Your Exclusive Rewards Build Customer Loyalty and Dollars Spent

Last week I talked about the importance of enhancing your business rewards program.  I wasn’t the only person talking about the need for this. Customer Experience Futurist Blake Morgan was also sharing.  

This year it is more important than ever before to offer rewards tailored to your targeted audience. If your audience includes Gen Z, the positive stats for loyalty rewards jump even higher.

Review of Ms. Morgan’s article

50 Stats that Show the Importance of Good Loyalty Rewards

If you don’t yet have a loyalty program, it’s time to join the more than 90% of companies that do.

52% of American consumers will join the loyalty program of brands they regularly purchase. A surprising 84% have made a redemption from a rewards program.

Not all loyalty programs get used. Most, 65% of consumers engage with less than half of their loyalty programs. 

Satisfaction with loyalty programs has dropped to 44%, down from 47% in 2018.  People are looking for businesses that offer something better.

Interestingly a whopping 95% of consumers, according to Code Broker, want to engage with more loyalty programs using chatbots, AI, or VR and their smart devices.  75% want them accessible on their smartphone.

Engage with your customers emotionally, and they spend 27% more.  Personalization is huge. When you do it well for your members, it creates a 6.4x lift in their satisfaction with your program.

Loyalty rewards increase sales

One stat I didn’t mention, Incentive Solutions, shared that adding a loyalty program to your e-commerce platform can increase average order quantity by 319%.  

With the competition becoming more fierce as companies try to capture some of the “rebound spending,” it’s vital to ramp up bonding. The better your rewards, the stronger your fan loyalty will be. 

Make sure those rewards are easy to earn and relevant to your audience.

Psychographics can maximize your rewards program.

Psychographics focuses on what and why people respond as they do. And the buying triggers are different for women and men. Since women influence so much of the spending, cater to their reward psychographics to maximize your efforts.

The use of psychographics can be of benefit when considering personalization and relevance. But it’s also beneficial for the emotional triggers of social consciousness. 

Here are my 3 key takeaways on the benefits of loyalty rewards.

There are certainly lots of things to consider to create a winning rewards program.`

Keep reward programs simple

The last thing your customers want is a complicated reward system. In the article, stats showed that you’d reduce the number of users if you require a downloaded app. 

The days of wallets stuffed with rewards cards are over.  Most people don’t want to carry them, and yours is apt to be left on the counter or tossed. 

Avoid or give very generous expiration dates. Rewards expiring before use is a frustration for members. Be sure to thank them for a redemption—you’ll be in the minority that does.

Most consumers, 95%, want to access their rewards via their smartphones. They like to use AI, Chatbots, and VI.  

Giving gifts increases bonding.

Finding ways to say thank you, even when they make a redemption, holds value for consumers.  And if you employ those thank yous, you’ll be in the minority of businesses who take that extra step.

I’ve never met anyone who didn’t enjoy a surprise gift or an unexpected piece of mail that wasn’t trying to sell something…just say thank you. 

If you don’t have physical products, there are other options. There are numerous programs available that offer gifts that can be personalized. It becomes a branding opportunity to keep customers thinking of you.  Branded items offer a bit of swag, another bonus members love.

Even early access to sales is a gift they like.  46% of customers love this bonus.

Or, send members an incentive.75% of consumers purchased something after receiving a reward.

Willing to pay for upgraded loyalty reward program

Don’t discount an upgrade option. Creating an optional paid upgrade can bond members even more. They paid something, which increases the desire to use the benefits. 

Paid membership puts you into an elite inner circle. After a year of being disconnected, being a part of something has enhanced value.  

When I work with clients

For new clients, or when we’re doing a review, I put on my “consumer hat.”  I put myself in the shoes of their target audience and look for ways to enhance their customer experience and loyalty programs. 

A customer who likes your brand and is pleased with your rewards program is far more apt to recommend you to their friends.

Need help?  Judith@jculpcreativecopy.com.

