Loyalty cards are GREAT!! They do exactly what they say on the tin, they create loyal customers and reward them as such with a freebee or discount to products, we see them all the time in coffee shops and at some retail stores. We help a number of coffee chains and small independent coffee and food outlets and massively encourage the use of a loyalty scheme.
The problem with loyalty cards? When the seller gets greedy, when they want you to purchase 12 cups of coffee just to get one for free? When will I ever do that? If I visit that coffee shop once or twice a week it would take me at 7 or 8 weeks to get anywhere near the 12, I was offered a loyalty card last week with 12 stamps to collect and handed it back.
If you're in to selling coffee you're on to a winner, giving out the odd free coffee to a loyal customer should be fine in your business model, so why not reward it with less stamps? It has worked for our clients in the past who have offered customers a free hot drink after only 4 stamps, it brings them back and back again.
Helping coffee shops and independent food outlets with their marketing has allowed us to try a number of different loyalty campaigns, one we tried last year offered free coffees to customers during a certain time of the day on a certain day of the week, when they were presented with their free coffee they then has a coupon giving them their next coffee for £1, the coupon was one of the hot snacks at half price. The extra on the final visit was a free coffee if you like or follow their social media accounts, it created 3 visits per customer and thus creating a loyal customer.
One thing to be clear on this is that this only works if the product you sell is good, you can't market a crap product and you certainly won't make any loyal customers if your product is bad or your customer service / experience is poor also.
If you run a coffee shop or restaurant then drop us an email and we can certainly help you get more bums on seats - firstname.lastname@example.org