The “Surprise & Delight” approach in a loyalty program is quite simple: the customer receives an unexpected gift. Despite its simplicity, this strategy reveals surprising results!
It might be a specific product, an invitation to an event, or even a gift card. The goal is simply to surprise the best customers with a thank you. In some cases the initiative is also used to encourage the customer to generate an additional visit in store.
A Surprise & Delight offer or gift is not based on specific program criteria.
When such an offer is announced, it’s meant to be surprising and out of the blue. This being said, loyalty program managers must develop this strategy well ahead of time.
In the fast-food sector, the Pret A Manger UK coffee chain uses the Surprise & Delight strategy on a larger scale. Through its 450 locations in nine countries, Pret A Manger invites its staff to offer a free drink or a free snack from time to time to their preferred customers. In a 12-month period the chain has offered more than one million free coffees. Considering the fact that this strategy has been in place for many years, it can be assumed that the increase in the rate of customer loyalty must yield much more than the cost of the free coffees!
Closer to home, the Harry Rosen’s program (male fashion) provided its customers with gift boxes at Christmas season. In the food business, Metro supermarkets offer their top members digital or postal coupons. Members are also entitled to additional metro&moi points on products they purchase frequently.
The WOW Effect
The “Surprise & Delight” approach in a loyalty program is a great way to create a WOW effect and use the customer’s emotional responses. As a result, commitment and retention to a brand greatly increase.
4 reasons why you should incorporate Surprise & Delight approach into your loyalty program
- 94% of Canadians felt more positive about the company after receiving a S&D offer.
- 62% agreed that companies don’t understand just how meaningful gestures like surprise gifts and special recognition are to them.
- 34% who experienced a recent S&D said the experience led them to give the company more business.
- 70% of millennials were able to recall an instance in which they were recently surprised and delighted by a company. Millennials are more likely to be influenced by S&D than any other generation.