You can read Blake Morgan’s Article HERE.

“Edutainment” Powers Up Engagement

Use edutainment for customer engagement.

“Edutainment” content is a secret weapon to get viewer’s attention and engage them. 

Our prospects spend a fair amount of time scrolling through social media or searching online. Subliminally, they are looking for answers to nagging problems.

“Edutainment” content is a secret weapon to get viewer’s attention and engage them.

IF we can catch their attention and keep it, we have the opportunity to help them.

So what’s edutainment?

The first time I heard of edutainment was about 15 years ago when I attended an instructor continuing education workshop. The educator was smartly dressed and pulled together from head to toes. She was in the beauty industry, after all.

“You can’t teach someone if you don’t get their attention.”

I remember jolting more upright in my seat. I knew it was true but had never thought of it that way.

The presenter slapped a silly fishing hat festooned with lures on her head. People giggled. She smiled.

“See, I’ve got your attention. If we can hook the student with a prop or change of approach, we can share.

“Teachers need to be more than educators. They need to employ edutainment.”

It changed the way I taught, and the students loved it.

If you tune into any “kids” channel, you’re likely to see edutainment in action. Catchy tunes, graphics, and tidbits of education cloaked in fun.

Southwest Airlines does a great job of incorporating edutainment into its pre-flight message. Delta has done the same in their pre-flight video.

Both take a serious subject and make it easy and memorable.

Edutainment also works for your content.

I found making dry content more interesting applies equally well to marketing. If we can pleasantly surprise the reader or make them smile, we have their attention.

Edutainment is simply entertaining education.

Over the years, I’ve done a lot of content revision. I take challenging, dull, or complicated subjects and make them more accessible and exciting to read. The result is more engagements.

It works for all types of content, from web pages to articles, blogs, and emails.

One thing to keep in mind

You need to stay true to your voice. You can lighten up and take a more friendly tone, but it needs to be in a way that is consistent with your brand.

The last thing you want to do is send mixed messages.

3 keys about edutainment content

The key to engaging customers is sharing your brand’s story. More than just the story, customers want to know the people behind the brand and its personality.

So if your content reads like a how-to assemble for home office storage cubes, that’s like skating on thin ice. Snoozeville. Many people will tackle the job and never attempt to follow boring directions.

Start with your story.

Revisit your story, your people, and the personality. Look for ways to create positive links. You want to link your brand and the positive experiences the person will have with it. How can it help them overcome a challenge and enjoy the benefits?

Break it into tiny snippets. Let each snippet share a tidbit of information showcased in a mini-story.

Mixed approach

You’ll need to appeal to both sides of the brain. You need to engage both the logical side of the brain as well as the emotional side. When done well, you don’t realize it’s happened.

The mini-story is subtle, not blatant in its approach. It doesn’t work if you’re too obvious.

It has to logically work at the same time that it’s entertaining our emotional side. Then it can subtly address our pain points and help us feel better, be happier, and enjoy life more.

Try video

Because of their visual nature, videos are instantly more entertaining. The content is generally less than three minutes, with the most popular well under one minute. Short gets more engagement.

The absolute best example of this is excellent inspiration.

So how would you take a dull topic like deodorant and turn it into edutainment on steroids?

A company did it. Which one? Old Spice. It saved the company from bankruptcy. The first series was titled “Smell like a man.”

The theme shared how your guy could at least smell like this great-looking actor, a football star—even if he couldn’t look like him. It was released in 2010 and has undergone various theme changes to keep up with an evolving market. But the pattern is still running today.

Their videos are among the top-watched on YouTube. The most-watched was one in the “Men have skin too” series with 59 MILLION views. Did I mention Old Spice now dominates the deodorant market?

It just goes to show anyone can benefit from a revamp. Out with dull or boring. In with edutainment.

So, how can Your brand’s story become more edutaining?


