Programs
 
TripAdvisor Looks to Counter Google by Considering Loyalty Initiatives for First Time
The travel planning site is exploring the prospect of launching a loyalty program in order to compensate for its lack of visibility in Google searches. “Company officials called out the lower search engine optimization traffic from Google in the quarter that ended June 30 as one of the factors, along with ‘optimizing’ its paid marketing spend and foreign currency fluctuations, behind a 7 percent revenue decline in TripAdvisor’s hotels, media, and platform segment.”
 
Vogue Australia Launches VIP Customer Loyalty Program
The publication has launched the first-ever loyalty program (beyond a traditional subscription) for a magazine. “The News Prestige Network publication’s new Vogue VIP program is exclusive to subscribers and coincides with Vogue’s 60th birthday this year in Australia. A key program element is the opportunity to join Vogue as a VIP guest at national events, gaining access to pre-sales tickets, parties, and shopping nights. Members also have the ability to network with the Vogue community, editors, business mentors, and fashion industry notables.”
 
SLH Makes Changes to “Invited” Loyalty Program
The hospitality brand has altered its loyalty program. One key change: “Status qualification is going from being based on stays to being based on nights. Whether or not that’s good news depends on your typical stay patterns.”
 
Customer Experience
 
GM, Volkswagen Say Goodbye to Hybrid Vehicle
Major automakers are discontinuing hybrid models. “General Motors Co. and Volkswagen AG are concentrating their investment on fully electric cars, viewing hybrids—which save fuel by combining a gasoline engine with an electric motor—as only a bridge to meeting tougher tailpipe-emissions requirement.”
 
Ikea Goes All-In on Smart Home Tech
The retailer has announced that “it will invest heavily in a new ‘Ikea Home smart’ business unit with end-to-end responsibility for its burgeoning portfolio of smart devices. With access to 780 million shoppers who visit Ikea stores each year, the announcement also serves as a wake-up call to smart home incumbents like Google and Amazon.”

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