pocket! 

    Posting referral program terms and conditions clearly will mean you get the sales benefits without the headaches. 

    Here are some questions to ask yourself when setting conditions.

    When will the referral reward be given? 

    Decide on a timeframe for giving out rewards. This might look different depending on what reward type you choose. 

    Here are a few things to consider: 

        • Do new customers automatically get a discount or only after they sign up? 
        • For cashback, do they get it immediately after the purchase has been made or each month? 
        • Do existing customers only get rewards when friends actually make a purchase?
        • Is there a time limit on the discount code once new customers sign up? 

    Thinking about these conditions early on will mean you make money from referrals rather than lose it. 

    Should you use a tiered reward structure? 

    A tiered reward program is a customer incentive strategy that rewards people the more they spend. 

    Consumers who engage with high-performing loyalty programs are 78% more likely to spend a premium. So the more you reward people, the more loyal they will be!

    A referral program rewards your most loyal customers for advocating on your behalf. If you use a tiered reward structure, your referrals could increase as customers move up the levels. A tiered system gives more rewards to people higher up to encourage loyalty and higher spending.

    Let's look again at modern streetwear brand Federation +. Their loyalty program features three loyalty tiers: silver, gold, and platinum. With an 88% reward redemption rate and 20% repeat purchase rate, it’s no wonder that they have seen almost a 10% revenue boost from loyalty marketing alone.

    Marsello-_Federation-Tiers-Widget


    Creating demand for your referral program 


    You don’t need to reinvent the wheel to have a successful reward program. Marsello customers see the best results when they keep it simple! However, there are a few things you can do to make your referral program incentives more desirable or effective.

        • Create scarcity: Add a limited timeframe for coupons. This creates scarcity and encourages people to spend now
        • Reward loyal customers: If you are a new brand you might consider offering a slightly bigger reward for your existing customers to increase loyalty. For example, if sign-ups receive 20 points, you could make referrals 25 points
        • Run a seasonal campaign: To give your referral program a boost you could give double points for a limited time 
        • Create multiple referrals: instead of giving out store points, you could give people free gifts after a certain number of referrals
        • Make an ambassador program: This is like a loyalty program except exclusively for referrals. This lets your most loyal customers feel like they are “in the club” and are rewarded with raving about you 

     

    Examples of successful referral programs from existing brands


    Still not convinced that a referral rewards program is the way to boost sales and build customer loyalty on autopilot? Take a look at these examples of successful referral programs and how simple they can be! 

    Merrell NZs online stores loyalty widget pop-up showing how customers earn points

    Merrell NZ

    Merrell NZ is a footwear brand that helps people get into the great outdoors. Their loyalty program has a 15% repeat purchase rate and an average purchase frequency of 3.5x, showing that Merrell NZ’s customers are already proven loyal regulars. Customers can earn 100 points to spend in-store when they refer a friend.

    Smack bang's earn and rewards options from their eCommerce store's loyalty widget

    Smack Bang 

    Smack Bang is a New Zealand-based merchant that specializes in locally-made pet accessories, gifts, and treats. The gorgeous pet boutique also has a lovely loyalty program that’s paying dividends; these loyalty initiatives have generated a 100% loyalty engagement rate, and a reward redemption rate of 38%. Using their adorable, branded widget, customers can earn 10 points when they refer a friend which they can see immediately on their dashboard. 

    Carolina Liyestyle's eCommerce loyalty widget showcasing loyalty member earn options

    Carolina Lifestyle 

    Carolina Lifestyle also rewards customers who successfully refer their friends. Members get 100 points (equivalent to $10) for every successful referral – and those customers immediately get $20 simply by joining!

    All these initiatives, combined with Carolina Lifestyle’s exquisite and unique products, help to ensure that shoppers keep coming back. And it works – the company’s average customer lifetime value (CLV) is $716.94, and about a third of Carolina Lifestyle's customers return to shop again within two months.

    The eCommerce loyalty widget on Crosby by Mollie Birch's ecommerce site.

    CROSBY by Mollie Burch 

    CROSBY by Mollie Burch is an eclectic, modern fashion brand. Their loyalty program, The Crosby Collectors, lets customers earn Pink Points. Their referral program is a good example of setting conditions for rewards. For example, customers receive points for referring a friend which can then be spent in store on orders over a certain amount.

     

    Final words

    Offering your new and loyal customers referral program incentives is a win-win-win sales strategy. Whether you are offering limited-time discounts, points to spend in-store, or other fun freebies, a referral program is sure to keep your customers (and bank accounts) happy.

    Customer advocacy starts by creating a rewarding and engaging experience no matter how your customers choose to shop. Marsello makes it easy to launch a bespoke loyalty and referral program that is proven to increase customer lifetime value and maximize ROI.


     

    Redeeming loyalty coupons through a POS system

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    Learn how to activate loyalty coupons and customer loyalty at your in-store POS.

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    On average, 65% of your revenue comes from your most loyal customers. Integrating loyalty coupons into your existing POS system lets you serve your best customers and reap the revenue rewards with ease! 

    Loyalty coupons are one of the best ways to encourage repeat buyers, increase the lifetime value of customers, and build the loyalty of your already happy customers. Customer loyalty strategies pay for themselves.

    By combining loyalty coupons and your eCommerce or POS system, you can target your marketing, identify your best customers, award coupons and turn your business into a loyalty-building machine. 


    Marsello-Redeeming-Loyalty-Coupons

    How do Loyalty coupons work?


    Loyalty coupons, also known as customer coupons, are effective at driving repeat and loyal customers. Repeat customers spend 33% more than other customers, so it is worth focusing your marketing efforts on them specifically. 

    So how do they work? 

    Simple. Loyalty coupons encourage already loyal customers to be even better customers by improving their shopping experience. You can either set up customer accounts to add points and vouchers or give people discounts automatically when they meet certain criteria. 

    The easiest way to start giving loyalty coupons or rewards points is to integrate it with your existing Point of Service (POS) system.

     

    Evermore Toys Points Reward System explainer page from their website

     

    For example, ethical toy company Evermore Toys has customers that buy online and in stores. To simplify their loyalty program, they integrated Marsello directly into their POS systems (Shopify and Cin7) so customers can redeem points no matter where they shop. Using Marsello, their simple loyalty program resulted in a 156x ROI and a 738.87% increase in revenue.

    You don’t need to reinvent the wheel to integrate loyalty coupons into your business!

     

    How does a POS system increase customer loyalty?

    A POS system increases loyalty because you can use customer details to personalize their shopping experience. An all-in-one system makes it easy for customers to use loyalty coupons no matter where they shop with you and therefore improves user experience and loyalty over time.

     

    1. By collecting customer data


    One of the main functions of a POS system is to collect customer data. This allows you to create targeted marketing campaigns, personalize customer experiences, and identify your most loyal customers.

    Your POS system is an opportunity to collect online eCommerce and in-store visitor details and turn them into repeat customers. The best way to collect details is in exchange for something valuable like in-store points and loyalty coupons.

    For example, Merrell NZ cleverly maximizes every opportunity to encourage customer engagement with their brand. Their website has a simple pop-up form that encourages shoppers to leave their name, email, and date of birth in exchange for promotions and exclusive discounts. 

    Merrell-Form


    This pop-up has a sign-up rate of 25%, a customer engagement rate that you miss out on if you don’t collect customer details with a POS system!

     

    2. By providing personalized promotion


    Once you have customer details in your POS system, you can create personalized promotions. The details you collect when a customer signs up mean that you can segment your marketing based on their behavior. 

    This behavioral segmentation is known as RFM segmentation, which stands for 

        • Recency – When the customer last purchased from you.
        • Frequency – How often they buy. 
        • Monetary – The amount they’ve spent.

    In other words, you can maximize your marketing ROI and increase loyalty by knowing more about them. 

    Modern streetwear brand Federation + shows this in action with their segmented email campaigns.

    Federations automated Welcome email overlaid on a black background

    When shoppers first create a customer account with Federation +, they immediately receive the “WELCOME TO THE FAMILY” automated email campaign. The eye-catching email offers customers 10% off their first purchase and uses a product recommendations email block to suggest current top-selling products. 

    This campaign has seen a 19% conversion rate in just over 5 months, and almost 50% of the total revenue generated by their automated campaigns is directly attributable to their welcome automation! 

    3. By identifying VIP customers and rewarding them

    75% of consumers say that they favor companies that offer rewards. Integrating a rewards program with your POS system will make it easy to identify and reward your already-loyal customers. 

    VIP programs are effective because they target customers who already have buy-in with your brand. Our Bralette Club runs an effective rewards program that makes this process extremely easy.

    Our Bralette Clubs membership loyalty tiers explainer webpage

    Through their all-in-one system, customers can sign up, earn rewards and in-store loyalty points and be part of the Peach Party community. The Our Bralette Club VIP loyalty program has an impressive reward redemption rate of 71% (in 2020) and has resulted in a 278% increase in revenue.  

    4. By providing a convenient customer experience


    According to a study by eMarketer, the only thing online shoppers like more than customer reward coupons is a quick and easy checkout process. 83% of shoppers marked this as their top priority for loyalty. 

    This is why your POS system is so important for building customer loyalty! It doesn’t matter how good your discounts and loyalty program is if the user experience doesn’t deliver.

     

    Different ways customers can redeem loyalty coupons through a POS system

    Your POS system can encourage loyalty in many different ways. From in-store points to purchase order value increase, there is a loyalty coupon system to suit every business. 

    1. Through a points-based system

    A points-based system is one of the most common types of loyalty coupons for retailers. 

    A rewards point loyalty program encourages certain customer behaviors. They can earn points for things like 

        • Signing up for your loyalty program 
        • For every dollar they spend 
        • Sharing your brand on social media
        • On their birthday

    For example, boutique dog brand SmackBang has an on-brand widget for their loyalty program. It seamlessly integrates with their POS system and lets customers see how many points they have and how they can earn more. 

    Marsello-SmackBang-Loyalty-Widget

    Their points system has generated $8,200+ for the brand, sees a 100% loyalty engagement rate, and a reward redemption rate of 38%.

    Building loyalty with points systems works best when it benefits your customer as much as your business. Rewards create loyalty when you give your best rewards to your best customers. 

    2. Through an automatic voucher system


    An automatic voucher system is where customers automatically qualify for a voucher when they meet certain requirements. 90% of consumers use coupons so it is an effective way to increase loyalty and amount per spend. 

    For example, you could add an automatic voucher when someone has made a purchase, reached a certain threshold, or joined your loyalty program. 

    If you are going to use an automatic voucher system, it is best to do this directly through your POS system. Physical vouchers incur production and distribution costs, whereas POS systems allow customers to easily access vouchers without delay

     

    3. By providing discount vouchers

     

    Everybody loves a good deal! Discount vouchers can be a great way to entice new customers, reward existing ones, and boost revenues for a short period. 

    However, offering discount vouchers too often can actually have the opposite effect. It can make it seem like you are a discounted brand.

    For effective discounts, vouchers should:

        • Have a time limit or expiry 
        • Be combined with personalized or targeted marketing campaigns (e.g. for first-time customers) 
        • Be easy to use online or in-person (i.e. integrated with your eCommerce and POS system)

    Instead of just discounting prices you could also add value.

     

    Marsello-Sigi-Skin-One-Off-Email-Campaign

    For example, skincare retailer Sigi Skin ran an email campaign for Mother’s Day where instead of slashing prices they added a free makeup pouch. Their email campaign had an impressive open rate of 37% and a conversion rate of 19%, and, in the first 7 days since it was sent, the campaign saw a revenue increase on their usual daily sales of +48%.

    4. By purchase order value

     

    Loyalty coupons for purchase order value is a system where customers can qualify for rewards when they reach a certain amount in their cart or in-store. 

    24% of consumers would spend more to qualify for bonuses like free shipping. This benefits them as much as your revenue! 

