Dr. Sam’s is a simple, no-fuss skincare brand created by Dr. Sam Bunting with her 20+ years of expertise. After years of working in her own clinic, Dr. Sam was motivated to fill a gap in the market she noticed: solutions for problematic skin that were simple, effective, and affordable. In 2018, she launched the brand with her award-winning Flawless Cleanser. 

Since then, the brand has grown into a holy grail staple for acne-prone customers worldwide. With a purposefully limited range of products that target specific issues, customers feel confident instead of overwhelmed when shopping on Dr. Sam’s website.  

As customers continued discovering the brand online through social media, press, or by word of mouth, a strong community took shape. It was time to start rewarding this community for its loyalty.

“Loyalty is integral to our business. Good skin habits deserve great rewards!” 

- Sarah Wimpenny, Sr. Ecommerce Manager at Dr. Sam's

We sat down with Sarah Wimpenny, Sr. Ecommerce Manager, to learn more about how Dr. Sam’s customer loyalty program has evolved over time. 

“We introduced our loyalty program in 2019 as a means to appreciate and reward our loyal customers,” Sarah explains. “As a brand, we recognized the value of building long-term relationships with our customers and wanted to provide them with an opportunity to earn points on their purchases.” 

Over the past 5 years, Dr. Sam’s has modified its loyalty program in some pretty big ways and has achieved even bigger results.

Key takeaways:

  • Dr. Sam’s migrated its loyalty program to Smile.io with support and ease. 
  • Smile.io enabled a tiered VIP program based on customers’ historical annual spend.
  • Dr. Sam’s ran a successful program launch email campaign using Klaviyo. 
  • The Smile.io program achieved a 98.71% redemption rate in its first week, earning  £25,000+ in Smile-Generated Value. 

Migrating a loyalty program to Smile.io with support

After using another loyalty program provider for several years, Dr. Sam’s was unsatisfied with its program’s performance. Frustrated with its current program’s engagement rates and price, the team decided to make the switch to Smile.io. 

With Smile.io, Dr. Sam’s wanted to maintain the core program features and add a VIP program to enhance its program even further. Dr. Sam’s wanted to add a VIP program in Smile.io based on historical annual spend to reward customers’ lifetime loyalty. This involved transferring point balances and VIP status for its 150,000+ customers across its UK and US websites. 

Our team of loyalty experts worked closely with Dr. Sam’s to make this possible and straightforward. Working in tandem each step of the way, the onboarding process involved:

  1. Configuring a branded program in Smile.io.
  2. Setting up a hidden VIP program in their former loyalty provider based on annual spend. 
  3. Exporting customer loyalty data from their old loyalty provider.
  4. Importing the data on points balances and VIP tiers into Smile.io
  5. Deactivating their former loyalty program.
  6. Activating Smile.io 
A screenshot of Dr. Sam’s Flawless rewards rewards program explainer page with multiple calls to action to join the program. 
Dr. Sam’s Flawless Rewards refreshed loyalty program explainer page.

It’s clear that a lot of work went into this loyalty program migration, spanning the course of a week. But with Smile.io, Dr. Sam’s executed it flawlessly and with ease.  

“At Dr Sam’s, we had a seamless experience from the initial discovery call to integration and ongoing support. The process has been efficient and straightforward. The Smile.io team consistently provides responsive assistance through email and chat support, ensuring any queries or concerns are promptly addressed.”

Introducing a tiered VIP program with Smile.io 

One of the biggest elements of Dr. Sam’s new loyalty program launch was introducing a VIP program to reward its most loyal customers. 

“We have developed a three-tier loyalty program that incentivizes customers based on their spending with Dr. Sam's. As customers spend more, they earn a higher number of points per pound or dollar spent.” 

Customers work their way through Enthusiast, Expert, and Pro tiers, earning more exclusive rewards and perks along the way. Dr. Sam’s top customers who spend more than £500 annually unlock access to monthly giveaways, product development testing panels, and VIP-only events.   

A screenshot of a chart from Dr. Sam’s website showing its VIP tiers and the associated rewards and perks of each. The 3 tiers are Enthusiast as an entry tier, Expert for over £200, and Pro for over £500.
Dr. Sam’s new VIP tiers using Smile.io. 

“Customers can also earn points by sharing their experiences through written or photo reviews. Points are then converted into cash rewards that can be redeemed on our website. As customers progress to higher tiers within our program, we reward them by offering full-size gifts as a token of appreciation,” Sarah further explains.

A branded email launch campaign powered by Klaviyo 

Along with the program migration and new VIP program, Dr. Sam’s layered in marketing campaigns to promote the launch, including a design refresh of its rewards program explainer page and a matching branded email launch campaign. 

A screenshot of Dr. Sam’s email launch campaign with a header of someone applying skincare products and text reading: Loyalty is getting a makeover!
Dr. Sam’s sent a loyalty program launch email campaign using Klaviyo.

There’s so much to love about this loyalty program email launch campaign:

  • A branded look and tone
  • Dynamic content based on the customer’s status (VIP tier, point balance, rewards available)
  • An easy-to-understand explanation of the VIP program
  • A motivating teaser of the next available tier’s benefits
  • Multiple calls to action throughout the email with deep links

By leveraging integrations with Smile.io, Dr. Sam’s has built an ecommerce app stack that functions cohesively. Integrating with Klaviyo for its email and SMS marketing allowed them to ship this email launch campaign. 

“Smile’s integration with Klaviyo allows us to create specific segments based on customer loyalty status so we can accurately target our audience. The integration also syncs their number of points and tier name so we can upsell and send relevant messaging in our campaigns.”

A simple email was enough to drive customers back to the store to spend the points they may have forgotten about. 

Immediate value in one week with Smile.io

By successfully migrating, configuring, and promoting its new loyalty program, Dr. Sam’s achieved incredible results in its first week with Smile.io. In the first 7 days, Dr. Sam’s program earned a 98.71% redemption rate and over £25,000 in Smile-Generated Value (orders with a Smile.io rewards code).

Dr. Sam’s achieved a 98.71% redemption rate in its first week with Smile.io. 

These astronomical metrics resulted from Dr. Sam’s fully understanding its customers, designing a program that values them accordingly, and promoting the program effectively.

A flawless loyalty program re-launch

We couldn’t have executed a better loyalty program re-launch if we tried. Dr. Sam’s ticked all the boxes with the migration of its Flawless Rewards program:

  • A smooth transition from loyalty providers to maintain an optimal customer experience. 
  • Adding a VIP program that rewards loyal customers right off the bat. 
  • Designing a branded explainer page to answer all customer questions. 
  • Promoting the loyalty program re-launch via email to engage and re-engage customers. 
  • Capturing immediate value with Smile.io with a 98.71% redemption rate in 1 week. 

Updating your loyalty program can seem intimidating, but here at Smile.io, we’re here to support you every step of the way.   

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