How to choose the right name for your rewards program

Choosing the right name for your loyalty program is a critical decision that can impact its success. This is your program's identity we're talking about, the front line of your relationship with customers and the phrase that'll be on everyone's lips. So, let's get it right.
How to choose the right name for your rewards program

Choosing the right name for your loyalty program is a critical decision that can significantly impact its success. 

This is your program's identity we're talking about, the front line of your relationship with customers and the phrase that'll be on everyone's lips. 

So, it's essential to get it right.

In this guide, we'll explore the ins and outs of selecting a name that not only captures the essence of your brand but also appeals to your audience and sticks in their memory. 

From first impressions to lasting relationships, the right name can be a powerful tool to enhance customer loyalty.

Let’s begin.

Note: before going any further, it's important to clarify what we're talking about. In this article, we'll be exploring rewards programs designed specifically to turn customers into brand ambassadors, rather than discussing employee recognition programs aimed at boosting a company's employer brand.

What is a good name for a rewards program?

Selecting an exceptional name for your customer loyalty program demands both precision and creativity.

It should encapsulate the essence of the rewards while resonating with the company’s ethos. 

Aim for a name that's self-explanatory yet memorable, enabling customers to instantly grasp the benefits while fostering loyalty.

A name with clarity and memorability might be one that meshes with your brand while hinting at the joys of accumulating discounts, exclusive offers and free products. 

Consider names like 'Rewarding Circle' or 'Points Premier', which suggest exclusivity and recognition without being overly complex.

Aligning the name with your brand's character is key. For a more professional image, 'Elite Earnings' could strike the right chord, whereas 'Bonus Bash' could echo a more informal, festive personality.

It's also crucial to think long-term. The name should be flexible, allowing your program to evolve without becoming outdated or misleading as new features are added.

9 tips for memorable loyalty program names

1. Simplicity reigns supreme

A straightforward, breezy name is your best bet. 

The key is to find a balance between being descriptive and being concise, ensuring that the name is both informative and manageable.

Names such as 'Reward Roundup' or 'EarnEasy' convey the program's purpose succinctly, without overwhelming the customer. 

The easier it is to recall and say, the more likely it will stick in your customers' memories.

The simplicity of a name also extends to its longevity and versatility. 

It should not only resonate with customers today but continue to be relevant as the program evolves.

A simple name will serve as a stable identifier for your rewards program, one that can outlast trends and market shifts.

GIF saying "Keep it simple"

2. Keep it relevant

When picking a name for your rewards program, it’s imperative that it mirrors the core offerings and values of your brand. 

A relevant name does more than describe. It connects with your audience and reinforces the essence of the program.

Let’s say your company is all about adventure and exploration. A name like ‘Explorer Points’ or ‘Adventure Awaits’ might strike the right chord, signaling to customers that their purchases will take them on a journey. 

On the other hand, if your brand is steeped in tradition and sophistication, a name like ‘Heritage Honors’ could be a perfect match, reflecting a legacy of quality and prestige.

The goal is to choose a name that speaks directly to the heart of your audience, a name that resonates with the ethos they associate with your company. 

This relevance is what transforms a rewards program from a mere transactional entity into a facet of the customer's lifestyle.

Moreover, a relevant name ensures that the program remains a natural extension of the customer experience.

It should feel less like an added bonus and more like an integral part of what it means to interact with your brand. 

3. Flexibility is key

Aim for a name with room to grow. 

Why? Because as your business evolves, so too will your rewards offerings. A name that's too specific might be fitting today but could become restrictive tomorrow.

For example, if you opt for a name like 'Shoe Shoppers Club' for a program that starts off catering to footwear enthusiasts but later expands to include accessories and apparel, you'll find yourself in a bit of a pickle. 

The key is to avoid painting yourself into a corner with a name that limits the scope of future possibilities.

A name like 'Style Rewards' or 'All Access Perks' offers a wide range of possibility under which a wide array of products and services can comfortably fit. 

4. Make it distinctive

In the crowded e-commerce industry, all brands are vying for attention. So having a distinctive name for your rewards program isn't just an advantage, it's a necessity.

Dodge the commonplace and opt for uniqueness with names that capture attention and intrigue. 

'Glitter Gold Gains' or 'Velvet Rope Rewards' immediately sets your program apart from the more commonly named 'Members Club' or 'Points Program'. 

It's about creating a niche in the customer's mind, a special corner where your brand stands alone.

5. Beware of cultural sensitivity

A rewards program name should resonate positively across various cultures and avoid linguistic pitfalls or unintended meanings that could alienate potential customers.

The process begins with due diligence.

