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How Marriott’s real-time mobile rewards strategy results in 100pc conversions

Marriott is perfecting the art of doling out real-time rewards by targeting social media users mentioning the brand and offering them loyalty points that are instantly added to their accounts, resulting in a 100 percent conversion rate.

Marriott joined forces with conversational conversion platform Chirpify’s Reply Rewards solution, which allows brands to surprise and reward social media users for their activities with various perks, thereby deepening customer relationships and driving repeat purchases. The hotel chain has been targeting Marriott Rewards members posting about its resorts on Twitter by proactively contacting select individuals and gifting them with complimentary loyalty points that are instantly added to their accounts.

“Unlike other programs, Marriott hasn’t just ported its program information to mobile channels, it has created an altogether new way to surprise and delight Marriott Rewards members,” said Chris Teso, CEO of Chirpify. “We worked hard to ensure that what guests love most about Marriott – that it goes out of its way to ensure guests are welcome and feel at home – was brought into the social and mobile experience.

“The campaign has seen such high mobile engagement because Marriott is effectively surprising and delighting its loyal customers at the right time with the right reward that encourages timely engagement,” he said.

“And for many Marriott Rewards members, that means over mobile, on-the-go as they are sharing their travel experiences.”

Surprises on social media
Chirpify’s Reply Rewards solution lets marketers easily engage in social advocacy and organically drive brand mentions in consumers’ social media posts. The program employs a strategy that Chirpify refers to as, “surprise and delight” when it comes to rewarding these users with relevant perks.

Reply Rewards uses social listening tools to scour networks such as Twitter for each brand’s topics of interest before giving the company the ability to proactively connect with fans via moderated messages.

Chirpify enables brand moderators to view an individual’s social media history and helps them develop tailored messages for each user. Brands can also integrate their loyalty member databases with Chirpify to ensure they receive all necessary information about a consumer.

Marriott leveraged Reply Rewards in one of its latest campaigns in a bid to surprise and reward loyalty members who were celebrating their anniversary with the program.

The hospitality chain was able to pinpoint users who were posting about its resorts and send them a tailored social media message in return, alongside a link leading to a Chirpify landing page.

There, consumers could immediately add the bonus loyalty points to their Marriott Rewards accounts.

“Since using Chirpify, Marriott has a social media loyalty program attached to Marriott Rewards that enables it to gather data that it otherwise wouldn’t have,” Mr. Teso said. “Simultaneously, Marriott social members have opted in to receiving instantaneous rewards based on their social activity.

“These two things give Marriott both the targeting and tools necessary to identify and reward social members at the precise right moments, like a rewards member’s anniversary, or sharing a photo from a property, or engaging with a Marriott brand campaign.”

Organic conversations and conversions
Marriott was able to foster deeper relationships with its loyalty members following the campaign rollout, as well as enjoy positive word-of-mouth branding. The chain also spurred more consumers to post about their stays at Marriott hotels, as many users hoped to be on the receiving end of a branded message containing a link to bonus points.

Since Marriott rewarded existing loyalty members and enabled them to instantly add the points to their accounts, the conversion rate clocked in at 100 percent.

Additionally, Chirpify saw 68 percent of individuals register for the Marriott Rewards program using a smartphone, showcasing the undeniable correlation between mobile and loyalty.

Approximately 50 percent of social actions and triggers stemmed from mobile, while the other 50 percent originated from desktop.

This past winter, Marriott also scored a touchdown with another campaign powered by Chirpify, which asked consumers in San Francisco to take a photo of its Super Bowl-branded bus and post it to Twitter in exchange for Marriott Rewards points (see story).

“Mobile is critically important for brands in reaching loyalty members, especially in environments like retail and hospitality where customers are inherently untethered,” Mr. Teso said. “Mobile outreach is important to loyalty efforts for a few key reasons.

“First, consumers increasingly expect – and will be loyal to – brands that save them time, engage in the moment, and make doing business with them easier,” he said. “Mobile is the ideal remote control for delivering this utility. Second, mobile devices are ultimately personal and increasingly the primary way that people interact with brands.

“To develop loyal, ongoing customer relationships, it’s imperative that marketers seize these mobile moments and reward members for them. Lastly, mobile provides the unique ability to modernize a loyalty program beyond traditional ‘spend and get.’ This is important as 84 percent of consumers, as reported by Loyalty360, said they would spend more with retailers that offer points for activities other than spending.”