by Alex Palmer | June 04, 2018
Millennials may have a reputation for changing careers more often than members of older generations, but new research finds that they are plenty loyal when it comes to the programs they join -- especially when it might involve earning a gift card or other reward. A new report from Hawk Incentives, a Blackhawk Network business, finds that Millennials are members in an average of 6.5 loyalty programs, higher than the overall average of 6.2 programs. Additionally, they report being active in 4.2 programs, also more than the 3.9 programs in which all respondents said they were active.

The survey drew on responses from 1,500 American adults, including 645 Millennials, on their preference and attitudes toward loyalty programs across a range of categories, including retail, airline, hotel, food and beverage, online retail, bank, gym, telecom, and utility. It found that rewards were a key driver of Millennials' membership and active participation in the loyalty programs, with 55 percent of Millennial respondents saying that some type of reward card would keep them most engaged, compared to just 47 percent of Baby Boomer respondents. Eighty-two percent of Millennials said they would be interested in redeeming loyalty points for a gift card or prepaid reward card. 

"As shopper habits have evolved and the world has become increasingly digitized, there has been a lot of discussion on the staying power of loyalty programs. This research demonstrates that loyalty programs and modern reward options have kept up with consumer trends and continue to appeal to younger generations," said Theresa McEndree, vice president of marketing for Hawk Incentives, in a statement. "Our research also indicates that businesses designing loyalty programs with millennials in mind will benefit from offering an array of prepaid and gift card rewards, in both physical and digital options."
 
Millennials showed a predictable interest in digital offerings, with 65 percent saying they prefer digitals rewards, versus only 45 percent of Boomers. They were also found to be more likely to belong to online retailer programs, with 41 percent of Millennial respondents belonging to online retailer loyalty program, versus just 29 percent of Gen X and 25 percent of Boomer respondents.

To view and download an infographic outlining these findings, click here.