A CMO Council survey indicates that while the majority of marketers view loyalty programs as essential to their business, an overwhelming majority are having trouble determining effectiveness of such programs:

Some indicting facts from the survey:

  • 27% say they haven’t really tapped “brand champions”
  • 16% say “we’ve been highly effective”
  • 19% say “we don’t have a strategy for this”

Is this an example of chasing rabbits down the wrong holes?   We contend loyalty programs are largely designed with the wrong outcomes in mind.  Are you measuring the right behaviors?  What do you want your loyalists (Zealots) to do?

What do you want them to say about your brand?   Are you truly rewarding them or making them jump through proverbial hoops to receive an incentive?

Here’s a big hint: the large majority of $2 billion spent each year on loyalty programs is wasted.  True Zealots are already mobilized.   It’s about supporting them … and instead taking actions to engage other potential customers waiting to be transformed into Zealots.