Study Finds Growing Distrust of Brands, Yet Strong Loyalty Program Engagement

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By: Wise Marketer Staff |

Posted on July 26, 2018

Research indicates that brands are skeptical of how brands use their data, but omnichannel loyalty programs offer brands a competitive advantage and the opportunity to rebuild trust through relevancy.

CrowdTwist conducted research into consumer attitudes towards loyalty programs, brand engagement, emerging technologies, and shopping experiences. The report, the first in a two-part series, provides an overview of the general findings from the research, including an assessment by location and income, and an overview of the most popular loyalty programs in market today.

The research indicates that consumers are skeptical of sharing data with brands and are reluctant to try new technologies designed to enhance brand experiences. Engaging, omnichannel loyalty programs are valuable to consumers and provide brands the opportunity to capture rich, opt-in customer data.

Key findings include:

  • Only 46% of consumers (and 50% of Millennial and Gen Z consumers) are willing to share their data in exchange for personalized experiences.

    Consumers have become increasingly wary of how brands use their data. This learning is a significant change from last year when 98% of the Millennial and Gen Z consumers CrowdTwist surveyed responded that they are willing to share their personal information.

  • Only 34% of the consumers surveyed have purchased something that was recommended to them by a brand in the past six months.

    This indicates that brands are not effectively collecting or using data to personalize experiences for customers.

  • Most consumers prefer to shop online, but 41% also shop in-store and 76% of consumers want to be awarded points for walking into a brand location, restaurant, gym or store.

    This indicates that brands need to invest in having an omnichannel presence and provide a seamless brand experience across all channels.

  • 63% of consumers are more likely to shop with a brand that offers a loyalty program.

    Loyalty programs provide a competitive advantage for brands.

  • 78% of people are active in at least one loyalty program.

    The majority of consumers actively participate in at least one loyalty program. 57% have at least one loyalty app installed on their phone.

  • 86% of affluent consumers are active in at least one loyalty program.

    This indicates that loyalty programs could be beneficial for high end and luxury brands. It's worth noting this group also redeems rewards at a higher rate than other income brackets.

  • 89% of people want discount rewards from a loyalty program.

    Furthermore, 79% of consumers expressed that discounts and cash back are the most important components of a loyalty program.

  • 84% of consumers are willing to complete a survey as part of a loyalty program.

    This engagement activity helps drive better personalization. In addition, 55% of consumers wanted to be rewarded for visiting a company's website and 51% for playing a game.

Scott Matthews, CEO of CrowdTwist remarks, "The survey provides a comprehensive overview of consumer trends as they pertain to brand loyalty, and uncovers interesting insight. It is evident the effects of data mismanagement and poorly executed personalization has left consumers skeptical. Omnichannel loyalty programs however, offer an opportunity for brands to rebuild trust and create meaningful relationships with consumers through permission-based data capture and personalization.

This is affirmed by the fact that consumers are willing to complete a range of engagement activities like surveys in exchange for program perks and rewards. Loyalty programs also provide a competitive advantage, especially for brands with an affluent target customer base. The research also strengthens the growing need for brands to operate across digital, social and in-store, maintaining the same identity and experience across all channels."

For a snapshot of the findings, view our infographic, or download "Engaging Consumers in an Age of Increasing Brand Distrust" to learn more about the survey findings and for guidance on how to tailor your loyalty strategy to meet the expectations of your customers.