"Surprise and Delight" dramatically boosts brand image: LoyaltyOne Survey


TORONTO, Dec. 1, 2015 /CNW/ - Canadians are excited by the prospect of "Surprise and Delight" (S&D) experiences from retailers and brand-owners, with 95% confirming they boost their positive perception of the brand; yet a recent pre-holiday survey conducted by LoyaltyOne also found that only 54% of survey takers were able to recall a recent instance when they were pleasantly surprised with a gift or delighted by an offer from a retailer, airline or hotel.

The survey, conducted in November 2015 of 1,188 Canadians, highlights the extent to which these loyalty-building measures impact perception and spending. Among the 95% of Canadians who confirmed S&D leaves them with an increased positive view, more than half (56%) went on to share their positive experience with friends and family and more than one in three (34%) revealed the experience led them to give the company more business.

Millennials and Generation Z (ages 18-24) had the highest recall of S&D at 69%. The rate of recall was nearly cut in half (37%) among seniors (ages 65+). The survey also found that while they may not be getting as many surprise and delight experiences as they might like, virtually all Canadians are happy receiving them.

When it comes to the S&D experiences and their appeal, an overwhelming majority, 90%, of the survey participants reported to being most interested in receiving special privileges for being a longtime customer. Whereas exclusive club invitations and special community events, which are relatively expensive S&D programs to administer, were the least appealing S&D offers at 53% and 52% respectively.

"As we head into the holidays we might see more of these types of offers and loyalty-building strategies, but as this survey tells us, they are very few and far between as part of a more sustained and strategic business-building tool," said Bryan Pearson, President and CEO, LoyaltyOne. "Customers want to be appreciated and recognized for being loyal. And retailers want to set themselves apart from competitors and increase the perceived value of their brand in the eyes of their consumers. More brand-owners need to take S&D into account as a key part of their loyalty strategy."

The top five S&D rewards customers find most appealing include:

1.        Receiving special privileges for being a longtime customer


2.        Receiving surprise discounts after spending a lot with a retailer during a particular month


3.        Receiving free samples or products based on relevant products they purchase often


4.        Receiving a special offer or coupon for their birthday


5.        Receiving a special gift during the holidays based on what they often purchase


While the LoyaltyOne survey found that shoppers are quite consistent with how they prefer to receive S&D offers: 81% via email with direct mail a distant second at 27%; differences between men and women were also found: 

  • Women feel more appreciated than men by companies when they receive a surprise gift: 68% vs. 58% men
  • Women are also more likely to share a positive S&D experience with friends and family: 63% vs. 49% men
  • Women are twice more likely than men to divulge personal information, such as an email address, when treated to S&D offers

"Surprise and Delight is about providing shoppers with an unexpected 'WOW' experience that leaves a lasting impression," said Pearson. "These need not be hugely expensive programs, the key is relevance and leveraging data and personal shopping habits. What's more, when done right, shoppers are more inclined to give you permission to contact them directly with even more offers to build their loyalty and your business."

LoyaltyOne conducted an online survey of 1,188 Canadians in November 2015. Survey respondents were at least 18 years of age and had primary or shared responsibility for the grocery shopping in their household. The margin of error is +/- 2.42.

About LoyaltyOne
LoyaltyOne is a global leader in the design and implementation of coalition loyalty programs, customer analytics and loyalty services for Fortune 1000 clients around the world. LoyaltyOne's unparalleled track record delivering sustained business performance improvement for clients stems from its unique combination of hands-on practitioner experience and continuous thought leadership. LoyaltyOne has over 20 years history leveraging data-driven insights to develop and operate some of the world's most effective loyalty programs and customer-centric solutions. These include the AIR MILES Reward Program, North America's premier coalition loyalty program; a majority stake in European-based BrandLoyalty, one of the largest and most successful campaign-driven loyalty marketers outside of the Americas; and a working partnership with Latin America's leading coalition program, dotz. LoyaltyOne is also the owner of COLLOQUY, a group dedicated to research, publishing and education for the global loyalty industry.

LoyaltyOne is an Alliance Data company. For more information, visit www.loyalty.com.

SOURCE LoyaltyOne

For further information: Natasha Boeck, Environics Communications, nboeck@environicspr.com, 416.969.2724

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