500FRIENDS BLOG
Loyalty trends & best practices

We've Moved!

by Julia Leyrer
January 27, 2015
We've Moved!

As of today, our new office location is: 222 Sutter St., Suite 450, San Francisco, CA 94108. We're excited to join offices with our Experience Design Group in Merkle! Our new office is also in a great location within walking distance to Union Square and numerous restaurants, hotels, and retail stores... Read more

Importance of an Effective Trigger-Based Communication Strategy

by Julia Leyrer
January 15, 2015
Importance of an Effective Trigger-Based Communication Strategy

Once you implement a loyalty program, you are not yet finished with your loyalty strategy. In fact, there is a good chance that a loyalty program is set to be ineffective if it does not have an ongoing and robust communication element in place. Successful loyalty programs initiate a behavior out of your customers that they would not otherwise have done, and whatever the initiatives may be, they need to be communicated properly and clearly to be effective and drive results.This is apparent for many of our consulting engagements, that companies are not making the most out of their current programs because they are lacking simple communications--and many do not even realize they are doing it. They are letting members become inactive because they are assuming the customer has all of the information they need about the program. This may be due to the fact that it is easy for the customer... Read more

When Should You Start Thinking About Loyalty?

by Lauren Chan
November 11, 2014
When Should You Start Thinking About Loyalty?

How do you know when it’s time to start thinking about loyalty? Investing in loyalty is a big decision but has great rewards if deployed correctly and efficiently. Loyalty is a solution for companies who want to drive incremental lift and better understand their customers. If you are contemplating whether or not loyalty is the right solution for your company, ask yourself these three questions: 1. Is your cost of customer acquisition high (and your customer retention rate low)? Most retailers, if not all, will answer yes to this question. With methods like search engine marketing and paid search advertising, the cost of acquiring a customer is skyrocketing and hurting profitability. Today, brands must focus more on retention rather than acquisition. In the long-run, shifting your efforts towards retention will be more profitable as you will encourage repurchase rather than a one-time purchase... Read more

Case Study: How U.S. Auto Parts Increased Spend Per Member 20% with 500friends

by Lauren Chan
November 06, 2014
Case Study: How U.S. Auto Parts Increased Spend Per Member 20% with 500friends

High cost customer acquisition with no tradeoff of lifetime value defines today’s ecommerce landscape. As most retailers struggle with customer retention, marketing teams deploy loyalty solutions to gain a competitive edge by connecting with shoppers and incentivizing repurchase. With the help of 500friends, a leading provider of end-to-end marketing solutions, U.S. Auto parts increased its spend per member by 20%, its repurchase rate by 14%, and its enrollment rate by 45% after updating the loyalty program of its flagship brand, Auto Parts Warehouse. We at 500friends published a case study (below) highlighting the success of U.S. Auto Parts in increasing customer retention using the 500friends LoyaltyPlus platform. Although most ecommerce marketing teams are resource constrained, IR 100 retailer U.S. Auto Parts realized the competitive advantage of loyalty and decided t... Read more

Watch-On-Demand: 10 Ways To Personalize The Holidays

by Arif Damji
September 18, 2014
Watch-On-Demand: 10 Ways To Personalize The Holidays

Did you miss our recent webinar with Merkle? The joint webinar is now available to watch below and features Merkle's VP of Personalization, Zimm Zimmerman, as well as 500friends' Senior Director of Strategy, Arif Damji, as they both explore ways retailers can enhance personalization for their customers. They highlight how loyalty programs further enhance personalization for members through the data collected and aggregated. Learn how to use the holiday season to drive long term loyalty throughout the year... Read more

Upcoming Webinar: 10 Ways To Personalize The Holidays

by Jessica Chien
September 16, 2014
Upcoming Webinar: 10 Ways To Personalize The Holidays

What sets retailers apart from their competitors? It is the relationship that they have with customers. During this holiday season, it's not just price that will separate winners from losers. Instead, retailers who can deliver relevant and personalized conversations with their customers —at scale— will realize the true advantage. During this joint Merkle and 500friends webinar, we will explore consumer expectations for personalization and steps you can take now to improve your customer experience during the Holidays. Learn how to use the holiday season to drive long term loyalty throughout the year... Read more

Why I Like Facebooks Ban on Rewarding Likes: Better Data

by Justin Yoshimura
August 15, 2014
Why I Like Facebooks Ban on Rewarding Likes: Better Data

You might think that, as CEO of a company that powers loyalty programs for over 50 retailers, I would be upset about Facebook’s recent announcement that the company will prohibit rewarding "likes" with incentives, monetary or otherwise. In fact, I'm a big fan of Facebook's move. For one thing, Facebook has restricted incentivizing social actions for years, so the new policy language only clarifies that stance. Also, I've long advised marketers against directly rewarding likes—500friends loyalty software actually disallows it—not only because it lives in a Facebook policy gray area, but also because it just feels wrong, and not in keeping with most brands' values. But the biggest reason I like Facebook’s like-rewarding ban? It has to do with the real value that Facebook offers for retailers. Some would say that's attention or traffic, but I disagree. It’s data. All-encompassing, personalizat... Read more

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