Relevance is now a basic expectation. We are living in a world where people are increasingly used to only receiving information that is relevant to them. Whether it be via their Facebook news feed or the people and organizations they follow on Twitter, people now tend to consume media they have pre-personalized. An aftershock from this technological shift and rise in consumer expectations is the importance for brands of being relevant – if they want loyal customers. A brand’s offers need to mean something to the consumer if they are to rise above the marketing noise and increase engagement.

Irrelevance is more unpalatable than ever

Before this shift toward the increasing influence of social media and the rise in consumer expectations, sites like Groupon and Wowcher had enormous success sending daily deal offers to consumers. In searching for the reasons why they aren’t doing as well now, the word that stands out above all others is a familiar one; relevance. Of the several daily emails that land in consumers’ inboxes, the chances are fairly slim that many of them will be relevant.

This was probably less of an issue for people several years ago. But now it’s different. Today, people’s phones regularly notify them of something that is relevant. Irrelevance is more unpalatable than ever.

Those consumers who do find an offer that is relevant to them may not become repeat customers, either. It’s more likely that they will instead look for the next company offering a deal. And then the next. These kinds of deals tend to bring out the mercenary persona among consumers. Their main goal being to save a bit of money before moving on. Many of the deals could be described as ‘a one off’.

For these reasons, if a brand was starting out now and wanting to plan to engage with its customers and truly build loyalty, daily deals would probably not be a core part of the plan. Instead they should be thinking long-term. This means possibly using daily deals as only a tactical weapon – while having a defined path to increasingly engage with the customer around factors other than price (or discount).

Being relevant differentiates a loyalty program from daily deals

Brands need to see the relationship with their customers as a journey, where the end goal is loyalty and even advocacy. At the start of this journey, brands need to truly understand the importance of being relevant to their customers.

After all, being relevant should be what differentiates a loyalty strategy from just offering deals. A real loyalty strategy should strive to make the customer feel truly appreciated through personalized communications – which ‘sometimes’ include offers. After all, that’s what the customer expects when they share their personal details. There should also be a continuous dialogue with consumers in order to ascertain what is most relevant to them.

For reasons varying from a lack of knowledge of how to contact customers, to a lack of information about customer data outside their store(s), many brands fail to engage customers with relevant offers.

This needs to change.

After all, technology is making it easier and easier to know more about your customers. Social media is invaluable as a source for engaging with them and getting to know how your brand can help them.

Planning for the long-term

At Currency Alliance we enable brands to deploy a comprehensive loyalty strategy and provide the tools to increase relevance and personalization. We believe that the more value that customers can get from a loyalty program, the more they will shop, thereby providing the brand with powerful insights from more data. This thinking was a key reason behind the development of our universal loyalty currency, comcoin, which allows customers to collect the same loyalty currency across different brands.

Relevance is only going to increase in importance for consumers. Those brands that look for short term deals to entice customers will likely fall behind. And they may end up with a mix of customers that are not very profitable. Those that plan their loyalty strategy around being relevant to their customers will have the advantage.

If you would like to talk further, have any comments, or would like information about our universal loyalty currency, comcoin, please get in touch with us.