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September 2012

Master of Enterprise Loyalty

The Initiative

Caesars Entertainment Corporation defines itself as “a diversified casino entertainment company.” Customers benefit from the company’s Enterprise Loyalty strategy when they engage with Caesars through gaming, dining at com- pany restaurants, attending shows, buying gifts, and shopping online or offline with partner companies. It operates hundreds of outlets across nearly 40 properties in 20 cities across four continents. Caesars’ resorts operate primarily under the Har- rah’s, Caesars and Horseshoe brands.

The starting point for Caesars’ Enterprise Loyalty strategy delivering personalized experience across the organization is the information-gathering power of its Total Rewards loyalty program. The program was relaunched and expanded in March 2012. “There has been a huge uptake in our signups that coincides with the launch of the new program–a 20% increase in new Total Rewards members, adding to the existing member base of 40 million,” says Joshua Kanter, VP, Total Rewards at Caesars Entertainment.

COLLOQUY defines true Enterprise Loyalty companies as demonstrating five characteristics, and Caesars Entertainment’s loyalty initiatives sparkle in all areas.

  1. Customer-specific insights are derived from transactional data, behavioral data and collected customer preferences. “Customers have the option to provide preference information about the kinds of activities or entertainment that they enjoy most,” says Kanter. “When guests engage in Total Rewards, they’re choosing to let us know what kinds of entertainment matters most to them, through their purchases and/or gaming behaviors. This helps us craft personalized benefits, offers and experiences.”

  2. These insights are leveraged to develop enterprise-wide customer strategies, including creating customer segments that capitalize on high-value and high-potential customers. Insights are used to understand total customer behavior–for instance, helping target segments engaging with various parts of the enterprise. “With the launch of the new Total Rewards, we’ve broadened our message to appeal to entertainment seekers who may nor may not engage with the gaming portion of our offering. We’ve seen our customers engaging much more frequently in benefits oriented more toward dining and shopping and shows. We have seen literally two times the volume of purchases going through retail and dining outlets that are associated with Total Rewards cards.”

  3. The focus of the organization’s entire product or service offering is based on customer-specific insights, related to merchandising, pricing, new product/service development, operations, marketing, customer experience, retail layout/design, retail locations, etc. Caesars’ use of insights leads to smoother operations, and empowers better front-line service, and differentiated pricing. “We have what we call a ‘differentiated service model’ that’s keyed off of Total Rewards tiers. For example, we strive to provide a great experience to every guest, including our entry-level Gold members. But we also have special hotel check-in areas, shorter lines and exclusive lounges for our Diamond and Seven Stars members. And our VIP-focused organization engages with our most high-value customers individually. Our VIP hosts develop personal relationships with their guests, and help them plan their future trips. Once a guest arrives on property, they are greeted by a local host who is on call to ensure that the guest always has access to whatever service they require.” In general, “When a guest presents their card, every member of our front-line staff responds immediately with the level of service appropriate to the tier.” For example, “We’ve given tier-based discounts to our customers when they shop in our retail stores, ranging from a 10% discount for Gold members all the way up to 25% discount for Seven Stars members.”

  4. The company’s operational structure is aligned to better serve the right customer segments. Caesars has worked hard to achieve such alignment. “We used to have pockets of analysts all over the organization. It was quite fragmented. About a year and a half ago, we formed the Enterprise Analytics Shared Service, which consolidated our most talented analytical minds into a Center of Excellence. Enterprise Analytics supports every function that requires analytics throughout the company, including financial reporting, revenue management, gaming analytics, and marketing analytics.”

  5. Customer-based metrics as a gauge of corporate performance have been incorporated. “We have a robust Total Service customer listening program that helps us track and understand how our guests experience our properties. We focus not only on their overall experience at the property, but also on the elements of the experience. All of senior management’s compensation is tied to our ability to continuously improve the guest experience.”

COLLOQUY Interview with Caesars Entertainment