    There are several ways you can use purchase order value as a loyalty reward:

          • $ amount off total cart
          • % off total cart 
          • $ or % off a specific item 
          • Get a free product 
          • Get free shipping 

    The best part? All of these loyalty rewards can be integrated directly into your eCommerce or POS system with Marsello!

    5. Through promotions

    Running a points promotion is a great way to get a boost in loyalty points and sign-ups. Even your best customers need a little encouragement sometimes! 

    Your POS system will allow customers to easily earn and redeem points earned during your promotion. This positive user experience maintains a positive relationship over time. 

    An example of a points promotion was the double points promotion run by bCode. This shoe brand started a loyalty program for their existing business and wanted as many people to sign up as possible when it launched.

     

    b-code-points-promotion-campaign

    When they launched the online version of their loyalty program, they ran a points promo called “Double Perks weekend” which enabled members to earn double points on all purchases over a three-day period.

    This resulted in a 94% increase in loyalty points spent by both new and existing loyalty club members.

     

    Final words on redeeming loyalty coupons through a POS system

     

    Loyalty coupons give your best customers even more reasons to rave about your brand. Whether you choose rewards points, loyalty programs, discount vouchers, or promotions, customer coupons will benefit your customers and increase your overall revenue. 

    Marsello lets you integrate simple, on-brand loyalty coupons and reward points directly into your existing eCommerce and POS system. Whether you sell online, in person, or a mixture of both, you can easily reward your most loyal customers with Marsello integrations!

    Creating effective customer segmentations through loyalty programs

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    With customer segmentation, you can create personalized marketing campaigns that appeal directly to customers based on their purchase behavior. Learn how!

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    Have you ever wondered why marketers talk about why you should segment customers so much? 

    It’s because it can seriously boost your bottom line! 

    One of the best ways to help you segment your customers is with an engaging loyalty program. With detailed customer data pulled from your customer loyalty software, you can target different customer groups based on your marketing goals and individual campaigns. From your most loyal customers to infrequent shoppers who are at risk of leaving your brand community, you can develop a targeted, personalized marketing campaign for each customer group. 

    Personalization using segments drives sales and boosts loyalty. 

    A survey by Segment has shown that 49% of respondents have purchased a product they weren't planning to buy because of tailored suggestions, and 44% said they would become repeat buyers after experiencing tailored shopping experiences.

    If you’re ready to see why customer segmentation is so beneficial, what segments you should be targeting and how to keep customers coming back using loyalty programs, then keep reading. 

     

    What is customer segmentation?

     

    Customer segmentation, specifically behavioral segmentation, automatically groups shoppers based on their shopping habits. It shows you who your best customers are, which shoppers are more likely to make repeat purchases, which ones are slipping away, and more.

     

    A customer segmentation grid with a campaign for 'best customers' ready to be enabled.

     

    By using behavioral segmentation, your brand can easily identify your most valuable customers and focus promotional efforts on those most likely to purchase again. This is commonly referred to as RFM, which stands for:

    Recency – When the customer last purchased from you. 

    Frequency – How often they buy. 

    Monetary – The amount they’ve spent.

    Put simply, RFM looks at the overlap between when a customer last shopped with you, how often, and how much they spent. This allows you to target your best customers with greater accuracy.

    The most common segments are:

    • Best
    • Loyal
    • Promising
    • New
    • At-risk
    • Lost 

    Once you identify which category your customer is in, you can strategically market to them and increase the chance of them converting. 

    Want to know even more about what RFM is? Read this in-depth guide to customer segmentation with Marsello.

     

    Why segment your customers?

     

    One of the main benefits of customer segmentation is that you can put your marketing budget where it matters: your existing loyal customers. 

    Depending on what industry you are in, acquiring a new customer can be anywhere from five to 25 times more expensive than keeping an existing one. As Forbes put it, “acquiring new customers is important, but retaining them accelerates profitable growth.”

    As well as targeting loyal customers and rewarding them, you can capitalize on less engaged customers. By sending marketing campaigns at optimized moments in their journey, you can reduce customer churn rate and improve marketing ROI. 

    If you’re still wondering why you should segment, those results are just the beginning. 

     

    What are the benefits of customer segmentation?

    You will quickly learn that the benefits of customer segmentation positively affect your customer as well as your business. 

    Firstly, it is the easiest way to personalize their shopping experience.

    A Segment survey found that 71% of customers are frustrated that their online experience wasn’t more personalized. Consumers are craving connection and an elevated shopping experience, and segmentation does this for you automatically.

    Not only does segmentation improve customer experience through personalization; it improves your revenue. 

    yuccs uses Marsello's customer segmentation tool to send personalized marketing campaigns

    Take sustainable European shoe brand Yuccs. They use Marsello to create powerful email marketing campaigns that engage different customer segments and increase conversions. In just a year and a half of targeting different segments, Yuccs increased email marketing revenue by a whopping 1,733% (yes, really). 

    Those benefits speak for themselves!

     

    Defining your customer segments

     

    The first step of successful customer segmentation is defining your customers. Where are your customers in their buyer journey and what do they want? This will help you to personalize their experience and maximize the effect of segmentation.

    1. VIP Customers

    You can probably already identify your VIP customer segmentation. 

    Creating a VIP loyalty program not only rewards your best customers; it also makes it easy to segment them. 

    Carolina Lifestyle is a perfect example of targeting loyal customers. They are a lifestyle and fashion brand with an incredibly generous loyalty program (members automatically get 200 points just for signing up!). 

    Because they have a loyalty program that defines their most loyal customers automatically, they can send targeted campaigns. They send customers emails relating to their loyalty program, as well as beautifully designed One-off Campaigns to keep their customers up-to-date. 

    Carolina Lifestyle has a segmented loyalty program

    And it works – the company’s average customer lifetime value (CLV) is $716.94, and about a third of Carolina Lifestyle's customers return to shop again within two months.

    If you haven’t started segmenting your loyalty program members and other customer groups, this is your sign to start now.


    2. At-risk customers

    At-risk customers are your customers who haven't purchased recently. They are at risk of “slipping away” and forgetting about you. 

    Because they have already purchased from you (i.e. you are not acquiring a new customer) it is worth your time and money to target this group specifically. 

    Identifying at-risk customers is also important because it is easier to win them back now rather than wait for them to become “lost” customers. 

    You can identify this segment by a few factors:

    • They have made a purchase before but you haven’t seen them in a while
    • They visit your website a lot but don’t actually make a purchase
    • They abandon cart more than once 

    This can be frustrating, but not all is lost! We will show you below how you can get these customers coming back.

     

    3. Lost customers

    Lost customers are people that made a purchase but have completely fallen off your radar. 

    Firstly, don’t feel bad. Churn rates in the retail industry are about five to seven percent per year. Some customers will naturally fall off. 

    However, it is still more cost-effective to win this customer segment back than bring in new ones. 

    This particular segment can be tricky. It’s not like a new customer who saw your product and it wasn’t what they wanted. If they have purchased in the past and aren’t now, it might mean that you are no longer meeting their expectation in some way!

    Like all customer-focused strategies, you need to put their needs first when you are trying to win them back.

     

    How to keep each of these customer segments coming back

     

    The best part about customer segmentation is that it encourages customers to come back. Repeat customers spend 33%, so these strategies are worth the effort. 

    1. Include tiered loyalty for VIP customers

    One of the best customer segmentation strategies is to leverage your loyalty program. You should always be rewarding the customers who already know, like, trust and rave about you! 

    A tiered loyalty program matched with segmented marketing is the ultimate combination for targeting engaged customers. 

    Let’s look at an example of VIP customer segmentation. 

    T.C. Elli’s uses segmented SMS marketing to target their Best, Loyal, Promising, New, and At-Risk customers. However, they take it one step further and segment their loyalty program customers called “TCE Honeys”.

    T.C. Elli's uses SMS marketing to grow customer loyalty and promote marketing campaigns

    The T.C.E team ran a promotion that allowed shoppers to get a free item with select purchases. They sent a promotional text to their “Best,” “Loyal,” and “Promising” segments to ensure that their top customers would be some of the first people who can take advantage of the deal. 

    Combined with their in-store promotions and stunning email marketing, they saw a 51x ROI from their initiatives. 

    Rewarding your best customers is a sure-fire way to keep them coming back.

    2. Connect with at-risk customers with email marketing

    Email marketing remains one of the highest-converting forms of marketing. You can make the most of your at-risk segment by speaking to them directly.

    The trick is to send them a non-invasive email that gives them a good, time-sensitive incentive to come back. We promise this strategy pays off! 

    For example, Yuccs shoe brand segmented their customers based on their purchase history and behavior for a Black Friday sale. Those who hadn’t purchased in a while received a different message than those who have joined the Yuccs mailing list but are yet to make a purchase. 

    This strategy enabled Yuccs to connect to subscribers which engaged them in unique and compelling ways while maximizing conversions and sales. 

    And Yuccs’ efforts paid off. During the week of the Black Friday campaign, the brand saw a 38% revenue boost!

    3. Win back lost customers with rewards and offers

    Winning back lost customers can be difficult, but not impossible. 

    Like your at-risk customers, you can target this segment with a no-pressure incentive to come back.

    One way to win back a lost customer is to offer them in-store points in exchange for a simple feedback survey. 

    This achieves several things. 

    Firstly, you can get feedback on why you might have lost them! This helps you improve your customer service. Secondly, it reminds them that you exist and that they can use points in-store. Thirdly, you can get back on their radar without asking them to make a purchase.

     

    Final words


    This is your sign to segment your customers. Not only does it increase conversion rates, but it also boosts revenue, rewards your loyal customers, and optimizes your marketing strategy by targeting existing and previous customers. 

    The best part? Marsello can automatically group your customers based on their purchasing history and behavior, so shoppers are already segmented automatically, making it easy to create these targeted campaigns. There’s no time like the present to boost your revenue and loyalty programs!

    Guide to creating free shipping rewards & boosting revenue for your business

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    Free shipping rewards are a powerful loyalty tactic proven to get customers shopping and boost revenue. Learn how to make the most of them for your...

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    Free shipping rewards can be a fantastic strategy for boosting revenue in your eCommerce business. 

    According to Metapak, 47% of respondents ranked free shipping as their #1 consideration for most online purchases. In comparison, 60% of shoppers abandon their carts when extra costs are added, including shipping. 

    Offering shipping rewards removes friction for people that have already made the decision to purchase something. 

    We’re giving you the low down on why free shipping can boost revenue and customer loyalty, the benefits of free shipping for online businesses, and the pros and cons of the different types of shipping rewards you can offer.

    Smack Bang's loyalty widget with a free shipping coupon code added to an email campaign.

    What are the benefits of free shipping for businesses?

     

    Free shipping benefits are endless- if you have a strategic system for it. 

    Firstly, it could end up being more cost-effective than charging for shipping. Shippit research explains why free shipping could actually save you money: 

    “...offering free shipping could actually save you money. Think about it; free shipping could increase traffic to your site, lower your cost per acquisition and increase the quality of your customer; creating higher customer lifetime value…

    ...Or to put it another way, you will see 15-30% improvement in net profit.”

    Secondly, it boosts customer loyalty. Customers love to be appreciated and surprised. Adding free shipping to your customer loyalty program or as a special bonus for your best customers will only create more loyalty to your brand. 

    Other benefits of free shipping include:

    Keeping customers happy- 73% of customers want to see free shipping at checkout!

     

    Guide for businesses to provide free shipping while boosting revenue

     

    To create a free shipping program, there are a few things you need to be successful. If you offer it too liberally, you will lose revenue. However if you don’t offer it enough, you lose opportunities to reward loyal customers. Here’s what you need to do instead! 

    1. Set a minimum purchase amount

    A strategy you have probably seen is to offer free shipping on orders over a certain amount. 

