BUILDING THE CASE FOR LOYALTY AND INCENTIVE PROGRAMS
In this informative paper, we will assist you in building the case for loyalty and incentive technology. You will start by summarizing the benefits of a loyalty incentive program to clearly define the value proposition, how the organization’s investment in a loyalty and incentive program, and the necessary technology to support it will help achieve your organization’s business goals.
Time to Invest.
With the rising engagement and acquisition costs and shifts in managing privacy, now is a perfect time to reinvest or invest in your incentive program technology to future-proof your business’s internal and external engagement initiatives.
Loyalty and incentive programs are vital to future-proofing a brand. It’s not enough to rely on a decentralized one-off view of single application type incentive programs to manage your participant’s lifetime value for your market research incentive programs. Companies now look to add a business channel or expand existing in an organization. They look to modernize their Platform technology, developed on the foundation of security standards that can build and engage an internal and external participant base to drive brand revenue, engagement, growth, and longevity.
The primary difference between an incentive management platform and a single applications solution lies in flexibility and scalability. Single incentive application solutions can tackle a specific incentive, reward processing, and fulfillment application. In contrast, Platform solutions offer a robust technical foundation of several application solutions supporting different engagement use cases that can roll out across industries and organizational structures quickly and simultaneously.
Loyalty is key to your business’s long-term success.
Loyalty and incentive programs are the ideal relationship-building tool to overcome these monumental changes because they provide participants with a transparent value exchange.
Loyalty has always been difficult to measure, and future results can take months or years to understand outcomes. If original estimates are wrong, the costs of providing such benefits could be a severe hardship to the business and its panels.
Participants are far more likely to voluntarily offer their time to live a healthier lifestyle or put in the extra sales effort to close more sales if offered an incentive program with rewards. It is a fact that when organizations use non-cash rewards such as gift and prepaid cards and points, they have far better outcomes. The use of cash creates a compensation-orientated relationship with the participant and can ease the hardships of managing escheatment issuing payouts in specific denominations and states.
Acquisition costs continue to rise.
Customer acquisition costs (CAC) increased by over 60% in the past six years and showed no slowing. These rising costs also have high churn rates and a loss of participation.
Because programs have moved primarily online to interact with participants – participants notice when technology, convenience, or delays affect their experiences. They have more options to provide valuable review input that can affect the program’s success in attracting and retaining participants.
Before covid, businesses could allocate acquisition resources relative to cost; market uncertainty overhauled their ability to budget over the last year. Organizations have had to account for unpredictable and rising CAC, making their budget more and more prone to wasted resources.
Organizations can combat rising, unpredictable costs by shifting to focus on retention. The participant engagement journey will remain complex, and market research must focus on maintaining engagement from the top of the funnel to the bottom and vice versa. Retention must become as important as acquiring to drive lasting revenue and responsive engagement in a loyalty incentive program.
Retention is the Secret Sauce.
What are the benefits you can expect from an enterprise-level reward incentive program? Outcomes include increased operational efficiencies, lower incentive costs, higher participant engagement, customer profitability, richer data, better insights, and more. Your business should likely have a retention strategy, but a plan alone is the first step. A successful retention strategy needs to consider how incentives help build a journey of emotional loyalty. Still, a loyalty and incentive program is how your business can successfully execute your plan to accomplish your engagement and retention goals. With an effective enterprise loyalty technology solution, your organization can expect a variety of outcomes, including the ability to:
- Increased operational efficiencies, lower incentive costs, higher participant engagement, customer profitability, richer data, better insights, and more.
- These internal metrics are an imperative focus for every panel manager. Loyalty and incentive programs are key retention tactics that enable a company to accomplish these goals.
Retention is not just a customer initiative. Incentive programs are vital and the secret sauce to future-proofing a brand. Organizations must rely on loyalty and incentive programs to attract and engage participants to keep them contributing, productive, happy, and staying put. They must also focus on external programs that improve respondent rate, repeat interest in participating, and overall participant profitability to guarantee lifetime value. Loyalty and incentive programs are essential business channels in your market research program to build and engage a reliable broad participant base that drives brand profitability, optimism, engagement, growth, and longevity.
Collect More Data.
The decline of cookies and data accessibility means program managers need to protect and collect participant and customer data in new ways. Loyalty and incentive programs provide deep insights into behavioral attributes, product interests, engagement history, and purchase behavior that cookies could previously offer.
It has never been more critical to engage the services of a loyalty and incentive technology provider that understands data controls for loyalty and incentive programs and regulations that can influence the engagement journey of employees, members, and customers.
Mitigate silos with unified data.
You’ve identified data silos and need to build a single source of truth. It doesn’t matter if it is an employee or a customer – their loyalty and incentive profile stores all their data in one place. Documenting from the time they joined, which social channels they follow, and their contributions and engagement behavior throughout your program journey.
They want to be recognized and rewarded at every touchpoint. The top contender for your loyalty and incentive technology solution should be able to integrate your crucial tech stacks in support of your organizations, like CMS, CDP, and customer service helpdesk software.
Increase new channel adoption.
The rise of mobile communication and commerce is driving the adoption of new channels, especially engaging with SMS communications, as keys to a successful sales, engagement, and retention strategy. Loyalty and incentive programs present a direct opportunity for organizations to incentivize SMS engagements by offering rewards.
The Pew Research Center reports that 97 percent of smartphone owners use their devices to text every week. And according to Text Request, 91 percent of people who text say they prefer doing that to leaving a message on voicemail, and it is the most used form of communication for U.S. adults under 50. Additionally, Text Request reported that nearly 70 percent of employees want texting for interoffice contact and 80 percent of professionals currently use texting for business purposes.
This level of direct communication can increase behavioral outcomes, engagement, and conversion rates.
Organizations must face the reality that modes of communication change, and management will need to adjust their internal and external loyalty and incentive program communication methods accordingly.
For any incentive program to be effective, incentives must be clearly defined and considered a viable, valuable reward by participants when motivating behavioral outcomes.