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For Your Loyalty Program

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3 min read

One Key Factor To Consider When Picking A Loyalty Program Provider

One Key Factor To Consider When Picking A Loyalty Program Provider

Once you’ve decided to start a loyalty program, the next step is usually determining how to go about doing so. One option is to build and run your program in-house, and another is to partner with a loyalty program provider who can offer the platform technology and capabilities needed to create the program you want. 

There are several important considerations that come into play when picking a loyalty program provider: technical capabilities, integrations, rewards, reporting and analytics, flexibility, project and account management, and more. But when it comes to choosing a loyalty program provider, it's important to look beyond just the software and technical capabilities, and consider whether the provider can be the right strategic partner you need. 

Modern customers are seeking more from these programs than just transactional interactions - they also want emotional connections. A well-designed loyalty program that scales over time, grows emotional customer loyalty, and delivers real ROI can't be achieved with technology alone. That's why partnering with a loyalty program provider who can offer both platform technology and strategic expertise is key to success.

Why is strategic expertise important in a loyalty program provider? 

Electing to go with a loyalty program provider is more than just choosing what software and technical capabilities are best for you, although those are still important. What you should also consider (and include as part of your evaluation) is the level of strategic guidance and support your loyalty program provider can offer. 

Most businesses and marketers understand how loyalty programs work at the transactional level - make purchases, earn points, redeem points for rewards, and repeat. But it’s become more apparent over recent years that today’s customers expect more than just transactional interactions - they also want emotional connections, to feel recognized and appreciated by the brands they choose to shop from. Building and running a loyalty program that fulfills the modern customer's needs and wants, and provides both transactional and emotional benefits is more complicated than having a simple out-of-box loyalty program that follows the “buy this get that” format. 

When done right, a well-designed loyalty program possesses a number of beneficial characteristics: it can scale and evolve over time; it helps grow emotional customer loyalty; it can easily collect and translate customer and purchase data; and it enables brands to drive desirable member behaviors and actions. Most businesses want this type of loyalty program, but knowing how to create such a program that reflects their brand and continue successfully executing the program after launch is where they start to struggle. 

This is why partnering with a loyalty program provider who can both offer the ideal loyalty platform technology and provide strategic loyalty program guidance you need is key. A great loyalty program provider will have the strategic background to not only design the program you want, but also be able to lay out a plan for ensuring your program succeeds after launch. A loyalty program provider who also serves as a strategic partner can do far more for your program that just provide loyalty platform software: 

  • They can work with you to create a loyalty communications strategy that includes plans for activating and re-engaging lapsed customers as well as nurturing existing customer connections.
  • They can help you decipher and understand loyalty program data, and actually utilize it to drive progress towards your goals
  • They can identify which key milestones and KPIs you should check at regular intervals to make sure your program is performing as it should and help establish contingency plans if there are signs your program is starting to fall off track.

When it comes to choosing a loyalty program provider, it's easy to get caught up in the technical aspects of software capabilities. However, there is much more to consider in order to ensure program success. A well-designed loyalty program can go beyond transactional interactions, establishing emotional connections with customers that strengthen loyalty and drive desirable behaviors. To achieve this, it's important to partner with a provider that offers not only platform technology, but strategic expertise as well. A strategic partner can ensure your program is designed to serve the needs of both your customers and your brand, and that it continues to deliver the results that drive your business goals long after launch. By choosing a loyalty program provider with strong strategic support capabilities, you'll not only have a loyalty program that rewards customers, but one that builds long-lasting emotional connections with your customers year after year.