THE CLARUS Blog

New Customer Insights Show How Offering Incentives Can Increase Loyalty Program Engagement and Help You Collect Better Data

Your brand is always looking for ways to increase loyalty program membership, customer engagement, and gather more quality data. 

Incentives can help you achieve those goals. 

Consider 81% of consumers say they’re more likely to engage with a brand if it offers an incentive. 

To learn more about the impact of incentives on customer loyalty, we surveyed more than 1,200 U.S. consumers in late March and the following article is full of data and takeaways that your brand can use to leverage incentives tied to your loyalty programs. 

 

1. Seventy-four percent of consumers are likely to join a loyalty program if joining entered them in a sweepstakes to win a prize.

Our 2022 Customer Loyalty Data Study shows that less than one-third (32%) of loyal customers are members of loyalty programs. This presents a huge opportunity for your brand to use incentives to acquire loyalty program members. 

Automatically entering consumers who join your loyalty program in a sweepstakes is an attractive incentive to increase membership. 

Consumers are drawn to incentives because they want value in return for sharing their information.  

For example, the Energizer Go Rewards loyalty program offers the Power Up Promotion, comprising four sweepstakes: The Quest 2 Sweepstakes, the JBL Headphones Sweepstakes, and the $50 Southwest Gift Card Sweepstakes, and the $50 Visa Prepaid Card Sweepstakes. 

While existing members of the Energizer Go Rewards loyalty program can redeem points to enter, consumers who join the program can enter without redeeming points by mail. 

 

2. Eighty-five percent of consumers would likely join a brand’s loyalty program to receive a rebate or a gift with purchase.

Expanding on the first stat, this one also shows how most consumers would join a loyalty program if an incentive were offered. 

With more than two-thirds of loyal customers not members of loyalty programs, your brand has a big opportunity to use incentives like rebates or gifts with purchase to attract consumers to your loyalty program. 

In fact, 61% of consumers said they’ve switched from a brand they regularly use to a brand that offered better incentives, such as loyalty points and rebates. This figure jumps to 68% for consumers who are incentive inclined. Incentive-inclined consumers also have made first-time purchases from brands based on the incentives offered.  

For example, the Energizer Go Rewards loyalty program has offered a rebate incentive. 

To receive the $5 rebate, consumers had to purchase at least $15 worth of any Energizer Brand battery or lighting products in a single transaction at any retailer (excluding Lowe’s) between 10/1/2021 and 2/28/2022. 

Then, consumers were asked to take a photo of their original receipt and visit a link to submit it and redeem the rebate. To submit receipts, participants are required to be members of the Energizer Go Rewards loyalty program. 

 

3. Fifty-six percent of consumers are likely to share an experience with a brand by tagging the brands they shop with on their social media accounts in exchange for loyalty program points.

Sharing on social media is a great way for your best customers to engage with your brand and with other customers.  

When your customers share their brand experiences on social media, you build communities. If your loyalty program combines transactional and experiential benefits, along with attractive incentives, sharing those experiences on your social media pages builds more awareness and customer engagement. 

Given the fact that more than 80% of the U.S. population uses at least one social media network, this is a key area for you to market your loyalty programs. You can increase new membership and retain current members by offering loyalty points for sharing experiences on your social media pages. 

For example, we helped 19 Crimes (an Australian wine brand) with its Infamous Insider Rewards loyalty program that offers many great ways to engage, including sharing brand experiences on social media in exchange for loyalty points. 

Also, J&J Care Club Rewards members receive loyalty points after sharing brand experiences on the company’s social media pages. 

 

4. Seventy-four percent of consumers are likely to leave a review on a brand’s website in exchange for loyalty program points.

Reviews fall into the category of user-generated content (text, videos, reviews, images), which is incredibly valuable to your brand when customers share it on your social media channels like Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, or by uploading their submissions on a promotional contest site. 

A key reason user-generated content is so valuable to your brand is because it presents a current stream of real-time content created by loyal consumers.  

Your best customers know what is relevant and you’re accessing their insights when they post reviews on any of your social media channels. Helpful customer reviews help you attract new business, increase traffic to your website, spark interest from your social media users, and generate buzz about your brand. 

You can see why customer reviews are so important for your brand’s present and future. Encouraging reviews is great, especially when you can reward customers also. Therefore, awarding loyalty program points is an excellent way to prompt customers to leave reviews on your social channels. 

This is also something covered in the J&J Care Club Rewards loyalty program. 

Members who write a review of a qualifying product receive 25 points. There is a limit of five reviews per month per member. Each review must include a disclosure that clearly states that the participant is writing a review to receive points for this loyalty program. 

