Two happy women they purchased with teacher discounts through Madewell's customer loyalty marketing program.

5 Ways Madewell’s Gated Offers Are Good Customer Loyalty Marketing

Madewell, the J. Crew subsidiary known for everything denim, has always implemented good customer loyalty marketing. When shoppers join Madewell Insider, they receive a treasure trove of benefits. These include a birthday gift, free shipping and handling, free returns, free leather and denim personalization, and more.

Madewell also treats its key customer groups well. The company nurtures student and teacher loyalty by giving them an exclusive, in-store 15% discount. 

Both of these efforts are greatly appealing, but Madewell wanted to engage these high-value segments even further. They recently launched a new program that expands the discounts to online purchases and uses digital verification to implement the offers. 

These revitalized programs are a terrific example of good customer loyalty marketing. Here’s why.

5 Ways to Improve Your Customer Loyalty Marketing

Madewell’s new gated, exclusive offer for students and teachers has all the hallmarks of a successful customer loyalty marketing program.

01 Celebrate Your Customers

Being a student or teacher is a core aspect of one’s identity, and Madewell’s decision to celebrate that is a powerful move. It recognizes a special attribute of these customers, and taps into their deep sense of belonging to a group. And when customers feel recognized by a brand, they become more loyal.

02 Tie Promotions to Your Loyalty Program

Students and teachers have to sign up for Madewell’s customer loyalty marketing program to access their exclusive discount. This makes the exchange more than just a typical discount transaction by establishing an immediate and enduring connection between students and teachers and the Madewell brand.

A woman in a peach-colored outfit she purchased through Madewell's customer loyalty marketing program.

03 Provide a Great Customer Experience

When students and teachers sign up for Madewell’s customer loyalty marketing program, the company uses digital verification to confirm their eligibility to receive their exclusive discount. The verification process is a streamlined exchange that creates a positive user experience.

Customers simply provide basic information, such as their name, email address, and school, and then are instantly verified. The process is privacy friendly because it’s consent based. And it’s user friendly because it occurs as a seamless, in-brand experience. Customers don’t have to drive to a Madewell store, or worry about carrying a valid ID. And they don’t have to stand idle at the register while employees verify them.

Plus, once students and teachers are verified, they can use the discount every time they shop, whether it’s online or in-store. All this adds up, which makes for a great customer experience and helps drive long-term engagement.

04 Use Customer Data for Ongoing Nurturing

By opting into the offer, customers are saying they want to engage with Madewell. They’re also giving the brand data it can use to develop ongoing promotions that keep them coming back. 

Lowe’s does this kind of customer loyalty marketing particularly well. When the company tied its military discount to its MyLowe’s loyalty program and engaged customers with personalized campaigns, it doubled in-store visits from military members and tripled email open rates.

05 Align Your Brand’s Identity with Customer Values

Exclusive discounts are just part of Madewell’s strategy for turning students and teachers into long-term customers. Madewell’s brand identity emphasizes social responsibility and building community—priorities that greatly appeal to Gen Z and teachers.

Do Well is a Madewell program that fosters sustainability. Hometown Heroes helps local creatives all over the country grow their businesses. And Humans We Heart showcases artists, musicians, athletes, and others who inspire the Madewell brand.

These efforts make it easy for students and teachers to feel like part of the family because it demonstrates that Madewell’s values align with theirs.

Customer Loyalty Marketing with an Eye on the Future

One of the best things about Madewell’s new program is its potential for growth. With SheerID, Madewell can extend the discount to students worldwide and trust that the offer will be protected, even in regions in which fraud is rampant.

That’s good news for Madewell because investing in student offers is a smart strategy. Gen Z comprises two billion people worldwide. A study by Kelton Research revealed that 91% of students are more likely to shop with a brand that provides an exclusive discount, and 94% would shop with that brand more often. 

Madewell’s style and fit are legendary, and with exclusive discounts and a loyalty program that expresses its brand identity, Madewell is building a loyal customer base that will grow with them into the future.

Ninety-one percent of students are more likely to shop with a brand that gives them an exclusive discount.

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