Author of "This Is Rage" and "Endless Encores"

Posts made in April, 2017

You Call This a Loyalty Program?

By on Apr 13, 2017 in Blog | 0 comments

Try this episode on for size and tell me how it makes you feel about the brand: I recently logged into one of my hotel loyalty accounts where I had amassed several hundred thousand points. That is, I thought I did. All my points were gone. Apparently this chain has a policy that deletes all your points if you don’t stay at one of their properties for a year. Did they send me a courtesy email reminding me I needed to stay there toward the end of the twelve-month lapse? They did not. I called customer service and they recited the policy back to me, willing to say farewell to a customer who had paid the freight to accumulate several hundred thousand points in its loyalty program, just not in the past 14 months. Then I tweeted my complaint about the forfeited points publicly. A few hours later whoever runs the company’s Twitter account tweeted back publicly that the company was very sorry for the situation and dedicated to my satisfaction. The Twit-master asked that I send a private tweet to follow up, which I did. Then we moved the correspondence to email. I was then told that the company had a one-time exception to the policy where points could be reinstated, but that had already been done for me approximately 13 years ago. Silly how I could have forgotten their grace. However, they said that in an attempt to reinstate my customer satisfaction, they would restore half my forfeited points now and the other half if I agreed to stay at their properties at least three times in the next six months. I wrote back that it sounded a bit ridiculous to be playing Let’s Make a Deal – Loyalty Edition with them, but I would agree because, well, why not? To their credit, they did return half my points upon receipt of our “written agreement” in that email thread, and I have booked one stay with them. I just wonder, is this what they really set to accomplish in developing their loyalty program? Is it a loyalty program at all, or just a rewards program that effectively gives me a rebate on what I spend provided I do it...

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