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Marketing: Why You Should Consider Implementing a Loyalty Program

loyalty program

Nowadays, loyalty programs are a mainstay for consumer businesses, with companies of all sizes in a wide range of industries using them to retain customers and boost spending dollars.

This is because customer loyalty is key to a successful business. According to Sophia Bernazzani of HubSpot, “Did you know it costs a business about 5 to 25 times more to acquire a new customer than it does to sell to an existing one? Not only that, but existing customers spend 67 percent more than new customers. In short, customer loyalty really pays off — and customer loyalty programs pay for themselves.”

However, they only pay off if done right. According to Shep Hyken of Forbes, the best loyalty programs go far beyond just offering rewards to customers.

“Howard Schneider is the senior consultant for Kobie Marketing and a career veteran in what he calls ‘the loyalty marketing space,’” writes Hyken. “Notice that Schneider positions those two words, loyalty and marketing, right next to each other. Schneider says, ‘Savvy and strategic companies are now looking beyond these rewards programs to delight, create and retain loyal customers. They are looking to solve customers’ problems and soothe pain points.’”

Here are a couple companies with successful loyalty programs that your health club can draw inspiration from:


Starbucks’ loyalty program allows customers to earn rewards for their purchases, including drinks and food items. In addition, they can take advantage of mobile ordering — which is what makes this rewards program really stand out. As stated previously, great rewards programs solve a pain point for customers. Due to how strapped consumers today are for time, this feature is an attractive one, saving them from having to wait in line for their order.

Panera Bread Company

Like most loyalty programs, Panera’s program rewards customers for their purchases. But what makes this program stand out is its element of surprise. The brand is known for giving customers unexpected rewards — such as a free bagel every day for one month — which is a great example of how companies can use loyalty programs to delight customers.

If you haven’t considered creating a loyalty program for your health club, you should look into it as a great way to retain your members and boost their spending dollars.

But remember, as Hyken warned, you’ll only see those benefits if the loyalty program delights customers, solves a problem or soothes a pain point for them.

Rachel Zabonick-Chonko

Rachel Zabonick-Chonko is the editor-in-chief of Club Solutions Magazine. She can be reached at rachel@peakemedia.com.

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