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Was there ever a time when MP Status was about loyalty?

Was there ever a time when MP Status was about loyalty?

Old Oct 21, 19, 7:50 pm
  #1  
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Was there ever a time when MP Status was about loyalty?

I think we are all bemoaning that MP is now about spend rather than loyalty.

But with the exeption of MM status was there ever a time when yearly status was mainly about loyalty?

Looking at my early flights when MP just came into existance and number of miles flown was fairly close to dollars paid. So in that regard, even back then it was about dollars not loyalty.
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Old Oct 21, 19, 7:58 pm
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In the best case scenario, all of these marketing programs can be characterized as one-way loyalty programs; members being loyal to the program by sending their own (or other people's) money year-after-year.

So, in my opinion, no.
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Old Oct 21, 19, 7:58 pm
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Sure, when there were a lot more domestic airlines bringing competition to almost every possible route, it was definitely about loyalty (which in itself also compromises the dollar component, of course).

Those were the times of the mileage runs, finding the longest possible routes a fare would allow, up faring to higher fare classes just for the extra miles, competitions to qualifying for status with the lowest possible spend, and so on. Eventually, people wanted to discuss and share strategies, which led to the creation of this forum, FlyerTalk.

Back then, airlines needed real incentives to make you fly with them. Nowadays, the lack of competition is enough of an incentive.
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Old Oct 21, 19, 7:58 pm
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Yes back in the days of cr-1s and SWUs
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Old Oct 21, 19, 8:07 pm
  #5  
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And tulips. And a real UNITED.

Look up ďsweet spotsĒ for just one of many examples.
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Old Oct 21, 19, 8:13 pm
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Nah. Itís not about loyalty or rewarding customers at all. Itís solely about driving future behavior, not rewarding past purchases.
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Old Oct 21, 19, 8:16 pm
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Originally Posted by joeyE View Post
Nah. Itís not about loyalty or rewarding customers at all. Itís solely about driving future behavior, not rewarding past purchases.
Actually, now, it is neither.

And rewarding past purchases influences future behavior.
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Old Oct 21, 19, 9:04 pm
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Yes. When there were 8+ major U.S. carriers. Coincidence?
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Old Oct 21, 19, 9:07 pm
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My personal feeling, not focused on general market dynamics, is that before the CO merger, the UA MileagePlus program was quite rewarding of loyalty. I only flew UA before the merger, but it seems some pmCO folks felt similarly of CO.

Altogether, that suggests the analyses pointing to pre-consolidation loyalty are correct.
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Old Oct 21, 19, 10:51 pm
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Originally Posted by fumje View Post
My personal feeling, not focused on general market dynamics, is that before the CO merger, the UA MileagePlus program was quite rewarding of loyalty. I only flew UA before the merger, but it seems some pmCO folks felt similarly of CO.

Altogether, that suggests the analyses pointing to pre-consolidation loyalty are correct.
This was how I felt about CO out of Australia - I found if I purchased an economy ticket I was able to upgrade to Business and receive the mileage for a business ticket. It kept me very loyal to Continental for flights out of Australia until Continental pulled out of Australia. I then made the switch to United. I was never a QANTAS gal (ANSETT was my Australian go to). Through the end of 2020 I expect to remain loyal to Untied (using my PlusPoints and my miles), then free agent I suspect for 2021 going forward. While the airline kind of looks after me I will be loyal(ish) to them.
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Old Oct 21, 19, 11:57 pm
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I don't understand why people think the Mileage Plan (or any FF program...or any rewards program) is or isn't about loyalty. It definitely is about loyalty, and that loyalty is defined by "actions that positively influence the commercial outlook of the company". A corporation has no emotions, and thus can't define loyalty by feeling loved or protected outside of financial outcomes. Are there any loyalty programs that don't serve to reinforce the revenues of a commercial enterprise? A loyalty program that costs more to implement than the incremental revenue or customer retention value it brings in (on purpose)? Heck, even podcasts want you to "rate, review, and subscribe" to increase their ad revenues.

Loyalty is defined by $$$.

Likewise, we as customers do have loyalty for as long as we feel we receive value for our spending. When we don't, we break ties and "loyally" spend with other providers. We sometimes receive emotional or physical benefits instead of financial ones, because we're human, but we still demand benefits when we have choice. We often value emotional benefits over straight financial ones, but we're still expecting a return.

Well, there's one exception: sports. If you're a "fan" you are expected to emotionally and financially support your team no matter how terrible the product is that they provide. To rationally decide that the massive corporation or institution taking your money and time and purposefully providing a terrible product no longer deserves your support makes you a "bad fan" or "fair weather" instead of a rational actor. But that's just how strong the emotional benefit can be.
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Old Oct 22, 19, 9:00 am
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You have a different definition of loyalty from UA, yours might not be correct (or incorrect).
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Old Oct 22, 19, 9:37 am
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Originally Posted by joeyE View Post
Nah. Itís not about loyalty or rewarding customers at all. Itís solely about driving future behavior, not rewarding past purchases.
This.

People delude themselves what the purpose of these programs are. They are to create incentives for making decisions that favour the company which the consumer would not have otherwise made (e.g. spending more to fly with them rather than a cheaper alternative). Recently the programs have been tweaked to better factor in the profitability of the customer
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Old Oct 22, 19, 10:05 am
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I donít really understand why people are so emotional about this.

GS is arguably about UA loyalty, rewarding only UA metal flights, but has always been solely based on spend. Now the rest of MP follows suit. PQM based on fate class were previously a proxy for spent with more loopholes but MP was never about rewarding the person who could find a great deal via a mileage run. They just accepted it and now no longer do.
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Old Oct 22, 19, 10:24 am
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Sure, it was called OnePass.
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