Brands Reveal Keys to Retail Loyalty Success at CRMC 2024

4 minute read

CRMC 2024 in Chicago recently adjourned after delivering powerful insights and inspiration from a range of retail brands. The informative discussion during Annex Cloud’s CRMC roundtable was informative and focused on how an effective retail loyalty program can help brands optimize key business outcomes.

Throughout the presentations and candid conversations, several key themes emerged.

Retail loyalty revamps are on the rise, focusing on experiences


This apparel and home decor retailer is creating stronger emotional bonds and lasting memories by offering unique experiences that inspire engagement and encourage discovery. The brand has expanded categories, while increasing frequency and overall lifetime value by:

  • Getting feedback directly from customers using interactive in-store surveys
  • Using customer data to guide decision-making
  • Focusing on perks—such as early access, in-store events, sip and shop and bonuses—versus points
  • Elevating the convenience factor—shop for home, apparel, dining, outdoor and more all in one place


This iconic moto culture brand recognized that, even with a diehard community, transformation is essential to adapt, innovate and attract a new era of digital-savvy clientele. In fact, the brand cites adaptation as key to its success over its 121-year history. Fortunately, with change comes opportunity. The robust results from the brand’s most recent modernization of their legacy program indicate the changes are addressing long overdue needs for both fans and riders. Strategy enhancements have included putting an integrated CX at the core of their H-D Membership strategy, leveraging data from both riders and non-riders as well as the right technology to deliver on this, and connecting humans to engaging real-life activities—and each other—through their enriched community and app.

Key lessons they learned along the way:

  • Integrate your program into everything, over time
  • Good technology is more than just the tech, it’s about having a strategic partner
  • Always be listening to your community
  • Don’t be afraid to evolve your approach and pivot
  • Start simple and refine, refine, refine

Customer data is the secret sauce for winning loyalty in retail

Victoria’s Secret

The Victoria’s Secret and Pink Rewards program launched in early 2023, exceeding their year-one enrollment goal by 40%. Zero-party data capture and technology enable Victoria’s Secret to take their program benefits and member experience to the next level through a 360-degree member view. Together they fuel more engaging experiences, increased sales and better retention. This strategy has VS well-positioned to stay connected to their members and understand them from every angle.


This beverage brand’s transformative approach to consumer engagement leverages the fact that consumers willingly connect and share valuable first-party data if the value exchange is clear and relevant. PepsiCo’s fresh approach to retail loyalty is based on their 3As strategy—acquisition, application and acceleration. Engagement and data gathering opportunities include interactive digital experiences, product finders, personality quizzes and surveys.

Choice can be a powerful incentive

Personalization is paramount—but giving loyalty members the ability to choose their own experiences and rewards takes value to a whole new level.

Hilton Grand Vacations

Plenty of people love to travel but it’s become tedious and more stressful in many ways. Hilton is on a mission to not only alleviate these frustrations but also give travelers the power to customize their vacation experience. The brand consistently uses data and analytics to inform their decision-making and marketing efforts. Their goal is to meet travelers where they are, as well as recognize their personal and experiential preferences, to deliver unique, memorable vacation experiences.


This convenience store brand revamped their retail loyalty program to create a more personalized, holistic experience. Customers don’t think in terms of channel, they want a consistently great experience no matter how they choose to engage with your brand. The rebuild of their loyalty program, based on direct member feedback, is focused on delivering a seamless, enriching Wawa Rewards experience regardless of whether members are placing a prepaid mobile order or scanning their Rewards Card in store.

Personalization and the use of AI are becoming prevalent

In today’s hyper-competitive marketplace, businesses are increasingly turning to intelligence-powered personalization strategies to cultivate deeper engagement and lasting relationships with customers.

Wilson Sporting Goods

This athletic brand, founded in 1913, is launching a customer segmentation initiative that blends AI with the powerful knowledge that rests with the company’s teams. Wilson leverages technology to understand and drive the business through the lens of differentiated customer groups. By leveraging powerful AI models, the brand can understand customer behavior on a scale beyond what was previously possible.


MyPanera, one of the longest-standing loyalty programs in the restaurant industry, relaunched in 2024. The brand is moving toward its goals of winning back customers and inspiring one additional visit from every customer by focusing on:

  • Using AI-powered decisioning to retain and grow guests, achieve 1:1 personalization at scale across SMS, their app, the web and eventually kiosks, and turn loyalty members into passionate brand advocates
  • Leveraging data and insights to understand customer behavior and identify key segments with specific needs
  • Increasing engagement across 100 different touchpoints
  • Segmenting customers into three groups for better personalization—non-members, MyPanera members and their paid Unlimited Sip Club members

Let’s transform your customers’ experience with loyalty for enterprise retail

Annex Cloud helps brands, including Harley-Davidson, continue to innovate and grow—and we can help you, too. Read about all the ways loyalty can help you close your CX gap or, better yet, let’s connect to explore new possibilities for your retail loyalty program.

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