Many industry sectors—especially retail, travel, and credit cards—rely heavily on affinity rewards programs to keep customers loyal. It’s typically a small minority of high-volume consumers, the top 5 to 10 percent, that benefit the most from these programs. Brands typically design affinity programs based on knowledge of what will make the most loyal customer feel rewarded and want to engage more with a brand.
But what about the large majority of customers that don’t fall into these groups? What about those challenging ones that are the least engaged and the most vulnerable to attrition? While it’s foolish to suggest brands offer these customers the same type of incentives offered to their best customers, companies should explore innovative ways to create deeper connections with these challenging customers. There is seemingly a financial benefit in creating a larger pool of deeply engaged customers.
Research among challenging customers is typically transactional in nature and focused on where a service experience may have fallen short. It’s much less common for brands to integrate a holistic understanding of the needs and preferences of the challenging customer into the product and service development process. This feels like a blind spot. A deeper understanding of the challenging consumer—what makes them tick, what they want, and where they have unmet needs—and then creating innovative offerings based on these insights will strengthen loyalty for your brand.
A deeper understanding of the challenging consumer—what makes them tick, what they want, and where they have unmet needs—and then creating innovative offerings based on these insights will strengthen loyalty for your brand.”
Here are some steps brands should take to understand lack of loyalty among customers, and identify innovations to deepen engagement:
A choice-based technique is a way to build a layered message framework that links to desired behavioral outcomes. These are just some of the ways brands can integrate deeper knowledge from challenging customers into the innovation process to build loyalty. Want to learn how to find innovative solutions to attract your challenging customers?