For year’s consumer brands have been filling our wallets with their loyalty cards and tempting us with offers designed to keep us faithful and spend more. In the meantime business to business brands have had to work harder than ever to keep their customers loyal because the relationships are up close and personal and therefore long term value has to be seen and felt.
But there’s something amiss. Whilst marketing teams are beavering away in the board room trying to come up fresh ideas to keep customers happy, some of the strongest and most valuable brand assets are sitting right under your nose – your employees.
Every employee within a business is an investment; the cost of recruitment, salary and associated costs, the energy they use, equipment and tools, training and personal development and the value they bring. The VALUE that every employee COULD bring has been seriously overlooked by businesses and that value could so easily equate to annual ROI.
If there was ever a need for a brand loyalty card then surely it should begin within? Sure, all employees are different and recruited for different skills, but that doesn’t mean to say that each and every one of them doesn’t have the potential to be a brand icon and help to shape the future of the business.
If you’re scratching your head and asking ‘how could a staff loyalty scheme better our business?’ then let’s remember that employees are stakeholders too. They may work for you but they also have a choice about whether to stay working for you and, to some degree, how hard they are willing to work for you.
We all know how difficult it is to find good employees today and when we do find them we need to hang on to them and nurture them. More importantly, we need to add value to their lives and find ways to get them to add more value to the business.
Developing an employee loyalty scheme
Like any loyalty scheme, it needs to work both ways; you offer incentives and in return you ask for brand buy-in. For employees who opt-in, they could receive a set of perks in return. But to acquire real value from employees they could earn more perks by putting themselves forward to take part in business development groups where they can openly share new ideas for products, services and business improvements.
The groups could be broken down into sub-groups so that employees can choose which parts of the business they are more interested in and where they feel they could add more value. These could include but are not limited to:
- Sales/customer care/markets
- Marketing/social media/corporate events/communications
- Product design/product improvement/engineering/manufacturing
- Health and safety/quality/business improvement
- Site and facilities/social facilities
- Finance/cost reduction/supply chain
- PR/training/health and wellbeing
- Social club/outings/competitions
By allowing employees to run their own groups and feedback their discussions and ideas, they will not only feel more valued but they will also be earning more perks ie £’s, points or gifts and the business will be gaining valuable insight, ideas and a better return on their investment.
Each group should follow a set format which allows them to look at and discuss processes, how to save money, services, ideas and concepts and so on.
This type of engagement can deliver all kinds of benefits to the business such as:
- Cost reductions
- Product development ideas
- Better customer service
- Improved communications
- Improved customer services
- Process improvement
- Improved staff retention
- Higher staff productivity
- Staff loyalty
- Brand advocacy
- Improved brand perception
Businesses today need to think more laterally about how to get the very best out of the people they invest in and their business as a whole. Whether you have 10 or 10,000 staff members, inviting them to be one part of the whole could turn into one of the best investments of time and money you could make.
The simplest of ideas can turn into multi-million pound projects, so if just one person, regardless of their position, is given the opportunity to share an inspirational idea, they could potentially have a direct impact on the future of the business and of course the bottom line.
To turn this idea into a reality why not contact us today and let us help you to develop a new kind of loyalty programme.