iSeatz, a provider of travel loyalty technology solutions for major airline, hotel, and financial services companies, recently released its latest survey report, 2024 Loyalty Trends: The Role of Travel Loyalty Programs in the New Value Economy, examining the changing dynamics of loyalty programs, consumer priorities, and the alignment between member expectations and brand offerings.
Based on a survey conducted by iSeatz in the second half of 2023, the report features insights from 151 loyalty program managers and over 2,000 U.S. consumers, identifying key themes about loyalty program member needs and loyalty program manager priorities and challenges.
The findings underscore the pivotal role of value, establishing it as the predominant factor shaping consumer decision-making and a significant driver of member engagement with travel loyalty programs. Faced with consistent inflation and rising prices, consumers increasingly turn to their loyalty programs to save money, with nearly half (49%) saying saving money on travel was what they valued most from their loyalty programs.
Additionally, the report highlights critical areas where consumer expectations may diverge from existing offerings, revealing opportunities for airline, hotel, and financial services loyalty programs to focus on improving the member experience through personalization, expanded earning and redemption options, and dynamic content delivery.
“The findings in our 2024 Loyalty Trends Report underscore the need for brands to adapt to (and align with) shifting consumer priorities. It’s not just about offering rewards; it’s about creating a seamless, personalized, and value-driven loyalty experience,” says Kenneth Purcell, CEO of iSeatz.
Creating a Better Loyalty Experience for Increased Engagement
The 2024 Loyalty Trends: The Role of Travel Loyalty Programs in the New Value Economy report reveals four key areas that can create a richer and more customized loyalty experience that aligns with members’ priorities: sustainability, lifestyle rewards, personalization, and the integration of fintech tools.
Companies that invest in loyalty platforms that provide flexibility, configurability, personalization, and diverse lifestyle rewards can accelerate the maturity of their loyalty programs and capitalize more effectively on the opportunities presented by the value economy.
Other key insights from the 2024 Loyalty Trends report include:
- Providers still have work to do in delivering what consumers value most: Sixty-five percent of consumers said they would engage more with their loyalty programs if offered better discounts. Travelers want a better deal, and loyalty programs aren’t convincing them they’ll find it on their platforms.
- Brands benefit by aligning with consumers’ values on sustainability: More than half (53%) of consumers say that the importance of sustainability has increased significantly over the past three years. As a result, 60% of brands saw reduced churn and increased retention after implementing sustainability initiatives.
- Younger generations, particularly Millennials and Gen Z, are more willing to spend extra to preserve loyalty status or earn additional perks: 29% of Millennials are willing to spend more for extra loyalty benefits, compared to 8% among the Silent Generation and the 25% survey average.
- Brand priorities have shifted towards customer experience, retention, and revenue growth: Nearly half (48%) of companies surveyed plan to invest more in engagement capabilities over the next 6-12 months, aligning with their goals to boost revenue, retain customers, and foster growth.
- There is rising demand for technology partners with loyalty expertise: Survey data show a decline in brands developing loyalty programs in-house, dropping from 67% in 2022 to 37% in 2023, reflecting increased demand for a loyalty partner that can maximize program returns through advanced technology and strategic improvements.
“Our report serves as a valuable resource for brands seeking to optimize their loyalty programs and capitalize on unique opportunities in the loyalty marketplace,” added Purcell. “Whether it’s improving user experiences, incorporating sustainability initiatives, or embracing fintech tools, brands can leverage these findings to tailor their loyalty programs, fostering deeper engagement and lasting relationships with their customer base.”
iSeatz connects people to brands with personalized and diverse travel & lifestyle experiences. Backed by proven deliverability, reliable advanced analytics, and travel lifecycle expertise, iSeatz sets the bar for a superb journey from the very first search. Our clients represent the best in travel, hospitality, and financial services, including American Express, IHG Hotels & Resorts, and Wyndham Hotels & Resorts. Learn more at iSeatz.com.