I have been a long term member of Air Miles and have some serious concerns about what Air Miles is morphing into. Good on the Americans who rejected it years ago.
Here is an edited version of what I have written to their corporate office:
“Your ‘Points’ are increasingly worthless. You have gone from a ‘good’ deal’ to a bad deal in the past year or so. You remove sponsors without warning (i.e. Roots) and lower the value fo your ‘points’ continuously (i.e. METRO – 175 to 190). For multi-year collectors, none of these actions are desirable. Your affiliate marketing with credit cards such as the Bank of Montreal Mastercard, are in jeopardy. I for one, am seriously considering cancelling my Air Miles card in favour of a Cash Back Option. I prefer cash (always spendable and spendable anywhere) over Air Miles (which seem to continuously lose their value and the limits on the places that you can spend them at). I welcome a response for my readers and look forward to sharing your response.”
Here are two simple suggestions:
1) Warn members when sponsors are going to be removed
Considering that I get about a hundred emails from Air Miles each week, would it be too much to ask that you add a note about any sponsors that are leaving the program so that I have time to act (by either ordering that gift certificate or that item before it’s gone)? This just seems like a fairer way to do things and a more professional way to treat your customers. I recognize that the optics of stating that a sponsor is leaving your program are not good, but I think that you owe it to your users. They may even appreciate your honesty and straightforwardness.
2) Let your members know before you devalue their points
I see that many items now cost more points. In my view, this is acting in bad faith, when there is no warning given. Most every item requires ‘banking’ points for a while before you can cash them in. These points have been ‘earned’. Arbitrarily reducing the points value really undermines confidence for the consumer when it is done without warning. You could include any upcoming point changes in your weekly email (see below).
3) Stop Sending out so many emails
I literally get around ten emails from you each and every week. This is simply too much. Consolidate all of your offers on one weekly email.
Let’s see what Air Miles has to say. I’ll post any response I receive.
In the meantime, check out more of my reviews here