Are you thankful to your customers?
Obviously, you are.
Now the question is – do you show it?
Most customers come and go. Some of them prove to be loyal. They provide referrals and also make repeat purchases. Thus, it is quintessential to reward them with worthy incentive plans.
Offering great reward is one of the best ways to retain customers and this is also beneficial for your business in many ways. The major benefits of rewarding customers are – improves relationships with existing customers, helps increase sales, and attracts new customers.
In this article, we will discuss a gamut of proven Reward Ideas that will fit any budget for rewarding or enticing customer loyalty. You do not need to scratch your head searching for ideas anymore. However, you have to be innovative and creative to maintain uniqueness in order to compete with other brands in the market.
Let’s find out 80 such Reward Ideas !
Customer Status – For your loyal customers, the ones who spend thousands of dollars buying the product/service, you could establish a “VIP” status that gives them privileged access to various benefits, special deals, announcements, or even trials of new products/service before anyone else.
Gifts – Who doesn’t like gifts? It encourages the customers to share more referrals if they receive gifts from the brand. Gifts can be of any form and it must be delivered at the right time and on the right occasions. In fact, offering gifts often prove to be one of the best reward ideas.
Discounts – Once a customer touches certain parameter, the company must reward a customer by offering discounts on all the purchases they make.
Coupons – Coupons are in trends. Almost every business gives coupons to their customers. Coupons are probably the most basic and common way of showing customers some gratitude.
Vacation – A vacation with family can be a welcoming delight for a customer amid their busy schedule. We all know that pleasant experiences are always remembered. If the brand can create such experiences which are unforgettable then it will impact a great deal.
Membership Card – Offer membership card as a token of acknowledgment. It is a kind of membership plan or a reward idea, with the help of which customers can enjoy certain privileges.
Surprise – Surprises are like bolt from the blue and if it a pleasant one, everyone will adore it. Many innovative tactics can be incorporated to reward your loyal customers. It increases engagement and also motivates the customers to share enough referrals.
Delight – Delight can be of any form – tangible or intangible. Certain delights work well in getting referrals. This is also a form of customer engagement process which keeps up the momentum of sales and referral cycle.
Privileges – It is always better to offer special privileges to the loyal customers so that they go ahead and share referrals. The nature of those privileges completely depends on the brand.
Birthday Wishes – Just a simple “Happy Birthday” email has some positive benefits. It adds value to customer relationship building. Also, you can make the birthday week special by offering a discount or freebie.
Sharing Information – Information is important for those in B2B business and for professionals. If you know something that will help someone succeed in using your product, share it with your customers on regular intervals.
Pre-sale Notification – Notify the customer before a sale starts. It creates a buzz among the target audience and helps in generating enough footfalls. Since it is a sale, the word-of-mouth marketing will automatically come into action and thereby generating good referrals.
Post-transaction Gifts – Offer something to customers related to what they’ve purchased from you. The bigger the transaction, the bigger is the gift. Customers feel rewarded. It creates a good impression with the notion that the brand is appreciating their investment.
Gift Cards – Gift cards act as a great reward because it allows customers to pick up whatever they like instead of something being forced upon them. They work even better as a reward when you tailor-make the promotion to suit customers’ requirements. This means that you need to first understand where your customer is most likely to shop and then provide a gift card of that site/establishment. Providing different options from which a customer can choose can help in this regard.
Samples – Offering free samples is a way of promoting products as well as giving something of value to the customer. The samples actually help in gauging any product/service (how is it), so that the customers do not have any doubts while purchasing.
Dedicate a day/week/month – Having a Customer Appreciation Week (or whatever your preferred time span is) is a kind of declaration that you appreciate your customers, and want them to have some great deals.
Special Deals – Always boost your loyal customers with some special deals and rewards. Make them feel it’s especially meant for them for being loyal to the brand and also referring new leads.
Competition – A healthy competition is always fun. You can run competitions where customers can increase their chances of winning by buying more from you.
Customer Service – People come to customer service when they are in some kind of trouble with the product. Studies show that – “people actually desire a brand that helps them resolve issues without actually having to deal with customer service.” Try to be the brand who resolves the loyal customers’ issues prior they hit the service desk.
Say ‘Thank You’ – A simple ‘thank you’ message convey a lot of emotions. Saying so will create a feel-good factor in the mind of the customers and enhance relationship building.
Invite Customers – Invite your special customers for the events organized by the brand. Let them be a part of it. This can be done to the most privileged customers.
Greetings – There are numerous occasions namely Christmas, New Year, Thanksgiving, etc. Do not miss these opportunities to greet your customers and invite them to visit your company. Arrange something special for them. This acts as a step ahead in developing a relationship with your customers.
Contests – Referral contests are another great way to get referrals and provide rewards. Customers can get points or any other reward for every referral. This is then furthered to give the customer with most referrals a grand prize. This kind of reward often acts as a great boost to targeted leads and brand association.
Perks – Cheer up your customers with perks or glorious items that will attract customers’ attention. Every time they refer someone, offer a worthy perk.
