By Seamas Egan

Any business, large or small, has its industry role models. Whether the goal is to achieve top-tier customer satisfaction like Amazon, skyrocketing revenue like Salesforce or high-quality status like Dolce and Gabana, marketers and business owners worldwide are always taking tips and tricks from the most successful brands.

Starbucks can be seen as one of those role models, not necessarily for its world famous coffee, but for its competitive loyalty rewards offering. Recently, the coffee giant announced it is teaming up with ride-sharing startup Lyft to expand its loyalty program beyond birthday promos and personal perks.

Taking a cue from Starbucks’ customer strategy, any company will realize that the profits lie in the perks. Rewards and loyalty programs help attract repeat customers and build significant brand loyalty, and one of the most effective ways to foster these customer relationships is through email marketing. Below I’ve included my top three tips for implementing and maintaining a successful loyalty program.

1. Personalize Based on Data

Some perks will be more appealing to certain customers, while others fall flat. Data analytics will allow you to determine what resonates best with your target audience in order develop a personalized loyalty program.

Email marketing tools such as segmentation and A/B split testing offer the specific metrics and data you need to figure out which perks will grasp customer interest and how to package them to drive skyrocketing enrollment.

2. Create a Valuable Partnership

Two sets of customers are always better than one. Partnerships like the one between Starbucks and Lyft benefit all parties involved, as consumers receive twice the benefits, while companies get double the exposure and brand awareness.

But a word of caution: When choosing a loyalty program partner, be strategic. You want to make sure whichever brand you choose to partner with does not compete with your company, but rather complements it. For instance, if you sell chocolates, consider partnering with a wine company.

Additionally, geography can help determine partners as well. If you own a brick-and-mortar boutique shop, partnering with another store in the same neighborhood will encourage shoppers to stop by whenever they’re out and about.

3. Spread The Word via Email and Social

You won’t be able to sign up new customers in a loyalty program unless they know it exists, and email is the most effective way to spread the word.

Transactional emails in particular are ideal for promoting loyalty programs. Offer options to sign up in your thank-you and shipment confirmation emails. Since these are distributed to already paying customers, they will likely be more inclined to join a rewards program than others on your list.

In addition to email, utilize social media, like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. This allows your brand to spread digital word-of-mouth of your rewards program, and ultimately increase sign-ups exponentially.

By implementing the tactics above into your loyalty program, your brand will be sure to have a huge base of loyal customers in no time.

Seamas is the manager of revenue operations at Campaigner. He is an experienced technology leader in the SAAS space. Known for his strategic vision and operational excellence, he has a proven track record of delivering results. Having worked in sales, marketing, operations and corporate development, Seamas has a wealth of knowledge in running and growing business through fundamental business principles and out-of-the-box thinking. Seamas is a thought leader in eCommerce and is versed in digital media and email marketing. @SeamasEgan.