    Red Door research shows that orders increased by 90% when a free shipping threshold was offered (e.g. “free shipping on orders over $75”). 

    This works for several reasons. 

    Firstly, you are targeting customers who are already in the process of buying from you. If they put something in the cart and then see a pop-up that tells them they are X dollars away from free shipping, you will see amazing conversions (like the Red Door study above). 

    Secondly, you can usually absorb the cost of shipping because the cart value increases significantly. 

    The pro of this approach is that it is super effective for increasing cart values. The potential downside is that free shipping is not considered an exclusive reward for loyalty. 


    2. Offer free shipping with an annual loyalty membership

    The best thing about rewarding loyal customers is that they become even more loyal. So why not offer eCommerce free shipping with your online loyalty memberships

    If you have a loyalty program, there are several ways you could offer this. For example, it could be an exclusive reward for your top-tier members (i.e. customers who have a certain number of points). It could also be available to anyone who is in your membership. 

    Smack Bang is a dog treat boutique where you can see this in action. They have a list of rewards that members can earn, including up to 20% off and generous free shipping.

    Smack bang's earn and rewards options from their eCommerce store's loyalty widget

    Shoppers clearly love participating in the program. Smack Bang has a 100% loyalty engagement rate and so far members have collectively earned over 300,000 points!

    3. Provide free shipping tiered approach which provides rewards based on purchase value

    One way to give out shipping rewards is to create customer tiers based on how much they spend. This both rewards your most loyal customers and makes free shipping exclusive. 

    The simplest way to do this is to implement a loyalty program. Loyalty programs are a powerful customer retention tool, and you can create a top-tier customer experience for your biggest spenders. 

    A prime example is the streetwear brand, Federation +. Their online and in-store loyalty program creates an inviting and easy way for customers to earn points and incentivizes customers to shop more by offering generous loyalty tiers.

    The tiers tab of Federations online loyalty explainer widget overlaid on their website landing page

    Customers can easily exchange points for free shipping rewards (and other amazing bonuses like discounts and free products!). They have silver, gold, and platinum tiers that all encourage customers to remain loyal and take advantage of free shipping and other bonuses.

    The clear positive of this strategy is that it makes your most loyal customers feel appreciated. Meanwhile, the con is that you need to have a certain revenue threshold to absorb the shipping costs. 

    4. To continue engagement offer limited-time free shipping

    To boost revenue fast, you could run a limited offer on free shipping. 

    Human psychology shows us that urgent situations force us to make decisions instantly. You can use this to your advantage with free shipping offers.

    For example, Merrell NZ celebrated the global brand’s 40th birthday by offering free shipping on all orders for a limited time. With a 15% repeat purchase rate and an average purchase frequency of 3.5x, you know that they must be doing something right with their email marketing! 

    Merrell NZ's loyalty program email promotion

    Limited time offers are also great for at-risk customers. 

    These are customers that have already purchased but you haven’t seen them in a while. Offering something great like free shipping for a limited time can be enough to entice them back. 

    One of the downsides to the limited timeframe of this approach is that you only get a cash injection, not long-term benefits. But on the plus side, it demands action from your customers!

     

    5. Increase signups with free shipping on first order

    Incentivizing email newsletters and loyalty membership sign-ups is invaluable for increasing customer lifetime value. You can use free shipping as a way to increase these signups.

    This is a super simple way to win over people who need to cross the know-like-trust threshold. 

    Pros of free shipping on sign-up: You can grow your list of new customers and then segment them once they have made a purchase with free shipping. You are also rewarding them off the bat. Cons? You have to absorb the cost and these customers might not have as much buy-in as customers who buy without the free shipping incentive. 


    6. Build trust with free returns

    Offering free returns can help build trust with your customers. According to UPS, 68% of online shoppers check your return policy before buying. 

    Good return policies are usually a good indication of good customer service. It shows your customers that you care about them and believe in the quality of your product and their experience. 

    If you are going to offer free returns, there are a few things you should remember: 

    • Make your returns policy super clear for people when they are purchasing 
    • Create an FAQ page 
    • Decide what your guidelines are for free returns- is it no questions asked? Is it exchanges only? 

    The drawback of this policy is that there is always the potential for customers to take unnecessary advantage of it. However, the positive side is that you build trust and credibility, and remove a big hesitation for someone shopping online. 

    Final words


    This is your sign to segment your customers. Not only does it increase conversion rates, but it also boosts revenue, rewards your loyal customers, and optimizes your marketing strategy by targeting existing and previous customers. 

    The best part? Marsello can automatically group your customers based on their purchasing history and behavior, so shoppers are already segmented automatically, making it easy to create these targeted campaigns. There’s no time like the present to boost your revenue and loyalty programs!

    Common traits between the best customer loyalty programs

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    We’ve done the research and reviewed the common traits that all the best customer loyalty programs have. Want to be one of them? Keep reading

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    Ever wondered how other brands are killing it with successful loyalty programs? Don’t worry; we hear that all the time. 

    Customer loyalty programs are ingenious marketing strategies that help businesses increase customer retention and boost revenue creatively. They mix rewards with brand interaction which improves the customer experience overall. 

    Successful loyalty programs serve both customers and your business margins. Win-win! 

    We’ve done the research, and there are a few common traits that all the best loyalty programs have. Want to be one of them? Keep reading

    Marsello-Common-Traits

    Common traits of brands with best loyalty programs


    The most successful loyalty programs all feature similar traits while simultaneously managing to stand out to their customers. Let's dive in and break down some of these.

    1. Simplicity for customers
    One essential trait of a good customer loyalty program is simplicity. 

    57% of internet users will not recommend a business if the website is poorly designed. The same applies to your digital loyalty program!

    The aim of using customer loyalty software is ultimately to help the customer. If you prioritize being clever over clear, you will lose people along the way. 

    Design features you might want to think about for your loyalty program include:

      • Seamless integration between your online and physical stores/POS so customers can redeem rewards no matter where they shop
      • Single Sign-On option so returning customers can quickly log in from any device
      • Apply discounts automatically if they qualify (e.g., discount for spending a certain amount) 
      • Make your website or app extremely mobile responsive (85% of adults think that a company’s mobile website should be as good or better than desktop). 

    2. Desirable mix of great experience and good rewards

    Reward programs provide a huge benefit to your sales. However, the top loyalty programs prioritize excellent customer experience and great rewards. 

    You want your customers to be EXCITED to shop with you! You want to motivate specific customer behaviors by automatically rewarding points for purchases, referrals, product reviews, and social media activity. 

    Any time they shop or interact with your brand should be an opportunity to connect.


    Our Bralette Clubs loyalty widget on a light pink banner

     

    For example, the size-inclusive lingerie brand Our Bralette Club (OBC) offers both discounts and freebies with their loyalty program. OBC’s customers can use their rewards to score great deals (like $10 or 20% off entire purchases), or they can opt to get cool freebies like pocket mirrors and tote bags. 

    The results speak for themselves. By creating little enjoyable moments with freebies and discounts, OBC increased their revenue by 278% through their program members alone.


    3. They have an emotional connection with the brand

    Inviting customers to connect to your brand emotionally is a powerful marketing strategy. Not only does it add to the customer experience, but it also creates customer buy-in. They want to support you and tell everyone about you. That kind of referral is every business owner’s dream!

    And psychology backs this up. According to PsychologyToday, customers are more likely to connect with the emotional parts of ads than the written parts. The most effective emotions to use are things like happiness, the feeling of friendship or inclusion, and inspiration.

    Big-name brands like Nike are stand-out examples of businesses using an emotional connection to appeal to shoppers. Nike uses cleverly developed phrases to connect to customers’ feelings of pride and leadership with slogans such as “the first ones” and “just do it”.

    One clever way to create emotional buy-in is to name your loyalty program members. It makes people feel like they are “part of the club”. For example, Our Bralette Club uses a play on slang to playfully name their program the Peach Party, and international outdoor-wear brand Northface calls its loyal customers the VIPeaks.

    How can you use a loyalty program to create a sense of connection and inclusion?


    4. Strong communication with the customers

    One of the loyalty traits for top customer programs is to stay in touch.

    To be top of mind, you need communication to be timely and straightforward. A great marketing strategy will communicate the following with customers:

      • when there is an exciting event or sale on
      • when they have just bought something
      • to stay in touch and add value.

    A combination of all three will mean you can stay in their minds.

    In action, communication with your loyal customers might look like this:

    1. You send out an email to promote a special members-only sale and remind members that they can use their loyalty points.
    2. Once they have bought something, send another email to thank them and update them on how many points they earned with their recent purchase (the best time to touch base is right after they have purchased).
    3. Send them an update with their total points balance and add more value to the message by including deals such as a new member-only product or an exciting email related to your niche.

    Did you know that you can seamlessly automate all of your customer touchpoints, email campaigns, and loyalty notifications with Marsello?

    Book a demo


    5. Digital optimization is at the forefront of their strategy

    You need to optimize your online presence now more than ever. 

    A clunky mobile browsing experience could be hurting your business more than you know. No matter how good your product, business, or marketing strategy is, you could lose up to 80% of shoppers who leave bad mobile sites. Remember, consistent branding and good user experience matter!

    Successful customer loyalty programs focus on user experience as well as product development and sales.

    Marsello-SmackBang-Loyalty-Widget

    For example, New Zealand-based dog treat boutique Smack Bang has a beautiful brick-and-mortar store. However, they also use Marsello for their simple, eye-catching customer loyalty widget. It is easy to use, encourages customer behavior by telling them exactly how to earn points, and is 100% on brand with their colors. 

    Customers can easily spend points online and in-store, and Smack Bang sees 100% engagement with their loyalty program. By ensuring that they have a loyalty program connected to their eCommerce and brick-and-mortar stores, the team at Smack Bang can provide their customers with a consistent, rewarding shopping experience no matter where they shop. And that bonus of earning seamlessly across all sales channels also helps protect Smack Bang Big-name in the event of more lockdowns as customers reap the benefits even while shopping from home.


    6. They do not treat customer interactions as transactional

    Customer loyalty programs do precisely that – they build loyalty. They help foster interactions with customers that aren’t just transactional. That’s what sets successful loyalty programs apart. 

    So how do you do this on an individual level while still scaling? Doesn’t it cost a lot to put a lot of time into customers individually? 

    Actually, improving customer service and experience might be MAKING you money. There are a lot of long-term benefits of growing lifetime loyalty and adding extra touchpoints to make sure your customers feel appreciated. 

    For example, Forbes suggests that to improve interactions, you should be personalizing experiences wherever possible. They also suggest letting customers define how they want to interact with you rather than pushing it on them. 

    Instead of pressuring people to join your loyalty program, create something fun and desirable that invites them in. This is all part of creating a thriving community around your brand!

    Examples of brands with stand-out customer loyalty programs


    Let's take a look at a few established brands that have really found their feet with loyalty marketing.

    1. Merrell NZ’s loyalty program builds long-term relationships with customers

    Merrell NZ Tiers loyalty widget


    Internationally renowned outdoors brand, Merrell, has a strong presence in New Zealand, with the NZ chapter of their business operating as the longest-running distributor of Merrell’s products. In the wake of COVID-19, Merrell NZ’s marketing team knew they needed to bolster eCommerce sales and maximize customer loyalty. 

    After creating a solid foundation using Marsello to power their email marketing strategy, Merrell NZ developed a tiered loyalty program to elevate customer experience, build meaningful relationships with shoppers, and foster a team of brand ambassadors. 

    With three tiers, emails promoting their loyalty program, and inviting earn and rewards options, Merrell NZ’s customers have welcomed the loyalty program eagerly. 

    José, sales and marketing manager at Merrell NZ, had this to say about their new loyalty program:

    “[…] the Merrell Rewards program powered by Marsello means a lot to us – it gives us the opportunity to link customers from our retail and web stores, work around customer retention and automate email marketing flows in a really clever way.”

