Progressive Grocer - September 2017 - 106

Technology

Loyalty Programs

'Incentive'

Begins With 'I'
Personalization, respecting data are key to driving loyalty program memberships.
By Randy Hofbauer

L
If a deal or offer
is personalized,
shoppers love
it. In fact,
shoppers have
come to expect
personalization."
-Mir Aamir, Quotient

106

oyalty programs have long been a
major strategy in drawing consumers
to one retailer rather than another.
However, while growth of loyalty
program membership has continued
- reaching 3.8 billion - this year's edition of Colloquy's Loyalty Census shows that it has dropped 11
points, to 15 percent, since the 2015 edition. Grocery program memberships have contributed to this,
dropping to 142 million, from 188 million in 2015.
While the findings, presented by Toronto-based
loyalty program and analytics firm LoyaltyOne,
show that the 24 percent decrease in grocery program memberships is due, in part, to many mergers
and acquisitions in the sector, it also reveals a need
for grocers to continue to offer enticing reasons for
consumers to become members.
For grocers in 2017, personalized incentives -
digital offers and deals, relevant digital ads - are
a powerful way to appeal to shoppers, drive sales
and build loyalty, says Mir Aamir, president and
CEO of Mountain View, Calif.-based digital
promotions provider Quotient.
"The reason is simple: Shoppers love digital offers
and deals, either in the form of discounts on products they buy, or in terms of rewards like points, if a
retailer has such a program," Aamir notes. "The key

is to make all such incentives relevant and easy to use.
If a deal or offer is personalized, shoppers love it. In
fact, shoppers have come to expect personalization."

Personalization Tips
Grocers have a number of ways to personalize
programs, and different demographics have different ways that they want to enjoy incentives. Some
of the ways grocers could better personalize loyalty
program incentives to customers include:

1

Creating ease of participation: It should be

easy to take part and simple to redeem, says
Therese McEndree, VP of marketing with
Hawk Incentives, a subsidiary of Pleasanton,
Calif.-based Blackhawk Network Holdings.
Also, the benefits must be clearly and consistently communicated. One grocer that does this
is Food City, a subsidiary of Abingdon,
Va.-based K-VA-T Food Stores that rewards
shoppers based on the amount they spend at its
stores, according to David Bishop, partner with
Barrington, Ill.-based retail consultancy Brick
Meets Click. Customers at the grocer earn a 5
percent-off reward that they can use on future
purchases after spending $300 at the retailer.
Bishop notes that the program is personalized

| Progressive Grocer | Ahead of What's Next | September 2017

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9/26/17 9:44 AM



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