The Hallmark of Modern Loyalty? AI to IA℠.

Today’s successful loyalty programs rely on personalization. As technology has expanded marketers’ capabilities through data collection, consumers now expect messages and rewards that match their own specific wants and needs.

This has elevated a new concept in loyalty: using artificial intelligence to drive individual action. Put more succinctly, it’s AI to IA℠.

Artificial intelligence enables marketers to identify patterns and idiosyncrasies among customers in a much faster, more efficient manner. A group of like-minded consumers that might have taken an entire marketing team months to identify can be spotted by a computer in a matter of minutes. Leveraged strategically, that can make a big impact in terms of incremental visits and revenue.

Here is a common example that at least one large brand used to drive astounding results: a 37% lift in visits and a 28% lift in spend from the targeted customers.

That brand used artificial intelligence to build a smarter “We Miss You” campaign. These campaigns are usually brief messages that leverage some sort of no-strings-attached reward just for coming back to the store—something like $2 off the customer’s next purchase. The key to making these successful is to send them just after a customer has missed their typical visit, according to their usual pattern—be it daily, monthly or something in between.

Without AI, the marketers would need to choose when to send that message to a large segment of customers—but reaching the customer at just the right moment within their visit pattern would boil down to luck. That’s because the message would be manually sent in a single batch to the most logical group the marketer could identify.

Now, add AI to the mix. An algorithm can be set to identify each customer’s personal visit cadence and triggered to send a “We Miss You” message as soon as that person has missed a visit. Suddenly, the messages are being sent on a rolling basis and to targeted customers in a way that matches their personal situation, making for a much more effective campaign.

This is just one example of the power of AI in loyalty. It’s also been used to send specific messages to customers who have never used an online ordering platform and to boost the speed with which marketing emails are opened by more than 16%.

The most effective campaigns are those that send the right message to the right customer through the right medium at the right time. AI simply enables brands to do that faster and more efficiently—to get great results.

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