    In the first month since launching the Merrell NZ VIP loyalty program, they saw their VIP customer list grow to 123 members! Customers are also turning around a 15% repeat purchase rate and an average purchase frequency of 3.5x, which just goes to show that Merrell NZ’s customers are already proven loyal regulars.

    It’s no wonder that Merrell’s customers feel welcomed into the brand’s community; their loyalty is rewarded with enticing rewards and engaging communications about causes that interest them!

    Read their whole story to learn more about Merrell NZ’s marketing.

    Read Merrell NZ's Success Story

     

    2. LEGO Certified Store’s customer-centric approach to loyalty rewards

     

    LEGO Certified Stores' loyalty widget on a bright yellow background


    When looking for loyalty program inspiration and reward development, look no further than LEGO Certified Stores (based in South Africa).

    Whether shopping in-store or online, customers earn 1 point for every R 1.00 spent. They can then redeem their points for cash-back and exclusive gifts that encourage customers to shop time and time again!

    It’s no secret that the LEGO community is internationally dedicated! With somewhat of a cult following, LEGO is no longer considered just for children, and LEGO Certified Stores’ loyalty program helps them build customer relationships for the long term.

    Through combining their loyalty program and other marketing efforts, LEGO Certified Stores build a community around their brand and connect their customers through LEGO.

    One thing has remained essential for the LEGO Certified Stores team: seamless customer experience no matter where they shop. They had this to say about their Marsello-powered loyalty connected across both their Shopify and Vend-powered stores.

    "Marsello offers a single integration into our POS and online store for our email database. The nature of our retail offering revolves heavily around our loyalty program and the exclusive gifts that customers can redeem from us. Marsello made the most sense as it offers a single loyalty program that extends to customers online and in-store. We have many customers that shop with us in both channels and expect a seamless loyalty and marketing experience."

    Read LEGO’s full customer story here to learn more.

    Read LEGO's Success Story

    3. bCODE’s point promotion campaigns encourage customer engagement and buy-in


    bCODE's "double perks" points promotion email on a banner of a woman modelling blue sneakers


    When looking for a stand-out loyalty promotion strategy, look no further than Nigerian shoe brand bCODE!

    The launch of any marketing campaign can feel like a daunting task when so much often hinges on its success. When bCODE expanded their loyalty program from just their brick-and-mortar store and launched it online, they knew they needed to do so with a bang!

    What better way to do this than offering customers double points over launch weekend and promoting the offer through emails and social media?

    With a spend threshold and a set time frame, bCODE (then known as THE BCODE) encouraged increased sales, loyalty program sign-ups, reward redemptions, and more! In fact, just before they sent the above email (with a captivating GIF included), bCODE encouraged customer sign-ups by sending an email campaign that detailed how shoppers could sign up to the newly expanded loyalty program and earn points in the lead-up to the weekend’s promotion. 

    After launching their double points campaign, bCODE saw an astounding 94% increase in loyalty points spent, and over one year later, their loyalty program is thriving both in-store and online!

    Read bCODE’s customer success story.


    Read bCODE's Success Story

    4. Anna Beck’s inviting loyalty program entices all types of customers


    Anna Beck's loyalty widget on a background showcasing some of the brand's jewlery

     

    The team behind well-loved designer jewelry brand Anna Beck knows that a low barrier to entry is one of the fastest ways to encourage loyalty program sign-ups and grow customer loyalty. When they developed their loyalty program, they kept it simple, beautifully on-brand, and undeniably enticing. 

    As soon as customers join, they are rewarded with a 10% discount. And within their next shop, they can earn their next reward – a free cleaning cloth. By generously rewarding customers early into their brand experience, Anna Beck creates gratifying customer experiences that build loyalty from the earliest stages. Those customers are then much more likely to remain loyal and even become vocal brand ambassadors.
     

    “​​Through the data, we’ve found that we have incredibly loyal customers. Once they make their second purchase, they are highly likely to be lifelong customers. Marsello allows us to easily reward those loyal customers for sticking around; it was a no-brainer. Anna Beck has only been an online retail brand for a handful of years, and a loyalty program was the natural next step.”

    We’ll let you in on a secret, too: Anna Beck experimented with including tiers into their loyalty program but decided that keeping it simple was best for their brand. Experimenting, looking at the data, and then drawing data-driven conclusions that best benefit your business is an essential part of marketing success. There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to customer loyalty, and we love that Anna Beck was able to find a loyalty program design that suits their business and delights their customers. 

    Interested in learning more about Anna Beck’s marketing?


    Read Anna Beck's Success Story

     

    Final words

    The number one similarity between successful loyalty programs is a customer-first approach. Keeping it simple, branded, and customer-centric will naturally benefit your revenue as much as your customers. Put them first and you will reap the rewards organically.

    Looking for an easy way to reward your customers? Marsello is the all-in-one software for simple in-store and eCommerce loyalty programs! 

    Drive brand awareness with customer loyalty

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    If you aren't leveraging customer loyalty software to drive brand awareness, you're leaving money on the table. So how do you see profit from brand...

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    Building brand awareness online is harder than ever. How can you stand out in all the noise? Easy.

    You get your loyal customers to build brand awareness for you.

    Referral marketing has a conversion rate 3-5 x higher than any other form of marketing. If you are not leveraging customer loyalty software to drive referrals, reviews and bonuses, you are leaving money on the table.

    Using a combination of content marketing and investing in your biggest fans will help your brand awareness skyrocket.

    Marsello-BrandAwareness-WithLoyalty

    Why is it important for businesses to build brand awareness


    It is easier to sell to people that already trust your brand. They have already crossed that first threshold, experienced your products, and enjoyed the journey they’ve had with your store so far! Brand awareness builds this trust faster, encourages connectivity, and increases ROI.

    Let’s break this down with the following concepts:

    1. Brand awareness builds customer trust

    All you are doing is building familiarity. If someone is choosing which brand to buy, they are more likely to choose something they recognize and know something about. 

    You can build that trust and brand awareness by 

        • Having a consistent presence online and in-person
        • Putting a face on your brand or product 
        • Telling your brand story 

    Using social proof from existing customers (people trust other people for reviews over you!)

     

    2. Brand awareness helps your audience to associate and relate to your brand

    Brand association is when people can easily bring your business and its traits to mind. This is powerful in growing your brand awareness because ultimately people associate this with high-quality, go-to brands. 

    Think of Apple products for example. When you think about their brand, some of the traits you might associate with them are:

        • Innovation 
        • Sleek
        • High quality/exclusive 
        • Favored by creatives

    This is the power of positioning. How customers feel when they think of your brand is just as important as sales and marketing strategies. This is why brand awareness is important for your business growth as a whole.

     

    3. Brand awareness builds brand equity

    Brand equity is the increased revenue a business makes when it has a recognizable name or value. 

    You probably already know what brand equity is in practice. 

    Say you are in a hurry in the supermarket. Brand equity is the reason you automatically choose Pantene shampoo over something name-brand even if it costs a lot more. You associate the brand with salon-quality and shiny hair (you know the kind of ad we are talking about!). 

    Building brand awareness is directly tied to brand equity. It increases brand loyalty over competitors. 

    There are three components of brand equity that you should consider when building brand awareness: 

        • Brand perception - This is what customers believe about you, not what your marketing says. Is it luxury? Fun? Accepting? Worth the price? This comes down to branding and positioning  
        • Positive or Negative Effects - Whatever customers believe will either help or harm your bottom line. Does their perception make them excited to spend money with you? Are you tracking Net Promoter Scores?
        • Value - Positive effects will bring value to your business. This is both in the form of revenue, as well as further positive brand perception.

    In other words, brand perception + positive effect = value for your business.

    Those three components determine whether revenue is going up because customers are choosing you over other companies due to your perceived higher value.

    Marsello-Loyalty-Program-Email-SMS-Campaign

    How to drive brand awareness with customer loyalty

     

    So how do you ensure that your customer loyalty program will continue to drive brand awareness and business growth? 

     

    1. Reward existing customers for referrals

    The best way to market your online business is to get raving fans to do it for you. That’s why a referral rewards program can be so effective in raising brand awareness! 

    You don’t necessarily have to run an affiliate program or use influencers. A simple points reward system can be just as effective. 

    Our Bralette Club showcases this beautifully. Their Peach Party members can earn points even when they aren’t purchasing anything. By simply referring a friend, they can earn more points to spend in the store. As well as this, they encourage social media engagement and sharing which deepens brand ambassador relationships even further.

    Our Bralette Club's loyalty widget on a light pink banner

    The best part is that it is not just beneficial to reward existing loyal customers. The people they refer to you? They are 18% more loyal than customers you get from any other type of marketing.

    2. Leverage the benefits of social media

    Social media might feel overwhelming and saturated, but it is still the best way to build brand awareness.

    A Clutch survey also showed that 58% of customers agreed that they would choose to share their positive brand experiences on social media. A brand awareness strategy would be encouraging them to tag you!

    Leveraging social media allows you to entertain and interact with customers. It helps to create a community around your brand. Don’t forget, customers remember the way your brand makes them feel. Being present on social media gives you a platform to position yourself in their minds. 

    Tips for building brand awareness using social media:

        • Use a consistent branding “voice” 
        • Show PEOPLE - customers using your product, staff doing work behind the scenes, use people in your product photography 
        • Engage with followers, don’t just ignore messages or content they share. Set up a loyalty program or giveaway that rewards them for sharing and engaging on social media  
        • Have a team member that is dedicated to customer service. Make it easy for people to ask questions - sometimes, that means answering a few direct messages on social media instead of the help desk.


    3. Use content marketing in your brand awareness program

    Effective brand awareness isn’t just about telling people to “buy this thing”.

    It’s about community building. It’s about interacting with customers and their interests.

    That is why content marketing is so important.

    There is currently a huge shift towards video marketing and “infotainment”, especially on social media platforms. This is where businesses are getting in front of customers in a way that both entertains and educates them about their product or niche.

    Say you had a business that sells candles and homeware. You wouldn’t just tell people to buy a candle.

    Using content marketing (and a deep understanding of your audience), you could create content like how to make a magazine-worthy lounge, and how to reuse old candle holders. A vegan protein powder business might share recipes for healthy protein cookies and smoothies.

    It lets your customers interact with you even when they’re not buying.

    To build even better brand awareness, encourage user-generated content (UGC). UGC is any photo or review of your product in action. It doubles as social proof because new customers can see other people using your product. 


    4. Encourage customers to provide reviews about your brand

    The hard truth about marketing? Your customers will do it better than you ever will. 

    That’s why reviews and social proof are so important in brand awareness. 

    Luckily there are ways that you can organically encourage customers to provide reviews about your brand:

        • Make it part of your loyalty program where they can earn points for writing reviews
        • Set up automatic email campaigns that ask them for reviews right after they purchase (directly after purchase it is a valuable window!)
        • Be active on social media and encourage people to tag you when they use or talk about your products so you can share them on your platforms 
        • Set up a referral or affiliate program that rewards them for telling people they know.


    5. Surprise your loyal customers

    Want a fail-proof customer loyalty strategy? Surprise your most loyal customers. 

    Let them know that you appreciate them and their loyalty. 

    One way is to use the “Taylor Swift” strategy. Even though she has hundreds of thousands of fans, she will often respond to requests to sing at weddings for example. Does she make money from this? No! But her fans are obsessed. 

    Here are a few creative ideas to surprise your loyal customers:

        • Send handwritten thank-you notes 
        • Create a secret branded product just for them and send it out with orders for free (e.g. shirt, stickers)
        • Over-deliver so that they want to talk about your brand even more 
        • Take note of the little things - do they have a favorite tea brand? Have you had a conversation with them about what product they would love to see in your store next? 
        • Share their content even if they’re not paid influencers 
        • Send birthday notes and bonuses (super easy if you have customer loyalty software like Marsello).

