Smiling woman in orange dress with shopping bags and loyalty card

7 Media Trends in Loyalty / Rewards You Need to Be Talking About 



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According to eMarketer, “Loyalty program membership and engagement reached new highs in 2023.” This is excellent news for businesses in the rewards, incentives, and loyalty space, as it demonstrates a growing demand for their products and services. 

However, eMarketer also points out that although the average consumer belongs to about 18 loyalty programs, they are only currently active in half. These numbers are higher than previous years, but pinpoint opportunities to drive better adoption and ensure rewards and loyalty offerings are fresh and relevant. 

Whether you’re a B2B, B2C or B2B2C brand in the loyalty and rewards industry, it’s imperative to create a buzz about your business to get noticed, generate leads, and close sales. But it’s extremely difficult to sell to and engage your target audiences if they don’t know you exist or aren’t clear on how your capabilities address their business needs.  

While many rewards and loyalty organizations turn to marketing and sales, which often go hand-in-hand, consider complementing those efforts by attaching smart PR initiatives, especially media campaigns.  

A strategic, experienced PR partner drives awareness about your business through smart media relations activities complete with astute thought leadership. And while it may seem counterintuitive, the key to success is not talking about what you sell. Instead, show that you understand your audience’s pain points, goals, and industry by offering thoughtful solutions and insights that benefit their businesses.  

To get the ball rolling on your media relations endeavors, we recommend weighing in on industry ideas and trends that are buzzing in trade and national media—particularly those you can speak to with confidence. Through our work with loyalty, rewards, and incentive clients, we actively track the key topics media and other industry stakeholders are talking about right now. Whether you author a byline or blog, prepare a media pitch, or plan a social media campaign, look to join the following conversations:

  • Personalization in loyalty​. Thanks to artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and increasingly rich sources of customer data, there are new and novel ways to move beyond basic personalization. With rapidly evolving technology, businesses can cultivate deeper, more meaningful engagements that drive lasting loyalty by better understanding the customer journey and which rewards resonate. Explain to your target audiences how they can leverage modern technology to hyper-personalize brand interactions at an individual level. 
  • Moving beyond transactions to building emotional bonds. People want to do business with brands that understand them, offer the solutions they need, and reward them for their loyalty. Think beyond simply offering points or discounts: how can your partners and clients create emotional, long-lasting connections with their customers? Consider delving into how the right rewards and positive brand experiences forge connections that withstand noise from competitors. 
  • Common pitfalls in reward and loyalty program execution. Your prospects and customers will appreciate expert advice and insights on how they can optimize ROI on their programs, particularly as budgets tighten and economic challenges linger. Try to address issues like stagnant engagement, program fatigue, burdensome redemption processes, clunky tech applications, and rewards that fall flat—and also share step-by-step strategies to mitigate these concerns.​ 
  • The value of omnichannel rewards and loyalty programs. People want to be able to engage with rewards and loyalty programs where they are, when they want, and for the rewards they find most meaningful. Walk your prospects and clients through how to keep customers continually connected with their organization to open up more two-way relationships, how the right technology or APIs can simply program execution, or how smooth reward accessibility keeps brands top of mind. 
  • Evolving traditional brand loyalty to feature the brand experiences people crave. While consumer spending is rebounding, people have honed their skills for the best deals and rewards. As a result, they are more discerning when deciding which brands they want to engage with and buy from. Loyalty is now reliant on offering people experiences they remember and leaving them with positive feelings after they engage with your brand. Try to share examples of how your prospects can provide these experiences to encourage customer stickiness.​ 
  • Navigating digital privacy concerns. While the benefits of digitally enabled reward and loyalty programs are extensive, so is ensuring your customers’ data is protected. Rich data provides deep insights into customer behavior that can drive loyalty—but breaking customers’ trust and not adequately protecting their data will unravel efforts to engage them.​ Explore the delicate balance between personalization and privacy, and dive into how data collection can be done securely and tastefully. 
  • Gen Z’s influence on loyalty. Gen Z has unique expectations and is redefining loyalty. Understanding this generation’s psychological preferences exposes strategic opportunities to nurture long-term relationships with young customers. Share insights on how this generation views loyalty, their preference for authenticity, their desire for better brand experiences, the types of rewards they gravitate toward, and how they expect the brands they interact with to be socially responsible.  

PR is about storytelling. Presenting your brand in a positive light. Showcasing what makes you different and special. Generating an air of excitement about your brand. As businesses across a variety of industries look to drive loyalty among their target audiences, the demand for rewards and incentives programs is rising, as is the number of businesses creating and managing those programs. Now is the time to invest in a PR and media plan that will publicize your offerings while showing your depth of expertise. Making headlines and securing media opportunities will help you educate your key audiences on how to drive and nurture engagement and loyalty by leveraging the right rewards—while also positioning your company as a leader in the space.