Researching and testing the name in different languages and regions to ensure it doesn’t carry negative connotations or inappropriate meanings. 

For instance, a name that’s catchy in English might have an unfavorable interpretation in another language.

Taking the time to assess cultural implications also includes understanding cultural symbols, idioms, and values which can vary widely from one region to another. 

The name of your rewards program should be a bridge, not a barrier, appealing to a universal audience while maintaining local relevance.

What’s more, a name that passes the cultural sensitivity check not only protects the brand from potential embarrassment but also shows respect for the diversity of your customer base.

It demonstrates that your company values inclusivity and is attuned to the cultural nuances of its audience. 

6. Check the availability

Ensuring the name of your rewards program is available for use is essential to avoid unnecessary turbulence.

This step is two-fold: it encompasses both legal availability and digital presence.

Firstly, dive into a thorough trademark search. This isn't just a bureaucratic hoop to jump through. It's a safeguard against future legal headaches. 

You'll want to ensure that the name isn't already in use by another entity within your industry (or any industry if the brand is large enough to be widely recognized).

Securing a unique and trademark-free name is not only a legal buffer but also sets the foundation for a strong, individual identity.

Then, shift your focus to the digital world. 

Your rewards program will likely live online, so check domain availability. 

Your program's name should ideally match your domain name to streamline customer access and enhance online marketing efforts.

It’s also prudent to peruse social media platforms to ensure your program’s name isn’t already claimed or associated with different content.

7. Test it out

Before setting the name of your rewards program in stone, it's a good idea to submit it to public opinion.

Testing the name with a sample of your target customer audience can provide invaluable insights and highlight potential issues you may not have considered.

This could take the form of focus groups led by employees, surveys, or A/B testing across various customer segments. The aim is to observe genuine reactions to the name. 

Does it spark interest? Is it easy to remember? Does it resonate with the brand values they expect? These are the types of questions you want to answer.

Direct feedback from potential program members can steer you away from names that might seem brilliant on paper but fall flat in reality. 

Moreover, it can affirm when a name has the right level of appeal, standing out to consumers in the way you intended.

It’s also an opportunity to measure how the name performs across different contexts and mediums. 

Will it look good on marketing materials? Is it easy to comprehend over the phone? Does it work well in an online setting? 

These practical considerations can make or break the name’s effectiveness.

A GIF saying "Test"

8. Brand alignment

When it comes to naming your rewards program, alignment with your brand identity requires precision and care to ensure a perfect match.

The name of your program should reflect your brand's voice, values, and ethos as if it were a natural extension of your company’s narrative.

For example, if your brand is known for luxury and exclusivity, a name like 'Elite Encore' would resonate well. 

Alternatively, if your e-commerce store is all about eco-friendliness and sustainability, a name like 'Green Gratitudes' could encapsulate your commitment to the environment.

This alignment is not just about thematic fit. It’s also about emotional resonance. 

The best names are those that evoke the same feelings and associations as the company itself.

When your rewards program feels like an organic part of the brand, customers are more likely to engage with it as they do with your products or services.

9. Invoke emotion

A rewards program name should linger, evoking feelings and memories. 

Emotional resonance can transform a standard rewards program into an experience that customers feel a personal connection to.

Consider names that tap into the aspirations, desires, or sentiments of your audience. 

A name like 'Dreamscape Points' might conjure images of achieving one's dreams, while 'Hearth & Home Rewards' evokes feelings of comfort and belonging. 

These aren’t just titles. They’re emotional triggers that can drive deeper engagement.

An emotionally-charged name becomes a powerful tool for building emotional loyalty

It can transform the ordinary act of purchase into a step towards fulfilling a wish or supporting a cause, like "Wishful Rewards" for example.

And of course, the emotion evoked by your program’s name should be in harmony with your brand’s personality. 

If your brand is jovial and fun-loving, a whimsical, joyful name could be a perfect fit. On the flip side, if your company’s tone is more serious and grounded, a name that reflects stability and trust would be more appropriate.

Infographic of our tips for a great loyalty program name

9 example of great rewards program names

There are several loyalty programs out there with names that resonate well with consumers and stuck in their minds. 

Here are some great rewards program names:

  • Sephora's Beauty Insider
  • REI's Co-op Membership
  • Nordstrom's Nordy Club
  • The North Face's XPLR Pass
  • Dunkin's DD Perks
  • Petco's Pals Rewards
  • Hilton Honors
  • Bloomingdale's Loyallist
  • Swarovski Club

1. Sephora's rewards program: Beauty Insider

Sephora's "Beauty Insider" is a stellar example of a rewards program name done right. 

It instantly positions members as part of an exclusive group with access to privileged information and perks. 

