Perceived as old-fashioned, Flybuys was losing relevance and required a complete transformation. After repositioning the brand, active membership is up and there’s been a huge increase in new membership.
Just add happiness
In 2018, active engagement in Flybuys was trending down. Research showed that collecting points for rewards only appealed to half of members. Most worryingly, the programme didn’t resonate strongly with the ‘up and coming’ or ‘thriving families’ growth segments, instead losing out to AA Smartfuel, Onecard and Air NZ Airpoints. As the market leader, Flybuys was in danger of becoming complacent and taking its 2.8 million customer base for granted.
To turn things around, it had to transform from an old-fashioned persona of ‘toasters for Mum’ to a modern loyalty programme that resonated with younger target segments, without alienating its loyal core. There were three objectives: increase monthly average new member signups, increase active memberships and drive active currency choice.
The new Flybuys focused on adding happiness to the little things Kiwis do daily, distilled into the brand line ‘Everyday Happy’. This was brought to life with a modern campaign, involving new card designs, a new app, an updated website and direct comms. The media strategy built awareness through broadcast channels using TV, online video and OOH, along with significant investment in social, search, display, programmatic and eDM. Flybuys commissioned a Happiness Research Study to better understand what makes Kiwis happy, providing a basis for PR and earned media engagement. Flybuys’ shareholder businesses also leveraged the relaunch: Z, Caltex and New World ran individual ‘currency’ messaging, and BNZ and IAG amplified messaging.
The cross-organisational stakeholder engagement needed to bring about the transformation was immense. Planning occurred over a 24-month period, kicking off with design-led thinking followed by technical integration sessions and CX workshops. Flybuys then engaged their creative and media agencies to deliver a complete through-the-line campaign. The launch coincided with the end of lockdown, adding an extra layer of complexity.
Flybuys’ members reacted positively and there was real appreciation of Flybuys delivering a practical benefit at a time when people needed help with household expenses. Importantly, the campaign resonated with younger people, with two-thirds of new members aged under 40. Active membership is now up 19 percent and there’s been a huge 289 percent increase in new membership. During the campaign launch period, registered accounts actively chose a ‘currency’, leading to a direct spike in redemption levels. The Flybuys transformation netted a gain over their October 2019 to October 2020 measurement period, and the brand continues to see excellent engagement with Points and the Flybuys store.
Category: Best Brand Transformation
Company: Loyalty NZ
Marketing Initiative: Transforming NZ’s Favourite Loyalty Programme – Flybuys
Marketing Partners: Colenso BBDO, Colenso PR, The Industry Group, Colmar Brunton, Mindshare
Judges’ Comments: “Solid insight and strong coverage of all elements of the marketing programme – from strategy to value proposition, to execution. Clearly very complex with many stakeholders but came out with impressive results.”
Finalists: NZME, Ryman Healthcare, Coca-Cola Europacific Partners, Sky Television