Brands are expanding their loyalty budgets: 65% of B2C marketing decision-makers in Forrester’s Marketing Survey, 2024, said they were planning to increase their investment in relationship/loyalty marketing in 2024. The most effective consumer loyalty initiatives are built on strategies that span business functions and deliver both business and customer value.

Marketers must coordinate their loyalty efforts with other corporate, product, and customer experience initiatives to grow customer loyalty. Brands often tap loyalty services providers to help them create differentiated and better-performing initiatives.

Forrester defines loyalty services providers as:

Marketing service providers that offer loyalty-specific consulting to help companies conduct market research, develop their loyalty strategies, build and manage programs, measure performance, select execution partners, and offer operational support.

Introducing The Forrester Wave™: Loyalty Services, Q2 2024

To help loyalty marketers vet the right service provider for their brand, we’ve published The Forrester Wave™: Loyalty Services, Q2 2024. Given today’s loyalty market, marketers should look for services partners that:

  • Begin engagements with a comprehensive loyalty strategy. To optimize loyalty initiatives, brands need an enterprisewide strategy that drives collaboration across functions, coordinates initiatives, and aligns business goals. Leading services providers influence the entire C-suite and foster collaboration across silos to develop a loyalty strategy and value exchange.
  • Center the customer in service offerings. Growing customer loyalty requires deep understanding of customer behaviors, emotions, and preferences toward a brand. Differentiated services providers measure emotional and behavioral loyalty, manage insights, and expertly design human-centered experiences across touchpoints.
  • Enable brand agility with a clear vision for the future of loyalty. Generating lasting value from loyalty initiatives requires regular strategy adjustments to accommodate changing business objectives and consumer needs. The best service providers help clients maximize speed and agility in loyalty planning, journey development, and implementation. They have a sharp vision for the future of loyalty and thoughtfully incorporate emerging technologies into their practices.

Forrester clients can use this report for more insight into the loyalty services market and the eight vendors that matter most. Schedule a guidance session with me to discuss how to use this Forrester Wave evaluation, and read The Loyalty Services Landscape, Q3 2023, to drive your selection of a loyalty services provider. And join me in Nashville at CX Summit North America, where I’m moderating a panel of loyalty practitioners discussing their use of AI.