As the world's best drugmakers, researchers, and scientists scramble to find a vaccine (3 are in human trials), loyalty program managers and businesses alike are continuing to weather the storm. Auto insurance companies are issuing refunds (I think I can speak for all of us: THANK YOU), Hublot, Accor, and Sheetz are making moves, and cybersecurity is a top priority in big tech's move into "tracking coronavirus". Here are those stories and other loyalty-related news:
- Loyalty programs still active despite coronavirus as consumers purchase over 100 million points and miles a day.
- State Farm and Allstate issue refunds ahead of time aiming to strengthen customer loyalty.
- Stay up-to-date with the latest brand communications in response to COVID-19 .
- Cybersecurity expert warns that apps collecting data to help stop the spread of coronavirus must "limit sharing of information".
- Privacy issues raised over South Korea's roll-out of a central tracking app that informs citizens when someone with COVID-19 is within 100 meters.
- Sheetz launches "SHcan & Go!" feature to create convenience and promote social distancing.
- St. John accelerated the launch of its e-commerce platform in response to coronavirus.
- Titans of the retail industry poised to come out of the COVID-19 crisis even stronger.
- Hublot launches sale of its new watch exclusively on WeChat.
- Accor acquires All.com in its latest acquisition as it looks to rebrand globally.
- Events DC announces an $18 million hospitality and tourism relief package to support restaurants, hotels, and undocumented workers in the D.C. area.
LOYALTY PROGRAM NEWS:
Loyalty Programs Still Show Some Life for Decimated Hotels and Airlines
Quotable: “With so many people housebound, you might assume travelers have ignored their loyalty programs. But that’s less true than you might think: loyalty programs are still showing some activity, which is good news for cash-starved airlines and hotels. Many travelers have been continuing to buy frequent flier miles and hotel points. Between the start of February and the end of March, travelers bought more than 100 million points and miles a day...”
LOYALTY STRATEGY NEWS:
See how State Farm and Allstate are marketing refunds in a loyalty play
Quotable: “'It’s a great way to build loyalty, demonstrate value to policyholders, and bolster their reputations,' says Ellen Carney, an analyst at Forrester, noting that smaller regional carriers like Shelter Mutual in Columbia, Missouri are also issuing refunds along with the larger national players. She said such initiatives are particularly important in cementing customer loyalty now ahead of natural disaster claim season this summer, and serve as something insurers can point back to later this year.”
A Regularly Updated list Tracking Marketers Response to Coronavirus
Quotable: “The latest moves brands are making to deal with the fallout, in reverse chronological order ... The rapidly spreading coronavirus is causing major disruption for marketers, forcing unprecedented action, including mandating employees work from home, closing offices, stopping agency reviews and tweaking or stopping certain advertising.”
DATA PRIVACY NEWS:
Apps collecting data to help stop the virus spread must limit sharing of information, cybersecurity expert says
Quotable: “Apple and Google’s joint initiative to build a platform that helps contain the spread of the coronavirus looks promising, but steps have to be taken to prevent it from invading the privacy of users for the long term, an academic with expertise on science and tech policy told CNBC. The tech giants announced Friday they were working together to provide tools that help track the spread of coronavirus, a process commonly referred to as 'contact tracing.'”
COVID-19 pandemic opens up new frontiers for health data privacy
Quotable: “Publicly, eyebrows were raised in the European Data Protection Supervisor’s office by South Korea’s rapid roll-out of Corona 100m, a central tracking app that informs citizens when they are within 100 metres of known COVID-19 cases. Privately, there has been considerable admiration for the role the app has played in the country’s relatively successful containment strategy.”
Sheetz launches new feature to ‘scan and go’ with their app
Quotable: “Sheetz is launching a new service that lets people check out their own convenience store items to minimize social contact during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a statement from Sheetz, their new 'SHcan & Go!' feature allows customers to use the Sheetz app to scan and pay for items in the convenience store of all 600 Sheetz locations in the country. 'This new feature continues to deliver on our mission to be the ultimate in convenience, allowing customers to scan and pay for items they need easily and quickly,' said Travis Sheetz, President & COO of Sheetz, Inc.”
St. John Accelerates China E-commerce Strategy in Response to Coronavirus
Quotable: “The Irvine, Calif.-based fashion house built on polished knitwear has accelerated the launch of its e-commerce in China, in direct response to the global coronavirus pandemic. Chinese conglomerate Fosun Fashion Group acquired a majority stake in St. John in 2017. The decision to launch international e-commerce came together over the last month. Now that China is in recovery mode, with luxury selling again, the time was right to accelerate an online sales channel, company sources said.”
Survival of the biggest: Coronavirus transforms retail
Quotable: “Amazon has "essentially become infrastructure," says Sally Hubbard, a director at the Open Markets Institute and a former assistant attorney general in New York's antitrust bureau. As the country stays home and observes social distancing guidelines, its reliance on Amazon is becoming increasingly apparent.”
Amid COVID-19, Hublot Starts Selling Via WeChat
Quotable: “Beginning April 13th, fans of the Swiss luxury watch brand, Hublot, can now purchase the latest releases on WeChat ahead of other global markets ... This is the first time the prestigious watch brand has launched new items exclusively on WeChat. In addition to being in the know about upcoming product releases, customers can now enjoy a host of other services.”
Accor’s latest acquisition yesterday signals global rebrand
Quotable: “The new loyalty program at that time – Accor Live Limitless (ALL) – aimed to transform the brand’s rewards scheme through providing a fully integrated global platform for its customers. The program integrated rewards, services and experiences for guests through marketing access to ‘ALL of Accor’, across their portfolio of more than 30 hotel brands. Fairmont, Raffles, Delano, SLS, Sofitel, and many others. Yesterday it was discovered through domain name records that All.com had been sold to Accor for an undisclosed sum.”
Events DC Announces $18 Million Hospitality And Tourism Relief Package Amid COVID-19 Pandemic
Quotable: “Events DC, Washington DC’s official convention and sports authority, today announced an $18 million hospitality and tourism relief package to address the impact of COVID-19 pandemic. This critical initiative is designed to provide emergency funding to help DC’s local hospitality and tourism industry that is in dire need of immediate support. The relief package, approved by Events DC’s Board of Directors, will provide support to restaurants, hotels and undocumented workers in Washington, DC.”
The Loyalty Newswire is compiled and edited by the staff at The Wise Marketer.