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Why Loyalty Programs Fail

Jacob Brain


Avoiding loyalty program fatigue is a difficult task. By the time you start noticing the signs, there is not a whole lot you can do to revive it. At that point, your number one priority is to find out the core reason why your program was not successful. You won’t be able to save the program, unless you understand where you went wrong in the first place.

Wrong Intentions

Loyalty programs were the buzz marketing topic on the lips of every B2C company in the world, and it’s possible that you started your program without thinking deeply about the outcomes. You may not have had the right intentions or goals of the program, if you used it to gain customers rather than reward them. Turn the focus to rewarding customers, and don’t worry about new customers for now.

Too Complicated

Double points on purchases after 5pm on the second Tuesdays of the month, in two of our five locations. Does this remind you of your program? If so, your customers may not have seen the value in changing their habits to meet your program needs, or simply felt to burdened by your program. Loyalty rewards, it does not direct. It’s push vs. pull. You can incentive your loyal members to a degree, but if your program is too hard to understand, that ability to influence them is lost.

Does not differentiate your brand

Good loyalty is specific. Points might not be the answer. Sure, they help democratize the reward process, but they homogenize your program in with hundreds of other point programs. Then your points get compared to other company’s points, and now we have a point battle that took our rewards, and made them subject to scrutiny by the consumer.

These are just a few reasons why a loyalty program might fail. If you have one of these issues, or a different issue, the next step would be to talk to New North to help you create a plan to bring life back into your loyalty program.


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