4 Strategies to Naming Your Loyalty Program

January 27, 2017 Catherine Malone

Naming your brand’s loyalty program can be a daunting task, given that it will be the first thing your customer will learn about your program. You have the opportunity to craft a story within your program—from naming the program itself to selecting the title of each tier or naming specific benefits.

In reality, create a name for your loyalty program isn’t all that difficult since a majority of the work has been done for you. Typically, a program’s name and branding mirror that of the company.

When it comes to selecting a program name, the possibilities are endless and creativity is encouraged. However, it’s essential to follow these guidelines to assure that customers easily understand the details of your program.

1. Communicate the purpose: It’s important that the title you choose for your program conveys the purpose and includes identifying language. Be upfront with your customers and readily communicate what the program goal. While TOMS Shoes is creative with its program name, the brand ensures its grounds the title back to the program purpose by including the identifier “Rewards.” Consider adding descriptive indicator like “rewards,” “points,” “loyal,” “club,” or “benefits” to the title to communicate this purpose.

2. Establish a tagline: A memorable slogan is an important piece of the branding puzzle for any company, particularly if you are creating a loyalty program. By creating a tagline, your team can maintain a consistent program image, regardless of where your customers interact with the program. Dunkin’ Donuts, for example, uses “Life runs better with unlimited perks” for its DD Perks program. JetBlue uses a few taglines including, “For your loyalty, we give you ours” and “Join. Earn points. Get rewards.” A tagline will make it easy for your team to convey the essential message of your program in a seamless way.

3. Keep it simple: Program names don’t need to overthought or complex in nature. It’s important that you think about the customer journey and make sure that your naming system will be easy to understand. If your program is going to have a tiered structure, keep in mind the perceived distinction between each level. While the order of “Silver,” “Gold” and “Platinum” is easy to understand, it is more complicated for a member to navigate through levels like “Star,” “Captain,” “Leader,” and “Top Dog.” Confusion around tiers can be a big problem for brands, so make the names easy to understand and as simple as possible. For example, Sephora has “VIB” and “VIB Rogue” members. Bloomingdales uses “The List” and “The Top of the List,” while Nordstrom numbers its tiers as Levels 1 through 6. Let members know exactly where they stand.

4. Follow your brand: Once your program is in place, it’s imperative to sync your program with your overall brand. Strengthen your overall brand image and marketing initiatives by tying your program to your company’s image. For example, TOMS Shoes works with giving partners in over 70 countries around the world. Naming the program “TOMS Passport Rewards” fits into the larger brand ecosphere, as the program invites customers to join the adventure. As a member engages with the program, the member will earn “Stamps.”, which is a fun play on the concept of filling a passport with stamps as people travel. Create a program that customers will love by using the keynotes of your own brand image to determine a complimentary naming structure and program design.

Your brand’s loyalty program is an opportunity to make a statement and reinforce your commitment to your customers. The naming conventions of your program are the first steps toward establishing a good customer experience that will be exciting and worthwhile to your busy customers. By following the strategies as outlined above, you’ll quickly convey the goals of your program and more easily entice consumers to join and participate.  

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