The term "Insider" suggests a community of beauty enthusiasts who are the first to know about the latest trends and products. It's a name that not only defines the benefits, but also taps into the desire for insider knowledge and the feeling of exclusivity, which is magnetic in the world of beauty retail.

Sephora's rewards program

2. REI's rewards program: Co-op Membership

REI's "Co-op Membership" cleverly sums up the brand's cooperative structure and community-centric ethos.

This approach to naming solidifies a member’s sense of belonging to a group that’s about more than just transactions. It's about shared values and a love for the outdoors.

The term "membership" takes customers from mere buyers to members of something bigger, a community that supports environmental stewardship and outdoor adventures.

It's a name that resonates with the cooperative spirit and commitment of REI's customer base, making it an excellent match for the brand's identity.

REI's rewards program

3. Nordstrom's rewards program: Nordy Club

Nordstrom's "Nordy Club" breathes a touch of casual chic into its loyalty program by playing on its own name, which suggests a familiar and lovable term to its shoppers.

The name implies exclusivity yet accessibility, aligning with Nordstrom's reputation for high-end products alongside exceptional customer service. 

With a name that's easy to say and even easier to remember, Nordstrom ensures that its loyalty program remains at the forefront of customers' minds, encouraging repeat visits and ongoing engagement with the brand. 

Nordstrom's rewards program

4. The North Face's rewards program: XPLR Pass

The North Face "XPLR Pass" gets to the heart of what it means to be an adventurer. 

Short for 'explore', the abbreviation lends a modern, friendly feel, reflecting the abbreviated communication style popular on social media. 

Moreover, the name aligns seamlessly with The North Face brand, which embodies the spirit of exploration and the great outdoors. 

The North Face isn't just offering a rewards program. They’re inviting customers on a journey, making them feel like they're part of a global community of explorers.

The North Face's rewards program

5. Dunkin's rewards program: DD Perks

Dunkin's "DD Perks" nails the casual and upbeat vibe that the coffee giant is known for. 

The alliteration of "DD" makes it catchy and rhythmic, ensuring it sticks in customers' minds. "Perks" suggests a bounty of benefits, which is exactly what a rewards program should offer : tangible value. 

This name reflects Dunkin's straightforward approach to customer rewards: simple, no-nonsense, and packed with value. 

It's friendly, it's to the point, and it perfectly sums up the everyday rewards that Dunkin' patrons can expect with every cup.

Dunkin's rewards program

6. Petco's rewards program: Pals Rewards

Petco's "Pals Rewards" program embodies the friendly, convivial nature of the brand, while effortlessly conveying the idea of a rewards program. 

The use of “Pals” highlights the warm, loving relationship between pet owners and their pets, as well as the camaraderie Petco shares with its customers. It's a cozy term that invites pet owners into an inclusive circle where every member is considered a friend. 

This program name is approachable, memorable, and it perfectly mirrors the welcoming and community-focused environment that Petco stands for.

Petco's rewards program

7. Hilton’s rewards program: Hilton Honors

Hilton’s “Hilton Honors” elegantly doubles down on the brand's name to reinforce recognition while introducing an element of prestige with "Honors." 

The name suggests a tier of esteem and exclusivity, appealing to customers' aspirations for high status and exceptional service. 

It’s cleverly designed to make members feel valued and special, as if they are part of an elite group. This sense of distinction is a powerful draw for a hospitality brand like Hilton, where service and status are key to the customer experience.

Hilton's rewards program

8. Bloomingdale's rewards program: Loyallist

Bloomingdale's "Loyallist" program is a prime example of a name that’s not just catchy but also speaks directly to the relationship the brand seeks to cultivate with its customers. 

They create an identity for program members that goes beyond the transaction. It's as if buyers weren't just customers, but brand aficionados, like an artist with a passion for his craft. 

This inventive naming approach elevates the program above standard points-based systems, suggesting a more personal, lifestyle-oriented relationship with the brand.

Bloomingdale's rewards program

9. Swarovski’s rewards program: Swarovski Club

Swarovski’s “Swarovski Club” name is a straightforward declaration of recognition and belonging. By simply adding "Club" to its renowned brand name, Swarovski invokes a sense of exclusivity and community. 

The name is clear and direct, leaving no doubt about what’s being offered: membership in a select group that appreciates the refined elegance of Swarovski crystals. 

The repetition of the brand name enhances recognition and recall, ensuring that the luxury and quality associated with Swarovski are front and center in the customer's mind. 

It’s a name that promises insider access to a world of sparkling rewards and experiences, aligning with the brand's reputation for sophistication and exclusivity.

Swarowski's rewards program

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