15 Ideas for Using Rewards and Incentives to Optimize the Entire Customer Journey

  • author

    BHN Rewards

  • posted

    Mar 16, 2023

  • topic

    Digital Marketing, Sales

15 Ideas for Using Rewards and Incentives to Optimize the Entire Customer Journey

It’s Marketing 101. Mapping the customer journey gives your team valuable insights into common pain points — pain points you can lessen with rewards and incentives.

No matter where your customers or clients are on their buying journey, there’s a lot you can do to move the needle. Looking to drive webinar attendance, motivate customers to add to their cart, or generate leads from referrals? Including the right rewards at key touchpoints will help you optimize the customer experience.

Here are 15 ideas for incorporating rewards and incentives throughout the five main stages of the customer journey: awareness, consideration, purchase, retention, and advocacy.

READ MORE: 5 Steps to a Successful Marketing Rewards Campaign

Stage 1: Awareness

The beauty of customer journey mapping is that it allows your marketing team to personalize the experience across all touchpoints. According to Salesforce, 56% of consumers expect all offers to be personalized. A key step to generating awareness? Picking rewards and incentives that speak to your target audience.

  • Increase webinar attendance. Offer a digital gift card to attendees after the webinar for an effective way to encourage people to register and follow through.
  • Build relationships for account-based marketing (ABM). Create upfront value for key contacts and get the attention of the right people with digital rewards and incentives that encourage relationship-building.
  • Incentivize blog subscriptions. Increase your target market by offering rewards for signing up to be notified of new blog posts or receive email newsletters.
  • Grow your online presence. Bolster your brand image by thanking customers for engaging in online word-of-mouth marketing on social media and industry sites.

Stage 2: Consideration

Show appreciation to prospects who take time out of their day to learn about your product or service. Incorporating rewards and incentives into this stage nurtures leads and moves prospects down the funnel.

  • Reduce meeting no-shows. Empower your sales team to incentivize prospects to attend their presentations or discovery calls.
  • Encourage demo or workshop attendance. Offering rewards can greatly increase requests for demos and registrations for lunch-and-learns and other engagement activities.

Stage 3: Purchase

Here’s where the rubber meets the road and you can use interesting rewards and incentives to drive sales.

  • Offer a compelling reward with each purchase. Motivate customers to hit the checkout or sign on the dotted line by adding a bundled reward. It’s more powerful than just another discount.
  • Get off on the right foot with new clients. Give customers a warm welcome and kick things off on a high note — and ensure they stay.
  • Improve your sales and onboarding experience. Solicit and reward feedback from new customers, when their initial interactions with you are fresh on their minds.

Stage 4: Retention

Marketers know it costs more to gain a customer than it does to retain one. Rewards and incentives are an ideal way to show customers you appreciate their business.

  • Encourage product use and expertise. Retain customers by motivating them to get educated on your offering. The more time they invest in mastering your product, the less likely they are to wander over to a competitor.
  • Incentivize responses for feedback surveys. Show customers that their feedback is valuable by asking them how you can improve your offerings and customer service. Plus, you can find valuable testimonials to use in future marketing campaigns.
  • Rebuild trust with unhappy customers. Strengthen customer relationships and avoid negative brand perception with “make it right” rewards. Give customers a gesture of goodwill to remember — instead of the issue that led up to it.

Stage 5: Advocacy

Rewards and incentives that get your customers talking positively about your brand online are becoming an important marketing strategy. Research shows that word-of-mouth marketing is more trusted by consumers and generates more sales.

  • Generate more leads from customer referrals. By offering rewards for referrals, you can build an effective lead generation program that also strengthens the bond with your best advocates.
  • Increase online reviews to build your reputation. Who doesn’t check out reviews before finalizing a purchase? Here’s your chance to make sure your brand has them online — and not just from those who had bad experiences.
  • Promote engagement in loyalty programs. An estimated 37% of internet users were blocking ads in 2021, making it harder for you to reach your audience. It’s becoming clear that anything that turns your loyal customers into advocates is money well spent.

Of course, these ideas are just the beginning of how to use rewards and incentives across the customer journey. What would you add to the list?

Not sure your team has the time to incorporate all these marketing and customer incentive ideas? Find out how integrating rewards directly into your martech stack can make things easier!

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!