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How to Use Loyalty Data to Boost Engagement for Personalized Emails

Customer experience is the decisive differentiator between you and your rivals. Loyalty programs and personalized emails are a great way to make you stand out. They offer endless opportunities to connect with and encourage your audience to spend more with you, more often. But they also provide you with a massive source of information about your audience. Knowing how to combine the two to create an unforgettable customer experience is essential. 

DMA’s Consumer email tracker 2019 revealed that loyalty programs are a key driver encouraging new email sign-ups. 

The benefits of a good loyalty program are endless. It’ll encourage repeat purchases, increase Customer Lifetime Value (CLV), and give you an endless wealth of data on your customer. And to keep customers engaged, data is key. 

Using data & personalized emails to drive loyalty 

When you launch a loyalty program, you’ll soon find that you have more data at your fingertips than ever before. Most of these programs are informed by purchasing behavior, preferences, and customer interests. As a result, you have the power to really enhance your email communications. 

Loyalty data enables you to send hyper-targeted, personalized content to your audience. Below, we’ve outlined some of the most powerful ways you can make this data work better for you.

Beer Hawk — a shared client of dotdigital and Antavo — takes personalization to the next level with their omnichannel strategy. In one of the company’s high-end bars, bartenders could recommend beer based on the customer’s taste profile in real time.

Beer Hawk — a shared client of dotdigital and Antavo — takes personalization to the next level with their omnichannel strategy. In one of the company’s high-end bars, bartenders could recommend beer based on the customer’s taste profile in real time.

Benefit-driven campaigns

The first segment you need to make, and should be constantly monitoring, is that of your non-members.

Okay. Technically, you’re not using the data you’ve gathered as part of your loyalty program. But what you’re showcasing are the benefits customers receive when they hand over their data.

American clothing and accessories brand, Loeffler Randall, strategically target this segment with an exclusive offer. The objective of this email is twofold:

  1. Driving subscribers to make a purchase
  2. Demonstrating the numerous and simple ways shoppers can earn loyalty points

 

To make this email stronger, Loeffler Randall could’ve included a deeper outline of the program. This could be explaining the various tiers, or what rewards shoppers receive when they reach certain milestones.

To make this email stronger, Loeffler Randall could’ve included a deeper outline of the program. This could be explaining the various tiers, or what rewards shoppers receive when they reach certain milestones.

Track progress and mark milestones

Rather than letting your customers forget about your loyalty program, keep them engaged by informing them about their progress. You can do this in a number of ways, depending on what works for you and your brand. 

Sephora and Designer Shoe Warehouse (DSW) pull in data about shoppers’ points and spending to track progress.

Sephora display customer status and the number of points they’ve earned at the top as a constant reminder about the rewards and benefits awaiting them.

Sephora display customer status and the number of points they’ve earned at the top as a constant reminder about the rewards and benefits awaiting them.

 DSW, on the other hand, pull in data about upcoming milestones to encourage shoppers to spend more and earn their next reward.

DSW, on the other hand, pull in data about upcoming milestones to encourage shoppers to spend more and earn their next reward.

This use of dynamic content allows the content of these personalized emails to be hyper-personalized to the reader. 

Women’s fashion brand, Madewell, and cosmetics brand, e.l.f. use this data to trigger automations as loyal shoppers progress. 

In this example, Madewell have set thresholds for each tier in its loyalty program. Once they’re met, this email is triggered.

The message is kept short and simple. The customer earned enough points to receive expedited shipping for free and can look forward to receiving two free gifts a year.

The message is kept short and simple. The customer earned enough points to receive expedited shipping for free and can look forward to receiving two free gifts a year.

e.l.f. cosmetics’ loyalty program triggers messages every time shoppers earn new points. Once again this is keeping the program and the awaiting rewards at the forefront of customers’ minds.

e.l.f. cosmetics’ loyalty program triggers messages every time shoppers earn new points. Once again this is keeping the program and the awaiting rewards at the forefront of customers’ minds.

Celebrate with shoppers 

Milestones shouldn’t be limited to the progress shoppers are making along your loyalty program. 

Your shoppers have lives outside of their relationship with you. To connect with shoppers on a highly personal level, it’s important to take these things into consideration.

Nike do this with a 25% discount for a whole month around members birthday. By going above and beyond, members feel like they’re getting superior value out of the program.

Nike do this with a 25% discount for a whole month around members birthday. By going above and beyond, members feel like they’re getting superior value out of the program.

Sephora mark customers’ joining anniversaries with an exclusive rewards card.

Sephora mark customers’ joining anniversaries with an exclusive rewards card.

To make these examples even more personalized for the reader, pull in loyalty data such as points to determine their reward. Consider things such as how long they’ve been shopping with you. There may be something special you can deliver to mark five years as a loyal shopper such new perks.

Re-engage lapsed loyalists with personalised emails

One of the key benefits of a loyalty program, is it helps you track how frequently and recently customers have shopped with you. This means, you should always be aware when members of your program start to lapse. 

The example we’ve already shown from DSW is a great way to remind subscribers what they’re missing. Prompting them to return because they’re so close to their next reward could be the re-spark their interest and bring them back into the fold. 

Or, you could pull in loyalty data to give your standard re-engagement emails extra energy. Take this email from Blue Apron for example:

To make this email more impactful, you could pull in information such as the date of their last purchase, how many points they’re away from their next reward, or how long they’ve been a valued member of your loyalty program.

To make this email more impactful, you could pull in information such as the date of their last purchase, how many points they’re away from their next reward, or how long they’ve been a valued member of your loyalty program.

Put it all together 

The key to a successful loyalty program is creating a connection with your shoppers. Because you don’t have the power to get to know each and every one of the customers in your database, you need to use the information you have. Thanks to your loyalty program, there’s a lot of it, just waiting for you to tap into. 

We’ve outlined a couple of key ways you can use loyalty data to deliver personalized emails to your subscribers. But we wanted to leave you with the best of the bunch. Once you’re comfortable pulling in data and using it to create unforgettable customer journeys, creating something like the email below will be a walk in the park!

DavidsTEA’s anniversary email has it all: it remembers the date of registration, the customer’s total consumption and favorite products, and serves all of it with lovely graphics.

DavidsTEA’s anniversary email has it all: it remembers the date of registration, the customer’s total consumption and favorite products, and serves all of it with lovely graphics.

Just remember, you already have this data. It’s up to you how you use it. 

Join our seminar and learn more!

dotdigital and Antavo are organizing a morning seminar titled “How to boost your marketing with a loyalty program”. If you’re hungry for more knowledge regarding customer retention and customer engagement, then this is the perfect opportunity for you.

Jenna Paton
Jenna Paton
Jenna is an accomplished copywriter, with experience in marketing, PR and internal communication at the NHS and British Red Cross. With a degree in Literature and History from the University of East Anglia, Jenna is passionate about all things content – a passion that she has now brought to the dotdigital content team.