Here’s What the Best Customer Rewards Programs Have in Common

  • author

    BHN Rewards

  • posted

    Mar 30, 2023

  • topic

    Digital Marketing

Here’s What the Best Customer Rewards Programs Have in Common

During the last recession in 2008 and 2009, 38% of customers switched brands, according to Qualtrics. That precedent shows that in a tough economy, buyers are more willing to take their business elsewhere.

You have to be on top of your game and offer just the right balance of value and experience to retain customers. With inflation on the rise and another recession looming, that means offering one of the best customer rewards programs to avoid losing business.

But what do great customer rewards look like? Here are five key features you’ll want to include in your program, so you can be sure to keep your customers loyal during the economy’s bumpy climate — and for years to come.

READ MORE: 10 Stats to Show the Importance of Rewarding Customer Loyalty Now

Compelling, Flexible Rewards

To rank among the best customer rewards programs, you have to start with the rewards. If the rewards aren’t attractive enough or they don’t appeal to a wide variety of tastes, they won’t be effective in encouraging action. While some may want to earn rewards that fuel their Starbucks or Dunkin’ habit, others may prefer a Visa or Mastercard that they can spend on whatever they like. Still others may prefer the feel-good vibes of knowing their reward goes to a trusted charity.  In general, most consumers prefer flexible options or, even better, the opportunity to choose for themselves. According to PwC, the most important things consumers look for in a personalized experience are rewards for products they use regularly (48%) and a loyalty program with flexible rewards (43%).

Takeaway: The most compelling rewards are those that give customers lots of options.

Plenty of Reward- or Point-Earning Opportunities

It’s no secret that gamification is in. The best customer rewards programs include a range of actions to earn rewards or points, with different levels of effort. First, decide whether you’ll use instant rewards or a points-based program, depending on your budget, membership, and goals.

Then, think of all the opportunities for customers to earn those rewards or points — as well as how much each should be worth. Some examples include:

  • Providing feedback by completing customer surveys about your offerings or serving as beta testers on new features or products.
  • Expanding product knowledge by attending training sessions or workshops.
  • Advocating for your brand by submitting referrals, writing online reviews, or participating in case studies.
  • Creating user-generated content by posting best practices videos or answers to other users’ questions in your customer community.

Takeaway: Make earning rewards or points easy, fun, and flexible, again giving customers lots of options.

Complete Tracking and Reporting

The features that makethe best customer rewards programs aren’t all focused on the members and recipients. They also need to create value for the people running the program. Great programs enable administrators to monitor their budget and understand the return on investment quickly and easily. Look for real-time reporting on available rewards, redemption rates, and refund totals, for starters. You’ll also want 100% transparency into who has received, opened, and redeemed rewards.

Takeaway: Robust reporting tools are key to helping you track your rewards budget, see your rate of return, and determine the success of your program.

Automated Workflows

When you can integrate rewards with your existing customer engagement and community tools to automate delivery, it’s a win-win. Customers want their reward quickly, so automation lets you give them the instant gratification they’re expecting, while also freeing up your team from rewards fulfillment drudgery. In addition, a tool like BHN Rewards can add even more automation potential, for everything from curating international reward options based on each recipient’s location to sending claim reminders.

Takeaway: Simplifying your rewards program management starts with automation, which eliminates manual processes for you and results in instant delivery for your customers.

Ready to see how BHN Rewards can help you create one of the best customer rewards programs out there? Request a demo today!

about the author
BHN Rewards

BHN Rewards puts the power of digital rewards to work for marketers, researchers, and HR managers. Don't forget to check out all the great content in our Resources section!

BHN Rewards puts the power of digital rewards to work for marketers, researchers, and HR managers. Don't forget to check out all the great content in our Resources section!