The “recent” Maxis fiasco highlights an interesting topic — loyalty, be it brand loyalty or even “loyalty to employer”.
For Maxis, according to The Star Online….
“The saga started when a Maxis customer complained on the Lowyat.net forum that a friend of his had gotten a more attractive offer from Maxis when that friend tried to port out to another telco.
The customer, who has apparently been a subscriber to Maxis for almost 10 years, contacted the telco’s customer support to enquire about the offer but was told that the offer did not exist.”
The thing is, these days, not many organisations set out to reward loyalty. Consumers who have been loyal to a brand and have been acting as “indirect brand ambassador” are left feeling disappointed when they realize attractive offers are made to attract customers over to the brand but hardly anything is done to retain and reward loyal customers.
In the workspace, I have heard of comments from employees about their “long service award” that goes something along the lines of “Only a one-off USD250 for my 5 years!? I could easily get that monthly by accepting a new job offer!”.
But we can also say that loyalty is a concept that works both ways. Consumers are also less “brand loyal” these days.
As consumers become “smarter”, it’s only natural that they start to compare between products and services and pick the ones that gives them best “value for money”. No doubt there will still be those brand loyal ones who don’t mind paying a premium price for the status and brand association.
For organisations, one way to improve a consumer’s perception of “value for money” is to introduce a loyalty reward program. Using the telco industry as an example, they could implement a reward program that rewards a customer based on how long they have been a customer. It could be something like this:
Of course there needs to be some T&Cs (terms and conditions)… Like perhaps the customer needs to be on a monthly plan that is above (an example) rm50/ month. For those below, it could be a different set of rewards — yes, having a different set of reward can mean “discrimination” but seriously, we don’t expect an organisation to make a loss, no?
Ideally though, there should not be that many different sets of rewards, else one will end up with customers feeling “under appreciated”.