U.S. marketers spend an estimated $90 billion a year on non-cash rewards alone for loyalty programs, reports Ad Age, but that investment appears increasingly wasted, according to new research by Accenture.

According to Ad Age:

“The firm’s 12th annual survey of more than 25,000 consumers globally and 2,500 in the U.S. showed 54% of people said they’d switched providers in the past year, and 78% say they retract loyalty faster today than they did three years ago. Retailers, cable and satellite providers, banks and internet service providers were the most likely victims of switchers.

“Survey results suggest many loyalty efforts are misdirected at things people don’t want that much, said Robert Wollan, senior managing director and global lead of advanced customer strategy at Accenture Strategy. Only 34% of respondents said what makes them loyal today is completely the same as three years ago. Some would just as soon brands play hard to get, with 8% saying they have a negative reaction when companies try to earn their loyalty, with another 8% saying they’re likely to be indifferent to such overtures.

“Indeed, beyond the survey, some evidence suggests previously successful loyalty programs aren’t packing the punch they once did or need tweaking.”

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