    Find ways to budget in rewards for your most loyal customers. 

    6. Increase the brand reach and awareness with advertising

    If you have a product-based business, you will probably run paid advertising at some point in your marketing strategy. Advertising, especially on social media, has the potential for huge reach to new audiences and customers.

    Again, it is about building familiarity. That way when your target market eventually goes to buy, and your brand pops up as an option, they are already aware that you exist.

    Tips for online and social media advertising for brand awareness

        • Make sure you have a product that converts before throwing money into social media advertising 
        • Pair it with an organic social media and evergreen content marketing strategy 
        • Run awareness campaigns first to gather target market pixel data before selling directly.

    Rewards-Email


    Advertising can support an already amazing loyalty program strategy. For example, when outdoor apparel brand Merrell NZ launched their loyalty program, they used their omnichannel loyalty program to promote their new rewards system through emails. They announced how they planned to give back to existing amazing customers and how people could become part of the community.

    Using a combination of email marketing, social media and paid advertising can all skyrocket your customer loyalty and awareness.

     

    7. Give your brand a personality

    To build brand awareness you need to connect emotionally with your audience. Giving your brand a personality can solidify your brand in their minds!

    A great example of a brand personality is the Australian health-food brand Botanika Blends

    Not only do they have high-quality products, but they also have colorful, playful wizard motifs that are worked into all of their branding. Their wizard is extremely recognizable and pops up everywhere on their website, marketing, and even order confirmation emails. 

    Examples of giving your brand a personality to build brand awareness: 

        • Naming your customers/audience/community 
        • Branding your loyalty program 
        • Have an engaging social media presence that people want to tag you in
        • Share content that isn’t just about selling products 

    Take advantage of using real people in your content- people are more likely to remember faces than brand names so use people to stand out!

    8. Continually measure your brand awareness progress

    Building a memorable brand is continuous. You can’t just “do it once” and expect results! 

    That’s why it is important to use some form of brand awareness measurement. 

        • Are you tracking loyalty member sign-ups? 
        • Do you have a referral or affiliate program that loyal customers can market for you? 
        • Do you have a centralized platform that automatically tracks campaign progress?

    Successful loyalty programs are in it for the long haul. 

     

    Final words


    Building brand awareness builds trust, loyalty, and a business that customers can connect with emotionally. Not only does it increase customer loyalty, but it will encourage customers to refer people they know and drastically increase your marketing ROI. 

    Marsello’s customer loyalty software and marketing automation make brand awareness effortless for retail and hospitality businesses. Start building brand awareness and customer loyalty with Marsello’s all-in-one marketing platform.

    How to drive repeat customers with a VIP loyalty program (with examples)

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    A VIP loyalty rewards program gives your business a structured way to reward your most loyal customers. Learn the ins and outs of creating tiered loyalty.

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    A rewards program is anything that you use to motivate customer behavior. A VIP loyalty program elevates that strategy by making customers feel special! 

    Rewarding your customers is the fastest way to build brand awareness. Loyal customers contribute to the most sales, refer more new customers than any other type of customer, and actively market your brand for you. 

    A VIP loyalty program gives your business a structured way to reward loyal customers. Using strategies like outstanding customer service, personalizing your marketing segments, and connecting with your customers, you can give back to your most dedicated fans and drive profitable repeat sales.

    Alchemy Equipments VIP loyalty program and notification email

    How do loyal customers help with business growth


    Loyal customers grow your business because of something called the Pareto Principle. Also known as the Law of the Vital Few, this theory states that80% of your sales generally come from 20% of your customers. That 20% are usually your most loyal and regular customers. 

    From a simple ROI perspective, this is where you want to put your money. 

    Not only do your top 20% of customers contribute to 80% of your revenue, they also drive referrals. 

    A 2015 study showed that 83% of people would trust a recommendation from people they know. As well as this, shoppers who existing loyal customers have successfully referred have a 37% higher customer retention rate and have a 25% higher lifetime value than other customers. 

    Investing in your loyal fans with some kind of VIP program is invaluable. 

     

    Why is it important to have a strong VIP program


    Building a VIP program into your sales strategy is the easiest way to reward loyal customers. 

    It is also a great way to create NEW loyal customers. That’s because you are making a direct correlation between people engaging with your business or product and getting a positive reward. You are incentivizing actions that are typical of loyal customers. 

    Successful VIP programs:

        • Are simple to join 
        • Are easy to understand (i.e., customers know exactly how to earn points or move between tiers) 
        • Have a branded community built around it with branded tiers in the loyalty program 
    Focus on rewarding the customer, not just increasing revenue (that’s just a side effect of loyal customers!).


    Our Bralette Club's membership loyalty tiers explainer webpage


    How to convert your regular customers to VIP’s


    So how do you strengthen your customer relationships enough to create vocal brand advocates and lasting loyalty?

     

    1. Deliver outstanding customer service

    The best VIP rewards in the world won’t drive repeat customers if you have terrible customer service. 

    In fact, according to Microsoft, 54% of consumers globally say that they have higher customer service expectations than they did in 2020. 

    If you have to choose where to spend your yearly budget, you could put just about all of it into customer service for your most loyal customers. A person with a positive Net Promoter Score (i.,e. they would promote your business to their friends) has a lifetime value of up to 1400% more than someone who wouldn’t promote your business. 

    2. Identify your customers that provide value

    Your long-term business strategy should obviously include bringing in new customers. However, identifying your Most Valuable Customers (MVCs) is just as important. 

    Your MVCs are the ones who order frequently and have a higher value per order. In other words, your loyal customers. You probably know that it is more cost-effective to retain customers than acquire new ones. Who are your existing VIPs? 

    Here’s what bespoke jewelry brand Anna Beck had to say about finding their MVCs: 

    “Through the data, we’ve found that we have incredibly loyal customers. Once they make their second purchase, they are highly likely to be lifelong customers. Marsello allows us to easily reward those loyal customers for sticking around, it was a no-brainer. Anna Beck has only been an online retail brand for a handful of years, and a loyalty program was the natural next step.”

    Anna-Beck-Social


    Some of the ways you can identify your Most Valuable Customers: 

        • How often do they purchase 
        • How much they purchase in each order compared to your average customer 
        • What their overall lifetime value is- you’re looking for people that spend the most overtime, not a one-time big hit, and then never come back 

    3. Use hyper-personalization for your target users

    Marketing automation is the fastest way to personalize customer experience while still scaling. Research from Accenture showed that “33% of customers who abandoned a business last year did so because personalization was lacking”. 

    Ways that you can start personalizing your VIP customer experience: 

        • Create an automatic email sequence for new members 
        • Send product recommendations based on their previous purchases using segmentation 
        • Send VIP members special surprises or freebies on their birthday
        • Save abandoned carts 
        • Run a tiered loyalty program that lets them unlock exclusive rewards 

    The best part? All of this can be done through the Marsello platform! 

    Hyper-personalization makes it even easier to target VIP customers who are most likely to buy anyway. 

     

    How to create repeat customers with a loyalty program

    The cornerstone of loyalty success is repeat customers – so how do you keep your customers coming back time and time again, and how do you reduce that repeat purchase cycle?

    1. Give something in return to your customers

    You can start driving repeat customers by giving them something in return. 

    The easiest way to start? Create a reward points system. This is where customers earn 1 point for every $1 they spend (as a simple example). Once they reach a certain threshold, they can exchange it for a reward. Consider building a VIP loyalty program model into your loyalty program too; this way loyalty members can accumulate points or spend thresholds to move up to the next tier and see increased value with each engagement with your store. 

    For example, the Evermore Toys loyalty program gives their customers $10 for every $100 they spend. This simple yet elegant system of giving back to customers resulted in 156x ROI.

    Evermore_Reward


    No matter what your VIP rewards program is, it must be customer-centric. 

    2. Connect with your customers beyond purchase

    Connecting with your customers looks like community building, strategic email marketing, and content marketing. This achieves two things (besides giving you more small opportunities to engage with customers online). 

    Firstly, it increases brand awareness. 

    Content marketing and email workflows keep you top of mind even if you are not selling directly. Your online presence also contributes to the feeling of a community, especially if you refer to your VIP members specifically. 

    Secondly, it encourages repeat customers. 

    For example, signing up for your VIP program might trigger an automatic email marketing sequence. If product recommendations in the first email don’t motivate a purchase, automatically follow it up with an exclusive discount just for them.

    Footwear brand Merrell NZ does exactly this. 

    Merrell-Tiers-2


    They aim to create community through the communications they produce by linking their loyalty members and email marketing list to local events, thought leadership articles, and engaging topics. 

    They also communicate through social media to further develop these relationships and encourage customer engagement in events that are particularly relevant to the likes of hiking, outdoors, sustainability, and socially progressive causes.

    By combining their loyalty program with an effective email marketing strategy, they developed brand awareness, loyalty, and customer buy-in. 

    Rewards-Email

    3. Turn your customers into brand advocates


    Turning existing customers into brand advocates increases revenue without increasing your marketing budget. So how do you get people to talk about you? 

    Running a VIP program makes customers feel seen and appreciated. That’s the first step for creating brand advocates. You can even give them store points in exchange for sharing or engaging on social media. 

    Next, create excitement around launches or events. This gives them things to talk about on social media or in their network. 

    If you have an active social media presence, make sure to share content that they tag you in! User-generated content is excellent social proof for curious followers.

    Lastly, provide an outstanding product or service. Customers will be thankful to have a product they can count on and will naturally want to shout about it. 

    Want an impressive example of customer engagement? Go check out what Our Bralette Club is doing with their community. 

    Not only did they have a reward redemption rate of 71% in 2020, but they are also extremely active on social media to deepen relationships with their biggest fans. That’s how you turn customers into advocates. 

     

    4. Provide opportunities to incentivize your customers


    Incentivizing isn’t just about buying more. You can create multiple opportunities for customer incentives

    That’s because loyalty programs are all about motivating particular behaviors that grow your business. 

    Examples of ways you can incentivize your customers by rewarding points:

        • Sharing or tagging you on social media
        • Referring a friend or family member 
        • Signing up to be a member
        • Signing up to your email list 
        • Following you on social media 
        • Surprise them with points on their birthday. 

    The lingerie brand, Our Bralette Club lets customers earn basically every time they interact with them. Join the club? Reward. Make a purchase? Points. Collect 1800 points? Enjoy 15% automatically! 


    Bralette_Widget


    This is a stand-out approach that helps to keep OBC’s loyalty program fresh and engaging. 

     

    5. Provide rewards in the form of experiences

     

    You don’t just have to give VIP members discounts or points. You can also use experiential customer rewards

    Experiential rewards are just that- they give customers something they can experience. It creates a long-lasting emotional connection, creates life-long brand advocates, and rewards your high-spending, loyal customers. 

    For example, Sephora’s Beauty Insider Community is a tiered loyalty program. If you are in their “Rouge” top tier, you don’t just get discounts and free shipping. You also get first access to new products, free samples, exclusive beauty events, and meetups. 

    Experiential rewards help you go above and beyond for loyal customers. 

     

    Final words

    Building a VIP loyalty program creates a feeling of community, rewards your loyal customers, and builds brand awareness. If you are looking to improve your marketing ROI and lifelong customer loyalty, use Marsello to create a VIP loyalty program that benefits both you and your customers. Marsello is the ultimate all-in-one loyalty program software, perfect for eCommerce, in-person stores (or both!).

    A complete guide to creating effective tiered loyalty programs

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    Tiered loyalty programs are a business owner's secret weapon to establishing life-long customer relationships. Get it right from the start with our...

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    Loyalty programs keep customers coming back using rewards and referrals. But what about tiered loyalty programs? What makes them so uniquely effective for engaging customers and boosting revenue? 

    Tiers prove value to customers throughout their entire customer journey which means that you are consistently enticing customers back.

