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The Red Roof Inn’s RediCard loyalty program eclipsed the 1 million-member mark last November. Loyalty360 caught up with Brenda Eddy, who has managed the RediCard loyalty program for the past six years, for an update on the program.
Can you give our audience an update on the Red Roof customer loyalty program? How is it going this year and what specific customer insights have been gleaned that have helped enhance the program?
Eddy: Our RediCard program has been aggressively growing in terms of new members. This year, through August, new members are up 80%. We continue to focus on amenities that make our members feel special like complimentary bottled water during their stay and, most importantly, a consistent, brand-wide free nights reward program.
What is the biggest key to success for the program?
Eddy: Relevant communication to our members and special offers to keep them engaged.
How important is listening to your customers and responding to their changing expectations?
Eddy: Listening to all of our guests is a primary objective for Red Roof. We constantly monitor not only member, but all guest communication through our various channels: Contact center, email, social media, online review sites, 24/7 responding to all inquiries. This coordinated effort allows us to recognize common concerns and suggestions and take appropriate action.
What does Customer Experience/Customer Engagement mean to Red Roof Inn?
Eddy: The customer experience includes any and all contact with our guests, whether that is with our technology, associates and/or the physical product. That’s why we focus on technical enhancements that simplify processes and deliver information on the guests’ preferred devices; continually train and evaluate associates; and research, test, and implement the product improvements that Wow our guests. The new NextGen room designs and Red Roof PLUS+ brand extension were the culmination of guest, franchisee and technical input. The results were faster Wi-Fi, more conveniently located electrical outlets, wood-like floors, and intensified training.
How does RR stay on top of rapidly changing technologies and what role do they play in customer engagement/experience initiatives?
Eddy: Social media and mobile connectivity are at the forefront of much consumer engagement today and our guests are active in both. Our Social Media and Digital Marketing teams actively pursue relevant technologies that add value to the overall guest experience. It is a never ending process. We are proud of our reputation for being one of the best at engaging and responding to our guests across social media. And we continually strengthen our mobile capabilities. During the record breaking winter of 2014 we were able to use mobile communication to advise stranded air travelers of our availability at the hotels closest to their airport. A win-win for both guests and our hotels.
How do you define customer loyalty and has that definition changed or evolved in recent years?
Eddy: Customer loyalty is not only attributed to RediCard members and guests who stay frequently with us, but to those less frequent travelers who continue to put Red Roof at the top of their list when they do travel–that pet lover who may only travel to one pet show a year, but always stays at the Red Roof, or the annual spring vacation trip with the stopover in Virginia.
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