The Royal
Canadian Legion

Ontario : Branch 50 - FRED GIES, Kitchener.

 

Home

News

All News
-2147467259
News Letters
WEBNEWS
Photo Gallery
Video Gallery
 

 

News - All - 25 May 2017

News Item 79 of 4257 

Miscellaneous: 25 May 2017
Canadians hoarding $16B worth of unused loyalty points

Canadians are signing up for an average of 12 loyalty programs, but they're not actively using them all and reaping the rewards, says a new study. (CBC)

We all love free stuff, so it's no surprise that Canadians are pledging allegiance to a growing number of loyalty programs. However, many of us are not bothering to cash in on our rewards.

A new report from Bond Brand Loyalty estimates that collectors are sitting on a whopping $16 billion worth of unused rewards points that works out to a value of $629 per collector.

The Mississauga, Ont.-based marketing agency surveyed 9,299 Canadians online in January and February. It found that 55 per cent of collectors don't even know how many points they have, and 41 per cent are unaware of the value of their points.

On top of that, one-quarter of loyalty members have never redeemed any of their points for rewards.

Despite this, Canadians keep signing up for more loyalty programs. According to the report, collectors have committed to an average of 12.2 programs each up by almost 25 per cent since 2013.

However, we're not always keen on all of our chosen programs, which means some go neglected.

"The onus is on the program operator to make sure that the member is primed for engagement," says Scott Robinson, Bond's vice-president of design and strategy

When loyalty is lost

Robinson says collector satisfaction depends not only on value per dollar spent but also on how enjoyable members find the entire experience of earning points and getting rewards.

The study found that satisfaction was highest with programs tied to credit and debit cards as well as coffee, gas and drugstore retailers.

Large programs like Air Miles and Aeroplan that partner with many businesses scored the lowest.

Bond Brand Loyalty says it's harder to foster customer loyalty when programs involve multiple brands.

The company suggests negative publicity such as Air Miles' recent attempt to impose a controversial expiry policy also doesn't help.

"A breach of trust is the number one anti-driver of loyalty," says Sean Claessen, Bond's executive vice-president of strategy and innovation.

Last year, Air Miles ran into trouble when it introduced an expiry policy for points, and members complained they couldn't find adequate ways to redeem their miles. Following public outcry, the program cancelled the expiry policy one month before it was set to take effect.

Gilda Spitz used to diligently collect Air Miles. But following the expiry debacle, she stopped and doesn't particularly care if her remaining 1,000 points go to waste.

"It's not high on our agenda," says Spitz, of Thornhill, Ont. "I was really fed up with how poorly they treated their customers."

In March, Air Miles apologized to members and announced changes to its program to appease them.

Collectors like easy rewards

Steve Woloshyn in Mississauga also ignores his Air Miles account. But he consistently uses his McDonald's coffee rewards program, where he earns and redeems points in the form of stickers.

"It's easy. It's automatic," says Woloshyn. "You don't need to submit a card, fill in all your personal information. You just collect your stickers. Next thing you know, you've got a free [coffee]."

There's no expiry policy, he adds.


Robinson, with Bond Brand Loyalty, says coffee programs are popular because collectors know exactly what they're getting.

"It's easy to explain, it's easy to understand, easy to engage with," he says.

Simplicity also drives Spitz to actively participate in the President's Choice loyalty program in which she gets discounts on her Loblaws grocery bill.

"Even though it's a small thing $20 off your groceries it's like a nice surprise," says Spitz. "It's like instant gratification."

Both Spitz and Woloshyn say they may wind up using their Air Miles one of these days if they can find something worth redeeming for. Both are also sitting on thousands of Aeroplan points.

Use it or lose it?

Many Canadians hoarding points may still hope to eventually redeem them. But stockpiling points may not be smart, warns Lethbridge, Alta.-based financial writer Robb Engen.

"What they fail to realize is that programs can change at any time," he says.

A loyalty program might impose an expiry policy, as Air Miles tried to do, or quietly devalue some points. Or the rewards offered may change. It's still up in the air whether Air Canada will be able to offer flight rewards through Aeroplan when the airline starts its own loyalty program in 2020.

"Rather than just signing up for every single one you can get your hands on, be active in the ones you know you're going to participate in regularly," advises Engen.

He adds there's another price to pay for committing to a large number of loyalty programs: when you participate, many of them track your shopping habits.

"People need to understand you're not just signing up to get something for free or a little bit of a discount," he says. "You're actually giving up a little chunk of your privacy."

Sophia Harris, CBC News/Twitter/AA
 

Read 3116 times.

Member Comments on this Article.


None

 

 

      Share on Facebook  
       
        News Item 79 of 4257   
     

Search News :

 

 

 

SUPPORT OUR TROOPS - WEAR RED ON FRIDAYS

TOP BACK TO TOP | ABOUT US | NEWS | ACTIVITIES| MEMBERS | LINKS | LEST WE FORGET | HOME


Contact Us


Guest Book


 

   
Mail Services By
  

Copyright: Royal Canadian Legion, Fred Gies (Branch 50) Ontario 2017
Daily Visitors: Since Inception Oct 30, 2007  1123746, This Month 12795, Today 590
ADMIN

Special Thanks to...
Non-Profit Web Hosting provided by myhosting.com

TEST