Inspired Incentives

Five Reasons Why Loyalty Programs Are Effective Sales Tools

Posted by Brian McHugh

Sun, Apr 17, 2016 @ 08:33 PM

Business_presentation_byVectorOpenStock.jpgLoyalty or incentive programs are often thought of as benefits for your customers, as a system which rewards and encouragers desired behaviors, as well as one that has proven to boost growth. What is often forgotten is that these programs can be your ace in the hole and a great tool for your sales team.

When a salesperson is trying to sell a customer on their product or service, often times there won’t be much of a difference between what they are selling and what their competitor is selling. So having something as simple yet dynamic as a rewards program can really end up being a competitive advantage when it comes to generating—and maintaining—business. Here are the top 5 reasons why a loyalty program can be a benefit to your sales team:

1. Helps take the focus off the price of the products

Obviously, we all want to pay the lowest price for the best service. A loyalty program can help move the needle back in the right direction by shining a spotlight on things that make your business special, such as earning points for being a loyal or growing customer. This is especially useful when giving your customers just another reason to do business with you.

2. Reinforces your relationship with customers

Selling is all about the relationships you foster with your customers. A loyalty program gives your salespeople opportunities to grow those relationships organically—whether it’s a phone call to see how a customer is enjoying that new TV they redeemed for, or a congratulatory email for crossing an earned points’ threshold. A loyalty program opens the door for another touch point, and your customers will welcome it.

3. Motivates the sale of featured products/services

While no sale is a bad sale, some are certainly better than others. Convincing your customers to buy the particular product or service that you want them to buy requires tact and a discerning sales strategy. Why not give your sales team a little extra leverage by tacking on some bonus points to a featured product as part of a Product of the Month promotion, or something similar?

4. It’s a 24/7 appreciation machine, and a subtle one at that

If only your sales team had clones, it would be a heck of a lot easier for them to consistently remind all of your customers how much you appreciate their business. But with a loyalty rewards programs, your customers are reminded of this every time they check their points total, or use that new iPad they earned. What’s more, this isn’t the type of heavy-handed gesture that makes your salespeople seem overly eager or desperate to please.

5. It’s a motivator, not a compensator

Unlike a rebate strategy which offers cash or a percentage off of your product, an incentive program motivates your customers to earn more points based off of the rule structure. Countless research shows that when trying to motivate desired behaviors, non-cash items — including merchandise and experimental rewards — make much better and more effective rewards than cash. This will be music to your sales teams’ ears.

Have you talked to your sales team about loyalty rewards programs? Their answers might surprise you.

Topics: Loyalty Programs