Loyalty Newswire – August 2nd, 2021

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By: Wise Marketer Staff |

Posted on August 2, 2021

Welcome back to The Wise Marketer. Every Monday, our team of editors curate a list of the latest customer loyalty, marketing, and other relevant news to make it simple for busy professionals to quickly digest important, trending topics. Show your support by joining our mailing list to gain access to exclusive content, events, and promotions. Or you could just follow us on social media!

  • Live events marketplace Vivid Seats unveils new rewards program as part of its strategic rebranding
  • Taco Bell Rewards continues to grow digital sales for the brand, with active loyalty members accounting for a 35% increase in spending
  • HubEngage's integration with Tango Card enables its customers to streamline employee rewards
  • Athleta recently announced the launch of AthletaWell, an immersive digital platform designed to promote female wellbeing
  • H-E-B, Food Lion, and Kroger ranked first, second, and third in Bond's Loyalty Report 2021
  • Square announced plans to acquire buy now, pay later (BNPL) company Afterpay for $29 billion in stock
  • Aiming to enhance B2B payments, Barclaycard Payments signs multi-year agreement to join Mastercard Track™ Business Payment Service.
  • Zoom agrees to pay $85 million to settle privacy lawsuit after claims the company violated users' privacy rights
  • Amazon fined a record $887 million for allegedly violating data protection and privacy laws in the E.U.
  • In recognition of the UAE's 50th anniversary and Dubai's upcoming Expo, Emirates Skywards members can earn one mile for every minute you spend in Dubai


Vivid Seats Launches Strategic Rebrand Along with New and Improved Rewards Program

Highlight: The new loyalty program is designed to benefit every fan, whether they attend two events a year or twenty. Current Vivid Seats Rewards members will get to enjoy all the new benefits, while also maintaining their current level or moving to a higher tier in the updated program. “At Vivid Seats, we strive to provide unparalleled value and deliver exceptional experiences,” said Stan Chia, Chief Executive Officer of Vivid Seats. “Our enhanced loyalty program gives every customer 10% of value on every ticket purchase and offers unique and differentiated ways for them to get more rewards and perks. We are thrilled to help everyone “Experience It Live” and celebrate the power of shared experiences to unite people.”

Taco Bell Loyalty Program Increased Active Customers’ Spending By 35 Pct

Highlight: “The Taco Bell U.S. launch of our Taco Bell Rewards program in 2020 has continued to grow digital sales for the brand,” Yum! Brands CEO David Gibbs said on a call with analysts. “We’re incredibly excited by the early results from the program and the future growth opportunity that remains. We’re seeing significant uptick in frequency and higher spend per visit, leading to an increase in overall spend of 35 percent for active customers in the Taco Bell rewards program compared to their pre-loyalty behavior.” The program rewards a set number of points per dollar spent, personalizing offers and messaging to each user. Overall, Taco Bell’s same-store sales grew 21 percent over 2020 during the quarter, 12 percent above 2019’s pre-pandemic sales.

HubEngage and Tango Card Launch Strategic Partnership to Bring Gift Card Incentives to Companies Seeking to Enhance Employee Engagement and Rewards

Highlight: HubEngage's already powerful employee communications platform enables organizations of all sizes to communicate with their employees, stream videos, take surveys, recognize, and educate their employees. With the addition of a powerful integration with Tango Card, HubEngage's customers will have the ability to seamlessly reward their employees with gift cards, all from one convenient platform. “This new strategic partnership with Tango Card allows us to offer even more value to our enterprise customers of all shapes and sizes with a complete end-to-end gift card incentive option for employees”, said Yash Chitre, Senior Vice President of Engagement at HubEngage. “Our customers will now be able to complete their employee communications activities with a few simple clicks that will provide incentive and engagement for participation”, continued Chitre.


Athleta Launches AthletaWell, an Immersive Digital Platform for Women to Connect on a Range of Topics Rooted in Female Wellbeing

Highlight: As a brand with a mission of empowering women and girls, the platform is rooted in these values and aims to create a community for women. AthletaWell is an integral part of Athleta’s evolution from a performance brand to a true lifestyle brand and a key component of its Power Plan growth strategy to develop enduring deep relationships with new and existing customers. Athleta is also partnering with obé Fitness, a digital fitness platform with a focus on bringing entertainment, pop culture and design to fitness, and recently participated in its latest funding round. “We know being active is an important part of our customer’s overall well-being, so we are thrilled to invest in and partner with obé, and offer the Athleta community access to this like-minded partner,” said Mary Beth Laughton, President and CEO, Athleta. “As our brand continues to grow, this investment creates a unique engagement opportunity for our customers and helps us build even more loyalty over time.”

