Scale success story: Nike loyalty scheme

With a brand value of $15billion, Nike is the most valuable sports brand in the world. In 2019, the sportswear giant’s global revenue totaled $39.1billion. But along with their monetary success, comes something else to brag about; the Nike loyalty scheme. In 2017, the program had over 100 million members who, according to Nike, spend around three times more than guest customers on the website. Since then, Nike has been improving its rewards program, fine-tuning it into one of the best loyalty schemes in ecommerce.

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How does the Nike loyalty scheme work?

The Nike membership program is a club where Nike customers and fans can receive exclusive perks. Shoppers become a member through the Nike website or any of their four apps; the Nike app, Nike Run Club, Nike Training Club and SNKRS. 

The Nike app is the main hub for the rewards program. Here, customers can view their rewards, receive messages from Nike and browse member-only collections. And, when members use the other apps, their engagements are reflected in the main Nike rewards app. Customers can also scan the app in Nike stores and at events to earn rewards while they’re there.

The benefits of the Nike loyalty scheme includes: priority access to tickets to sporting events, exclusive products, early access to product launches, expert advice on training and exercise, rewards for being active through their apps, special offers on birthdays and, to top it off, free delivery.

Amongst the big online players, Nike ranks ninth in brands with the most loyal customers. Let’s dive deeper into some of Nike’s loyalty program benefits and why it is so successful.

Why is the Nike loyalty scheme a success?

Nike offers members four core values at the heart of its program: 

1. Exclusivity

2. Community

3. Personalization

4. Omnichannel experience

Let’s look at how they’re offering these values to customers, why it is a successful loyalty strategy and how you can replicate it in your own loyalty program. 

Exclusivity

A key benefit of becoming a Nike member is that you gain access to exclusive perks. Loyal customers have access to priority tickets to sporting and Nike events. They are allowed to shop exclusive collections only available to members. They also gain the privilege of shopping products and collection launches before they’re released to the general public. Loyal Nike customers see the value of this benefit as many products are limited editions and become collector’s items later. 

79% of consumers say being able to unlock exclusive benefits makes them loyal. Nike has positioned exclusivity as one of the main reasons to join their loyalty program. It makes their loyal customers feel special and it lets them stay ahead of infrequent Nike shoppers. Learn more about the psychology of rewards and exclusivity here.

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To replicate Nike’s approach in your own program, try adding loyalty tiers. Fast-fashion brand, Never Fully Dressed, uses tiers to give members top-shelf perks not available to regular customers. Members in the low tiers receive exclusive discounts. And, in the higher “Supremely Sassy” tier, they gain access to “Secret Sales”.

Community

Another reason customers engage with the Nike loyalty scheme is the community. Membership gives customers access to free workout classes, training support and educational content. They also offer inspirational articles to keep members motivated and a place where they can follow and comment on similar interests – much like a social media app. 

Togetherness and community are also apparent through Nike’s messaging. The program’s call-to-action reflects this with powerful language like “Belong” and “Join Us”, which urges shoppers to become members.

Community is important for building long-term customer relationships. 47% of consumers said they are motivated to be loyal by becoming part of a like-minded community. Establishing a following of people who share the same interests creates an emotional bond between Nike’s consumers and the brand. This secures loyalty as Nike will be front-of-mind when consumers need sporting goods.

Build your own brand community by engaging with customers in the spaces they socialize in. Never Fully Dressed rewards customers loyalty points for a social follow. Then, on their channels, they post tutorials on how to style their garments for different occasions. They’re providing valuable content in this space and get back in front of their most valuable customers as a result.

Personalization

Another pillar of the Nike loyalty scheme is personalization. Loyal customers receive gifts for birthdays and member anniversaries which makes them feel special. But there’s more. Members get access to their own online Nike store which is full of recommended products based on what Nike knows about them from past purchases and engagement history. 

With 61% of shoppers saying they will return to a brand if they are shown personalized product recommendations, Nike has struck gold.

Personalization within the program makes each loyal customer feel understood and valued, rather than the same as casual shoppers. Plus, having their own Nike store saves time searching through irrelevant items for something to buy. 

To take the same approach and delight shoppers, add personalized loyalty components to your program. Never Fully Dressed welcomes logged in members with their name and unique points balance. 

Omnichannel experience

Another appeal of the Nike loyalty scheme is its omnichannel experience. Whether customers are shopping in-store, on-site or through their four mobile apps, their loyalty program membership stays connected at all times. Customers use the same login for each of the Nike apps and the Nike website. They can also scan their loyalty profile while shopping in-store. No matter where customers choose to shop, their loyalty will be recognized.

This seamless and connected loyalty experience across all of Nike’s brand touchpoints ensures every purchase loyal customers make is accounted for. This is pleasing to customers and encourages them to keep engaging with the program.

Conclusion

Use Nike, and other big-brand loyalty programs, to inspire your retention strategy, secure long-term loyalty and scale your ecommerce business.

Want to learn more strategies on scaling up your ecommerce business? Take a look at our How to scale your ecommerce business resources. Access four insightful webinars and ebooks to help take your business to the next level.

Ready to start a loyalty program? Book a demo with a member of our team today.

About the author

Alison Murtagh

Alison is a Marketing Assistant at LoyaltyLion. After starting at the company as Office Manager, she began helping the Marketing team with projects in her spare time. Since then, she has developed a strong interest in Marketing and joined the team full-time, working on content, events and social media.

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