Gone are the days where customer loyalty was a simple byproduct of convenience and habitual shopping. Today, if brands want loyal customers, they need to earn and nurture it by continuously engaging their customers with relevant, personalized offers and experiences. 

Put simply, customer loyalty isn’t a metric to be measured – it’s a relationship to be valued and cherished by marketers. 

The brands that succeed in this new loyalty landscape will be those that leave one-size-fits-all customer experiences behind, in favor of a personalized approach. In this blog post, we’ll arm you with 8 personalization tactics to set your loyalty strategy in motion.

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Customer Loyalty and Personalization: Why Does it Matter?

This very minute, your customers are on social media, being hit with content from endless brands fighting for their business. If you want to earn and re-earn your customer’s loyalty, you don’t want to blend in with the brands that serve one-size-fits-all content. You need to show your customers you’re listening to them, and personalization is the key to making this happen.

By creating marketing engagements that are personalized based on your audience’s past purchases, behaviors, and even product affinity, you demonstrate a few key things:

  1. You understand them.
  2. You’re willing to take the time to get to know them. 
  3. You’re willing to put in the effort to talk to them on a 1:1 basis, instead of casting a wide net.

By personalizing your content, you don’t leave your customers feeling like just another number in your marketing analytics dashboard. You build a genuine connection and a reciprocal, two-way relationship that rewards customers for spending time with your brand, and earns you their loyalty. Every generic email they receive from a competitor will reinforce their decision to shop with you.

8 Personalization-Powered Strategies to Drive Lasting Loyalty

The journey from first-time customer to loyal brand advocate is paved with personalized experiences, which are driven by a deep understanding of your audience. 

Here are 8 strategies to help you keep your customers coming back, featuring expert advice from our technology partner, Annex Cloud

1. Leverage AI-powered segmentation

The reign of one-size-fits-all marketing has long since ended. In its place, triumphant, stands AI-powered segmentation. Segmentation used to be a manual task that took a marketer’s time out of creative and put it firmly into tedious execution. AI has changed this. 

By connecting a customer engagement platform like Emarsys to your key data points and channels, AI can process reams of customer data and automatically segment your audience based on key data points including:

  • Loyalty status 
  • Likelihood to churn
  • Product affinity 
  • Average Order Value 
  • Return frequency 

The magic happens when you connect Emarsys to a SaaS loyalty platform like Annex Cloud. By giving Annex Cloud access to these AI-powered customer segments, you can serve up personalized rewards, promotions, and incentives across every touchpoint.

“Segmentation is the cornerstone of crafting personalized loyalty experiences that truly resonate with customers. By understanding the unique preferences and behaviors of different customer segments, we can tailor loyalty rewards and communications in a way that feels personal and relevant. 

“This targeted approach not only elevates the customer experience, but also fosters deeper emotional connections and loyalty to the brand.”

Erin Raese, Global SVP, GTM & Strategy, Annex cloud

2. Recommend products even better than a friend would 

Remember the last time you were recommended a movie by a friend that you ended up hating? It made you less likely to trust their recommendations in the future, right? 

The case is the same for the product recommendations you provide to your customers. 

Product recommendations can make or break your retention marketing strategy. Why? Because nobody likes bad recommendations. Serving your customers irrelevant products is an easy way to put a dent in your relationship, reduce their trust, and make them less likely to listen to what you’re saying down the line. Fortunately, there’s a personalization hack you can use to deliver recommendations that are spot-on every time. 

By leveraging your customer and purchase data, you can make product recommendations based on past orders. This way, you serve recommendations that you know your customers will love, providing them with an online shopping experience that’s uniquely relevant to their likes and interests. 

Take this a step further with Annex Cloud. By integrating your e-commerce channel with Annex Cloud’s Loyalty Experience Platform, you can actively collect cart data and action it to provide relevant recommendations that incentivize loyalty members to purchase additional items. 

3. Reel in customers with exclusive events and offers 

Everywhere you go in a Four Seasons hotel, the staff know your name. This works wonders for brand loyalty. Why? Because people like to feel special. 

