Personal Loyalty Program: Should You Start One?

Buy 10 drinks, your 11th is free.

Stay five nights, your sixth is free.

Accumulate 10,000 points by flying, shopping, and bonuses, and you get a free flight.

All kinds of businesses have customer loyalty programs. Should you make a personal loyalty program where you reward yourself for being loyal to yourself?

Almost every business that competes with other businesses has a customer loyalty program.

You won’t find them with all businesses, however. If the business in question doesn’t have to compete with other businesses, forget about finding a loyalty program.

You’re never going to see one from a utility, for example. You’ve usually got no choice but to use their services.

Loyalty programs are only popular with businesses that have to compete. If a business that has to compete doesn’t have its own, then they’re probably a member of a program with a lot of other businesses included.

You’re probably a member of more than a few of these loyalty programs. Some of them are compelling, especially if you know you’d patronize the business frequently.

The thing is, your interests compete with the businesses you deal with. It’s in the business’ interest to have you spend money there, to not shop for other potential providers, and to spend as much as you can in with them.

Say you’re rewarded with one point for every dollar spent at a fast-food restaurant, with occasional double-point promotions.

With 50 points, you can get free food, a t-shirt, or some other swag.

You might be tempted to order more food than you need just to get these things.

Forget about the pen with the restaurant logo printed on it. You don’t need the french fries. You may need to keep your $3.50 more than you need some fried potatoes. You need to not have the fries because you don’t need to work off the calories.


The goal of the loyalty program is to incentivize you to choose them over their competitors.

They want to draw you into their circle. Tightly. They want to make you part of a pillar that supports them.

You’ve got to be careful before your loyalty is coopted. You’re better off if you’re true to yourself first.

You know this, of course. This isn’t news. Nevertheless, it’s easy to forget. It’s the kind of awareness we strive to create at the Dream Recovery System.

Points for shopping

A grocery store near me awards points for shopping. With these points, you have an opportunity to buy gasoline for a lower price.

The thing is, the grocery store has higher prices than other grocery stores. The gas station also has a higher price.

If you buy things at the store that are on sale, you can get a good value as far as the gas, but you have to be careful.

One hundred dollars spent equals 10 cents off of a gallon of gas; you can easily find gas for up to 40 cents less at other nearby stations.

The opportunity to earn “points” in a loyalty program can blind you to doing something else that’s in your best interest.

Make good decisions

Get the skills to fall asleep without taking anything.

Eat good food at the right time so it doesn’t give you indigestion.

Take steps to remember your dreams so you can understand them and, consequently, yourself, too.

Write the letters you put off.

Do the stretches and strength exercises you avoid.

Save some money to invest or pay off bills.

Doing these things is a way of being true to yourself first.

After yourself, be true to your loved ones, then your friends, then mankind as a whole, generally speaking.

Loyalty programs can offer good benefits. It’s part of being a smart consumer.

But always consider your interests first. If you forget, start your own personal loyalty program! It’s smart.

What would a personal loyalty program look like?

Something formal, a few lines in a journal might be overkill. You don’t need to do this.

Who would you be keeping records for? Who cares if you spent 15 minutes reading, for example, except for yourself?

Keep in mind your long-term goals. Every step you take toward them, give yourself a point. After so many points, give yourself an award that’s unavailable anywhere else.

If nothing else, be sure to ask yourself if what you’re doing related to these loyalty programs makes sense.

More on this in a future post.

From the other side:

All about business loyalty programs with examples.

Also on the blog:


James Cobb RN, MSN, is the founder of this blog focused on every facet of sleep health.

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