Loyalty is a fast-growing sector, despite its numerous failings. Blockchain is also growing fast. The intersection of the two promises to be exciting, with Incent poised to revolutionise the space in 2019.
The loyalty sector as we know it today has been around for decades – though rewards to incentivise repeat custom are probably as old as commerce itself. The industry followed a familiar pattern that is not dissimilar to that of peer-to-peer cash. There were a handful of early attempts to create viable loyalty programmes, before someone hit on a formula that truly worked. Air Miles revolutionised consumer loyalty, just like Bitcoin revolutionised decentralised money.
But Air Miles, like Bitcoin, was swiftly followed by a slew of competitors. Many were no more than copycats, a handful offered something different, but one way or another, Air Miles started losing market share.
Air Miles was ultimately forced into making concessions that robbed it of its unique appeal. Today – unlike in the crypto world – there is no clear market leader in the loyalty sector. But that sector is still booming.
A saturated market
The figures for loyalty are staggering. Loyalty membership has grown steadily over the past decade or more. In the US alone – a country with a population of some 327 million – there were 3.8 billion individual memberships for loyalty programmes in 2016. Fewer than half of these are active. The number of memberships tripled in ten years, from 1.3 billion in 2006, but roughly the same proportion (an average of around 44%) are actually used. It doesn’t matter how many more people sign up to these loyalty programmes. The majority still don’t offer anything meaningful to consumers. Today, the growth of the loyalty sector is beginning to slow. The market is ‘maturing’ – or, to use a more accurate term, saturated. Even with double-digit growth, it’s a case of diminishing returns. Tellingly, over a quarter of members abandon a programme without ever redeeming a single point.
Something old, something new
Blockchain is also growing fast, and it’s poised to make a huge difference to loyalty. Incent was launched at the end of 2016 with the vision of changing how retailers engage with consumers, by offering crypto points with real value. Given the reasons customers give for participating in loyalty programmes, the attraction of Incent is self-evident. For example, one analysis found that:
- 53 percent of consumers identified ease of use as the main reason for participating in a loyalty program – and Incent is completely frictionless.
- 39 percent cited great discounts as the reason. Incent is like money in your wallet to save or redeem to cash as you want.
- 37 percent cited ease of understanding the program – and what could be simpler than points with real value you can save or exchange for cash?
- 57 percent said they abandoned a program because it took too long to earn points or miles – but with Incent you earn real value with every single purchase.
- 51 percent said they trusted loyalty programs with their personal data. Incent is fully PCI compliant, similar to other big names that you are familiar with.
Incent’s waiting list is currently live, with full launch planned for July. Consumers will be rewarded in Incent tokens on every spend they make. To find out more, visit www.incent.com.
- Incent Slack: https://incentinvites.herokuapp.com/
- Incent Telegram: https://t.me/IncentLoyalty
- Buy and sell INCNT tokens on Bittrex.