Monday, March 22, 2010

Integrating your loyalty program into your customers communities

So you're a retailer and you have a customer loyalty program, nothing new there, everyone does. But until now this has been a mostly one-to-one relationship. Maybe you're a forward thinking company like Sears and have built a community for your loyalty program or like Best Buy and built a youth community for a specific segment of your customers. Breaking the one-to-one mould and exposing loyal customers to each other, great.

This means big bikkies to create a community platform from scratch and one of the down sides of this is that your brand is essentially insulated within its own community boundaries. For smaller retailers there is an alternative that can generate exposure as well as community.

I originally got on this train of thought when I read a blog post by platform vendor Lithium and their integration of Foursquare into their platform. This was more of a comment on bringing outside community mentions into an enterprise community, but the concept of blending inside and outside communities is essentially the same.

And now I have come across Tasti D-lite, a US ice-cream chain that has really taken social media integration to the next level for small business.

You can read more about how Tasti D-lite have brought social media into their loyalty program here, but essentially what they have done is leverage the power of their customer's existing free and public networks to promote their own loyalty program.

For USD$10,000 Tasti D-lite integrated Twitter and Foursquare into their loyalty program and POS system so that when a transaction is made using the loyalty program card a Tweet is sent with how many points were awarded and a check-in is made in Foursquare for the customer.

Setting aside the mammoth amount of small business activity in Facebook, this example shows how for relatively small amounts of money small businesses can leverage the power of their customer's existing networks to build brand and loyalty together.

1 comment:

Lauraaaa said...


Sweet post!

I've got a few loyalty-card based post running at the moment too ...