Free Items – With a purchased product, if you could add a free item then it can create a good impression. Many customers seek for free gifts from the brand at the time of purchase. It’s a nice gesture of rewarding loyal customers and you can incorporate it in your referral program.
Product – For receiving enough customer referrals, the products need to be exceptional. Without a good and quality product, referrals are tough to come. For any business having a good product is quintessential.
Make Donation – People love doing business with businesses that do good. Donate a portion of your proceeds to a good cause in your loyal customers’ honor.
Host Lunch or Dinner – In the honor of your customers, host a lunch or dinner. This signifies that you are showing interest and acknowledging them in their endeavor to share referrals and being a part of your brand.
After Hours Sale – Treat a group of customers to an after-hours sale. Let your VIP customers come in for an hour after you close, to shop on a special sale. It’s a great time to get to know your customers too.
Feature your Customers – Have you thought of featuring your valued customers in the store and on certain promotional activity? Involve them in your advertisements if possible. Tell a story of your brand presenting them in the forefront.
Wish Customers with Rewards – As you build a relationship with customers, be sure to collect information about them. That way, you can send special offers on their birthday or on the anniversary. This can turn up to be a happening reward idea.
Out of the Box – You can mail out autographed pages of a filmstar or a sportsman. If the actor or the sportsman happens to be your brand ambassador, organize a special event so that your customers can meet them.
Sponsor Giveaways – Offering something as a giveaway is all about building relationships. Always fill your customers’ hand with certain items. Keep a stock and distribute as and when needed.
Personalized – Each customer is unique in their own way. Personalize and customize the benefits based on their uniqueness so that it matches their needs.
Merchandise – Coffee mugs, tee-shirts, bags and other such merchandise works as a great reward for numerous reasons. One is that they are almost always branded which means that every time they are used, your brand gets free advertising. Second, customers find these products useful on a daily basis and are more likely to positively associate with your brand. However, it is important to ensure that the merchandise you offer is well-designed, something that customers can actually use, and something that they find fun and exciting.
Reciprocal Discounts – Partner with an associated business to offer reciprocal discounts or to offer both way rewards. A typical example is – “a sports clothing shop that offers discounted membership at the local gym for purchases above a certain value. In return, the gym offers members discount vouchers for the store and access to special promotions.”
Meet them Off-site – Bring out some time to meet your customers off site on a special day and spend quality time. Make the occasion happening with rewards and incentives.
Badge of Honor – Offer a badge of honor to the customers based on certain achievements. It can be for sharing enough referrals, for making most purchases, or for any other parameters.
Digital Discounts – Chalk out a program for customers those who are regular to your brand in online platforms. Give discount coupons, offer special rebates for purchasing from the online portal, and also present worthy rewards for sharing referrals through social networking websites.
Quiz – Plan a session with your customers and conduct a Quiz contest where they can win prizes. It’s fun and the main objective is to enjoy and spend time with your customers.
Online Reward Ideas – Send out discount codes or coupons to your existing customers to entice them to do business with you again. It can be done through email campaigns, social media promotions, SMS, phone, etc.
Lucky Draw – Lucky-draw is a good reward idea. Select a set of customers on the basis of certain criteria (most purchases, most referrals, etc.) and reward the winner.
Collect Suggestions – Ask your customers regarding how you could improve your service. On the basis of their suggestions, act upon it and surprise them doing exactly what they are looking for.
Create Community – Brand creates a community for its loyal customers, organize social and educational events, where customers with a common interest can come together, talk and learn about the product and share stories.
Make Purchase Memorable – Offer something to a customer in the form of gifts or rewards, and try to make every purchase memorable. Thank them for visiting your store and also promote your loyalty programs to them.
Do Things Differently – Don’t be a cliche. Always brainstorm to be innovative in terms of rewarding your customers. It brings freshness and also helps in standing out from what your competitors are doing.
Go Extra Mile – Deliver your service, even though that does not fall under your activities. For instance, pick up a customer whose car has broken down. Personal connections matter and friends do kind things for each other with no expectation of return.
Smart Plan – Introduce a smart plan for your loyal customers. Offer cumulative discounts on selected lines of items. Offer discounts to customers when they reach specified spending targets – for example – 15% off on their next purchase if they spend $400.
Cash Back and Incentives – Provide customers with added incentives whenever they purchase from you. Also, a cash-back program can be implemented along with it.
Preview Session – If you’re launching a new product/service, invite your best customers to a preview evening where they can buy first. Make sure the event has an exclusive feel, that you provide good refreshments and your customers have time for networking.
Loyalty Scheme – If you sell a high-volume item which has a low-value (drinks, candy packs), give customers a card that will be stamped with every purchase. Once they reach the target number, they will qualify for a free one. Many such loyalty schemes and reward ideas can be implemented.
Special Offers – Give away free items while customers are going for multiple purchases. Buy one and get the 2nd one free of cost is a tried and tested method of encouraging short-term repeat sales.
