It has been about two years since Rogers kicked off their new “First Rewards” customer loyalty program designed to reward customers that would chose to enroll in Rogers’ programs or extras. Cable, internet and wireless customers could all earn rewards based on their monthly spending – the more they spent, the faster points would be earned and subsequently then redeemed. The points were not for cash, but you could use them for movie rentals from Rogers on Demand or discounts on smartphone upgrades. Rogers also introduced their own Rogers MasterCard that also turned all of your purchases into First Rewards loyalty points. It was quite easy to build up points, but apparently customers were not interested.
Our source tells us that the participation rate had a fewer than 5-percent redemption rate of programs such as home monitoring credits or The Shopping Network gift cards. Those Rogers’ customers still enrolled in the program will continue to accrue points until December 1 and they must be redeemed sometime in June 2016 when the program will shut down for good. On top of that, Rogers is also scrubbing their First Rewards MasterCard in the near future, but it will be replaced by a similar product that will allow customers to redeem 1.75-percent of their purchases that can be used as credits toward their monthly bill. It will be a simpler program and part of the customer improvements that CEO Guy Laurence set out in his new Rogers 3.0 Plan.
While First Rewards is a certified failure, Rogers’ has also had many successes, such as Roam Like Home, Shomi, Ignite internet and over on Fido, the Spotify streaming has been a big success. Rogers needs these types of programs to help wipe away their reputation for poor value, not to mention their poor customer service. At the same time though, Rogers had its highest subscriber rate in three-quarters this past July. This surge was not so much because of their wireless business, but the bundles they offer were very attractive. Rogers is also in the middle of transitioning Mobilicity’s customers to its 3G network and will offer a Staff Pick every quarter to entice customers to give them a good bargain.