Your quality online content is critical to stay competitive. Ready to attract new buyers, increase lifetime buyer value, build sales, and more engagement? You need quality content. Let’s have a quick chat. You can message me: Judith@jculpcreativecopy.com.

Revenge Spending

In 2021 consumers are ready to take revenge on the pandemic and spend pent up savings.

Vaccines and stimulus checks have people thinking of moving toward what we used to think of as normal. Vaccinated seniors are setting the trend to get even with the pandemic by spending money and getting out. They call it revenge spending.

Attending events, going shopping, and travel are rising to the top of consciousness.  People want liberation. 

Revenge spending will typify 2021

Last week an article came across my desk about “revenge shopping” as a rebound from the pandemic. At first, I laughed, then realized I had participated.

It turns out that in China, one of the first places to reopen their malls, sales spiked through the roof. Not only were they buying basics, but they also went for luxury items like Louis Vuitton bags.

After the January stimulus checks started going out, department store sales increased 21% in the US. 

Tired of wearing sweatpants, chasing kids, and working from home, women want to go out. They want to dress up and wear something new.  Even the trip into a store is starting to sound exciting.  

Depending on location, online shopping is still the norm. I ordered something last week and actually went into the store to pick the item up and try it on.  It was just the sales staff and me, which felt a little odd. Changing room signs proclaimed: Freshly Sanitized. It felt so decadent and liberating even with social distancing and wearing masks.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Bloomberg reports that during 2020 many people saved money. No trips, events, or outings. Lots less discretionary purchases. They estimate there is $1.7 trillion waiting to be spent.  

It’s time for businesses to get on board in the right ways for the coming surge.

Consumers are ready for revenge.

I dove through every report I could find on this topic, and there are many reports and articles out there.  It won’t happen all at once, and the timing will be different based on location. But based on conversations with clients, colleagues, and friends, people are ready for change. 

Businesses in the hardest-hit sectors, like restaurants, hospitality, and apparel, are ready too. It was a very long, tough 2020.  

I also researched how our buying patterns have changed and what we expect from businesses moving forward.  There are some shifts that effective marketers are already implementing, and it can help your business too. 

One thing to keep in mind

Consumers are tired of the sea of useless information. Regardless of where your content is, it must have value if you want to keep their attention.  Value equals helpful information.  

I replied to an email a company sent me complimenting them on its content.  It provided useful information on an alternative way to deal with seasonal allergies. Something they don’t even sell!   Unheard of— but very refreshing.

Today’s buyer is looking for authenticity and value.  We also are craving connection. For most of us, it’s been too long since we’ve visited with family and friends.  Without social media and virtual visiting, the year would have been much worse.  

Ramp up sales with these three techniques

To maximize sales, we need to engage and connect with customers where they are looking for information. That means now, and we need to make sure and have the right presence the right way on social media.  

We need to have conversations with prospects. We need to respect what they are looking for, including the increased focus on social consciousness.

Social media

Dependence on social media grew in 2020, and we started using it in new ways. Pre-pandemic social focused on status updates—things like sharing selfies, where we’d been, and what we’d done. 

Today that’s shifted to social being a key place to find solutions. Have a question? Someone has an answer, just post it. Need a solution? Social is where we go.

We want those solutions to reflect our increased need and desire for value and wellbeing. Users need simple ways to cope and manage stress, working from home, parenting issues, or managing a flex work schedule.  They want to know how to take a vacation in the COVID environment.

If you or your product is a solution, you need to be on social media and help them find you. That means more than having a Facebook business page with periodic product posts. It means having conversations.  It even has a new title…

Conversational Commerce

When we were forced to shift to online buying, we lost something. We lost connection with people, and we lost the ability to ask questions or get advice.  When you go into a store, there is usually someone you can ask.  Online? Not so much. 

Conversation Commerce, also called C-Commerce, (CC), is working to fill that need.  It’s considered any way you connect with your buyers using conversation.  