    Consumers who engage with high-performing loyalty programs are 78% more likely to spend a premium. So the more you reward people, the more loyal they will be! 

    Let’s dive into what a tiered customer loyalty program is, why it is so effective, and tips for implementing a tiered system in your own business. 

    Marsello-Loyalty-Tiers


    What is a tiered customer loyalty program?

    A tiered customer loyalty program is a customer incentive strategy that rewards people the more they spend. Once a customer spends a certain amount or earns a certain amount of points, they move up a level. 

    This could look like a “bronze, silver, or gold” membership, or something like a regular membership versus VIP membership. 

    But how does a tiered loyalty program work? 

    You have probably seen examples of this with airline frequent flyer programs. The more customers spend with a single airline, the more points they accumulate. When they move up, they are then rewarded with bonuses like access to lounges and priority boarding. 

    A tiered system gives more rewards to people higher up to encourage loyalty and higher spending. 

    You may not have a VIP airport lounge, but your business can still take advantage of a tiered loyalty program!

     

    What are the benefits of a tiered loyalty program

    You might be wondering if there are benefits to using a loyalty tier instead of regular rewards. 

    There are a couple of benefits of rewarding loyal customers in this way. 

    Firstly,  it encourages brand loyalty because the more loyal they are, the more rewards they get. It is beneficial and exciting for them to keep purchasing from you over competitors because their customer experience is only going to improve over time. 

    Look at loyalty programs like Amazon Prime. Premium members spend about double what non-members spend and shop twice as much in a 12 month period. 

    The second benefit is that it encourages higher spending. When people have free “points” to use, they will come back. A gift-card study found that 59% of people spent more than they had on their gift cards. 

    Incentivizing people with points and rewards means they are more likely to spend more than they intended.

    Lastly, you can increase the value of the rewards incrementally. Lower tiers still have points and rewards, however, higher levels (i.e. people who spend the most with you!) could have experiential rewards as well as points. 

    For example, beauty brand Mecca runs a loyalty program called the Beauty Loop. Their top-tier members get experiential rewards like surprise gifts 3 times a year, access to exclusive beauty events, and dibs on limited edition products.

     

    Strategies to create a successful tiered loyalty program


    Getting started can feel like the most daunting part of planning your customer loyalty program or adding tiers. Give yourself a good grounding knowledge with these strategies:

     

    1. Provide clear value to customers at every level

    One of the obvious benefits of customer tiers is that nobody misses out on benefits. It just gets better over time! A successful tiered loyalty program will provide value at every level.

    Using the airline example again, a bronze customer might get complimentary food and drink. A silver customer might get priority boarding and free luggage allowance. A gold member might get lounge access, priority boarding, double luggage allowance, and first-class seating. 

    Each tier is rewarded, which improves customer experience, which then encourages more spending and loyalty. There are clear benefits at each level that make loyal customers feel special.

     

    2. Keep it simple for the customers


    If you want higher engagement with your tiered loyalty program, you have to keep it simple. Your customers should know exactly what they need to do to qualify.

    How can you creatively simplify your loyalty program? Here are some ideas 

        • Have a visual loading bar that shows them how much they need to spend to get to the next level 
        • Display the different tiers side by side and show the different value levels
        • Don’t have too many conditions to move up each level – make it worth their time too! 

    Anna-Beck-Social

    An example of a simple loyalty customer is jewelry boutique Anna Beck. Customers automatically receive 100 points just for joining their rewards program!  Since starting their points system, Anna Beck has experienced a 728.33% increase in revenue, directly attributable to their loyalty program.

    Simplicity is a good rule of thumb no matter what loyalty program design you have. 

     

    3. Brand your tiered levels


    As well as having a branded community, consider having branded customer tiering.

    Each level should differentiate customers and reward them for their loyalty and engagement.

    You can keep it simple with a gold-silver-bronze model, or push the creative boundaries like inclusive-lingerie brand Our Bralette Club.

    Our Bralette Club has a branded loyalty program called the Peach Party. That means that all customers get to be part of the community. However, they take it to the next level with their different tiers. 

    Our Bralette Clubs membership loyalty tiers explainer webpage

    They have a simple spend threshold system that unlocks new and exciting benefits for customers. Instead of just 1-2-3, they are called “Seed”, “Bloom”, and “Peach”. 

    Their tiers are 100% on brand and invite customers into a fun, inclusive community.


    4. Use experiential rewards for your customers


    Experiential rewards are bonuses that go beyond the transaction. The goal is to exceed their expectations and give them a customer experience they won’t find anywhere else.

    Online competition is fierce for loyalty programs. 44% of consumers aren’t happy with rewards programs because the bonuses feel “irrelevant”.

    It’s not enough to just add discounts for something your loyal customers would probably buy anyway.  Adding experiences to your loyalty rewards program will help you stand out. 

    Experiential rewards you could use for your VIP customers could be things like: 

        • Giving access to fun, exclusive events run by your brand
        • Sending freebies on their birthday 
        • Running giveaways/competitions for similar interests 
        • Gamifying their points to spend on things other than products.


    5. Blend gamification into rewards


    Gamification is an excellent strategy for increasing engagement with your loyalty program. Loyalty program gamification is when you take fun, game-like elements and integrate them into the user experience.

    Examples of gamification are things like earning points, random bonuses or prizes, unlocking surprise rewards, and lottery-type strategies where anyone could win if they purchased in a certain time frame. 

    BCode is a great example of loyalty program gamification. After launching their double points campaign, bCODE saw exactly the kinds of results they could hope for, including a 94% increase in loyalty points spent! 

    Gamification engages your customers and differentiates you from other businesses wanting their attention.

     

    Tips for an effective tiered loyalty program


    If you are going to run a tiered loyalty reward program in your own business, there are a few things you need to implement to be successful.

    1. Customers come first


    Of course, loyalty programs benefit your business – loyal customers, referrals, and improved customer experience all contribute to increased spend per customer.

    However, if you want real engagement with your customers, they need to come first.

    It may be tempting to create a tiered loyalty program that only encourages people to spend more. We promise that you will be a lot more successful and they will love buying your products if you prioritize their experience over revenue.


    2. Regularly monitor results


    You can’t “set and forget” customer loyalty building!

    Part of putting your customer first is to regularly monitor engagement and results and make changes if they aren’t responding. A good loyalty program will have high engagement because people ENJOY spending money with you. 

    To analyze customer experience and run a truly successful rewards program, you should invest in UX analysis and loyalty program software that tracks results automatically.


    3. Effectively communicate with your customers


    Building a loyalty program involves actually building loyalty. To do this you need to communicate with customers at every touchpoint.

    This can be either passive communication or direct communication. 

    Passive communication is how clearly your loyalty program is set out. 

        • Do customers know exactly how to join?
        • Is it obvious how many points they need to get to the next level?
        • Are they aware of the benefits of moving up a level?


    Take pet boutique Smack Bang for example.

    When customers log in to their easy-to-read interface, it is obvious how customers can earn more points.

     Marsello-SmackBang-Loyalty-Widget

    Direct communication is when they interact or make a purchase. 

        • Do you send follow-up emails to ask about their experience?
        • Are you gathering feedback?
        • Do you use language that makes them feel “part of the club” and thanks customers for being loyal? 
        • Could you surprise them even if they haven’t made a purchase recently? 

    The Pareto Principle (also known as the Law of the Vital Few) states that 80% of all sales come from just 20% of your customers and that 20% are usually loyal, returning customers. 

    Make sure you are communicating with your “Vital Few”.

     

    4. Have a single view of all your campaign progress


    The last tip for an effective tiered loyalty program is to centralize your data. You should be able to see your campaign progress at a glance.

    This is especially important if you have both online and in-store rewards. Don’t make it difficult for customers to spend points with you!

    Loyalty programs can improve marketing ROI, drastically increase revenue, create lifetime loyal customers and drive brand awareness. However, you can’t take advantage of all those great benefits if you can’t easily track your campaign progress.

     

    Final Words

    A tiered loyalty program is a clever way to reward customers who spend the most. Using strategies such as gamification, effective and timely communication, and branding your tiers will guarantee higher engagement. Ultimately, giving your customer the VIP treatment will benefit your business! 

    To track your campaign progress, increase ROI, and reward loyalty points with ease, try building your loyalty program with Marsello! 

    6 Tips for creating a point system for rewards

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    The ultimate goal with a loyalty points system is to leverage customer loyalty & grow your business. Learn how to create rewards your customers will love.

    Quick links:




    The ultimate goal with a reward points system is to motivate customer behavior that grows your business. However, it is also a good way to build brand loyalty and reward your most loyal customers. 

    The Pareto Principle (also known as the Law of the Vital Few) states that 80% of all sales come from just 20% of your customers and that 20% are usually loyal, returning customers. 

    Creating a rewards program lets you focus on that valuable 20%!

    If you have ever wondered 

    • What a reward points system is, 
    • How to set up a simple rewards program for loyal customers, and 
    • How you can increase your revenue with a loyalty program

    Then you are in the right place.

    Related: How Mecca Built One Of The World's Best Loyalty Programs


    Marsello-Rewards-Point-System

    What is a reward points system?

     

    According to Shopify, rewarding points is the most common type of customer loyalty program. A reward points system is an incentivization strategy that increases spending through earning in-store points or credits. 

    Customers earn points on their account when they purchase. They can then redeem points the next time they shop or use them for other freebies and perks. Some loyalty programs also let customers accumulate points and move from a “regular” member to a “VIP” member in a tiered program. 

    Evermore Toys is a great example of a simple points rewards system. Their mission is to create high-quality toys for their customers, and they implemented an elegant customer loyalty program that increased their revenue by 738.87%.

    Customers earn 1 point for every $1 they spend; when they reach 100 points they get $10 off their next purchase. Evermore Toys saw a 95% per month increase in loyalty points over a one-year period, showing that you don’t need a complicated loyalty program to get results.

    Evermore Toys Points Reward System explainer page from their website


    6 tips for designing a points reward system for your business

     

    To implement a reward points system for customers, there are a few key systems you need. Your business and your customers are unique. 44% of consumers aren’t happy with rewards programs because the bonuses feel “irrelevant”. So it’s worth a bit of creative strategy! 

    The most successful loyalty programs are specific to your brand community and are extremely customer-focused. 

    Related: 7 Steps To Building A Profitable Loyalty & Rewards Program

    1. Identify the main goals of your customer loyalty program

    Obviously, your loyalty points system benefits your revenue potential. However, you can do so much more with it! So the first step to a successful points system is to identify what you want to achieve with it. 

    Here are a few questions you can ask yourself: 

        • Do you want to build brand loyalty by creating a unique community?
        • Do you want to reward your MOST loyal customers by creating a tiered reward system? 
        • Do you want to delight customers with unexpected surprises? 
        • Do you want to encourage more spending or points accumulation? 
        • Do you want people to share your business on social media or get people to refer their friends? 
        • Are you going to run “points promotions” to encourage higher spending in sales? 

    All loyalty programs motivate particular behaviors. When you are starting out it is best to choose just one or two goals so that you can track their progress and then build from there.

     

    Download the free CLV Calculator
    Most retailers use loyalty programs to increase the average lifespan and value of a customer. Use Marsello's free calculator to quickly estimate your average CLV.

     

     


    2. Determine how customers will earn the rewards

    Next, you will need to determine HOW customers actually get rewards. 

    You might want to keep it simple like the Evermore Toys example above. They spend a dollar, they earn a point. There’s nothing wrong with avoiding complications.

    Loyalty programs also offer points for customer behavior such as

        • Sharing on social media 
        • Earning freebies on your birthday 
        • Giving product reviews
        • Referring a friend

    Take Our Bralette Club as an example. Their loyalty program members can earn points when they make a purchase, for every friend they refer, for Tweeting about the brand, and even just for getting a year older on their birthday.

