New IHG Rewards Club Brand To Replace Priority Club Rewards Brand

The Priority Club Rewards brand will be replaced by IHG Rewards Club brand in July of 2013 in honor of the tenth anniversary year of InterContinental Hotels Group.
Among the significant benefits expected to be offered — in addition to the benefits currently offered to Priority Club Rewards frequent guest loyalty program members such as points that never expire, no blackout dates on reward nights, the flexibility to redeem points at any hotel company in the world, and extended check-out times — are the following:

  • Free access to the Internet at all hotel properties worldwide for all members in 2014, starting with Gold Elite and Platinum Elite members in July of 2013 — this benefit alone will help IHG Rewards Club, where the top “pet peeve” pertaining to hotel properties amongst many FlyerTalk members are where the hotel properties of premium brands charge for typically sub-par Internet access
  • Fast track to elite status when you stay in greater than two InterContinental Hotels Group brands, which initially sounds like another unique differentiation — although details pertaining to this benefit are are sketchy and unclear
  • Reward nights will count towards elite membership status — a benefit which is a differentiation currently being offered by the Hilton HHonors frequent guest loyalty program
  • Nights earned beyond what is needed for elite membership status will count towards Platinum status the next year — which sounds similar to a “rollover” benefit currently being offered as a differentiation by the Marriott Rewards frequent guest loyalty program

As a person who has experience in branding, I will venture to guess that the swap of the words Club Rewards to Rewards Club gives more of an air of exclusivity to this frequent guest loyalty program — as if you are now “part of the club.”
Although I am not particularly crazy about the new choices for the colors identifying the IHG Rewards Club frequent guest loyalty program, they are certainly an improvement over what I consider the duller colors of the Priority Club Rewards frequent guest loyalty program, in my opinion.
I suppose the “other shoe has dropped” from the announcement back on January 7, 2013 of the complete restructuring of the rewards chart of the Priority Club Rewards frequent guest loyalty program — but in a good way, it seems.
However, will the promising new benefits to be offered by the IHG Rewards Club frequent guest loyalty program be enough to significantly offset the perceived devaluations and ease the pain experienced by some FlyerTalk members who were adversely affected by those changes — and will the IHG Rewards Club frequent guest loyalty program offer any additional benefits which have not yet been announced? Will there be any setbacks or additional perceived devaluations forthcoming which have not yet been announced?
We shall eventually find out. Right now, all we can do is wait and see — and speculate, if you choose to do so.
Hey, Wyndham Rewards — remember when I said the following:

“This is a golden opportunity to offer something substantially different and poach customer share away from the competition. Capitalize on it. Be more aggressive about enticing potential customers with benefits which they cannot resist. Create more positive differentiation between Wyndham Rewards and competing frequent guest loyalty programs.”

Take a cue from your competition — if you want to really compete…

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