Goodbye loyalty cards… Hello loyalty SMS

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Loyalty SMS taking over from loyalty cards

Recently we have seen a lot of talk about brands launching new loyalty schemes and ones which seem to signal the end for the old plastic loyalty card – but what do we put in its place?

To begin with, loyalty schemes are a great way to try and build up a good base of loyal customers. By offering your loyalty customers exclusive content, offers or products, you can make them feel special and lock in their loyalty to you.

Loyalty cards have always had issues with customers not really wanting to bulk up their wallets or purses which also begs the question of how you can contact those customers to let them know you have an exclusive offer for them?

By looking at the benefits of loyalty schemes and also the weaknesses, retailers are now bringing their reward schemes up to date, and so far there seems to be two main front runners for the crown; reward apps or loyalty SMS, and amongst the major retailers we are seeing both…

We decided to take a look at the contenders:

The recent advert from Harvey Nichols below, has signaled their direction.

Apps are a neat little extra for your brand to offer but are they effective and are they what your customers want? Research seems to suggest no…

SAP research says that 81% of customers prefer SMS over mobile apps for communicating with their brand. 71% said it’s annoying having different conversations in different apps – they want all their communications in one place.

“We are moving away from customers asking ‘Is there an app for that?’ to asking ‘Is there an SMS for that?” Sethu Meenakshisundaram, President of SAP.

There also seems to be rumours and talk circling on the web that Google is going to start to penalise websites that try to send customers to their external apps rather than keep them on the web.

So although apps might be a nice thing for you to show off, in reality a simple SMS loyalty programme is more on target and probably what your customers are looking for. Savvy Marketing research states that 65% of customers found the idea of receiving targeted offers/coupons on their smartphone very attractive.

Recently we have had a big influx of retailers, restaurants, hotels etc. start to adopt our Form2SMS feature on their site as it’s a great way to capture and let customers sign up to your loyalty programmes by adding just one little field to your website – see how here

With the holidays coming up fast, now is the time to start sending out those small, added extra but exclusive offers, products and news to your customers by automated SMSsign up here and start to get the Christmas snowball rolling

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