Global loyalty market to be worth US$100bn by 2015
Groupe Aeroplan exec says data vital to maintain competitive edge in growing sector
The global loyalty market is predicted to be worth over $100bn by 2015 according to a senior Groupe Aeroplan executive.
Dave Battiston, Group Aeroplan’s MD Retail, added that the future importance of data for retailers is crucial to maintain a competitive edge in a growing and lucrative market.
Loyalty management company Groupe Aeroplan, operates multi-partner schemes in Italy, the Middle East, Canada and the Nectar programme in the UK.
It owns 60% of Air Miles Middle East, the region’s leading coalition loyalty programme, which has over 1.7 million members, with over 2,000 participating outlets in the UAE, Qatar and Bahrain.
Speaking at the Customer Show MENA 2010 in Dubai, Battiston said: “In the Middle East we operate under the Air Miles banner and membership in the UAE, Qatar and Bahrain has almost doubled over the past five years. We’re aiming for a 50% increase in penetration by 2013, to take our membership to over three million members.
“Research predicts more people will access the web by mobile than through computers by 2013 and this statistic underlines the importance of these channels, as retailers evolve and plan for the future. The advent and growth in popularity of PDAs and smart phones is making the use of loyalty programmes increasingly simple and accessible and is helping propagate such schemes in the region.”
Battiston added that this data is a rich commodity that is extracted and refined, and those that handle it in this way massively increase their chances of success. He said large organisations must always strive to better understand the needs of individual customers and the correct use of data is a crucial factor.
“One of the biggest challenges facing retailers is the increasing need to provide consumer value, with many merchants looking to loyalty options rather than discounting prices,” said Battiston. “By understanding customer shopping behaviour organisations can individually target promotions to prevent inefficient ‘across the board’ marketing. This in turn increases customer loyalty and ultimately generates significantly better returns on investment for retailers.”
He added that most major retailers are now multi-channel and like to engage consumers through smart interaction, such as with Amazon, where the website will automatically show you other things you might like to buy whenever you make a purchase. This type of intelligent interaction will be vital to the future success of retailers, according to Battiston.