Loyalty programs are now an indispensable part of running a business, there are already a lot of successful examples in the market such as Yuu, Moneyback, and a lot of mobile loyalty applications launched by different brands. Among all the commercial loyalty applications, there are some new types of loyalty rising up and changing our ways of living, they are called “activity-based loyalty”.
As the name suggests, activity-based loyalty programs mainly encourage users to develop certain behaviors that are positive and useful to themselves or the community. For instance, there are loyalty applications that motivate users to go green, keep fit, contribute to social work, and so on. These applications are in fact launched by different companies such as MTR, BOCLife, and FWD, to emphasize their beliefs and values, as well as gain trust from their customers.
Mutual Functionalities and Features
How do they optimize the loyalty program to encourage users to build positive habits? Well here are some ways and examples that we can learn from:
1. Easy to use, but valuable outcome
Differ from commercial loyalty applications, activity-based loyalty is not about urging customers to purchase, it is more about encouraging them to participate in a particular activity. For example, in Carbon Wallet, a recycling application launched by the MTR, users need to do recycling work, have lunch in vegetarian restaurants, and other eco-friendly missions to earn CW Points. Not only the program is free to join, but the users may also find it meaningful to participate in the loyalty program. Except for Carbon Wallet, there are more similar activity-based loyalty programs that can help users to build up healthy, and positive habits, such as Biological Age Model (Healthiness), FWD Max (Health Management), and You Challenge (Social Work). Providing an easy way for the users to earn loyalty points, develop long-term positive habits, and acquire both tangible and intangible rewards is the attractiveness of these activity-based loyalty programs.
2. Gamified Achievements, Missions, and Goals
In most activity-based loyalty programs, there are long-term missions for the users to finish, such as the walking challenge in Carbon Wallet, users may need to continuously finish the mission to earn rewards so that they could have a long-term goal and slowly develop a green habit. Gamified the difficult tasks and outcomes (such as doing exercise, being vegan, etc.) into missions and rewards made it easier for the users to develop a long-term habit.
It is important to provide users with a sense of satisfaction in order to keep them motivated. Take the Biological Age Model application launched by BOCLife as an example, on the main page of the app, there is a progress bar to remind users of the efforts they have put in, and also an estimated number of years of how much they have become younger after finishing different health-related tasks.
Establishing milestones for the users may also motivate them to keep using the application. Take Nike Run Club as an example, when the users ran for a certain distance, corresponding badges will be given to them. The more the users run, the more badges they could get. In the long run, the users will keep running and keep track using the application for the badges. Nike does not have to provide costly rewards to the users, they can also motivate them to keep using the application and develop the habit of running.
If we could help the users to keep track of their efforts and demonstrate them in a specified form, they will feel satisfied with what they have earned from the application, and hence keep using it to achieve better results.
3. Relevant Rewards
The reward is a crucial part of a loyalty scheme, it is especially important for the activity-based loyalty program to choose suitable rewards. Rewards should be relevant to the purpose of the loyalty program, so that the users may further achieve the beliefs of the companies. For instance, the rewards of Carbon Wallet are all about green products, such as coupons for vegetarian restaurants, recycled products, or eco-related field trips. Hence, users may go green by finishing different tasks, as well as supporting the collaborated eco-friendly brands. It is important to emphasize the companies’ beliefs throughout the whole loyalty program, not only for the brand’s reputation but also for the users to bear in mind the advantages of the app.
4. Community and Referrals
To optimize the loyalty program, it is necessary to create a trend and reach out to more users. Providing referral rewards is a good way to do so, such as extra points could be given if the existing users recommended the application to their friends so that word-of-mouth promotion could be conducted, more users can be benefited from the application. Apart from that, in order to let the users motivate each other, a community could be built in the application. For example, the You Challenge program created by The Hong Kong Jockey Club allows users to communicate with the supporter in the chatbox; The FWD Max program allows users to share articles and thoughts about their thoughts. These forms of communities are able to gather users that share the same value together so that a sense of belonging can be generated and they will be motivated to keep on participating in the program.
Besides, A ranking board can be added to create positive competition among users. In the Biological Age Model application, once the users added their friends, they are able to see the status of their friends and see how much work they have already done. They can remind each other to be active and motivate each other through the leaderboard. There are also some missions that require the participation of multiple users, such as The New Era challenge, if the user and three friends finished the mission together, they can all earn 300 points. Users are more likely to remind each other of the mission, rather than finish tasks individually. Once the users are able to motivate each other, they are more likely to stay active in the community, so as to remain the high usage of the application.
How to start developing your activity-to-point loyalty application?
Of course, it is important to consider the mentioned four elements carefully based on the actual situation of the company. For example, how much and what level of rewards can the firm provide to the users, as well as what beliefs and values do the firm want to emphasize. Once these foundations are established, it would be much easier to follow the direction while developing the application. Technology-wise, there is a lot of software that could help fasten the project. Motherapp developed a loyalty program engine Aillia that could help save your time and develop your application swiftly. If you are thinking about developing an activity-to-point loyalty program for your business and wish to seek professional help, feel free to contact us for more information!