Would you like a side of shares with that?

Incentive Solutions

Building an investment portfolio while you spend your money may sound weird and wonderful, but the ability to earn fractional shares in a company as a loyalty reward is a growing trend across the globe.

In a recent discussion, Colin Samson, our chief executive, said that giving customers a stake in the brands they love is a creative way companies can reward loyalty.

He pointed out that brands are always seeking to make solid and emotional connections with their customers, and the ability to earn fractional shares in a company when buying their products is big overseas and getting bigger.

He went on to say “The solution is a twist on older loyalty programmes such as cash-back, discounts, coupons or ‘rewards’ points that can be traded for goods and services.

“Generally, reward programmes become devalued over time, so hoarding them is not good. Not so for fractional shares. These rewards can grow in value over time, strengthening the bond between customers and brands,”

The idea behind fractional shares relies on customers using a mobile app that tracks each time they make a purchase with participating brands. The software then rewards the customer with a partial share (fraction) of that company’s stock.

With fractional shares, you earn a portion, or fraction, of one instead of one or more full shares of the stock. Naturally, the shareholding will accumulate.

This, Colin explains, makes fractional shares a potent marketing reward. “The idea is a key part of the emerging ‘ownership economy’, which leverages the concept of having skin in the game.

“So, if a person is offered bite-sized pieces of a company as a reward, that person is likelier to be loyal to the brand. After all, the better the brand does in the market, the greater the value of that person’s rewards,”

Many Kiwis already understand the concept of shares thanks to the work of investment platforms such as Sharesies and Stake, which focus on offering simple investment solutions for small investors.

Here in New Zealand, our company is exploring and evaluating options for introducing fractional shares into the country and looking for ways to bring brands on board with this model.

The US-based start-up Bumped is a great example of how to use fractional shares.

Bumped launched its app in 2020 in the US. It now has over 20,000 users who earn fractional shares in 50 companies when they shop at more than 1,000 different retailers. The app allows consumers to turn their everyday spending into stock ownership.

Bumped represents a new way for brands to build relationships with consumers by making them brand ambassadors and part of the company’s story.

If your company is interested in thinking outside the box, we have a few tips to help you out.

1. Listen to the data

Customers can generate a lot of data when shopping. Businesses must take every opportunity to capture and use that data to enhance customer experience and drive brand loyalty.

Data is critical to customer loyalty. You can’t achieve loyalty without a deep understanding of your customer. Customers expect to be acknowledged and for companies to know their needs. People respond well if you give them a sense of belonging.

Loyalty programmes that don’t use data will quickly find themselves in decline and failing.

2. Be flexible

Issuing loyalty rewards has historically been a slow process. But the technology behind fractional shares means that by the time a customer has finished a can of Coke, they might own a slice of Coca-Cola.

The power of fractional shares as a loyalty reward is in its momentum. People want to feel connected to a brand, and these rewards help achieve that connection.

Fractional shares as loyalty rewards add a whole new layer of sustainability for any business that can quickly adapt to the world’s most interesting marketing trend.

3. Be creative

Companies looking for creative ways to connect with customers now have access to technology that improves both people’s lives and the bottom line. Fractional shares are a great way for brands to stay relevant to people’s changing preferences by offering them more of what they want.

People’s tastes, preferences and expectations can change quickly. Customers want to be valued, and that comes from understanding them.

Since technology prices are reducing yearly, technology outside your budget five years ago is probably affordable today. Don’t be afraid of playing with new technologies; you never know if you’ll find a hidden solution.

Ready To Talk?

If you’re thinking of how to start growing your loyalty in the B2B sector, schedule your FREE and no-obligation consultation with one of our specialists.

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