How to Easily Build a Loyalty Program into Your Marketing Strategy

by Patrick Trochaniak
April 25, 2018

You’ve spent a lot of time coming up with a marketing strategy that drives sales for your business, which means you might be a bit wary of adding new elements like a loyalty program to it.

Thankfully, adding retention to your marketing arsenal is just like adding the last puzzle piece: not only does it help you improve sales, but it also won’t disrupt current activities!

Increasing the focus you place on existing customers compliments your current strategy because it’s simple yet effective.

Building a loyalty program adds a small layer to your strategy that improves the effectiveness of all your other marketing efforts.

Where a Loyalty Program Fits into Your Current Strategy

Your current marketing strategy is most likely made up of three main components:

  • website
  • email messaging
  • social media

Each of these areas are already considerations of a well-structured loyalty program, making it easy to incorporate into your marketing efforts!

Let’s take a look at how a loyalty program can fit into each element of your current strategy.

Website

Your website is the main driver of your sales, which means you spend a lot of time optimizing it so your customers have the best experience.

After all, giving your customers a great shopping experience is what leads to purchases.

The best part about loyalty programs is that they can easily be implemented into your existing website.

They offer a seamless experience that enhances the customer journey and ultimately leads to more sales. They are able to accomplish this by rewarding customers for shopping with you again and again instead of your competitors.

This can all be achieved without drawing attention from the rest of your store.

Linking to a program explainer/FAQ page from your main menu or adding a small CTA on your product pages are both easy and unobstructive ways to promote a program without distracting from your products and services.

 

Loyalty Program with Website Rewards

Evy’s Tree has put a number of these strategies into action.

With a link in the navigation bar and homepage callouts, customers can easily discover and explore their points and referral rewards program.

On their explainer page, Evy’s Tree’s customers learn that they can earn points for making purchases, sharing their brand on social media, and writing reviews.

Points can then be spent on valuable rewards like coupons and free shipping, which makes them very valuable for customers.

All of this value is easy to find and understand on their explainer page, and they’ve even included a branded program launcher on every page to make sure that every customer can find the program no matter where they are on the site.

Smile.io has made this process super easy, with a quick onboarding process that gets programs like this one up and running in a number of minutes.

Your customers are browsing your website and constantly making decisions whether to purchase your products or not.

You can make this decision easy for them by incorporating a points program that makes it hard not to buy because of the increased bang for their buck.

Email

Your email communications are key to re-engaging your customers to get them shopping with you again.

Having a loyalty program allows you to send them more value in each email you send, which gets them even more excited about your brand!

Email Loyalty Program

There are a number of ways you can easily include your program in email marketing.

The easiest way would be to include a points balance reminder in the header or footer of every message.

This will not only remind customers that you have a rewards program but also nudge them to come back and spend their points! This is an extremely effective re-engagement technique that has worked wonders for brands in a number of industries.

You could also choose to send dedicated program emails that inform customers of their status in your program or of special member promotions.

This gives extra incentive for emails to be opened and ensures that customers are checking back with your program often.

Email Loyalty Program - Dedicated Program Emails

Cents of Style does an excellent job of incorporating their VIP program into email campaigns.

In this example, they sent all their top-tier VIPs the opportunity to earn a free blanket scarf just to show their appreciation for their business.

Sending out this email was an easy way this brand was able to secure the loyalty of their best customers, which makes up a significant portion of their bottom line.

Since you are sending emails to boost your sales, integrating elements of a rewards program into them allows you to achieve exactly that.

Social Media

The goal of your social media strategy is to get eyes on your brand and people shopping for your products.

However, if you’re not leveraging your customers’ networks you’re not doing this as effectively as possible.

You can boost your reach on social media by placing valuable rewards on the line that gets your customers motivated to spread the word.

A loyalty program adds value to your posts and takes your social media game to the next level by rewarding customers for engaging with you and your brand.

For example, by rewarding your customers with dollars off their purchase for referring one of their friends, you can encourage them to share out their referral link through their social media accounts.

This gets them sharing on Facebook and Twitter to earn rewards, while also generating brand impressions for you.

Social Media Loyalty Program

Heima Market posted about their referral program on Instagram, explaining that every successful referral will give both the new and returning customer $10 off their next purchase.

This type of post is very successful because it allows you to target your most engaged fans on Instagram who are the most likely to spread this offer around their friend group.

Your social media strategy exists to create as many engaged fans as possible, and having a referral program supercharges your efforts.

By leveraging your customers’ networks, you will ensure social media success that would not be possible without a rewards program.

Build a Loyalty Program into Your Marketing Strategy

Whether you’re introducing a points, referral, or tiered VIP program to your business, they all can be easily integrated into your current marketing strategy!

With simple ways to incorporate rewards into your website, emails, and social media campaigns, a loyalty program is the perfect tool to boost your sales and re-energize your day to day marketing activities.

 

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Patrick Trochaniak Patrick Trochaniak is a Marketing Coordinator at Smile.io with a passion for business, start-ups, and learning something new. He spends too many hours at the gym and running his e-commerce shop.