Loyalty partnerships have become a big deal in loyalty marketing, with many brands seeing an opportunity in offering value from another brand. Just in the hospitality space, brands have teamed up with airlines and restaurants to attract and retain business travelers. Consider Wyndham’s partnership with Door Dash, which offers guests free delivery on premise.
 
Of course, not all partnerships are created equal. How do you ensure that a partnership is effective and offers compelling value to your consumer?
 
This question will be addressed at Customer Expo 2019 in a presentation from Bridget Sponsky, Senior Director of Enterprise Marketing for Ally. Until this session, let’s take a look back at some conversations Loyalty360 has had this year with industry leaders who have helped create and maintain effective partnerships.
 
Matt Overberg, Associate Brand Manager for Busch, spoke to the importance of partnering with brands that resonate with your core audience. “The campaign with Busch and Big Buck Hunter, benefitting the National Forest Foundation, is at its core a way for our fans to support wildlife conservation in a unique and unexpected way,” he said. “We know a lot of our fans are hunters who are acutely aware of the decline in wildlife funding, but we also know that many people outside of the hunting world probably don’t realize that hunting permit purchases have a direct tie into that funding, so we want to help raise general awareness of this important issue.”
 
On the other hand, Mike Molitor, Vice President of E-Commerce & Loyalty for Raley’s, noted that partnerships can also be used to reach new audiences. Of his brand’s partnership with Instacart, he said, “Getting on the Instacart marketplace allows us to reach new customers. Many customers only use Instacart, and not being on the marketplace restricted our ability to reach this audience.”
 
This effort has seen results: “Through the new program, we are garnering new Something Extra sign ups through the Instacart platform as well as providing current loyalty members the opportunity to earn points with their Instacart purchases. We’re trying to do things a little bit differently by integrating our own loyalty program into the Instacart marketplace with the hope that those customers, to the degree that they buy things in-store, become loyal to Raley’s.”
 
Eric Dean, Senior Director of Marketing Partnerships at Home Chef, also affirmed that partnerships can reach new audiences, and noted that alignment is key in making partnerships effective. “A partnership with United Airlines provides us the opportunity to reach an audience that is loyal to the United brand and is engaged to the currency of miles,” he said.
 
“Aligning ourselves with that industry-leading brand and providing an offer of earning miles gives us a much stronger chance to convert that MileagePlus member into a Home Chef customer. A product like Home Chef also provides needed flexibility to these active customers since they are often traveling. They need an easy-to-use website that can deliver best-in-class products on time and to their location of choice.”
 
Clearly, creating a loyalty partnership is no simple task, as there’s much for leaders of each brand to consider. Fortunately, Sponsky’s thought leadership at the Customer Expo will provide a nuanced perspective on this topic.

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