Consumers are connected, empowered, and experimental. And loyalty programs aren’t as effective at driving emotional loyalty as marketers would like: Less than half of consumers agree that programs make them feel more loyal to a brand. This reality makes loyalty harder than ever to earn. Brands need strategic guidance to make the most of their programs and, more importantly, to establish a larger strategy for earning, recognizing, and maintaining customer loyalty regardless of whether that customer is a loyalty program member.

That’s where our latest loyalty Forrester Wave™ comes in. As I promised a few months ago, our evaluation of loyalty service providers — “The Forrester Wave™: Loyalty Service Providers, Q3 2019” — is now live. These providers offer services to help marketers with all their loyalty-marketing-related needs: from setting an enterprise loyalty vision and designing loyalty programs to implementing technology, managing loyalty program operations, and executing creative loyalty campaigns. In our 22-criterion evaluation, we identified the top 14 loyalty technology vendors — Aimia, Ansira, Bond Brand Loyalty, Brierley+Partners, Capgemini, Epsilon, ICF Next, Inte Q, Iris Concise, Kobie, The Lacek Group, Lenati, Merkle/HelloWorld, and T3 — and researched, analyzed, and scored them.

We found that providers of loyalty services are shifting their efforts from designing and managing loyalty programs to delivering loyalty programs as a means to an end for insight and experience delivery. And the best ones help clients set an enterprise strategy that reimagines loyalty as the outcome of all the experiences a customer has with a brand and reframes programs as the source of customer insight needed to fuel those experiences.

To see more detail on how the evaluated vendors stack up, Forrester clients can find the full report here. Please keep in mind that the written report just scratches the surface of the full evaluation. To view the detailed evaluations and create a customized ranking, download the Excel sheet associated with the Wave graphic (Figure 1 in the report).

If you’re interested in digging deeper into the findings of the service evaluation or want to discuss the loyalty vendor landscape more broadly, please schedule an inquiry. Or join my upcoming webinar, So You Want To Hire A Loyalty Provider? Best Practices For Vendor Selection, on July 25 at 1 p.m. ET.