Loyalty Marketing Coming in Hot in 2012

Positive economic indicators along with the recent buzz about loyalty marketing are setting up the assumption that 2012 will not only be a recovery year for the economy, but also a growth year for loyalty marketing.

Current economic factors have reduced the size of our wallets, forcing individual consumers and businesses to think hard about how and where they spend their money.

Frugal consumers are one of the most important factors affecting America’s uphill battle of breaking out of the recession, according to International Business Times. Many Americans are increasing their savings, consuming less, and are carefully determining the right places to spend their precious dollars.

However, things may be looking up. BlackRock Inc. said the U.S. economy may grow as much as 2.5 percent this year. In addition, Consumer confidence in the U.S. rose last week to the highest level in over five months, according to BusinessWeek. With growth in consumer confidence and many other economic indicators, the end of the recession may be near, but individuals and businesses are still cautious about their spending. Marketing budgets are still relatively conservative and thus some marketers are putting loyalty on the back burner.

This won’t be for long.

2012 may likely be the breakout year for loyalty marketing, as its value is finally being recognized. Loyalty marketing has proven its success in many markets as a way to drive incremental revenue from existing customers and create a competitive advantage for brands.

Loyalty marketing programs provide incentives that drive repeat business and help build relationships with customers—something that is helping many businesses survive as the economy fights to spring back.

More individuals are accepting the concept of building and mining customer databases. Loyalty marketing program provides business with a wealth of information about their customers.  All businesses can better reach and motivate their customers by collecting insights on buying behavior, trends, etc.

Ultimately, consumers want relationships with their favorite brands. Just like when we shop at our neighborhood market and appreciate when the owner greets us by name.

Some of the biggest obstacles to loyalty marketing success in the past were lack of understanding and lack of funding. Now, businesses realize the value that loyalty marketing holds. 2012 may be the year to watch out for it.

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