Your CC could be an AI-driven chatbot, a person you can chat with online or via phone, or another messaging program like WhatsApp. Even Alexa is included because of the way you use words to tell her what to do.

The process puts the customer in control. They reach out and initiate the conversation. They hope you will guide them to the right purchase. If no one is there or doesn’t respond promptly to messages, they’ll look elsewhere.

As the quality of these interfaces increase, the process will become even more valuable.  If you’re stuck with a poor-quality chatbot, replace it or go back to a person.  

IT Cosmetics uses live chat. Their phone lines and chat lines are open 9-5 Eastern, six days a week.  If you’re on the opposite side of the country, it’s not a perfect answer, but it’s better than a chatbot that has limited capabilities. 

If your chatbot can only respond to specifically limited choices, the shopper is left stuck and frustrated. It feels like going into a department store with no salespeople. If you can’t get the help you need, you leave with a negative feeling.

Globally, 84% of people surveyed said customer support is equally essential to what is sold. That makes it critical to get conversations going and help your shoppers.  

Revenge shopping will embrace social consciousness

2020 brought lots of changes, including the trend for social consciousness. From mental health to equality, social justice, caring for the planet, and inclusivity, it’s all part of the package. Awareness is accelerating even more in 2021.

Social consciousness isn’t something a business can afford to ignore. It’s not going to go away, and it’s part of the new normal. Hiding your values isn’t a path to success.

Sharing your position is also a way to connect more emotionally with buyers. When you develop and share a mission-driven campaign to help people or the planet, you build connections. They become your avid fan because your message resonates with them.   

Getting prepared with social media, enhancing conversational commerce, and embracing social consciousness will position you to tap into the coming spend.


Looking to increase lifetime buyer value, build sales, and more engagement? Let’s have a quick chat. You can message me: Judith@jculpcreativecopy.com

Entourage Effect for 2021

Entourage effect when all components work together and exceed the parts individually

The entourage effect impacts many aspects of our lives. The CBD niche has highjacked the term to mean how the different plant parts work together.  However, the word entourage is not new. It actually traces back to a French term dating from 1832 meaning surroundings or environment. 

The French were referring to a group of people, but it is equally applicable to many things in life and business. Everything from formulations, to health and marketing.The power of the components of the entourage greater than the individual parts.

Entourage effect for health

Like many people, I managed to pick up a few COVID pounds and wasn’t happy about it. So I started trying different techniques to get rid of the sneaky ten.

Research showed you need three factors to maximize health—adequate sleep, exercise, and the right food choices.  An entourage effect. All your surroundings/environment working together to maximize the result.

I found daily walks made me stronger and I lengthened them to two-three miles daily. I could see changes in the mirror, but there’s a problem. A pound of muscle weighs exactly the same as fat, it just takes up less room.  While I was looking better, my weight didn’t change.

An evening routine to reduce exposure to blue light, (think electronics) and adding a melatonin supplement, improved sleep.

A fitness tracker where I could track food choices was the third factor.  I didn’t focus on “dieting.” Instead, following healthy nutrition choices for my body type. 

That made the difference. An entourage effect is necessary for success.    

Entourage also works for business marketing

In my 25+ years of work in the skincare industry, I earned that formulations are the key to a successful product.  Each botanical enhances the others for an entourage effect. You have to get the right ingredients in the right formula to have the desired outcome.  Then you have to recommend the right product for the right client.

In marketing, I’ve seen the exact same thing. Your marketing messages and strategy either work together as an entourage, or they don’t.  When you have mixed messages, you have confused prospects.  Confusion is the biggest obstacle to a sale. 

One thing to keep in mind

Whether you’re creating a product or designing a marketing campaign, you need to know who it is being designed for.  The right product, for the right buyer.  

As a woman, I learned long ago, one-size never fits all. It’s a myth. You need the right product, the right message, the right “fit” for success and repeat buyers.

