Customer loyalty programs have been around for hundreds of years. One such plan dates back to 1793 when a merchant gave out copper tokens which customers would collect and later exchange for items in the store.
More than two centuries later, a lot has changed, but the concept of loyalty programs still remains a constant: to achieve customer retention and encourage repeat purchases. Here are some of the more innovative customer loyalty programs from around the globe.
Please, stay…just a little bit longer. Thai-owned ONYX Hospitality Group partners with VOILA Hotel to form a program in which members earn 10 points for every eligible U.S. Dollar spent. Other benefits include priority check-in. After additional stays, members earn elevated status and receive room upgrades and other perks.
Drive a hard bargain. With the Hyundai MasterCard in the Philippines, members get a 3% rebate on fuel purchases and 0.5% rebate on other retail purchases. Rebates can be redeemed in the form of Hyundai vouchers to pay for services, parts and labor, and accessories at all authorized Hyundai dealers. Also, members receive a 10% discount on preventive maintenance plus parts and labor, and selected accessories.
Las Vegas casinos reward customers for not gambling. (You read that correctly.)
Rewards accrue depending on how much you spend — not just how much you gamble. Now shopping, nightclubbing, dining and attending shows gives you the chance to mingle with celebrity chefs, hang out with world-class boxers, appear in a Cirque du Soleil production, swim in the shark tank at Mandalay Bay, or dine alongside the Bellagio fountains choreographed to the song of your choice.
Australia’s Buzz Insurance gives customers the gift of time. As policy holders renew, they receive points that can be redeemed for time-saving services from partner organizations such as Dial an Angel (home cleaning, gardening etc), Gizmo (PC and network set up & support etc), and Galmatic (driving and car maintenance courses).
Customer loyalty is being reinvented by social media. In this recently launched program, a business signs up for Pegmo and creates actions they want customers to take in order to win a badge (called a peg in the service – hence the name). Pegmo is integrated with Facebook and Twitter – allowing a business to set the task of “liking” their Facebook page or following them on Twitter — Pegmo automatically recognizes when that act has been completed and notifies the user and tracks peg earnings.
Everyone recognizes that current customers are worth their weight in gold. Companies are getting creative in the way they express their appreciation while attempting to increase the spending of their loyal patrons.