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Tuesday | December 7, 2021
Do Loyalty Schemes in the Gaming Industry Effectively Bring in and Retain Gamers?

Do Loyalty Schemes in the Gaming Industry Effectively Bring in and Retain Gamers?

Loyalty schemes can work in retaining customers, but they are far from perfect. This is what research from a variety of sources has indicated. Despite this, many businesses have spent significant amounts of time and money on trying to come up with innovative loyalty schemes, with some being far more successful than others.
A popular innovation is that smartphone apps are now used in most cases to carry the data instead of the traditional cards. Many apps also allow you to order items, which is especially useful as we move into being a cashless society.

This has certainly succeeded in building relationships with younger consumers. YouGov research points out that over 60% of the 18 to 24-year-olds surveyed have signed up to at least one loyalty scheme or programme. Almost 75% of this age group believe they are a good way for businesses to reward regular customers.

 

Gamer Demographics

Gamer demographics are varied and loyalty schemes in this industry are an important promotional tool, and so must come in many forms to accommodate their customers.

For instance, Microsoft has recently got in on the act with Microsoft Rewards (www.xbox.com/en-GB/microsoft-rewards.). This allows you to pick up reward points for using the Xbox One or Xbox Series X/S. Points can be used for Microsoft Gift Cards and charitable donations. Millennials like to engage with businesses that have a clear CSR strategy, so the charitable element of this is a smart move from Microsoft.

Gamers will also see that retailers such as Game have their own rewards programme. This allows you to pick up points when buying and trading in games. Despite an increasing number of gamers now choosing to download their games from services such as Xbox Live or the PlayStation Network, the second-hand games market is still important for most retailers.

Another part of the industry that tends to be overlooked in this context, but is one of the most prolific for offers and customer retention, is the online casino market. There are hundreds of casino gaming sites available and, as such, competition is rife which leads to increasingly generous bonuses. As an example, if you’re a new customer visiting https://www.bonus.net.nz/spin-casino, you will see offers relating to free spins, bonuses, and welcome packages.  But the pertinent question is, does this actually succeed in retaining customer loyalty?

 

It’s a tough question to answer, but opening up the question to gamers, in general, makes it a bit easier to tackle. It’s worth looking at what gamers are saying about their purchases and whether they believe in loyalty across the industry. We spent time exploring forums and found some interesting comments on this. When asked if he was loyal to a console brand, this poster on a https://forum.psnprofiles.com/topic said:

“Not really; all the major titles seem to come out for all the major consoles no matter what. I’m not not getting an Xbox because of brand loyalty; I’m not getting an Xbox because there’s nothing I want to play on it that I can’t also play on the PS5 I was going to get anyway.”

Do loyalty schemes help build brand loyalty?

Further research published in Marketing Week, shows that 51% of 2,000 adults surveyed were only fairly satisfied with the rewards and benefits on offer in loyalty schemes. Only 24% said they were very satisfied. As technology and brands evolve, you have to wonder if businesses, brands, and operators will persevere with these schemes and what their longer-term plans are for rewarding loyalty.

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Regina Falange

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