 

5. Eighty-eight percent of consumers would be willing to complete a survey or poll question in exchange for loyalty program points.

Incentives like rewarding loyalty program points in exchange for completing a survey or poll question are great ways to boost customer engagement and collect more data. 

According to our 2022 Customer Loyalty Data Study, only 24% of consumers have completed a survey for their favorite brand in the past 12 months. 

Surveys and polls can give your brand psychographic/demographic information, along with various customer insights.  

Incentives are a great way to encourage your loyalty program members to complete surveys for their favorite brands.  

When you join the Sparkling Ice Rewards loyalty program, two of the activities you can complete to receive loyalty points is a survey or poll question. Loyalty program members receive 10 points for each of these activities. 

 

6. Eighty percent of consumers would likely watch a brand’s video content in exchange for loyalty program points.

It’s clear from our data that most consumers would be willing to complete various activities to earn loyalty program points. 

And watching a brand’s video content fits this pattern also. Most people love to watch videos, so if your brand has engaging videos and rewards customers for watching them, you will build more engagement. 

And watching brand videos is a perfect way to educate consumers as well. 

Give your customers a reason to engage through an incentive and you will drive positive outcomes. 

Both the Energizer Rewards and Sparking Ice Rewards loyalty programs award members 10 loyalty points for watching a brand video. 

 

7. Almost half (47%) of consumers would likely use their loyalty program points toward entries in a sweepstakes for the chance to win a prize or experience, rather than using those points for product or service discounts.

This is an interesting stat for a few reasons. 

One might think consumers would rather receive a product or service discount than an entry in a sweepstakes for a chance to win a prize or experience. 

The first is a definite result that will benefit your customers while the second is aspirational and exciting, but hardly a sure thing. The risk/reward scenarios in play are quite opposite. 

Johnson & Johnson Care Club Rewards, 19 Crimes Infamous Insiders, and Energizer Rewards are loyalty programs we work on and they all offer incentives where members can use their loyalty points to enter a sweepstakes to win a prize or experience. 

And more members participating doesn’t translate to more costs because the prize or contest pool is fixed, so greater participation typically leads to greater efficiency. It’s also a terrific way for brands to get rid of points liabilities. 

This type of incentive is more appealing to many loyalty program members because having to save up a ton of points for a tangible reward can be a daunting task. 

 

8. Eighty-one percent of consumers would likely return to a loyalty program site if there was updated content available each month/quarter.

This stat speaks directly to the adage about a loyalty program: “Don’t set it and forget it.” 

Because if you launch a loyalty program after successfully marketing it, but then forget about it and let it run itself, you’ll wind up losing customers overall. 

When you launch a loyalty program, your job is just beginning because, if you want to retain members for the long term, innovation comes after marketing. And that means keeping your loyalty program and associated website fresh. 

Loyalty programs need to change over time, matching changes in their members’ expectations and desires. 

Updated content on your website related to your loyalty program is so important to keep and attract members. Add to your program benefits based on member feedback. Let them know what you’re doing every step of the way. 

Reinforce your brand messaging through your loyalty program and future changes to it. 

T-Mobile Tuesdays is a perfect example of this because the company updates its rewards every Tuesday. 

 

9. Eighty-two percent of consumers would visit a loyalty program website to view updated content in exchange for loyalty program points.

This stat echoes the previous one with a different outcome. In this case, members can view updated content in a loyalty program to earn loyalty program points. 

Most of your customers would visit your loyalty program website if you regularly update the content in exchange for loyalty points. This stat shows that if you give your loyalty program members an incentive, there’s a good chance they’ll visit your site regularly. 

And if they’re going to visit your site regularly, that gives you a big opportunity to inform members about new features, new benefits, new promotions, or anything else you’re trying to communicate to drive member engagement by offering points. 

 

Incentives Appeal to a Wide Variety of Consumers 

Our data shows that most consumers will join your loyalty program if you offer them compelling incentives. And, given the same incentives, your current loyalty program members will elevate their engagement levels.  

If you offer them exciting incentives, most of your loyal customers would do various activities to earn loyalty points, or enter a sweepstakes, or join a loyalty program.  

Those activities include leaving a review on your site, completing a survey, watching a brand video, and viewing updated content on your loyalty program site.  

If you want to chat about incentives or an end-to-end loyalty program, please reach out to us here at any time. 

 

Survey Methodology: Clarus Commerce surveyed 1,276 U.S. consumers 18 and older in late March as part of our 2022 Customer Engagement and Loyalty Survey. 

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