“Tell me and I’ll forget
Teach me and I may remember
Involve me and I will learn”
Benjamin Franklin

Why is customer loyalty so important?

There’s a sea-change currently underway in business practice, necessitating marketing efforts to constantly evolve. Those organizations destined to thrive in this highly connected world understand that to generate sales they need to move beyond traditional advertising and marketing campaigns. The importance of building a community of supporters loyal to a brand, and being able to offer a personalized service to these customers, has become a hallmark of future success.

Businesses that truly understand this new reality face the challenge of cultivating low-commitment supporters into loyal, high-commitment champions. One of the best ways of achieving this is through a loyalty program, which collects and analyses data, and directs customized marketing to those most likely to respond. The LRS program offered by Watson Creative/SkiData produces outstanding metric-driven results, and excellent ROI. It drives loyalty, rewards, and membership and is the only solution in the world that can engage customers at every touchpoint on-line and on-ground.

It pays to earn the loyalty of customers

Many companies are now measuring Customer Lifetime Value (CLV). By employing this measure, it’s possible to attach a projected long-term value to a loyal customer. Success depends on identifying a targeted customer and understanding each individual’s needs. Current technology allows a business to be more customer-centric and more personalized in their marketing than ever in the past.

Finding new customers is estimated to cost between 5 and 7 times as much as it costs to retain an existing customer, so it pays to build loyalty with your existing customers and to optimize the profit you can get from them. Any increase in customer retention can boost bottom line profits significantly.

The core of clients who are already repeat customers can become ambassadors for your business. Loyal customers tend to refer others, saving you the marketing and advertising costs of acquiring them. A loyal customer’s endorsement is more powerful to their family and friends than any ad campaign.

Thriving companies with high customer and employee loyalty levels are generally seen to outpace their competitors.

  • Loyal customers buy more, and are often willing to pay more, which means a steadier cash flow.
  • Loyal customers become familiar with your way of business, and are usually the first to see and report opportunities for improvement.

Elements of a successful loyalty program – business by design

The crux of a good loyalty program is that it rewards your customers for the behaviors that you want. For example, just increasing foot traffic into a retail store doesn’t help if the customers buy only the discounted items (that cost you money), and never return. A successful loyalty program should take your clients / supporters on a journey from low commitment activities (inviting a friend, sharing events on social media) to building a pattern of committed loyalty to your brand. By doing this, you will move them through bands of higher spend, and will derive maximum profitability from each customer, while they receive a reward in return. The program needs to be specific to your business so that you can drive and measure the behavior and spending patterns you desire, such as purchasing in collections, checking in at retail (on-line and on-ground), and collection driven purchases.

One of the most valuable features of a loyalty system is the data and knowledge that is collected, creating ever-increasing understanding of your customers and how best to provide them with the experiences they want. We help you build a purposeful set of interrelated consumer experiences to create a memorable and transactional journey. This has a symbiotic relationship with your brand: you are better able to build loyalty and commitment to your brand and to increase your brand equity; your loyal customer becomes your brand ambassador and will redefine your brand and help it to grow (both on-line and on-ground).

What makes our loyalty software unique?

We work with you and help you build your brand story. Our expertise is in community building through a thorough understanding of both traditional and on-line customer touchpoints. A loyalty program on its own can’t buy loyalty and ensure repeat visits – you need to know what truly motivates your customers and the power of building your brand equity through experiential marketing. Experiences are what give people intrinsic motivation, and that’s what determines their behaviors. We partner with you to engage these customers early, and to build a loyal community by activating and capitalizing on their intrinsic motivation.

Ideally rewards should be experiential. We use your brand to create these experiences. Bespoke games and experiences are key to success and create differentiation for your loyal customers. NASA is a good example of getting this right – which is why they’re rated as one of the leading US organizations with respect to building a community on social media. Their rewards include tours of their facilities, and being invited to attend launches – exactly what their community of interest wants.

  • A tier system can be introduced – for example, Season Ticket Holders could have a separate experience and membership platform versus others
  • Based on the psychology of motivation, users of the program should win after their first interaction and the redemption should be as easy as possible
  • Thereafter, a more integrated system of rewards can be introduced (interfacing with on-site commerce)
  • Membership cards can be created for fans on-site which activate discounts and can hold cash (not just another loyalty card to be put into a wallet)
  • Loyalty codes can be generated for immediate rewards on purchases online

The product is an online portal – it’s a website, not an app. It’s a service platform which we assist you to custom design to allow active engagement with your fans / customers. You can expose this software in your venue’s app, and it will pull in all the data.

The software operates on a point system – the system allows participants to redeem unique rewards and experiences with points they earn through each interaction. Thus, sports fans, for example, can engage with exclusive team content.

