A Program to Reward Your Top Customers

Thank you for your comments about the loyalty cards. Keep posting comments — Sandy and I love hearing from our readers. The past two posts were about loyalty cards and how we all have them floating around in our purses. Practically everywhere you go you can get a loyalty card from a business. Some are punch cards, some accrue points and some will give you discounts. This is the time of the loyalty card and it seems that most everyone is offering one or they have one in the works.
My salon decided to test another idea for a loyalty card last year. We decided to give our loyalty cards out to our "Top 100" clients only. We ran a report on our computer system that showed the clients who spent the most money in the salon. This is how we got our Top 100. The Top 100 clients that spent the most money received a special invitation in the mail. On the front of a large postcard it read, "Thank you for your loyalty in 2011. You have been chosen as one of our Top 100 clients for 2012. Enjoy benefits throughout the year. Please mention this card when booking your appointment. The Top 100 benefit is for the addressee only."
On the back of the postcard we had a complimentary service item for each month — including a complimentary hot stone massage upgrade, updo, lash tinting, mini foil, etc. The services that we chose to put on our postcard were services that we currently offer, however not everyone may know about these services or takes advantage of them. Because these Top 100 clients spend the most money in our salon, chances are that they do most of the big ticket services we offer. I have a full-service salon that offers hair, nail, skin, and massage. The majority of the Top 100 does receive services from all of these departments; that's how they became a Top 100 in the first place. So instead of offering them services they already got, we decided to offer services they didn't receive or know about.
Each month the Top 100 called to make an appointment to receive their free service. Typically, they did it with another service they had already booked. We heard rave reviews from our Top 100 clients. They were excited to be "chosen" as a Top 100 and many clients thanked us for picking them. Others jokingly said, "Don't let my husband know how much I spend here." We did not run around tell our clients how they were chosen. We told them that we were glad to call them one of our Top 100 clients. Keep in mind that the Top 100 clients may fluctuate from year to year depending on their spending.
We also noted in the computer system who the Top 100 clients were so the front desk staff was alerted to give them extra-special treatment. We also became very aware who our Top 10 clients were in our salon too, the people who spend the most. The following year we noticed that some of the Top 10 had changed. This gave us an opportunity to give those clients a survey. This survey was to see what we were doing wrong, because we saw them less over the last year. We also asked for suggestions as to what we could do to make their experience better and what services they wanted us to offer. This was a great tool and it really helped us to see what our top clients wanted.
Here is what we also learned: Our Top 100 didn't like carrying around the same post card for a year and getting it punched each month. A lot of them asked if we could send a post card every two months reminding them of the Top 100 specials that were exclusively for them. So, we did. Yes, it cost us more in postage, but we listened to our clients and the redemptions for the Top 100's went up. Here is another thing we learned: We were not redeeming a ton of the Top 100 free services as we thought we would. On average only a quarter of the cards were being redeemed each month. This is because it is only for the addressee, so they could not give the service to their friend, daughter, sister etc. It is exclusively for them. The services also do not appeal or apply to everyone on the Top 100 each month. What I mean by that is maybe they have short hair so the complimentary updo does not apply to them. They can have their hair styled if they wish instead, but still not all 100 cards were redeemed each month. So, it did not cost the salon a fortune to offer these complimentary services to our Top 100 clients. Instead they were given a choice each month to get the service if they wanted to. Nonetheless, they felt valued as a customer and that they got special treatment for their loyalty. Taking care of your Top 100 clients — one more way to help you stand out above the rest and become the BEST!
— Jill

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