Loyalty program members want brands and companies to think outside the box when it comes to rewards on offer, according to a new research study, Love or Money, commissioned by The Point of Loyalty. This may include rewards for recycling, healthy behaviours or to reduce everyday living expenses, particularly among Gen Z consumers.

The Point of Loyalty CEO and report author, Adam Posner said the Australian loyalty program landscape is maturing and it’s time for programs to focus on finding different and distinctive ways to improve the lives of their members.

“While members in general want rewards to reduce their cost of living, they are also keen to participate in programs with rewards linked to a greater purpose such as the recycling and healthy behaviours. It’s even more important in the current world situation for loyalty programs to focus on making lives better for their members. It will be remembered,” he said.

The research also revealed that two-thirds of Australians believe that loyalty programs enhance their overall desire to pursue a relationship and experience with the brand.

“The impact a well-designed program can have on brand experience is often debated and it was interesting to find that 68% of members agreed a loyalty program can enhance their relationship with a brand,” Posner said.

In 2020, while members are concerned with data use and security, they are making the most of their memberships with 63% indicating they are taking advantage of their rewards and benefits which has significantly increased from 54% when first researched in 2016.

“While programs are improving all the time, they need to keep an eye on their data practices and the value exchange they offer their members for the data they gain.”