Preferential Service Term – A set of customers may be responsible for a large proportion of your profits and so it’s important to provide them with a special level of service.
Spot Reward Ideas – The main objective of such program is to reward a consumer for frequent patronage, and that’s why entry-level perks like a free drink, Chocolate samples, free Wi-Fi, etc. work well.
Free consultation – Organize an event where the most important customers will be given free consultancy in certain areas. For instance – free eye check-up, fitness check-up, diet management lesson, etc.
Movie tickets – Offer movie tickets as a reward to the customers who have reached certain milestones in terms of purchasing or sharing referrals.
Celebration – Celebrate brand inception and anniversary by gifting something to the customers. It is a nice way of rewarding and being in touch with them.
Follow Up – Follow up with your customers and tell them about the reward and incentive plan. If you keep on reminding them regarding the benefits of purchasing from your brand and the benefits of sharing referrals, it will register in their mind, and they will act on it accordingly.
Credit Points – Keep on adding credits for customers who are purchasing continuously from the brand. Companies that provide regularly used services such as a cab service can make use of a credit reward system. In this case, every time you refer someone, you get some credit that you can easily use when you opt for the service next.
Customer of the day/month/year – Choose a customer who has done exceptionally well being loyal to the brand. Doing so will encourage the customers to buy more and share referrals to secure this title. You can try out this reward idea which has high possibilities to work.
Good Gesture – Many companies entertain high-value customers at Christmas or other occasions with an expensive dinner or even throwing a party in their honor.
Customer Reward Program – Introducing a lucrative customer reward program act as a secret sauce in getting referrals. Your customers must be aware of such programs and you must keep promoting it so that your customers can take full advantage of it.
Multi-visit Loyalty Rewards – You can start a loyalty reward program for customers those who are visiting your store multiple times along with other family members.
Calendar and diary – Offer a calendar or a diary in the new year to your customers, who are purchasing from you.
Public Recognition – Public recognition is a great reward idea to honor your customers. With this, you’re actually letting them know how thankful you really are.
Music Concert Ticket – Present a ticket or a pass to a music concert. It can be won from a lucky draw or after achieving the status of a loyal customer to the brand.
Keep Customers Guessing – Customers will come back for the possibility of a discount. Give unadvertised discounts during its weekdays or during happy-hours. Customers don’t know exactly what will be on sale or when, but they will come in to see what’s on special.
Cash – Customers can receive a percentage of the cost of a ticket, product or service if any of them is booked through a referral. This will lead to them providing more referrals to a targeted audience that can most probably be converted into loyal customers.
Think about Family – One alternative means of rewarding customers is rewarding their friends or family members. When they make a purchase, you can have them enter an email address or physical address, and then send those customers a free gift.
Handwritten Note – No list of customer appreciation would be complete without a handwritten note. It really works and adds a personal touch in your communication strategy.
Follow back – When a customer follows you on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or Instagram, follow them back. It shows a customer you’re interested in what they have to say.
Loyalty Program – Implement and introduce a loyalty reward program and make the customers aware of it. Give customers a reason to recommend you to friends, by offering them discounts and free gifts in return, for every new customer they introduce to your business. This is the most important factor to include in your reward ideas.
Listen and Act immediately – If your loyal customers come up with a complaint, act on it immediately. Do the needful and make a solution. It actually builds trust on the brand and gives a feeling that you are there to help them when needed.
Special treatment – A person’s first name is the most important sound in the world. Saying it to someone shows they’re more than just a customer. Train your sales rep so that they can address your customers in a special manner.
Pre-hours private events – Open your business to your best customers. Provide food, drinks, and entertainment, or simply give them first crack at purchasing your new product.
Giveaways – Contests and giveaways are a proven method of exciting people to action.
Mentions – Mention their name on your social pages and newsletters. For instance, you can start something like ‘Advocate of the Week/Month’ in your newsletters or post an update mentioning ‘Best Performer of the Week’.
Utilize feedback – Honest feedback is the best way to keep the pulse of your customers. The perception is most brands ignore customer feedback, so they’ll love it when you notify them of the specific changes you’ve made in response to their comments.
Think of the kids – The quickest way to a parent’s heart is something that can occupy or distract their young children. While your customers are shopping, take a special care of their kids.
Flexible Return Policy – Many companies have become more reasonable in their return policies lately, and everyone loves doing business with one of the few who backs their products for life. At least, consider adding special return policies to members of your loyalty program.
Someone once said – “An idea can change the world”. Similarly, a Reward Idea can change the fate of a business in a good sense. Now a day, brands are coming up with innovative and fresh ideas now and then. Discovering what works for your brand is only a matter of consideration of your customer base and their preferences. The reward ideas discussed in this article will certainly help you to receive enough referrals from your customers.
NextBee developed a methodology that aims to improve referral programs. Known as the PACE Methodology, it is needed to ensure that every participant is approached in a way that leads to increased conversion of referrals and leads. Thus, in order to formulate a worthy loyalty reward program contact at