Loyalty trends and best practices

Loyalty Makeover: Coldwater Creek

by Ashley Bienvenu
February 18, 2014
Loyalty Makeover: Coldwater Creek

In this installment of Loyalty Makeover, we look at the rewards program at Coldwater Creek, the struggling $743 million women's apparel retailer with nearly 400 boutiques in the United States. Loyalty Makeover suggests ways for retail brands to make the most of their loyalty initiatives. What Coldwater Creek Rewards look like today: Every time a Coldwater Creek Rewards member makes a purchase at Coldwater Creek, whether at a retail location or online, the amount is recorded in her Rewards account. Upon sign-up,members receive special promotions and coupons, as well as an in-store stylist, easy checkout and returns, and the Coldwater Creek newsletter. When a member's purchases reach $400 in a 365-day period, she qualifies for ONECreek status, which grants free return shipping and a $20 birthday gift card. The top status tier, Elite, has a $1,000 purchase threshold (also over 365 days) and adds free shipping on a... Read more

Successfully Driving Loyalty at U.S. Auto Parts (IR 100 Retailer)

by Zach Woith
February 03, 2014
Successfully Driving Loyalty at U.S. Auto Parts (IR 100 Retailer)

Leaders in Loyalty shares the insights and experiences of executives who run loyalty programs. In this edition, U.S. Auto Parts VP of Marketing Houman Akhavan discusses selling loyalty to colleagues and structuring rewards. How did you rally support at U.S. Auto Parts for your loyalty program? Akhavan: Acquiring new customers is expensive. I positioned loyalty as a way to increase repeat purchase, and that made a lot of sense to our team. In an industry as competitive as ours, where only around 20% of customers make a repeat purchase within 12 months, loyalty incentives give people a reason to bring us their next purchase. Another benefit is channel diversification. With Google becoming such a dominant source of shoppers, investing in our customers as a new way to grow the business was appealing. How has your loyalty program paid off for the business? Akhavan: One way is that it lets ... Read more

The Healthy Benefits of Kate Somervilles Loyalty Program

by Zach Woith
January 27, 2014
The Healthy Benefits of Kate Somervilles Loyalty Program

Leaders in Loyalty shares the insights and experiences of executives who run loyalty programs. In this installment, Matt Bunn, Director of Digital Marketing at Kate Somerville, talks about the many benefits of the skincare brand's loyalty strategy. Why did you launch the Ultimate Kate Rewards loyalty program at Kate Somerville? Our primary goals are email acquisition, customer retention and increased visitor engagement. Skin care and beauty is a competitive landscape, and most of our retail partners — such as Nordstrom and Sephora — offer their own customer loyalty programs. Ultimate Kate Rewards puts our online presence on a level playing field. Also, because we utilize our program to communicate with our most loyal customers, it elevates the overall brand relationship. Your loyalty program rewards not only purchases, but other activities as well. Can you explain how that drives ROI? We r... Read more

How's Loyalty Program Builds Profits

by Arif Damji
January 21, 2014
How's Loyalty Program Builds Profits

Leaders in Loyalty shares the insights and experiences of executives who run loyalty programs. In this installment, Brandon Proctor, VP of Marketing at online home improvement powerhouse (#80 on the IR500), talks about how loyalty program data can improve acquisition and profitability. Why launch a loyalty program at Loyalty programs give you the data to make all kinds of better decisions because you can assign value to — and track — activities outside of a purchase. For example, you can reward customers for posting a product review, for social sharing, or just for coming back to your site a few times each month. All these activities give you the profile data to identify actions that ultimately drive more sales, helping you understand who your customers really are. Retailers love to throw around terms like CLV (customer lifetime value), profile-based marketing, and Big Data, but f... Read more

Crafting Your Loyalty Programs Business Case: 8 Non-Obvious Benefits

by Dave Louie
December 16, 2013

Like most execs running omnichannel retail brands, you're probably thinking about the business case for loyalty — either to launch a new loyalty program or expand an existing one. Having helped many omnichannel retailers run those numbers, I'm always surprised by the ways in which loyalty acts as a kind of force multiplier, amplifying the benefits of your other marketing efforts. When crafting your loyalty business case, be sure to take these potentially huge — though not always obvious — benefits into account. 1. Higher gross margins The biggest benefit of a loyalty program is that it trains your customers to buy — not to expect discounts. Margin contribution typically grows over time as more members enroll and your team gets smarter about how to most effectively substitute loyalty offers for straight discounts... Read more

Loyalty Without Upsetting Finance

by Justin Yoshimura
October 23, 2013

When properly executed, “increasing loyalty” isn’t a luxury reserved for companies with massive gross margins like Starwood Hotels. Yes, there are some risks if you do it wrong, but we’ll highlight a few of the steps that marketers can take to ensure that their program generates measurable uplift without upsetting finance, such as: substituting existing discounts and coupons for targeted loyalty promotions, expiring liability, setting the right funding rate and rewards structure, improving customer acquisition efficiency... Read more


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