Three techniques for the perfect entourage

To maximize an entourage effect in your marketing you have to be customer-focused. You build from the customer out.  What are their needs and concerns?  If you try to start with a product and try to figure out the customer after, you’re likely going to fall short.  

Start with your customer

Consider their demographics, psychographics and create a clear avatar for them. Who do you know like them? Spend time with potential customers. Learn not only about what they need, but how they find it and decide to buy.  

Buying habits will tell you the best places to reach them.  Their needs, fears, and concerns  provide the RAS triggers to use in crafting your messages. 

If you’ve created a new product, get it in the hands of those who need it. Get some real-life feedback—positive or negative.  Run with the positive. Learn and adjust for the negative.

Their buying journey

It’s helpful to create roadmaps of your customer’s possible buying paths. Follow each one from where/how they connect with you through the predictable steps to the purchase.  

I like to use a technique called the WOOP method. It’s great for planning.  W stands for what do they want or need. O is for the beneficial outcome they will get from getting that need met.  The second O is for obstacles.  What might interrupt their buying journey? And the P stands for plan. 

Using your buying journey messages, include resolutions for every potential obstacle. 

Did they get distracted? How can you bring them back again?

Look for issues like confusion, mixed messages, lack of proof including social proof. Validate pricing. Keep the pathway easy to follow. Eliminate any bumps in the road.

Craft seamless messages

Make sure every message supports the journey and connects the dots.  They should each support the previous one.  

Whether they encounter you on your website, social media, emails, or video—keep the messages clear and uniform.

Once created, look at all messages from the 10,000-foot view. Check to see they all flow and share the same tone, the same message. 


Judith Culp Pearson is a digital relationship builder and a problem solver. She uses those skills to help clients— improve their marketing messages, better engage their clients, keep clients loyal, and grow their business.

www.jculpcreativecopy.com

Differences in B2B and B2C Segmentation

Wholesale B2B and retail B2C buyers need different types of segmentation to effectively market to them.

I recently read an article by Leadspace. It discussed the differences between B2B and B2C buyers. At the core is the information needed to market to them. Here are the high points—

B2C marketing focuses on four data types.  

  • Behavioral – how they engage and shop.
  • Geographical –  allows location-sensitive messages. Think swimsuits. Florida is a better place to target in the winter than Maine.
  • Psychographic data – considers lifestyle, social status, values, interests.
  • Demographic data targets buyers based on age, occupation, sex, philosophy, education, or income.

By contrast, B2B focuses on different areas.

  • Profile data is similar to demographic. It focuses on data about the company.
  • Intent data allows sellers to focus on companies searching. They hone in on those looking. Specifically looking for their type of product or service. It’s based on activity. Data on what they read, search engines used, and reviews.
  • Engagement data parallels behavioral. It includes B2B specific behaviors. Things like: lead forms, trade shows, sales meetings, and email responses.

It’s common for both groups to use Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software. B2Cs often add a Customer Data Platform (CDP). This allows them to maximize marketing ROI. Using a CDP is an opportunity many B2Bs are overlooking.

You can find the full article HERE.

Conversational Commerce

Ogilvy’s Social.Lab recently published a report on “conversational commerce”. In 2020 more people than ever are choosing online. They buy groceries, shop, and connect with friends.

It uses chatbots or humans. It also uses language interfaces like Whatsapp and like Alexa to communicate with customers. Businesses are using it to set themselves apart from their competitors and enhance customer service.

The key takeaway? Be useful, be relevant, be trustworthy in every customer interaction.

Ogilvy’s Social.Lab recently published a report on “conversational commerce”. In 2020 more people than ever are choosing online. They buy groceries, shop, and connect with friends.

It uses chatbots or humans. It also uses interfaces like Whatsapp and like Alexa to communicate with customers. Businesses use it to set themselves apart from their competitors. And to enhance customer service.

The key takeaway? Be useful, be relevant, be trustworthy in every customer interaction.

You can request the full report from Ogilvy Ideas