How to Develop a Successful Strategy for Your Loyalty Program in 3 Easy Steps: The Comprehensive Enterprise Guide

Intro to Our Three-Part Guide: 3 Questions That Will Lead You to a Powerful Customer Loyalty Strategy

Anja Zschoernig
Stephanie Patchev, PhD

Written by Anja Zschoernig & Stephanie Patchev, PhD

March 17, 2020 | Reading Time: 5 Minutes

Enterprise Guide: Develop a Successful Loyalty Strategy in 3 Easy Steps

„Well begun is half done.“

So, you find yourself at the beginning of your loyalty project: either because you are setting up a new customer loyalty program, or you want to rework your existing one. You ask yourself: Where do I start? How do I develop a good loyalty strategy? What kinds of tools do I need?

You are now actually already a step ahead of your competitors! Why? Because the development of a loyalty program strategy is surprisingly often deprioritized – either because of time constraints or lack of in-house experience.

The words of Aristotle, however, ring equally true for your loyalty program: a good start gets you half-way to the finish line. Your strategic preliminary work serves as a foundation for the success of your program and is actually not difficult to implement. All you need are three steps, which we will guide you through in our three-part guide based on three simple questions. Once completed, you will have the perfect launchpad for a powerful customer loyalty program on hand!

Here are the 3 steps to your loyalty strategy:

Step 1: Status-Quo Analysis > Where Are We?

Begin with an inventory of your business, your customers, and your market environment. Answer the question “Where are we?” with a structured status-quo analysis. In our Guide Part #1, we show you how you can move ahead, what the most important issues in your analysis are, and will also equip you with a practical Excel worksheet.

Step 2: Articulating Goals for Your Customer Loyalty Program > Where Do We Want to Go?

Based on your situational analysis, you will be able to answer the most central question for your bonus program: „Where do we want to go?” In other words, you will establish here which goals you want to reach with your program. To assist you, we have put together our Guide Part #2. In this you will be presented with a catalog of possible objectives to choose from as well as central success factors that can help you as you define your goals.

Step 3: The Strategic Tools and Tactics > How do we get there?

Based on your principal goals, you then must ask yourself how you plan to get there. Here, you can define the strategic tactics and tools you want to employ to reach your goals. You can read more on how to achieve this in our Guide Part #3.

By answering these 3 questions, you will have laid down the groundwork to execute the next phase of your project efficiently: the targeted design of your customer loyalty program. To assist you, we will soon be providing you with a guide and many valuable tips and tricks on this topic as well. , you can already register for our newsletter and be one of the first to take advantage of these loyalty insights.

And now on to the strategic preparation😊! You can continue reading here: Guide Part #1: Status Quo Analysis > Where are we at?

A Brief Analogy “Under Palm Trees”: How Will Your Strategic Foundational Work Pay Off?

You can see it like this: Your strategic groundwork is like preparing for a successful vacation.

Before you actually plan anything, you decide what your “strategic” goals are (e.g., relaxing, treating yourself to gourmet meals, and sunbathing on a white sandy beach).

To define your goal, you normally begin intuitively by taking a self-inventory (e.g. heavily stressed from cold winter weather and being overworked), considering your budget (do you have enough for a luxury getaway), checking your availability (10 days in February), thinking about the wishes of your travel companions (e.g. they have similar goals but also want to play tennis), etc.

This preparation may take some time. But once you are done, it will be incredibly easy to develop a strategy that fulfills your wishes: an all-inclusive luxury vacation, tennis lessons included, a location with warm weather in February, and reachable by plane in less than 10 hours.

With such meticulous planning, the likelihood that you will get everything you hoped for from your vacation is extremely high 😊!

It is precisely the same for your customer loyalty program strategy. Based on a comprehensive situational analysis, you define which goals you want to reach with our program and which tools and tactics you would like to use for the “how” in reaching them. We can guarantee you: with this strategic groundwork in the bag, your success is assured!

As the adage goes:

“If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll wind up someplace else.”


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About The authors

Anja Zschoernig

Anja Zschoernig

Head of Marketing | Loyalty Prime

With her 10+ years of experience in the loyalty industry as well as in digital product management and marketing, there is no question for Anja: excellently set-up customer loyalty programs, motorized by the right tech stack, make the heart of every data-driven marketer sing! As Loyalty Prime’s Head of Marketing, she loves to inform and inspire about the great possibilities of powerful customer loyalty programs and Loyalty Prime’s award-winning technology!

Stephanie Patchev, PhD

Stephanie Patchev, PhD

formerly Content Specialist | Loyalty Prime

Stephanie is truly passionate about outstanding, well-researched content that inspires people. With her background in Neurosciences, she has a deep understanding about the bio-psychological basis of customer behavior and customer loyalty.