Loyalty Programs That Work: Strategies for Building and Sustaining Customer Loyalty in the Restaurant Industry

March 14, 2023
Barbara Castiglia


Loyalty programs use points, miles, or other currency to incentivize customers to purchase or engage with the brand. Customers can redeem these points for discounts, free products, exclusive access, or other perks. Technology, such as mobile apps and online accounts, allows customers to easily track and redeem their rewards and receive personalized promotions based on their preferences and purchase history.

How has technology changed how loyalty programs are designed and implemented, and what are some of the most innovative uses of technology in loyalty programs today?

On today’s episode of The Main Course Podcast, host Babara Castigila speaks with Kellie Zimmerman, President and CRO at Brightloom, on how restaurants can personalize their loyalty programs to make customers feel valued and appreciated, and what are some ways to gather customer data and insights.

Kellie Zimmerman‘s core advice: To build an effective loyalty program, simplify the process, personalize rewards, leverage technology, show empathy towards customers, and use metrics to measure and adjust the program over time.

“a lot of restaurants in the industry expect to think of it in the program itself; I think of it in a much bigger way; you are always building loyalty,” said Kellie Zimmerman

Castigila and Zimmerman also discussed:

● How do loyalty programs benefit the restaurant and the customer, and what are some potential drawbacks or risks associated with loyalty programs?

● How can restaurants measure the success of their loyalty programs, and what metrics should they be tracking to evaluate performance?

● What advice would you give to restaurants looking to start a loyalty program, and what are some best practices for designing and implementing an effective program?

“Franchising often is not given all the opportunity around the data. It is one thing we work hard for a fact and allow the individual franchisee owners. Whether you have one store or 50, we can help you with your data.” Zimmerman

Kellie Zimmerman has had a long and successful sales and customer success career and joined Brightloom as President & CRO and Chief Revenue Officer (CRO). She graduated from Washington State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Management Information Systems.

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