For a surfer, nothing beats the feeling of riding the waves. Just imagine a customer experience where members are rewarded for what they love, not just what they buy. Rip Curl, the “Ultimate Surfing Company” set out to do just that: reward customers for feeling the salty breeze on their skin and being one with the ocean.
Enhancing the End-To-End Surf Experience
Founded in 1969, Rip Curl has been at the forefront of the surf scene since its creation. Built by surfers for surfers, Rip Curl has been the market leader in sportswear for over 50 years. The company endeavors to make the best products, run the best events, support the best athletes, deliver the best customer service, communicate the best brand message, and have the best crew of people. This helps Rip Curl fulfill its vision of being The Ultimate Surfing Company.
“Rip Curl has been successful because of the passion for the Search, our driving force to truly live the spirit of surfing. This is a passion we share with our customers, who already are a part of our tribe. Introducing Club Rip Curl, as a membership program, is making the relationship official, and we’re so excited about being able to reward customers for what they love doing best – getting out and enjoying the waves.” – Michael Scott, Chief Customer Officer at Rip Curl
A Membership Program That Rewards Surfing
Rip Curl introduced a lifestyle membership program, Club Rip Curl, which is tied very closely to the brand’s ideology. The program connects and rewards people who have a passion and love for surfing and the beach lifestyle. Members of Club Rip Curl can earn points for valuable actions like shopping, surfing, and filling out their customer profile.
In general, the company sought to achieve the following goals:
- Build the largest and most engaged surfing community in the world
- Deliver more personalized messages at scale
- Give customers a convenient way to carry their member identification
Club Rip Curl: Surf to Earn
Club Rip Curl has a points-based structure, in which members earn 100 points for every dollar spent online or in stores. These points can be redeemed for Rip Curl-branded apparel, accessories, and surf equipment. The main feature that attracts and engages members of the Rip Curl community is the ability to earn points by surfing. Members who are registered users of a Rip Curl Search GPS watch and app are rewarded 200 points for every wave they surf. To make sure members don’t miss out on any of the benefits when they don’t have their membership card on them, members receive virtual membership cards on their phone, which they can show at participating stores.
Incentivizing Profile Completion
Rip Curl also encourages program members to complete their profiles by providing a 10,000-point bonus when they add information about their preferences to their customer profile. This allows Rip Curl to build trust and better understand their customers. By incentivizing profile completion, Rip Curl is able to access a new layer of customer data and fuel their personalization efforts, which allows the brand to offer more relevant rewards to its customers.
Special Rewards for Members
Another key factor in the unique Club Rip Curl experience is surprise birthday rewards. When they sign up, customers are asked to provide their date of birth so the company can surprise them with an annual birthday gift when their special day arrives — a $20 voucher toward Rip Curl products from Rip Curl stores. By adding surprise and delight mechanisms to their retention strategy, Rip Curl strengthens their connection with its community even more. This experience is exciting and unexpected for customers, and results in greater purchase frequency and customer engagement.
Since its launch, Club Rip Curl’s membership program has proven to be of great value for the brand. It has activated and engaged their community. The features provided in the program allow the global sportswear and accessories brand to build trust, better understand their customers, and ensure their communications and offers are well-targeted and relevant.
Membership Program Results After 6 Months:
- 97% of members have made at least one purchase, indicating high engagement
- 20% of weekly sales are made by members
- 22% growth for the overall average purchase frequency
Living the Spirit of Surfing
Rewarding customers for being themselves and connecting Rip Curl to its target audience’s values, aspirations and hobbies (in this case, surfing) establishes long-lasting brand love. The bonus points received instantly for riding a wave provide a kind of instant gratification that further enhances the experience, giving members the feeling that Rip Curl recognizes their passion and achievements.
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