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Loyalty NZ: Revamping the Flybuys brand for a new age of consumers

Loyalty NZ knew it had a significant task on its hands revamping the known and loved Flybuys rewards programme. Yet, despite multiple setbacks, due in large part to a global pandemic, the team managed to up Flybuys’ relevance and draw the attention of new members and brand partnerships. 

With 2.7 million members Flybuys is the best known loyalty card programme in New Zealand. However, according to Loyalty NZ’s CEO Lizzy Ryley, this familiarity was starting to erode brand relevance, which they knew they needed to adapt to beat.

“Feedback from younger people was that Flybuys was seen as the ‘toaster programme’ and something only their parents used. So, a decreasing appeal to younger Kiwis coupled with a more dynamic and competitive market, meant we needed to take a long, hard look at the programme and what we needed to do to increase relevance and ensure Flybuys was the card that members scanned most often.”

Multiple rounds of consumer research gave Loyalty NZ confidence that they knew how to innovate and re-design the programme to stay meaningful to members. According to Ryley, the research showed clear changes that needed to be made to the 24-year-old brand. 

Lizzie Ryley

“Members told us that while many of them still valued Flybuys’ ability to reward them with products and experiences from the Flybuys store, they were particularly interested in grocery and fuel related rewards as these would benefit them on a day to day basis.”

“We found members who had a lower level of spend expressed some frustration at having to wait a long time to be rewarded. They wanted to see the value of the programme more immediately and for it to be much more relevant. Our members know that we have the ability to deliver timely and relevant offers for the things they want and need.”

The new programme gives members the freedom to choose to be rewarded with Flybuys Points to spend in the Flybuys Store, New World Dollars or extra fuel discounts from Z and Caltex.

The revised programme has opened possibilities for Kiwi businesses, especially with a new treats, deals and offers platform. Flybuys lets companies offer one-off deals, without having to be a long-term Flybuys partner – the first time in Flybuys history.

“We’re open for business. Previously we could only work with companies who wanted to sign up for a long term Flybuys-issuing commitment. But these changes allow many other brands and businesses – who are not part of the existing Flybuys network, to do business with us. It’s a fantastic opportunity for marketers and agencies to access our database of 1.7 million active members.”

Z Energy and New World are both currency partners of Flybuys. Z Energy’s Chief Customer Officer, Jane Anthony, says the array of options provided by the new Flybuys adds huge value to business partners and consumers alike. 

“This shift really redefines the programme to be relevant to the needs of customers today and for the future while keeping what people have always loved. The refresh really puts customers at the centre and redefines the programme around them.” 

Anthony says the revamp and transition will help strengthen its loyalty offering through Flybuys as younger consumers look for lower thresholds of rewards. Dominic Quin, Group GM Marketing and Customer Experience for New World, agrees that this transition will improve brand recognition for Flybuys while attracting the next generation of shoppers. 

“We need to be constantly evolving to stay relevant and this applies to all brands, not just Flybuys,” says Quin.

“The Flybuys team have done a great job, the look and feel is contemporary and the ability for customers to select their rewards through Flybuys is certainly the kind of thinking we look for in a trusted partnership.”

COVID CREATIVITY

Leading creative agency Colenso BBDO partnered with Loyalty NZ to bring the new brand and communications to life. Working with Sweetshop, Colenso produced and distributed over 63 individual pieces of film for the launch campaign ‘Everyday Happy’, which so far has seen a great response. The creative agency influenced the reposition through the different touchpoints, the website design and even the new logo to make it more relevant.

Yet, Loyalty NZ’s Chief Customer Officer, Bridget Lamont, acknowledges the process was anything but straightforward. The global pandemic not only made them push the launch out by a few months, but also hit right after filming for the new campaign wrapped up. This prompted the Flybuys and Colenso teams to rethink potential consumer reactions to the ‘Everyday Happy’ positioning. 

Bridget Lamont

“We read the writing on the wall and knew we needed to hold back our launch until we were confident the time was right. It was a challenging process to complete development of a major launch campaign in a total lockdown, but we pulled out all our best collaboration and teamwork skills and we are thrilled with the end result. 

“We also needed to be sure that our new brand positioning was appropriate and relevant in a COVID-19 dominated environment, because there was a risk of being perceived as tone deaf, so more consumer research was undertaken – this time with the help of Zoom.”

“The very premise of the new ‘Everyday Happy’ positioning for Flybuys was to reflect that everybody’s idea of happy is different. This ties into the proposition of the new Flybuys – giving members the freedom to choose how they want to be rewarded. For some people it might be choosing to fill their car with fuel, for others it might be a discount on their groceries or a new piece of technology they buy with Flybuys Points in the Flybuys Store.” 

Lamont, who has extensive experience with loyalty programmes and data-driven marketing, says transforming such an established, trusted and loved brand meant that all strategic and creative decisions needed to be very intentional.

“We had to make changes that centred on what our customers were telling us. We talk a lot in marketing about being customer centric, and the new Flybuys represents an excellent example of taking customers on the transformation journey and asking questions every step of the way, right back to when we started this in the middle of 2018.” 

 To find out how you can engage with Flybuys visit flybuysopen.co.nz.

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