Best Ways to Reward Customers in 2023

Re-invent customer rewards in today’s ever-evolving martech landscape

Harwin Kaur

MarTech Blogger | June 20, 2023


Throughout the course of business history, brands have relentlessly pursued the goal of customer satisfaction, recognizing its pivotal role in fostering long-term growth and prosperity. The benefits of achieving this objective are far-reaching and varied, spanning increased repeat business, positive word-of-mouth referrals, and enhanced customer loyalty.

Thus, it is to no one’s surprise that reward loyalty programs have become ubiquitous among businesses, from major players like Amazon, Walmart, and Sephora to small local ones. As a result, it can be daunting to find ways to differentiate your program and stand out from the crowd in a tangible and meaningful way.

Nevertheless, there are some unique and efficient ways to achieve this. Here is a curated list of 7 effective ways to reward your loyal customers in 2023.

1. Acknowledge Special Occasions

Customers feel more inclined to stay where they feel appreciated. One simple way for businesses to achieve this is by adding a personal touch to their loyalty program by acknowledging a customer’s special occasion like a birthday or an anniversary.

Customize your digital rewards system to keep track of important dates like birthdays, sign-up anniversaries, and any other relevant ones.

Doing so will allow you to curate personalized incentives that cater to their specific preferences based on their previous purchases.

Research by Epsilon shows that 80% of consumers are more inclined to make purchases when offered a personalized experience by brands.

Giving rewards, such as discounts or free gifts, to commemorate customers’ special occasions is an effective way to build a personal connection with them that extends beyond the generic annual holiday sales.

2. Reward Consistency

One of the biggest hurdles in providing discounts to customers is deciding the appropriate amount and to whom to offer these. However, businesses can overcome this challenge by identifying customers who have exhibited loyalty to their brand and regularly make purchases. Thanks to a variety of analytical tools and algorithms at our disposal today, identifying these customer segments is easier than ever before. 

By providing incentives, such as discounts, businesses can encourage customers with a proven track record of purchases to continue doing so while simultaneously building a more devoted customer base. For instance, businesses can consider rewarding customers when they achieve specific spending milestones or maintain a minimum frequency of purchases to appreciate the consistency of these customers.

Encouraging reviews and referrals can be a powerful strategy for increasing customer engagement and expanding your customer base. As the current landscape becomes increasingly saturated with marketing and advertising campaigns, word of mouth remains a valuable and trusted marketing tool. A study by McKinsey found that word of mouth is the primary factor behind 20-50% of all purchasing decisions.

Positive reviews and referrals can help establish trust between your business and potential customers, highlighting the best aspects of your brand.

Offering incentives like discount vouchers, cash rewards, or services can be an effective way to get customers excited about spreading the word.

3. Offer Exclusivity 

A creative way to reward customers is by providing them with a unique and exclusive experience, beyond just physical rewards or discount vouchers. By granting early access to sales exclusively to loyalty program members, they are given the first opportunity to purchase products and services at discounted rates before they are available to the masses.

Taking it a step further, businesses can also consider offering limited experiences, such as invitations to exclusive product launch events or auctions that cannot be simply purchased. Such initiatives make loyal customers feel valued and appreciated, creating a special bond with the business, and increasing the likelihood of them returning.

4. Partner with Merchants

Partnering with businesses serving the same customer segment is often overlooked as a key strategy to boost customer acquisition, resulting in a seamless and beneficial experience for all stakeholders.

A well-designed loyalty program allows you to offer customers an enjoyable customer journey. However, when you forge partnerships with businesses that cater to a similar customer segment, you create a comprehensive experience that expands beyond just what your business has to offer and covers a lot more ground. 

A partnership with other businesses broadens the range of rewards you are able to offer customers as well as allows you to increase customer acquisition by tapping on the customer base of your partners. Through strategic alliances within a loyalty program, you provide customers with a seamless and unified journey that benefits all stakeholders involved.

One of the biggest hurdles in providing discounts to customers is deciding the appropriate amount and to whom to offer these. However, businesses can overcome this challenge by identifying customers who have exhibited loyalty to their brand and regularly make purchases. Thanks to a variety of analytical tools and algorithms at our disposal today, identifying these customer segments is easier than ever before. 

By providing incentives, such as discounts, businesses can encourage customers with a proven track record of purchases to continue doing so while simultaneously building a more devoted customer base. For instance, businesses can consider rewarding customers when they achieve specific spending milestones or maintain a minimum frequency of purchases to appreciate the consistency of these customers.

5. Gamify Rewards System

Gamifying rewards refers to incorporating game-like elements, such as challenges, achievements, and levels, into a rewards system to enhance customer engagement and motivation. For example, prompting customers to play simple games like ‘Scratch-A-Card’ or ‘Spin-The-Wheel’, to unlock their rewards adds an additional layer of excitement.

An advantage of gamifying rewards for loyalty programs is that it enhances customer engagement and motivation.

By incorporating game elements such as challenges, points, levels, and rewards, businesses can make the loyalty program more enjoyable and interactive for customers. 

It provides a welcome break from the monotony of simply pressing a singular button. This gamified approach taps into the natural human inclination for competition, achievement, and fun, leading to heightened participation and a deeper relationship between customers and the brand. This reinforces their loyalty to the business.

6. Offer Customers Options

Giving customers multiple options and allowing them to choose when providing rewards for loyalty programs aids in empowering them and catering to their individual preferences. By offering a range of reward options, businesses acknowledge the diverse needs and desires of their customers instead of allocating prizes that may leave some feeling dissatisfied. Diversifying the way rewards are presented through different games in one way to do so.  Another way would be to analyze the preferences of the customer and present them with different types of rewards like a voucher as opposed to a free gift.

This approach fosters a sense of autonomy and personalization, enhancing the overall customer experience. It also increases the likelihood of customers finding value in the rewards they receive, resulting in higher satisfaction and a deeper level of appreciation for the brand.

Why is it necessary to be innovative?

The importance of finding innovative ways to issue customer rewards cannot be overstated. By embracing creativity and constantly evolving reward programs, businesses can cultivate strong and lasting relationships with their customers. Innovative rewards not only drive customer satisfaction and loyalty but also differentiate a company from its competitors, boosting its brand reputation and market position. 

In conclusion, the implementation of innovative approaches enables businesses to gather invaluable data and insights, facilitating the customization of their offerings and marketing strategies with greater efficacy. Ultimately, by prioritizing innovation in customer rewards, companies can unlock unexplored potential and boost customer loyalty. To achieve this, consider The Perx Platform which empowers businesses to transform transient and fleeting customer interactions to meaningful relationships by leveraging behavioral science and gamification to enhance customer engagement and loyalty. Book a demo today to learn more about how the Perx customer loyalty and engagement platform can elevate your loyalty program.

Global businesses have driven over 5 billion customer-brand interactions on Perx.

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