How to Drive Loyalty With a Better Rewards Strategy


Although a lot of companies have loyalty programs, many don’t offer the right mix of desirable rewards needed to capture and keep participants’ attention. This is especially true the credit card, wellness and travel and hospitality verticals, which have broad bases of diverse members who all want different rewards at various redemption levels.

Companies should, instead, provide each participant with a personalized experience that encourages them to regularly engage. Here are a few ways to improve any program.

  • Offer the right rewards.
    You can drive loyalty program participation simply by providing the right reward mix. Create a robust rewards catalogue that includes several different types of rewards, such as universal incentive cards, physical gift cards, eGifts and virtual rewards, as well as travel and merchandise. Providing these options allows your loyalty program members to select the reward that best fits their personal preferences, which creates a higher perceived value of your program’s points.
  • Provide the right rewards values.
    Build a mix of achievable, accessible and aspirational reward values. Achievable rewards typically range from $5 to $25, and can be earned soon after program enrollment. Participants should be eligible for accessible, mid-tier rewards ranging from $10 to $50 after a few months of participation. Finally, for those who want to save their points over a longer period of time, aspirational rewards are valued at more than $50. Your participants will span from those who want to frequently redeem $10 gift cards for dinners to those who want to save up for a trip overseas-make sure you can accommodate them all.
  • Deliver rewards as quickly as possible.
    To create greater brand connection, make sure participants can receive their rewards promptly. Consider using digital delivery. By providing loyalty rewards in a timely, responsive manner, you keep their experience with your brand top-of-mind and increase the likelihood they will engage with your program again.
  • Offer value-added rewards.
    Providing special offers to your loyalty program participants can provide added value without breaking your budget. Engaging loyalty program members with exclusive offers-such as letting them get a $100 gift card to their favorite restaurant if they have only $90 worth of points-can keep them engaged and provide them exclusive access to benefits they could only receive as a member of your program.
  • Create more redemption opportunities.
    The whole point of offering loyalty points is to engage participants in loyalty-building behaviors. But unspent points or rewards don’t do your members-or your company-any good. Try leveraging promotions to drive redemption during key times of the year and create additional loyalty by making point spend options available when and where consumers want them. Provide availability via channels such as mobile, email, chat or, even, telephone, and consider your participants’ physical locations. Are your rewards available only in the United States, or can they be accessed internationally as well? Enabling participants to redeem their loyalty points easily when and where they want will help increase their satisfaction with your program.

Effective loyalty programs can keep participants engaged and coming back for more. Try to align your loyalty program objectives with an assortment of rewards and delivery methods that will help you achieve your goals and ensure your participants are getting the most out of their loyalty rewards.

Talk to Blackhawk Network

Whether you’re just starting your rewards journey, or optimizing your current program, Blackhawk Network is here to help. Just click here to get started or call 866.219.7533.

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