M&S introduces new Sparks card loyalty scheme

UK department store is due to launch scheme on 22 October after a trial period

British retailer Marks & Spencer (M&S) has announced the launch of a new loyalty scheme – Sparks. The scheme, which opens on 22 October, will reward loyal M&S customers with points, or Sparks.

The retailer designed the scheme in collaboration with more than 600 customers. It has been trialling the new scheme with 100,000 members and is now ready to launch, opening up membership to all of its customers. Consumers earn ten Sparks for every purchase, ten sparks for every £1 spent, 25 sparks for reviewing a product and 50 sparks for taking part in the retailer's Shwop recycling scheme.

Rather than offering money off products, the scheme will allow consumers to unlock certain benefits. Patrick Bousquet-Chavanne Executive Director at M&S, explained: "Customers tell us they want to be 'part of something special' and that's exactly why Sparks is a club. As a member you are more than a customer and you'll get the most from M&S – with tailor-made offers, priority access and invites to exclusive events. It's a two way relationship; members tell us what they enjoy, select their own tailored offers and are rewarded for sharing their views."

The Sparks scheme will offer consumers special benefits across food, fashion, home and beauty. New members are asked to share their interests to get tailored rewards. Each new member will be given a welcome order, such as a 10% discount on a selected department or a free beauty product with a set purchase.

Tailored offers will be sent to members each fortnight, with more offers sent to those with a greater number of Sparks. Consumers with 3,000 Sparks will be rewarded with previews and those with 7,000 will have 24 hour advance access to sales. Those with 14,000 Sparks will gain access to masterclasses and special events. Those with 17,000 will be entered into exclusive prize draws.

As an additional benefit, each time a member shops at a Marks and Spencer store, the retailer will donate a penny to their chosen charity, selected at registration.

Bousquet-Chavanne added: “Over 131 years, customers have built a unique sense of trust and ownership in the brand and a members club is the natural evolution. And now is the right time for M&S; thanks to our infrastructure investment and the breadth and depth of our product offer, we can deliver a club that sees us collaborate with our members to build a better M&S together.“

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