Lets start this off with a quick poll. If you are a consumer brand, how likely are you to be "afraid" of redemption? Put another way, in your company's financial culture, is reward redemption a good thing or a bad thing? (Pause for appropriate thinking time). Its remarkable to me that there are still divergent views on this topic at the C-suite level.
Beyond that very basic argument though, an effective loyalty program must have a well-tended/well-curated rewards catalog. Period. And as Azim Esmail points out, the content and mechanics of that catalogue must be unique to your customer segments and must be built on a solid understanding of the nuances of those segments.
Here is a segment from our recent conversation with Azim Esmail, founder and CEO of RewardOPS.