    Our Bralette Clubs loyalty widget on a light pink banner

    Other models include tiered rewards systems. This is where members can move from regular member to VIP status once they cross a spend threshold. VIP customers could have benefits such as Double Points (every dollar is 2 points) or other bonuses like automatic free shipping. 

    You will also need to consider online versus in-person shopping. Can customers earn and spend points no matter where they shop with you? Using a points reward software like Marsello makes loyalty programs completely seamless across eCommerce and POS.

    3. Determine how these rewards will be awarded to the customers

    Once customers have earned their points, it’s time to reward them! Do you have a system for how they can claim points? 

    Firstly it is important to have a login for members where they can easily see their points program total. Seamless integration with your eCommerce checkout and POS is critical for a successful loyalty program. Don’t make your customers work for it! 

    Next, identify the timeline. Can they redeem points as soon as they earn them? Will they receive a coupon or code for their next purchase? Will you send them something for free? 

    Lastly, consider what form their rewards will be in. It doesn’t just have to be points they can spend in-store. 

    Here are a few ways you could reward your customers in a points program:

        • Offer secret sales for people with  a certain number of points 
        • Collaborate with other businesses to do giveaways with similar products 
        • Give away freebies when they buy multiple items 
        • Do live in-person events for your most loyal customers 
        • Offer other bonuses like free shipping or first access to new products 
        • Set up an affiliate program where they can make actual money for referring new customers 

    Nigerian shoe brand bCODE has an outstanding loyalty program strategy. When they first launched their online rewards, they created a double-point promotion as well as a spend threshold. 

    The bCODE's points promotion email campaign


    With their email marketing and social media campaign, they encouraged increased sales, loyalty program sign-ups, reward redemptions, and more! They also encouraged bCode customers to sign-up by sending an email campaign that detailed how shoppers could sign up to the newly expanded loyalty program and earn points in the lead-up to the weekend’s promotion.

    With a 94% increase in loyalty points spent, you know they are rewarding loyalty right! 


    4. Identify the value of your rewards

    If customers earn points-per-dollar, you will need to identify the value of your rewards. You can categorize rewards from low to high value based on how loyal customers are. 

    Will they get a discount voucher? Do their points add up to free shipping? Can they move up a membership level if they reach a spend threshold? 

    If you have a tiered loyalty program, the value of the rewards can go up with each level. 

    For example, a first-tier member could earn points that add up to a discount voucher. A second-tier member could earn double points. A third tier, VIP member could have free shipping, triple points, and access to exclusive events. 

    Remember, your most loyal customers bring in the most amount of revenue. It is worth going above and beyond to improve their experience with higher value rewards.

    Look at outdoor apparel & footwear brand Merrell NZ. As soon as you sign up for their rewards program you can start moving up the tiers. Their silver and gold tier members enjoy generous discounts when they earn a certain number of points. Merrell NZ makes it simple for members to earn points with amazing rewards and a simple loyalty program widget.


    Merrell NZ's VIP tiered loyalty program online widget


    5. Associate a name/brand to your loyalty program

    No matter how amazing your product is, you are facing a huge amount of competition. Your customers are probably being asked to join a huge number of other loyalty programs. 

    To make your customer reward system stand out, we recommend branding it. 

    How can you make your loyal customers feel like they are part of a special community? This is where customer experience comes into play for modern business. It’s not enough to simply sell to your customers. Associating a brand name with your loyalty program makes you memorable. 

    For example, Marsello user Our Bralette Club has a membership loyalty program called the Peach Party. Peach Party members enjoy generous discounts and free products, and most importantly the branded name makes them feel part of the club!


    6. Promote your rewards point program

    Finally, you need a system for promoting your points reward program. You can’t reward customers if they don’t know it exists! Don’t be afraid to promote it everywhere online and in stores. 

    This isn’t just for new customers or new business. When Evermore Toys rebranded, they used a clever email marketing campaign to encourage existing loyalty members to engage with the newly branded store and earn more rewards.

    Evermore Toys' loyalty program announcement email on a bright yellow banner


    We have a few tips for promoting your rewards system online:

        • Let people register for an account at the checkout and remind them to sign in
        • Have a banner on your website telling people about the benefits of becoming a member and earning points 
        • Let customers know on your social media platforms 
        • Use an omnichannel marketing platform that combines your reward system online with your POS 
        • Automate your email marketing strategy to communicate effectively with new and existing members- you need to promote at the right times to ensure high engagement!

    Your loyalty program is all about serving your customers even more. Shout its benefits from the rooftops!

     

    Final words

     

    A reward points system is an effective way to increase your revenue. It rewards your most valuable customers and goes beyond a transactional relationship. By branding your loyalty club, designing an easy-to-follow system, and promoting it for every new and returning customer, you will see incredible ROI on your rewards program. 

    If you are looking for the easiest way to set up a loyalty program for your eCommerce or in-person store, you’ve already found it. Marsello makes it simple to set up, market and run a successful point system for rewards. Start rewarding your customers with Marsello!

    Read more: 7 Steps To Building A Profitable Loyalty & Rewards Program

    Boost your leads using diverse cross-platform marketing

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    Learn how to make the most of your sales channels and marketing platforms by first understanding which platforms will perform best for your business.

     

    Cross-platform marketing is becoming an essential part of any marketing strategy as customers become more diverse and move between more platforms as part of their buyer journey. Understanding how to make the most of this approach will allow you to have more positive engagements with your customers, leading to a higher rate of return.

    There are certain challenges to be aware of when it comes to starting out in cross-platform marketing. However, there are also specific benefits that you aren’t able to achieve through more static, siloed approaches. Understanding both of these will help you develop effective strategies that help you create more enjoyable interactions for your customers.

     

    What is cross-platform marketing?


    Marsello_atlas_cross_platform_Marketing_internal_3


    Cross-platform marketing creates an integrated experience for your customers. They are able to move between platforms such as your social media, eCommerce website, marketplaces, and physical stores during their research and purchase process. Information is maintained and integrated as they move, providing a tailored experience that feels like one fluid representation of your brand.

    The key difference between this and multi-platform marketing is that the emphasis is on allowing customers to move seamlessly between platforms. With cross-platform marketing, the messaging is not statically held in silos, instead, it adapts to the needs of the customers. The customer, not the product, is the center of the marketing activities.

     

    What are the common challenges of cross-platform marketing


    Before you begin building a cross-platform marketing strategy, it’s important to understand the challenges that you’re likely to face. This can help you better prepare for them and still achieve success with your strategy.

    Cross-platform marketing is more complicated than single-platform marketing by its very nature. This means you need to spend more time considering how to reach the right users at the right time. With a huge array of platforms available, it can be hard to predict where customers are going to be and when. You will need to learn how your ideal customers use your key platforms and use this information to inform your marketing strategy. . What works well as a television commercial won’t necessarily translate into a TikTok video.

    In the digital age, there seem to be endless amounts of data to process. However, the quality of this data isn’t always as high as marketers would like. Without a cross-channel marketing platform to bring all of this data into one place, it can be challenging to integrate it well. This also influences knowing the right channels to advertise on.

    With cross-platform marketing, attribution can become more tricky. As the customer moves between multiple platforms, it is difficult to define which tactic was responsible for the sale. A more holistic view of attribution must be used, knowing that all tactics contribute towards sales.

     

    7 cross-platform marketing tips to help boost leads

     


    Marsello_atlas_cross_platform_Marketing


    Often,
    the hardest part of creating a marketing strategy is knowing where to start. Your cross-platform marketing strategy will go a long way by understanding your customers and where they will engage with your brand most. Read our 7 tips to get a good grasp of how to implement a really solid strategy.

     

    1. Make use of buyer personas


    By building buyer personas, you’re able to better understand your potential and existing customers. Using real data and insights, you can better understand what segments of your market are motivated by and interested in. This flows through into the content you create and the platforms you show up on.

    To create a buyer persona begin with gathering data on the types of people you want to include. Again, this should include existing as well as potential customers. As you bring all of this together, look for commonalities. This includes demographics, purchasing behavior, ways of consuming content, and preferred platforms. A great way to get started is to couple your analytics data and paid advertising to create demographic-based segments from your current customers and create look-a-like audiences, refining your ad group segments as you iterate. You can assume these customers are more likely to convert than more generalized ad groups because they have similar ‘attributes’ to your current customers.

     

    2. Use platforms that resonate with your users


    There is an ever-growing list of platforms that you can use to market to your customers. Understanding which of these your target markets are using ensures that you’re selecting the correct cross-channel marketing platforms. These include email marketing, SMS, your website, social media channels, news or information websites, and more.

    When building your buyer personas, consider platform selection as part of this process. This will allow you to build customer journeys that move across the right platforms for the right customers in a way that feels natural and fluid. You can then also create content that is platform-specific and relevant.

     

    3. Use a single platform to analyze all your data

     

    Flatlay of a laptop and open notebook with a cellphone showing graphs and a pen and pencil laying on a bright yellow background

    When creating content and customer journey’s that move across multiple platforms, there can be vast amounts of interrelated data to report. Although you can’t attribute sales to a single platform or interaction, you want to be able to see all of the interactions that lead up to a sale.

    This is why using a single platform to analyze your cross-channel marketing data can simplify your reporting. Having one source of truth that can track your customers between platforms and through the entire journey makes reporting more accurate. Marsello’s integrated platform can help monitor the entire customer experience.


    4. Create content for users at every stage of the buyer journey


    Depending on where they are in the buyer journey, your customers are looking for different types of content. When mapping out a content strategy, it needs to align with your customer journeys. Your content could be designed to inspire, educate or differentiate; at the end of the day, it needs to be created with your customer in mind – giving them both what they need, while also directing them to interact with your content as you intended.

    Your content strategy should include the three key stages of the journey – awareness, consideration, and decision. Begin by looking at the gaps in your current content and where you could supply more information that would help trigger purchase. This could include email marketing that drips features to help build up a detailed picture of your products. Customers may need step-by-step instructions or videos showing novel user cases (depending on what your product offering is). Your content should educate and delight; it should keep your customers engaged and encourage them to delve deeper into your product offering.

     

    5. Explore the benefits of social media

     


    Social media icons displayed on an iPhone being viewed by someone sat at a table with a cup of coffee

    Social media channels have many benefits. They allow you to use visuals to educate and inspire your audience. It also allows for two-way communication, creating a personalized experience for your customers. Websites, print media or television only allow for you to communicate outwardly to your audience. Social media allows you to engage with your audience conversationally, increasing customer engagement and strengthening customer relationships.

    Cross-media marketing doesn’t mean that you need to show up on all platforms. Instead, find channels that work well together and are used by your buyer persona and ideal customer profile. Then you can invest the resources in creating channel-specific content rather than attempting to be everywhere and not performing well on any channels.

     

    6. Use data generated to make favorable business decisions


    By showing up in multiple channels for your customers, you are able to gather better data to help with your decision-making process. It will help to finesse your buyer personas with detailed customer behavior data such as platforms used and effective messaging. You’re better able to identify trends and patterns as they emerge.

    This data allows you to contextualize your audience’s preferences and decisions. Data-driven decision-making naturally builds on this as you are able to point to key metrics to help influence future campaigns. Each campaign then becomes the opportunity to test and further refine your data.

     

    7. Use a cross-channel marketing platform


    Marsellos in-app insights page showing retailers data and revenue results
    Using a cross-channel marketing platform allows you to work more efficiently and effectively track data across platforms. Marsello’s omnichannel approach integrates with your other platforms to create a seamless customer experience. You can track customers throughout channels as well as creating platform-specific campaign content.

    For example, it allows you to monitor who has engaged with a specific email marketing campaign. You can then follow up with SMS outreach to increase your success rate. Alternatively, you can automatically resend campaigns to those who haven’t opened or engaged with adjustments to better understand what your audience responds to and to increase open rates.

    My Sisters Closets 24 Hour Event email campaign.

