The influential role community loyalty programs play in fostering customer retention is just not easy to overlook. Though community loyalty programs work in conjunction with existing loyalty programs, these carry incredible potential to add new touch points to your loyalty program framework, thereby allowing you to reinforce your relationships with your customers. Let’s explore in detail the role and benefits of community loyalty programs to understand what precisely makes them special.
Acting as a value-enhancer for a typical customer loyalty program, community loyalty programs, also referred as loyalty communities, are basically add-ons to the existing loyalty program. Designed to foster maximum customer engagement via community level bonding, loyalty communities are clubs/groups within the loyalty program providing brands a unique way to stay competitive in the fierce industry competition.
Loyalty communities not only allow you to connect with customers through their interests but also facilitate delivering them with more personalized experiences. A significant number of successfully running brands have designed their community loyalty programs to strengthen their customer relations and foster loyalty. Consider for example –
Sephora’s loyalty program “Beauty Insider” deploys a point based and tiered system, besides providing its customers access to a special community of people with similar interests.
As a part of this community, the program members can seamlessly connect with each other, sign up for new events and do a lot more. The members even get the option to post their creative pictures in the community group to inspire other members. The community group members can do following other activities –
By developing a highly interactive platform like this for its customers, Sephora gets access to massive consumer insights that can be easily utilized for product development or improved conversion optimization. Sephora’s loyalty community is thus an ideal community loyalty program that brands can look forward to when designing one of their own. Implementing such program will surely draw positive results, provided the brand successfully encourages customer conversations relevant to the brand/products.
The sheer potential of loyalty communities in encouraging improved customer engagement makes them ideal for becoming a valuable component of your existing loyalty program. Let’s now explore the top benefits of loyalty communities –
Engage Customers Through Their Preferences
You can form a special community for a special product and get the interested members participate in the community group. Furthermore, a specific sustainability initiative may also serve as the focal point for your loyalty community formation. It must be understood that customers will consider being a part of your loyalty community only when it syncs with their preferences. Hence, deciding the optimally interesting subject for weaving your loyalty community essentially requires giving a thorough consideration to the preferences of customers. This would further require analyzing large volumes of customer data.
Provide Personalized Experiences
With only a specific number of customers as members of the loyalty community, you will get the opportunity to get a better understanding of your customers. This will further enable you prepare and present more personalized offers for the members within the loyalty community group. Still, it must be ensured that the offers are created in sync with your brand to keep them relevant for the customers.
Boost Brand Image Significantly
In the current industry, brands are swiftly realizing how crucial and tedious it is to constantly maintain a positive brand image. By attracting customers having specific interests via your loyalty community, you send across the message of your brand being linked with a distinctive sense of belonging. This projects a positive image of your brand, thereby allowing you to gain the much-needed competitive edge.
Boost Existing Loyalty Program
With community loyalty included as an add-on to your existing loyalty program, you can effectively strengthen the ongoing loyalty program. It allows you add an extra element of interest in your existing program, thereby providing more valid reasons to opt for your loyalty program in the first place. Also, one of the best parts of having loyalty community included is that you can add new touch points to your original loyalty program framework. Moreover, you can add as many loyalty communities to your program that allows you to structure plenty of diverse combinations to your customers.
Build Brand Advocacy
A sense of community helps transform your existing customers into virtual marketers for your brand. By providing customers a group or platform to share ideas and do a lot more interesting activities with other members, you actually win their affection. When customers are happy, they automatically get encouraged to share their emotions of delight with their peers, and that’s when they get triggered to spread the positive word about your brand. A delighted customer as a part of your loyalty community is thus most likely to share that pleasant experience on social platforms.
As loyalty communities offer a solid way for brands to seamlessly engage with customers, you must consider including it in your existing program. You can either create the core loyalty program first and then the loyalty community as an add-on, or you can have both created & launched simultaneously for your customers.
In order to create your community loyalty program, or loyalty community, you must decide the core idea or products on which your loyalty community will be based, right at the beginning. As community loyalty programs are purely based on subjects, or topics, or interests that hold significant importance for your customers, getting the subject right becomes extremely vital.
Further, as you plan the launch of your loyalty community, as a part of the existing loyalty program, your focus throughout should be to ensure that group members optimally & actively leverage the platform you have provided. By following the activities of group members, you can gets better insights about customer preferences and get utilize same for personalizing your future offers.
Loyalty communities, or community loyalty programs offer an amazing way to not just strengthen your existing customer relationships but also boost your brand image and marketing strategy. If you require any sort of assistance for creating your community loyalty program, our experts would be glad to help you. Just talk to our experts now!