The annual study from Brand Keys, an independent research firm surveying the customer reward program industry, found Discover leads the credit card industry in customer brand loyalty for the 16th straight year.
The 2012 Brand Keys Customer Loyalty Engagement Index was created after 49,000 consumers between the ages of 18 and 65 were surveyed, with 598 brands examined to determine the degree of loyalty that consumers displayed toward their favorite brands.
Carlos Minetti, president of consumer banking and operations at Discover, said the fact the credit card company has won the award for 16 years in a row shows the level of service it provides its customers that keeps them happy, satisfied and coming back for more. Brand Keys' insight revealed that brands like Discover need to constantly please consumers if they want to enhance their loyalty score.
“We are always listening to our customers and make an effort to deliver improvements based on their feedback, whether that is through new ways to redeem rewards or other integrated offers,” said Harit Talwar, president of U.S. cards for Discover. “Trying to exceed consumers’ expectations is one reason why we have some of the most loyal customers in the industry.”
Robert Passikoff, founder and president of Brand Keys, added Discover has consistently met consumer expectations across all areas of loyalty and rewards.
“Given the levels of brand commoditization we’ve witnessed in the past few years, it’s no surprise consumers are looking to strong brands to offer a difference and are able to offer ‘delight,'" Passikoff said. "This year consumers’ skyrocketing desire for authentic brand values are exerting the strongest impact on customer decision-making and profitable engagement with brands."
Customer reward programs can come in many shapes and sizes and are implemented by businesses of all sizes, large and small. Although small and mid-sized businesses may not have the expendable revenue of larger businesses in funding a loyalty or reward program of some kind, the benefits may pay off in the long run with improved brand recognition and loyalty among an ever-growing and ever-fickle customer base.