In the last few months I have been part of a new startup company, working with loyalty programs and their mobile presence. This has led me to think how one can apply the strategies and tactics of corporate loyalty to the peronal branding space. It might be a little controversial, but I think there are some valid points to consider.
Most people associates loyalty programs with points or miles, but there is so much more going on in the background. If you were to set up a loyalty program for yourself, it might look something like this.
The members would be your target groups or target persons, just as loyalty programs divide their member base in different segments.
These are the different ways you could communicate with your audience, eg. e-mail, snail mail, phone, text message, personal meeting, lunch, networking event, etc. Different people are more likely to answer in different channels. Maybe you can ask your contacts for their preferred way of communication.
Positioning your offer – Your message
What are you going to communicate with each group/person and how are you going to formulate and deliver the message? When talking loyalty programs, it is all about conversion rates and keeping the member loyal to the brand. It is crucial that you keep this in mind since it is even more important to you (with fewer “members”) that the message is leading towards you goal and that the recipient feels that he/she want the same as you.
This is one of the hardest tasks for a large scale loyalty program since it is very hard to find a group of members that are similar enough to respond to a common message. If you use social networks, a blog or sending out newsletters, you will have the same problem, but when formulating a specific message to a specific member you are able to aim it just to that person rather than a group of persons. It is more work involved, but definitely worth the extra effort.
As with everything else, it is extremely important to work with a follow up system that gives you the feedback to refine and improve your efforts. In loyalty programs this is not optional, and it shouldn’t be for you either. Make sure to set up a system that works for you.
I would not recommend taking it as far as giving “points” to your contacts, or calling them “loyalty program members”, but thinking about loyalty is definitely something that can empower you personal brand–if done right and based on the groundwork you have laid.
What are your thoughts on using loyalty program thinking to enhance your personal brand?- Ola Rynge
Ola Rynge is the CEO of The Rynge Group that focuses on market oriented small business and idea development. Please follow him on twitter for updates about how you can use Social Media and CRM² for your business.