     


    My Sister’s Closet does a wonderful job of maximizing their multi-channel marketing for their buyer personas. Their marketing moves seamlessly from email campaigns, SMS marketing, loyalty programs, to social media and even podcasts. They create content that they know will delight their customers all while encouraging sales. With a tightly integrated tech stack that starts with Shopify Plus, Shopify POS and Marsello, the MSC team are able to make data-driven decisions based on their most engaged customers. In fact, My Sister’s Closet has seen an astounding 641% increase in marketing-related revenue since using Marsello to manage its marketing.

     

    Final words

    Cross-platform marketing helps you to boost your leads. It allows you to reach your customers at different times, in different places using different messaging that all ties together to complement your brand and improve customer experience. This means that your content can be more tailored and specific to each interaction and creates more enjoyable interactions for your customers.

    Using an omnichannel platform like Marsello can help streamline this process. By integrating with your POS and eCommerce platforms, customers are accurately tracked throughout their entire journey. You can then better attribute sales to your specific marketing campaigns and interactions, giving you data that you can trust to further refine your marketing.

     

    Start omnichannel marketing

     

    Improve retail customer engagement with these 7 marketing touchpoints

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    How do you ensure your customers‘ experiences are enjoyable, memorable, & seamless across all your stores? Short answer: marketing touchpoints.

    A customer hands a card to a shop cashier to pay for goods


    Retail customer engagement is described as the emotional connection between a customer and a brand. The more you nurture the relationship outside of the financial transaction, the more you will gain trust, loyalty, and repeat customers. 

    You probably already understand the importance of customer engagement, but how do you start implementing it? How do you create a retail experience that is enjoyable, memorable, and seamless between your in-person and online stores? 

    The answer is marketing touchpoints.

    In this blog post, we will explain the role of multiple touchpoints in the customer journey. Using examples of customer engagement, we provide tangible advice for you to start implementing changes to improve retail sales and increase customer loyalty.

    Quick links:

    Marketing touchpoints’ role in the customer journey

    7 marketing touchpoints to improve retail customer engagement

    1. Engage customers with an in-store mobile experience
    2. Build a strong omnichannel strategy
    3. Identify your customers’ behavior
    4. Use live chat support to enhance a retail customer experience
    5. Leverage technologies like AI and AR for in-store customer service
    6. Combine your customers online and offline customer behaviors
    7. Run a customer loyalty program
    Final Words

    a person uses a blue bank card to shop online

     

    Marketing touchpoints’ role in the customer journey


    Marketing touchpoints are any moments or methods you use to connect with a customer. This is both in-person and online and can be automated with the help of AI technology or personal customer service.
     

    Increasing the number of positive interactions with customers is crucial for retail engagement. Increasing sales is not just about the checkout process: consumers want retail experiences. Did you know that 49% of customers claim to have made impulse purchases after a personalized experience, and 86% of buyers are more likely to spend more with great customer experiences (Segment Survey)? 

    The marketing Rule of 7 states that consumers need to hear a message 7 times on average, however, you don’t always have to use direct advertising methods (i.e. telling people what is for sale and how much it costs) to be top of mind.

    a customer faces a smiling cashier in a physical store

     

    7 marketing touchpoints to improve retail customer engagement


    Customer engagement is the sum of multiple moments with your business.
     

    To scale your retail and online business, you are not just making sales. You are creating experiences through continuous customer engagement. That requires consistent touchpoints with your customers wherever they make a purchase. 

    Below are 7 ways you can naturally increase contact with your customers without just directly marketing to them or enticing them with discounts.


    1. Engage customers with an in-store mobile experience


    Online shopping and mobile access don’t have to be the competition for your in-person store. 78% of young adults use their mobile devices while shopping. You can use it to your advantage!
     

    Providing an in-store mobile experience can increase retail engagement by making it an interactive shopping experience. 

    For example, Sephora realized that customers were checking their phones for third-party reviews, prices, and recommendations. To increase their retail engagement with in-store mobile experiences, they created an app that gave customers reviews and comparisons without having to turn to Google. They also utilize AI to allow customers to try on products virtually by uploading selfies. 

    Some simple ways you can create an interactive in-store mobile experience include:

    • providing free Wi-Fi for customers 
    • offering a system where shoppers can choose the music in-store 
    • displaying QR codes that give customers more information on products, menus (for hospitality businesses), and discounts
    • creating unique hashtags for social media and encourage people to share their shopping experience 
    • creating or making use of an app that lets customers see reviews, products, and discounts.


    2. Build a strong omnichannel strategy


    An omnichannel marketing strategy is when you integrate both in-person and online retail seamlessly.
     

    An omnichannel retail strategy puts the customer actions and reactions at the center. It combines all marketing facets from eCommerce, email automations, website CTA’s, and targeted ads to in-store POS purchases and loyalty programs

    An omnichannel method ensures that visitors become customers and customers become repeat customers by automatically integrating targeted touchpoints at every step of the purchase. 

    Omnichannel marketing strategies include methods such as:

    • capturing customer data from your eCommerce and brick-and-mortar store to drive measurable growth from your marketing. 
    • making it easy for customers to move between online and in-person purchases through customer accounts. 
    • driving customer retention through loyalty programs and apps where customers can spend rewards through your POS and eCommerce store. 
    • sending targeted and intentionally timed email automations that are designed to encourage repeat purchases and triggered by your customers’ habits. 
    • reaching customers through multiple channels (e.g. email, SMS) with discount codes and targeted product recommendations.

    Smack Bang's loyalty program widget displaying program rewards on their website

    New Zealand-based pet care store, Smack Bang does this effortlessly with the help of Marsello loyalty programs. This clever loyalty program has a 100% customer engagement rate! Their app interface is on brand, shows customers their loyalty accrued points, and integrates with their in-store POS, Lightspeed Retail. This allows their customers to redeem rewards in their oh-so-cute boutique store in the city, or online for optimal convenience. 

    Marsello uses all of these strategies to help you increase sales, drive customer loyalty, and effortlessly integrate all of your marketing efforts into one single platform. No more losing customers when they leave your website, no more guessing where your marketing budget is spent, no more making up campaigns as you go!


    3. Identify your customers’ behavior


    Retail engagement is all about knowing your customers’ shopping habits. The customer is king, but the data you use to market to them is the crown. If you can individualize their retail customer experience with data-driven strategies, you both win.
     

    Marsello uses customer segmentation to automatically group your customers based on their behavior using RFM. This allows you to market directly to customers at various points in their purchasing journey, as well as exporting the segments into other tools such as social media. 

    Yucc's 2019 Black Friday campaign with customer segments highlighted.

    This highly effective marketing strategy can drastically increase sales. For example, Yuccs, a European brand behind sustainable and ultra-comfortable shoes, uses Marsello to segment their customers to optimize conversions. For Black Friday 2019, the Yuccs team sent targeted, personalized email campaigns based on each customers’ lead origin and brand interactions (e.g. a loyal customer would see a different message than a Facebook ad lead). This campaign resulted in a 38% revenue boost and continued to a 1057% increase in average weekly revenue

    If you are looking to add segmentation to your next campaign, this Guide to Customer Segmentation will help get you started.


    4. Use live chat support to enhance a retail customer experience


    Customer support will improve your retail engagement because it improves customer satisfaction.

    Customer satisfaction scores (CSAT) are a basic measurement of a customer’s overall satisfaction with a brand or product. 52% of consumers say they have made an additional purchase from a company after a positive customer service experience, so this needs to be an integral part of your customer engagement strategy. 

    Utilizing live chat technology on your website shows customers that they can get help easily if they need it. Research shows that customer satisfaction is increased by businesses that value customer’s time more than other satisfaction measures, such as price. Your customer support and average query resolution time matter!


    5. Leverage technologies like AI and AR for in-store customer service


    Improving your customer service doesn’t just mean more manpower in your store. Artificial intelligence in customer service is changing the way businesses can engage customers both online and in person.

    For example, stores like North Face help customers to find the perfect coat by asking them a series of questions about where they will be and what they will be doing. Other larger stores use apps and AI to help customers navigate the store and find items quickly (no more wandering up and down isles).

    Another example is setting up your omnichannel strategy to capture customer data and set up customer accounts in-store. This way they can access customer service and loyalty programs seamlessly.

    AI allows businesses to scale customer service without sacrificing the benefits of treating each customer as an individual. AI gives you the tools to individualize customer experiences (something that is rated highly by customers) while still being able to scale over time.

    A cellphone shows a customer using AR to try on a pair of AllBirds(source: allbirds)

    Augmented reality (AR) is also fast becoming a popular way for retailers to help themselves stand out while offering an outstanding customer experience. One retailer who knows a lot about ‘standing’ out is Allbirds. With a handful of brick-and-mortar stores and international lockdowns keeping customers house-bound, the celebrate eco footwear brand launched their standalone app, giving shoppers the opportunity to ‘try on’ Allbirds from the comfort of their own homes and get an idea of the shoes and colors they like best.

    While creating your own AR-powered app may not be on the cards for every retailer, the point is that Allbirds created a unique customer experience that ensures the company stands out while the customer’s experience is prioritized. What could you implement easily that would create world-class shopping experiences that will have your customers telling all their friends?


    6. Combine your customers online and offline customer behaviors


    Although online shopping options are increasingly in demand, in-person shopping isn't going anywhere yet. That’s why it is so important to have a strategy that combines data from physical and digital consumer behavior if you have both in your business. This can be simple with CRM software that captures their details in-store and online.
     

    For example, if someone abandons their cart in your online store, automatically tracking their behavior might look like emailing them a discount code, which then triggers a Facebook ad sequence for your local store where they can see the product in person. 

    Another example is customer loyalty programs that allow shoppers to interact with your business in person and online. Integrated systems (like Marsello) let you track customer behavior in person – as you would on your online store – so you can send perfectly timed emails, bonuses, and referral programs to improve retail sales.

    This is the power of using omnichannel marketing to stay top of mind!


    7. Run a customer loyalty program


    Want to turn customers into repeat customers? Customer loyalty programs are an effective way to increase marketing touchpoints and engagement.
     

    Loyalty programs can be extremely effective for increasing sales because they give customers a reason to keep purchasing from you specifically. 

    Some examples of customer loyalty programs you can integrate are:

    • Reward points whether they shop online or in-person that can be redeemed virtually or in-store 
    • Reward spend thresholds with things like free shipping, discounts, and exclusive products 
    • Enable automated emails triggered to send immediately after they purchase to let them know they have won rewards or won VIP status 
    • Encouraging and rewarding them for sharing on social media 
    • Creating a VIP program that rewards higher purchases and loyalty 
    • Start a referral program that lets people who are already fans do the marketing for you (and reward them, even more, when someone purchases!).

    caroline lifestyle's loyalty widget that gives website users details on loyalty rewards

    Fashion brand Carolina Lifestyle offers customers an incredibly generous loyalty program that has consistently high engagement rates. Using Marsello, their loyalty program has generated $1.6million AUD for the label, has customers returning every two months to purchase on average, and their loyalty points have a 93% redemption rate.

    Improving customer loyalty increases other KPIs such as retention, customer satisfaction scores, net promoter scores, and higher purchase amounts. Cha-ching! 

    The best part? None of this needs to give you headaches! Marsello lets you do all of this effortlessly for both your eCommerce platform and POS. To learn how to make the most out of your loyalty marketing, check out The Loyalty Marketing Guide: 8 Strategies for Gaining Customers for Life.

     

    Final words

    Retail customer engagement is the secret sauce to gaining customer loyalty and improving their experience with your brand. These integrated marketing touchpoints are the difference between making a single sale and letting customers get immersed in your retail world and keep coming back for more. 

    Looking for an easy way to integrate all of these marketing touchpoints and more? Marsello is the all-in-one marketing channel for eCommerce and in-store retailers!

     

    Start omnichannel marketing

     

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