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Almost 88% of frequent flyer programme (FFP) members have a definite redemption goal in mind, but do the loyalty programme providers know what that goal is likely to be, or how to help their members feel the true value of the programme? There may be more than a little doubt about those goals, according to a survey by loyalty programme payments provider, Loylogic. This article is copyright 2015 The Best Customer Guide.

The online survey of more than 10,000 airline loyalty members worldwide was carried out to gain new insight into the behaviour and preferences of how frequent fliers redeem and collect miles and/or points, and the findings revealed some very unexpected insights into important factors for frequent flyers:

  • 87.9% of frequent travellers usually define a redemption goal immediately following activation.

    Key take-away: Engage them early with the right incentives to maximise your revenue.

  • Programme status is often referenced as most important benefit for frequent flyers, but the survey indicates that reward choices surprisingly matter much more (+ 29.1%-points).

    Key take-away: A reallocation of the programme investments could have a huge impact in the programme's success.

  • It is not the received value of the miles (21.3%) which it most significant for the members, but rather the flexibility of how to redeem points (31.7%) as well as the ease of the process itself (23.7%).

    Key take-away: Offering more appealing reward choices and a simple redemption process can be a powerful engagement tool for programme managers, and less costly.

  • 81% of the members actively collect every possible extra mile/point.

    Key take-away: Offer your members additional collect opportunities to boost your sales and to make you members even more loyal.

Perhaps the most important discovery was that almost 88% of frequent flyers have a redemption goal in mind when they start to engage in a programme. For programme managers it is absolutely essential to find out what this goal is for each member, in order to know how to steer and influence member's behaviour to boost their lifetime value.

Other surprising findings included that members are not so keen on programme status - instead, they prefer reward choices (which is three times more important for them). The flexibility of how to redeem points and the ease of the process itself is also much more crucial than the value of the mile or point itself.