Gamification – points are awarded based on the behaviors agreed upon, which can easily be integrated into the system and linked with your CRM program. These behaviors would provide increased revenue and would include:

  • Early attendance
  • Buying food
  • Buying merchandise
  • Watching videos
  • Connecting to social media
  • Liking sponsors (team stores)
  • Tweets/Retweets
  • Filling out surveys (as simple as like/don’t like)

Redemption of points would again be customized, but could include:

Once in a life-time team experiences – backstage / on field

  • Bid for Auction Items
  • Signed memorabilia – including limited edition items
  • Clothing
  • Bobble heads
  • Sweepstakes
  • Free food
  • Free merchandise
  • Ticket upgrades

The software allows for sponsorship which would include:

  • Naming Partner
    • Overall naming partner
    • Naming partner of different features
    • i.e. “Quiz presented by ___”
    • i.e. McDonald’s Big Mac for Dunks
  • Members can vote on who they think will have the first dunk or goal
  • Branded Sweepstakes
  • Promo Code/Coupon Push with sponsor logo
  • Barcode Scan/Enter Code for visiting partner location
  • iBeacon partner sponsorship – in arena and out of arena activation

Proximity marketing / location based services – outstanding results have already been achieved through the power of a contextual engagement campaign. Real-time information with a real-time response is critical when there is a limited time of engagement, and the features of this software allow you to take full advantage. Our best practice in this regard will deliver tangible, measurable results and include:

  • Real-Time/Scheduled Push Notifications
  • Robust data and analytics platform
  • Foot Traffic
  • Real-time heat map
  • Dwell time by area
  • Number of views
  • Number of click-throughs
  • Engagement rates cross-referenced with customer data

Proximity marketing is powerful as it influences behavior in real-time. With the loyalty software in place, information about the fan provides the opportunity to influence behavior:

  • Beacons are placed near the merchandise store
  • When the heat map indicates that the fan is near the store, a coupon to redeem at the store is triggered
  • The fan is incentivized to purchase with a time-delineated deal
  • The fan is influenced sufficiently enough to walk into the store and check it out
  • One professional sports team generated $185k in 2014 in incremental revenue via team store purchases through beacon-based offers to fans

App integration – Customized with the software will be an app with a dedicated section that focuses on loyalty/ membership / fan interaction. This will include:

  • Personalized Member Central
    • manage tickets
    • view membership discounts and offers
    • news
    • view member events calendar
  • Raffles and other gamification features
  • Polls and other dynamic interactive engagements
  • Supporting iBeacons, geofences, QR codes, and other proximity campaigns and engagements

The program can be customized to build a community and revenue across on-line, social, and ground activations for any type of business. Our clients include over 35 Pro Teams, Zoos, Ski Resorts, Theatres, Hotels, Non-Profits, Global Events and Retailers.

What our software has already achieved

We are able to build a 360 degree view of the fan and their likes and activities – both on-ground and on-line

Denver Broncos – by working with 10% of Season Ticket Holders, ticket spend was increased by $1,000,000. They increased their social following by over 2,300% in one season, which was greatly attributed to the critical mass developed by incentivized behaviors and loyalty. 4 minutes average portal dwell-time due to exclusive content. $40,000 of parking sold in one day through a one-time point offer. Upwards of $3 per cap spend increase at food and beverage by loyalty card holders. 59% of members arrive at least 30 minutes early when incentivized with points. 78% of card holders are swiping at retail. 57% more spend in the first 60 minutes of gates opening. Through the use of loyalty codes, teams are able to report concrete metrics to sponsors, increasing sponsorship opportunities through data.

Seattle Sounders

  • 40% increase in early attendance (30-minutes) prior to kick off
  • Early attendance produced a 89% increase in food and beverage spend

Kansas City Chiefs – Portal dwell time 6.5 minutes

San Francisco 49ers – Projected to have over 2 million users by the end of 2015-2016 NFL season

Detroit Pistons – Season ticket renewals have increased 17% year-over-year since implementing the program

Vancouver Whitecaps –

    • Fans who redeemed one reward were 93% likely to renew Season Tickets
    • Fans that redeemed two rewards were 98% likely to renew

LA Kings – Fans burnt 1.5 million loyalty points in sweep stakes recently

The University of Miami – 10,000 out of 30,000 people clicked on a link in an email to watch a video and log-in to a portal – a 33.3% click-through rate.

How the program will affect your marketing strategy

As the loyalty program gathers momentum and builds a community of followers, your marketing strategy will begin to change.

PR: By creating a growing social footprint, a no-cost, self-sustaining PR vehicle is created across digital, retail, and product. This builds consistent inbound marketing and generates further leads, while simultaneously driving consistent messaging and building your brand.

Experiential: Experiential events multiply exponentially, and become better attended. These events differentiate your business, add true value, and become a virtuous circle, driving further loyalty and self-sustaining communities. Engagement can be gamified and customized.

Advertising: With the explosion of PR and Experiential activities, your marketing drive will be weaned off advertising. You will already have a captive target-market acting as individual brand ambassadors.

Contact us for a free consultation

The power of constructive customer engagement is undeniable and should translate into a community of supporters who are committed to your organization. Every moment that you don’t take advantage of a customer interaction to build increased loyalty is an opportunity wasted. The Watson/SkiData LRS 360 has unique features and benefits that have proved highly successful wherever they’ve been applied, and demonstrate greatly enhanced sales and profitability through powerful community building.

Beyond the outstanding software program is the understanding we have of how to build engagement through customizing the product for your client-base. This is key to success, and our track record of superb metric-based results is a testament to our commitment to understanding your business. From the outset, we will work with you to define the program and to put together experiential events that will enhance your brand and delight your customers. Throughout the early stages of the project, we will assist you to ensure that the envisaged results are being achieved, and will tweak the program wherever necessary. We’re committed to a successful end result for you – an engaged community of loyal supporters who act as exceptional brand ambassadors on your behalf. Put us to the test today.


800 280 3057

by Watson Creative


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