Whether you’re an award-winning hotelier or an e-commerce startup, it’s the same deal. Your customers want to feel seen, and they want to feel rewarded for their engagement. There’s no better way to do this than through exclusive offers and events. 

By giving them rewards that aren’t available to anyone else, you make your customers feel special. 

By leveraging the data you’ve collected, you can create events or offers that resonate with your audience, making them feel valued and understood. Whether it’s an invite to a VIP sale, a product launch event, or a special discount on their birthday, personalized touches like these can significantly boost customer loyalty and turn casual shoppers into lifelong, loyal customers.

4. Connect e-commerce and Point of Sale for a seamless loyalty experience

A seamless loyalty experience across all shopping channels isn’t a luxury anymore – it’s a necessity your customers demand. As a result, friction between e-commerce and Point of Sale can quickly turn customers off. 

Fortunately, there’s a solution that turns this challenge into an opportunity for customer engagement. 

By integrating your channels with Annex Cloud and Emarsys, you can offer universal gift cards, coupons, and vouchers that your customers can redeem anywhere.

The result? You deliver a consistent, omnichannel experience that removes friction from the customer journey no matter where they choose to shop. This consistency is key to building and maintaining customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Meet Emarsys + Annex Cloud


Annex Cloud and Emarsys enable enterprise businesses to create deeper, more meaningful relationships that last. 

5. Actively invite customers to join your loyalty program

Has your brand got a loyalty program? Shout about it from the rooftops.

You could have the best loyalty program in the world, but if your customers don’t know about it, you’re never going to see the results you want. Don’t leave your customers to discover your program on their own – actively market it to them. 

Create email and paid social campaigns that clearly broadcast the benefits of loyalty program membership to both new and returning customer segments. Make signing up to your loyalty program as easy as clicking a button.

“Loyalty programs create and deliver a committed mutual value. This exchange deepens customer relationships and increases engagement. It is also essential to capturing zero and first-party data, compliantly. A willing customer will always share more when they trust that the brand will be a good steward of their data and use it to personalize their experience. Loyalty creates and maintains that exchange across channels and touchpoints to ensure the customer profile evolves with them.”

Erin Raese, Global SVP, GTM & Strategy, Annex Cloud

6. Get them back with personalized win-back campaigns

Do you ever wonder what happened to those once-loyal customers who seemingly vanished? They haven’t packed their bags and left for your competitors overnight. Their lapsing loyalty was likely a slow, gradual process – and if you can identify it early, you can stop it from happening. 

However, if you want to pull this off successfully, you need a personalized approach. This is where AI winback campaigns come into play. 

AI is capable of analyzing vast swathes of data, far beyond human ability, at a rapid pace. With this level of scale, it can identify customers who are at risk of defecting. 

Armed with this information, you can create and launch tailored win-back campaigns. Enrich your content with personalized product recommendations and offers for discounts on their favorite products to tempt them back to your store. 

7. Keep them coming back with automated reward reminders

Getting customers enrolled in your loyalty program is half the battle won, the second half of the battle is won by keeping them engaged.  .

One of the best ways to do this is by sending automated reminders when loyalty points are about to expire. If you haven’t already done so, setting up point expiry reminders into your automated workflows across channels like email and SMS are an effective way to nudge loyalty members toward engagement.

Encouraging brand interaction is another option. Awarding points for brand interaction across social media using specific hashtags or incentivising customers to write reviews are other tactics that can keep loyal customers engaged.

By doing this, you won’t just drive sales and help your customers save, you’ll also be showing them that your loyalty program is a two-way street, where you’re looking out for them and helping them get the best deals on their favorite products. 

8. Celebrate loyalty tier upgrades with personalized notifications

Are you running a tier-based loyalty program? Loyalty tier upgrades are a milestone worth celebrating. By notifying your customers of their new status and highlighting the benefits they now have access to, you can spur on further engagement. 

In your email, make it clear how they earned the upgrade, and lay out the exclusive perks they now have access to – complete with a CTA to start redeeming them. This doesn’t just reaffirm their decision to engage with your brand, but also incentivizes them to keep shopping with you.

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