The Thrivent Community: Loyalty From the Heart
We have seen the impact loyalty programs have on consumer participation and retention. Over the years, programs have been successful focusing around offers and rewards that pull the consumer back in for more. Holding the proverbial carrot over their head; enticing them to remain loyal so they can continue benefitting from deals. But is there another way? Can you create deep rooted loyalty without the constant give and take?
A number of organizations believe that you can. We’ve spent time this week talking about Thrivent Financial, and how they have managed to successfully cultivate this brand of philanthropic loyalty. What’s particularly impressive is how much of an impact they’ve managed to have considering they were founded in 2001. Within this brief time they have managed to develop a devoted membership of more than 2.5 million. How? Through a strong chapter oriented program that is deeply invested in the unique communities of its members.
Thrivent has a broad stretch of influence focused on building, enhancing and maintaining strong communities, thanks to those members’ involvement in local community chapters (1,336 nationwide). And then there are the personalized benefits, like Thrivent Choice, which we discussed as a prime example of ways to directly involve members, and reward them by giving them the opportunity to give back. With the power to influence the allocation of more than $100 million to benefit people you know in your community, you can imagine the loyalty this can garner.
This concept of developing loyalty at the grassroots level is undeniably gaining traction. Building relationships with members from within a community by personalizing the loyalty experience at its core has its benefits. After all, what solidifies a relationship more than helping build a Habitat for Humanity home in someone’s community, or funding their neighbor’s child as they undergo treatment at St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital? Sometimes the greatest form of loyalty is created through the investment that is made in one’s own community by a complete stranger.
A study by The Center for Philanthropy shows that charitable giving in the United States totaled almost $300 billion in 2011 and is on the rise from 2010. With numbers like these it’s interesting to find only 5% of corporations participate in charitable giving each year. There is a gap in the philanthropic loyalty market that Thrivent Financial has taken the first stab at filling. Clearly there is room for further growth with statistics to back it up. According to Cone Cause Evolution, 79% of Americans say that charitable giving does have an impact on their product choices. When price and quality are close to equal they will likely switch brands if one is associated with a good cause.
In many ways this is an untapped variation of loyalty that has gone overlooked by a vast majority of corporations. It worthwhile to consider including philanthropic benefits to your loyalty program. Just take a look at Thrivent Financial who built their loyalty foundation on this basic principle – “we succeed when our member’s communities thrive”.
You Might Like:
- Whitepaper: Success with Social Loyalty
- Webinar On-Demand: 2020: Predictions for Loyalty Marketing and Tomorrow’s Consumer
- Whitepaper: Getting Your Brand Ready For Loyalty