Daily Insights

A Rare Opportunity

By: Alizah Asif Farooqi | Aug 13, 2019

While email may impact site visits less, the marketing channel offers a rare opportunity to connect with customers directly, communicating new developments.

After Matches Fashion relaunched its loyalty program, it sent an email to existing customers to inform them they had “been selected to join The Curator loyalty programme,” a strategy exemplified by DSW following its spring loyalty relaunch. The emails resulted in a small, but notable impact on Matches Fashion’s traffic to loyalty pages following its release. It then communicated the different tiers associated with the program.

Macy’s similarly promoted its Star Rewards program to members, using discounts and status updates, remaining one of the 14% of department stores to see increased traffic to site from email. Department stores lead across major retailer verticals in promoting loyalty in-display ads according to Gartner L2’s report on the topic. The sector beats Big Box, Restaurants and Specialty Retailers with nearly 9% of studied display ads relating to loyalty programs.

Across this and other marketing channels, though, department stores launching new programs didn’t use the opportunity to promote exclusivity or savings with the program. Just as with email, DSW promoted the launch of its loyalty program using display ads and paid extended links, which offer department stores the unique opportunity to target valuable keywords and include certain text in the link. But Barney’s and Matches Fashion failed to leverage either platform to promote their new programs.

For most department stores, branded keywords drive outsize traffic to site, and extended links may be the first opportunity department stores have to greet new customers. Leveraging multiple marketing touchpoints across display and search can push the visibility of new or revamped loyalty programs.