Dear Customer Loyalty Scheme Provider,

Thank you very much for your kind offer to join your ‘exclusive family’, as you so beautifully describe your proposition, which I can’t help think has also been sent out to thousands of other customers who have shopped with you in the past. I know you really intended for me to feel special with your serialised invite and gold star envelope to the special event next weekend, but unfortunately I am busy on Saturday evening between 6.30 and 8.30pm. How many serialised numbers do you use, I wonder, and how did they get that star to look so real! Did it cost you much? By the way, I came across this article the other day and it reminded me of you…

Actually, I do remember shopping with you once, a distant memory now… at least I think it was you. There are so many shops selling these things these days its hard to keep track, it might even have been one of your competitors. Do they run a customer loyalty scheme?… but either way, it was an okay experience. I am sure there was a deal on at the time… or maybe it was that time I was desperate for the loo and needed to nip in quick, just before closing time. That’s it, I remember the two huge body guards dominating the door space just about to shut the shop and one of them took pity on me and let me through on the promise that I only needed one item… I grabbed a bag of sugar. That was it.

By the way Mr Customer Loyalty Scheme Provider… how did you get my home address?

I guess it is quite easy to track people down these days, as I am on the electoral roll and all, or maybe it was that time I shopped with you, before the late night emergency, when all your staff were pressurising people to fill out a form for entry into that prize draw? Did I join your customer loyalty scheme then? Whatever happened to that draw? Did I win? Oh, yes, it’s all coming back to me now… I wonder, is that why I keep getting those strange emails and text messages from ‘3rd party providers’? I did think I was being spammed, but maybe they are intended for me. Did you sell my soul to your partners in crime, so they could hound me too, did I forget to tick some box on that form? Did you know they have actually offered me some great deals through their customer loyalty scheme, though, I think! The only trouble is, I don’t have a car and I don’t own my own house so the DIY gadgets, which I have to confess, do look great, I have no use for. You see I am not really a gadget person either… but I guess you should have known that.

Mr Customer Loyalty Scheme Provider… Do you really care?

I know you may think that I am not that loyal, but I am sure I would use you if I could. I really do think you have a lovely logo, the way that quirky little line turns up at the end is very clever. In fact, didn’t you do those great adverts on TV last year – they really made me laugh, although I couldn’t remember at the time that it was you. Oh, maybe that wasn’t you! Anyway, I am sure you really care about me as you do want me to feel special. But, I still can’t stop that nagging feeling in the back of my mind… the one telling me that you are just after my money, since I haven’t heard from you for such a long time and now I then get a special invite, today. I can’t help but think that you just found out, I was the one who won the lottery last Saturday?

Anyway, here’s the thing. I will shop with you on one condition. You stop trying to create the illusion of providing something special for me and just deliver good honest products and services. If what you have is of value to me, which I will decide, then I will willingly give you my money… And, remember, I have a lot of money to give now too! This shouldn’t be too difficult to achieve for you, after all it is what your literature promises so somewhere inside that corporate machine there must be a heart. You see I am one of those new millennial, intelligent, discerning customers, not easily sold to, but I also have a lot of money to spend and need to go somewhere to spend it, so why not you? However, if I were going to buy into your loyalty scheme, it really would have to be very special… You know what I mean, the sort of scheme that supports someone or something other than you, perhaps doing great things for the environment or local community. You see… I’m not just in it for me… I’m in it for the greater good – so you need to be too, if you want my wallet share…is that the term?

Anyway, thanks again for the invite, but if you had really known me as well as you would like to think you do, then you would have known that I am busy on Saturday evening between 6.30 and 8.30 and therefore cannot attend your prestigious event. Just so you know, I think I might be one of those CBC or CBB customers. Have a drink on me, I will be thinking of you!

Yours sincerely,

A Smart (Customer)