Top 5 Reasons why your Loyalty Program is struggling

Written by Pete Howroyd 

Feb 2020

1)     The program proposition is too complex


Simplicity is the key, don’t try and get clever with your proposition and make it so confusing you need a degree from Stamford to understand it. Customers like to know how to use the program and what they get for using it in a matter of seconds. If it takes 5 minutes to understand your

program then you need to simplify your proposition.


2)     Communication is not relevant


It still kills me to see businesses sending out communication which it not relevant to their customer base. This was ok about 10 years ago but not anymore. If you want to keep your customers, add targeting criteria to every communication you send. I recently got a promotion for dog food by email but I don’t have a dog and I unsubscribed immediately.

Over the years I have worked with all kinds of brands adding this very capability and not only does it make your customer happy but it increases your sales! You want some of that right?


3)     Rewards are not strong enough


Let's not pretend consumers these days don’t know what’s going on. Customers join a loyalty program knowing they will get all sorts of communication and promotion but they also know they should get something in return, even Harvey Specter knows this (see previous post on my company page). Make your rewards appealing and appear to be BIG in value. No one likes to collect loyalty points for 10 years to get £5 off their shop.

Customers love experiences these days. I once worked with a brand who allowed customer to choose a reward for their birthday and it was the best campaign we ran all year! Add experiential rewards at every opportunity and you will go along way with your customer base.


4)     Lack of innovation


Innovation is key in todays market to keep ahead of competition and keep in your customers line of sight. You might have some chunky brand heritage keeping you afloat but don’t worry it wont be long until someone else comes with a snazzy new piece of tech to knock you down a peg or two. Keep your eyes on the market especially in tech and ensure you are keeping up with the latest and greatest.


5)   It's too hard to sign up


This is possibly my favourite bullet point but also the most frustrating. Everyone has experienced a sign up process whether that be for a loyalty card or online store which makes you want to chop off your own arm but there’s no need to be in this gang. Keep it simple, keep it quick and customers will happily sign up. Make sure your platforms are capable of handling your requirements and if not, change your platform. This is possible the biggest issue I’ve seen in my career and one which is so easily rectified. Don’t ask for too much information up front, instead have trigger communication ready to collect other bits of information which you may need, but don’t forget the customer wants something in return!


Well there you have it, 5 reason why loyalty programs are struggling in todays market!

Pete is the founder of The loyalty People and has directed and grown many well-known loyalty programs across department stores, fashion, pharma, and luxury retail. Known within the industry as a thought leader and expert in his field, Pete has a passion for unlocking the value of customer data. Pete founded The Loyalty People to allow businesses to build and accelerate customer loyalty.


Contact Us

Partner Directory

Lets Talk newsletter


  • LinkedIn

Follow us

© 2020 by The Loyalty People, London