Posted by Ashley Autry on Jun 1, 2021 10:00:00 AM

(New: Only want the latest data? Check out our most recent year-specific collection of loyalty stats.)

Customer brand loyalty is a rich and complex subject to grasp.  If you've found this page, you're probably trying to understand it too.

You may be starting at the beginning, trying to define terms like customer loyalty, customer engagement or member engagement.

Or maybe you want to get to the real heart of the matter: how can I get me some of that?

Companies across the world have studied what makes their constituents tick. Through their varied studies, patterns emerge. The best corporate discount programs, association member benefits, white-label rewards programs, and membership perks in general share traits and strategies. Members of different demographic groupings relay the things they want most from the companies they do business with.

Indeed, we have many articles that dive into these findings on our loyalty blog and employee benefits blog.

This page, however, is for the raw data. For your convenience, we've compiled dozens of loyalty statistics - from how many people are active in loyalty programs to what they're looking to get out of them and how they'd like to be communicated with.

We've tried to make this list as relevant as possible, which means we combed through recent research with a focus on the US (with the occasional global stat thrown in).

Posted by Ashley Autry on Feb 3, 2021 9:00:00 AM

A customer is someone who buys something. A member is someone who belongs to something.

Every business should aim to have members, even those without a formal membership structure. Members, in this sense, are customers who have developed a deeper, ongoing relationship with a product or brand.

These relationships don’t happen by accident. Some brands can develop deep cult followings, but not all of us can be Apple or Starbucks.

We can however, borrow specific tactics from membership groups designed to build engagement and long-term loyalty.

Start small. Try any of these 20 member engagement ideas used by some of the largest membership organizations in the world.

Posted by Ashley Autry on Nov 17, 2020 7:00:00 AM

Just like a juicy Thanksgiving turkey, the best discount programs are made with carefully chosen ingredients that come together to create a recipe for success.

When we think about eating a delicious holiday bird, most of us imagine ingredients like parsley, celery, onion, lemon pepper, salt, sage and thyme.  Almost no one is dreaming of eating a turkey where the main ingredient is, let’s say… Flamin’ Hot Cheetos powder (unfortunately this is a real thing).

Much in the same way, nobody wants to be a part of a discount program that has poor customer service, novelty discounts that people won’t use, low-value deals, online-only offers, discounts that are nonredeemable, and no mobile coupon options.

So for all you membership organizations out there, make sure the white label discount program you’re offering members is one you would actually want to use yourself – and not just every once in a while, but frequently.

And for those companies and organizations looking to make a switch or offer a discount/loyalty program for the first time, it’s important to be aware of the essential “ingredients” to look for that make a discount program effective.  

After all, your members/customers/employees don’t just want a discount program for the sake of having one. It’s only valuable to them if they can utilize and incorporate it into their everyday lives, saving money often on the things they buy all the time.

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Posted by Ashley Autry on Sep 14, 2020 8:30:00 AM

People fall in love with brands for many reasons.

They're drawn to become loyal through value, performance, branding and their own personal ROI.

Great customer service will also draw in a few people.

But, in sick twist of fate, poor customer service is the overwhelming reason why people abandon brands.

  • 47% of customers would take their business to a competitor within a day of experiencing poor customer service (Forbes)
  • 52% of consumers have switched providers in the past year due to poor customer service (Accenture)
  • Once a customer experiences what they consider a major customer experience failure, 64% will stop recommending the organization, start looking for an alternative brand or actively disparage the company via word of mouth, social media or other online channels (SDL)
  • 70% of customers cite poor customer service as a reason for not buying from a brand (McKinsey)
  • 78% of consumers have bailed on a transaction because of a poor service experience (American Express)

(There are many, many more stats around this field, all found over at our collection of loyalty statistics.)

Posted by Ashley Autry on Dec 3, 2019 9:03:22 AM

And just like that, 2019 came and went - yet another prosperous year in the books. And we couldn't have done it without our incredible team of employees here at Access, as well as our awesome merchant partners and clients. We are beyond grateful for the many wonderful relationships we've made this year, fresh opportunities and new growth.

Now that Thanksgiving has passed, the Christmas decorations are up and the New Year is just around the river bend (as Pocahontas would say), we can't help but reflect on this past year and all its happenings.

It was a busy year to say the least. In addition to celebrating 35 years in business with a much needed refreshing of the Access brand (complete with a new logo, new colors, new website, and more), there were also plenty of cheerful product updates, money-saving endeavors and client success efforts to be shared.

Posted by Ashley Autry on Oct 28, 2019 9:02:50 AM

It's a dark, cold night. We're gathered outside around the campfire. There's a noticeable uneasy feeling lurking in the air.

So with flashlight in hand, our scary story begins...

...Once upon a time there was a consumer that met a brand and became its devoted customer.

The brand also expressed it's love for the customer with a loyalty program and promise of valuable rewards.

But the brand failed to live up to its loyal customer's expectations.                                          

And so, what was once a devout customer turned into a beastly creature that threatened the brand, eager to gain revenge.

So what became of the brand and customer that were once in love?

It’s one of the oldest stories in the book, and a good reminder for brands out there on what can happen when you don’t deliver on customer expectations. Your most loyal customers can go from brand advocates to brand detractors – something we refer to as the Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde predicament. But don't fret too much, you still have the power to choose how your story ends.

The Chilling Tale of One Coffee Rewards Program

This story stood the test of time yet again when Starbucks recently made some major changes to its rewards program, catching some of its loyal customers off guard.

Its old program let customers earn 2 points (stars) for every dollar spent. Once their first point was earned, customers became green level members. Green level members received things like free in-store refills and birthday deals. After a customer accumulated 300 stars during a calendar year, they bumped up to gold status. Gold members received a free drink or pastry for 125 stars, were given opportunities to earn double stars monthly, and a personalized membership card.

With the new Starbucks loyalty program there’s no tier status, instead it’s set up to allow customers to start utilizing points sooner in smaller amounts. For example, earning just 25 stars gets you add-ons like flavored syrup, while 50 stars lands you a free coffee, hot tea or bakery item. But in order to receive the most popular items for free, like a handcrafted drink or hot breakfast sandwich, customers must earn 150 stars – 25 points higher than the previous program. And boy was Starbucks in hot water with its most die-hard members after they realized the value of their stars had decreased.

Some customers even went to bed with enough points for a free breakfast sandwich or two and woke up to those being taken away.

Really the majority of people taking the biggest hit with the new Starbucks rewards program are its most avid customers, as they are the ones that rack up enough points to become gold members, earning the fancy free drinks. It all comes together to create the perfect formula, turning Starbucks’ most loyal customers (Dr. Jekyll) into its harshest critics (Mr. Hyde).

This new Starbucks rewards iteration has been active for less than 6 months, so the jury’s still out. We’ll see what the future holds and the impact it makes on what were once Starbucks’ most loyal customers.