An Omnichannel Approach To Mobile Loyalty Engagement

By Dan Slavin

In my last post, I wrote about the need for marketers to take an omnichannel approach to mobile loyalty programs.

Here are the highlights:

  • Loyalty marketers are turning to mobile to sign up members, to get members more engaged, and to attract millennials.
  • Mobile is a platform with several communication channels (SMS, mobile app, mobile wallet, Facebook). Every consumer has a preferred way in which he or she wishes to interact with loyalty programs. A channel that works for one consumer may not work for another.
  • Loyalty marketers need the ability to invite each consumer to enroll in the loyalty program, and to access their rewards info, via that consumer’s preferred channel – and this is where an omnichannel approach to mobile loyalty comes in.

In this post, we will explore the key components of omnichannel approach to mobile loyalty member acquisition and engagement.

An omnichannel approach to mobile loyalty addresses three key program areas:

1) Member acquisition, 2) Member engagement, and 3) Rewards access.

Outstanding mobile loyalty programs address each of these three areas with an omnichannel approach – which means that consumers can sign up for the program, and access their rewards information, from their preferred mobile channel – SMS, Mobile App or Wallet, and Facebook. And marketers can have a contact strategy based on each member’s preferred communications channel.

A CodeBroker Mobile Loyalty Study of 1,207 consumers showed that there are numerous ways consumers prefer to access loyalty programs from their smartphones. By taking an omnichannel approach to mobile loyalty, marketers can more effectively:

  • Increase member enrollment – especially with millennials
  • Drive higher levels of member engagement
  • Deliver relevant, integrated communications across channels

Characteristics of Omnichannel Mobile Loyalty Acquisition and Engagement

The foundation of successful mobile loyalty is to give consumers a way to join the program in the manner that works for them. And, once they join, marketers can keep each member engaged over time by making it easy to access the program in the most convenient way for them. Let’s take a quick look at some of the key ingredients of an omnichannel approach that puts customer experience front and center.

  • Make the program available over all mobile channels to allow consumers to sign up and engage over their preferred method: SMS, mobile app and wallet, and Facebook.
  • Give members access to all loyalty program features – rewards, card, points balance, certificates, rewards redemption and program details via their preferred channel.
  • When existing loyalty program members convert to mobile, the member’s phone number, Facebook ID, etc. should automatically link to their loyalty program records.
  • The system should recognize the user, and point balances and rewards should be updated dynamically so the member has the most current information.
  • Never require members to log in to access the program. (Based on our mobile loyalty research report, 70% said they would use a mobile version of their loyalty program if they didn’t have to sign in to a website or download an app. )
  • Employ real-time mobile analytics to monitor member engagement for insights into how members are engaging with the program.

Key Challenges Addressed

An omnichannel approach to mobile loyalty helps marketers address four challenges that I hear again and again as I speak with loyalty marketing professionals.

1. Acquiring mobile loyalty members quickly and at scale.
2. Getting members to more actively engage with the program.
3. Using the right contact strategy for each member.
4. Attracting millennials and Gen. Y consumers.

Today’s consumers expect to be marketed to on their terms. By developing an omnichannel approach to mobile loyalty, marketers can employ the customer-centric approach that is required to succeed with today’s mobile consumers.