H-E-B, Food Lion, Kroger Rank Highest for Loyalty

Highlight: In an economic climate in which more consumers are looking for ways to save money, grocers can help retain shoppers by offering rewards programs that provide exclusive coupon discounts on everyday essential needs. A few of these programs are now being recognized nationally. H-E-B, Food Lion and the Kroger Co. have ranked first, second and third, respectively, in Bond Brand Loyalty’s report, “Best U.S. Grocery Retail Programs of 2021.” The attributes surveyed for the report included Loyalty Mechanics, Program Influence, Behavioral Loyalty, Earn Mechanics, Rewards & Redemption, Brand Influence, Human Experiences, and Digital Experiences. The top performers were based on members’ agreement with the statement: I am loyal to the program.


Square will pay $29 billion to acquire leading 'buy now, pay later' company Afterpay

Highlight: Afterpay, like other increasingly popular BNPL services (including Affirm, Klarna and Uplift), allows customers to pay over time without interest. To make money, they charge retailers a fee (4 to 6 percent), promising to connect them with a desirable demographic and assume all financial risk… “The addition of Afterpay to Cash App will strengthen our growing networks of consumers around the world, while supporting consumers with flexible, responsible payment options,” said Square's Brian Grassadonia. “Afterpay will help deepen and reinforce the connections between our Cash App and Seller ecosystems, and accelerate our ability to offer a rich suite of commerce capabilities to Cash App customers.”

Barclaycard Payments signs up to Mastercard Track Business Payment Service to modernise business payments

Highlight: Barclaycard Payments today announces it has agreed to join Mastercard Track™ Business Payment Service, making new services available to Barclaycard Payments’ customers later this year. The innovative, open loop network delivers value to both Buyers and Suppliers by simplifying and automating the set up and execution of business payments using multiple payment rails and enhancing the exchange of payments-related data. In turn, it enables Buyers and Suppliers to utilise the best available option for paying each-and-every invoice. The agreement builds on Barclaycard Payments and Mastercard’s strong existing relationship in Commercial cards. The two businesses have recently signed a new multi-year agreement, ensuring that together they can continue to deliver outstanding commercial payment services to businesses around the world.


Zoom Agrees To Settle A Privacy Lawsuit For $85 Million

Highlight: Zoom will pay $85 million to settle a lawsuit claiming it violated users' privacy rights, according to a preliminary settlement filed on Saturday. The class action suit by several Zoom users alleges the company shared personal data with Facebook, Google and LinkedIn, and allowed hackers to disrupt meetings with pornography, inappropriate language or other disturbing content in a practice called “Zoombombing.” The settlement still requires approval by U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, Calif., but if she signs off, subscribers would receive 15% refunds on their core subscriptions, or $25, whichever amount is larger.

E.U. regulator hits Amazon with record $887 million fine for data protection violations

Highlight: The National Commission for Data Protection (CNPD) in Luxembourg, where Amazon’s European operations are headquartered, issued the decision on July 16, the company disclosed in a securities filing. The privacy watchdog said Amazon Europe Core’s processing of personal data for advertising did not comply with the E.U. General Data Protection Regulation, the company said in the filing. Amazon told The Post the decision did not relate to a data breach and “no customer data has been exposed to any third party.” The company said it cooperated throughout the investigation but rejects its findings and plans to appeal. “Maintaining the security of our customers’ information and their trust are top priorities,” the company said in an emailed statement. “The decision relating to how we show customers relevant advertising relies on subjective and untested interpretations of European privacy law, and the proposed fine is entirely out of proportion with even that interpretation.”


Brilliant: Emirates’ “Mile-A-Minute” Promo For Visiting Dubai

Highlight: Expo 2020 will be taking place in Dubai later this year, and that also coincides with the UAE’s 50th anniversary celebrations. In recognition of this, Emirates is offering one Skywards mile for every minute you spend in Dubai. Emirates is owned by the government of Dubai, and the airline is arguably more about building up Dubai as a global hub than it is about actually being an independently profitable airline (and that’s totally fair). So in that sense this offer is great — not only does it encourage people to travel with Emirates, but it encourages people to actually visit Dubai and spend time (aka money) there.

Did you miss last week's newswire? Stay informed: Loyalty Newswire – July 26th, 2021

The Loyalty Newswire is compiled and edited by the staff at The Wise Marketer.