Loyalty marketing agency eyes expansion

Specialist loyalty marketing agency ICLP is expanding its Middle East operations and eyeing new opportunities in the travel and hospitality industries.

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By  Gemma Hornett Published  June 6, 2006

The Dubai-headquartered company, which manages loyalty programmes for several regional airlines including Emirates, Qatar Airways, Oman Air and Saudi Arabian Airlines, is opening offices in Doha and Jeddah later this year in order to better service the needs of clients operating in these markets. “Many of our customers have had loyalty schemes for between five and 10 years, so we are now at the stage where they have all their customers and it’s our role to manage and maximise those relationships. We are now looking at acquisition and growth because frequent flyer programmes and CRM (Customer Relationship Management) are still a fairly new concept for some companies in this region,” explained Jason de Winne, general manager, ICLP. ICLP is particularly keen to forge deals with hotel groups having successfully launched and managed the Hyatt group’s ‘Dining by Hyatt’ loyalty scheme, which was recently taken in-house. “Inevitably many loyalty schemes will be taken either fully or partially in-house once we have launched them, so we are looking to target new hospitality groups including hotels, restaurants and car rental companies,” said de Winne. “There is a huge footfall of people who walk into hotels, but no one finds out who these customers are.” De Winne’s advice to travel companies running loyalty schemes in the region was to “add value”. “It’s not enough to give customers frequent flyer points, you have to know who your customer is and offer them services that make their life as easy as possible. Every airline offers its frequent flyers extras such priority check-in and excess baggage allowances, so you have to offer something unique,” he said.

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