Top 5 Loyalty Programs in the Middle East

Loyalty Programs in the Middle East-

The customer loyalty management market in the Middle East region has grown significantly in the last few years and is expected to reach US$10442.3 million by 2026.

Customer behavior is evolving dynamically. The new-normal consists of digitally-powered customers gravitating toward virtual experiences in games, shopping, and social engagement. The Middle East has become a hotspot for digital transformation post-pandemic.

Customers are looking for brands that offer a holistic loyalty experience. 87% of customers in the Middle East prefer shopping with brands that offer loyalty programs. From market leaders to startups, brands in the Middle East are launching loyalty programs to meet customer expectations.

Let’s see the top 5 loyalty programs in the Middle East region and understand what makes them work.

Successful loyalty programs in the Middle East

Successful loyalty programs Middle East

1. Emirates Skywards

Emirates Skywards is a partner loyalty program between Emirates and Flydubai. The multi-tiered program offers various exciting point-earning and redemption opportunities. Loyalty partnerships with luxury hotels, rental companies, and retail brands enable the brand to lure customers and keep high engagement rates.

Benefits of the program:

  • Parents can enjoy extra benefits through the Skywards Skysurfers program.
  • Members can use Miles to book flights, purchase match tickets, book hotel rooms, or attend exclusive events.

Key takeaway

Flexibility and freedom to earn and use loyalty points (‘Miles’ in this case) enhance the customer experience and encourage them to earn more points.

2. Shukran Rewards

The landmark group’s Shukran Rewards is one of the biggest loyalty programs in the middle east, boasting over 10 million members. The program connects members with more than 50 brands through a single app. Members can earn and use shukrans to pay for products online or in-store via the digital card.

The digital card and mobile app are good sources of first-party customer data. It helps brands to understand evolving customer behavior and adapt quickly to their needs.

Benefits of the program

  • Members can earn points by shopping with Landmark group brands or partner brands online and in-store.
  • Gold tier members get invitations from exclusive Landmark Group events.
  • Members receive personalized recommendations, exclusive monthly deals, and special rewards during the holiday season and enrollment anniversaries.

Key takeaway

Personalized rewards and experiences are the core of a successful loyalty program. Therefore, it’s essential to have a deep data analytics-driven loyalty program design to stay ahead of customers and competitors.

3. Rotana Rewards

Rotana is a popular hotel and hospitality brand in the Middle East. Its loyalty program is the key revenue driver, with 21.3% of revenue generated through members’ spending.

The unique part here is that customers who have not joined Rotana Rewards but are part of their partner brand’s loyalty program – have the power to equivalent tier in Rotana’s loyalty program.

Benefits of the program:

  • Rotana Rewards Classic – This tier is tailored for corporate clients and offers exclusive deals and discounts on corporate meetings, events, and room bookings.
  • Rotana Rewards Select – Members can access VIP amenities, room bookings discounts, and bonus Air Miles.
  • Rotana Rewards Exclusive – Members can enjoy VIP amenities, a complimentary dining certificate, beach club membership, free internet, and late check-out.

Key takeaway

Out-of-the-box strategies and loyalty partnerships helped Rotana Rewards stay differentiated and lure customers.

4. Baitak Rewards

Baitak Rewards is the loyalty program of the Kuwait Finance House. Launched in December last year, the program has already claimed the 2022 Incentive Awards. The loyalty program has three tiers containing multiple cards for different customer segments.

Members can choose the card that meets their requirements and earn points on every transaction.

Benefits of the program

  • Members can redeem points for e-vouchers and gift cards of partner brands.
  • Members can transfer their points to loyalty programs for partner brands.

Key takeaway

Community-building in loyalty programs promotes long-term relationships with customers. With numerous ways to burn loyalty points, Baitak Rewards proves to be a customer-centric loyalty program.

5. Aura

Aura is about celebrating customers’ individuality and rewarding them with customized rewards and experiences. The loyalty program offers the widest choice of brands and experiences to suit customers’ different preferences.

Members can access a range of personalized shopping, dining, and lifestyle experiences and receive priority notifications of promotions and sales events. In addition, customers can use points for future purchases or enjoy experiences such as a personalized gourmet treat, a bespoke shopping experience, or a pampering beauty treatment.

Benefits of the program

  • Members receive personalized offers from their favorite brands.
  • Members can share the points with friends, family, or other program members.
  • Access to exclusive events for VIP members.

Key takeaway

Experiential rewards evoke a sense of belonging in the customers and encourage emotional engagement.

Conclusion

Loyalty programs are the game changers in a brand’s relationship with customers. With many brands to shop from, 63% of gen-z and millennials agree that brands must show them loyalty to earn their business.

Simply launching a loyalty program does not warrant growth. Brands must design a data-driven loyalty program that promotes emotional engagement and delivers personalized experiences to win customer loyalty. The wave of digital transformation is driving significant evolution in customer behavior throughout the Middle East & GCC. Brands can learn from top loyalty programs to take steps toward building a holistic loyalty program.