A peek inside the loyalty programmes of the world’s largest hotels
27th May 2019
Loyalty programmes are still raging in popularity according to Accor's programme growth of 23,000 additional daily members, contributing 30.6% global average to hotel revenue. However, for hotels the biggest battle is convincing consumers to join a loyalty programme and stay active to redeem their points. Confusion and frustration exist where customers are unsure how and when they can redeem points. This has become the frontier in digital transformation for cultivating loyalty programmes.
Hilton has deeply embedded its Hilton Honors programme in its digital strategy, delivering a range of benefits and loyalty options at every point of guest stays. Its ‘Expect Better’ campaign rewards customers with a price match guarantee and additional perks, delivering a growth of 14 million new members in 2018, with programme engagement jumping from 15% to 50% in just five years.
Marriott has embraced Gen Z by reworking its loyalty points system to reward members for engaging with social media, thus connecting with them even before they start travelling.
Best Western has restructured its loyalty programme, partnering with other leading brands like Amazon, Google and IBM to reward customers with points when dining out and allowing guests to convert points to currency through Apply Pay and Android Pay. Best Western’s Rewards Chatbot will even tell members their balance and the membership perks available.
The World of Hyatt truly embeds loyalty into its delivery by allowing guests to earn and redeem points by attending well-being programmes at its properties. This also incorporates wellness into every aspect of its business.
The Centre for Hospitality Research at Cornell University found that hotel chains reap an average of 50% more revenue from customers who belong to their loyalty programmes than from those who do not.
While competing with global branded loyalty programmes can seem quite a feat, many more customers are looking to connect with independent hotels, and be part of a more unique clique.
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