Why Different Members Receive Different Mileage Offers

Different customers get different mileage offers, and Chris Elliott thinks it’s discriminatory.

Which is rather silly. Different members with very similar profiles will get different offers precisely because their profiles are similar. It’s called “split testing.” You want to know what offer gets the strongest response. And in order to do that you need to compare people with similar profiles, and vary only the offer.

Perhaps you get the same response giving 1500 vs 3000 miles, in which case you want to give out fewer miles. Perhaps 3000 miles seems ‘too good to be true’ and people ignore the offer. Or perhaps there are even more offers out there, say a 10,000 mile offer. Maybe 1500 isn’t enough to get a response but the response rate is virtually identical for all offers above 3000.

The marketing gurus analyze the data and figure out how to better craft their campaigns.

But if the members being marketed to had different profiles, you didn’t know whether it was the varying offer driving different behavior, or the different characteristics of the recipients.
Or some people see gender discimination, I suppose.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Chris Elliott saying something “silly”? Why I’m SHOCKED. 🙂

    But, hey, he actually gets paid for his travel “insight.” Which is more than many of us manage to do. So I guess he’s not half the fool he often appears to be.

    As to the subject, of course it makes sense for the travel companies to mine all that frequent flyer/stay data they have and construct individual strategies to get you to spend some more money with them. It would be foolhardy not to.

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