#254: Loyalty Innovation in the Railway Industry

Today’s episode discusses the increasing need for customer loyalty in the railway industry for the first time!

Renfe is the leading train company in Spain, carrying over 500 million passengers a year and at 80 years old, they are facing new challenges as a business, with increasing competition not only from cars and flights as in the past, but also now from two new rail operators.

Our interview is with Javier Marin Martinon, Chief Commercial, Loyalty, and Customer Officer, who shares some great ideas that Renfe has already launched for members of its loyalty program – designed to be simple and exciting to understand even when they are sometimes quite difficult behind the scenes to deliver!

A great case study and an example of how to learn about loyalty from other industries to create compelling strategies for your own business needs.

Show Notes:

1) Javier Marin Martinon, Chief Commercial, Loyalty, and Customer Officer

2) Renfe

3) Más Renfe

Audio Transcript

Welcome to Let’s Talk Loyalty, an industry podcast for loyalty marketing professionals. I’m your host, Paula Thomas. And if you work in loyalty marketing, join me every week to learn the latest ideas from loyalty specialists around the world.


This show is brought to you by The Loyalty and Awards Conference, the leading annual event for loyalty professionals in the travel industry. Make sure to join us this year from the 10th to the 12th of October in Madrid. For the perfect mix of inspiring content and exciting awards. Check out loyaltyandawards.com for more information and to register.


Hello and welcome to an episode of Let’s Talk Loyalty, where we’re discussing loyalty for the first time in the railway industry. Ahead of the Loyalty and Awards Conference in Madrid in October this year, I met with Javier Marin Martinon, one of the keynote speakers, to learn all about his role as Chief Commercial Loyalty and Customer Officer for Renfe Trains.


Renfe is the leading train company in Spain. A company that’s already over 80 years old and now operates the world’s second-largest network of high-speed trains after China. Carrying over 500 million passengers a year, Javier explained some of the challenges facing the business for the very first time with increasing competition, not only from cars and flights as in the past but now also from two new rail operators.


Javier shared some effective ideas that Renfe has already launched for members its loyalty program. Designed to be simple and exciting, to understand, even when they’re sometimes quite difficult behind the scenes to deliver. I hope you enjoy listening to my conversation with Javier all about driving loyalty and increased rail travel for Renfe.


So Javier, welcome to Let’s Talk Loyalty. 


Hello, Paula. Very nice to be with you today. 


Yes, I know. You’ve been listening to my show a few times as well, Javier haven’t you?


Yes. Uh, I, I have to say that I’m, uh, listening to your podcast, uh, almost every weekend and this is the day that I’m using to, to do some exercise and to do some things cooking or whatever and when, while I’m doing so I’m trying to listen something on podcast.


Aw, thank you for listening. Um, and, and you’re absolutely right. I think what I like about this format from my own perspective is it’s nice and passive. So I can do two things at one time. I feel very efficient. I feel like I’m learning and cooking or cleaning or whatever at the same time. So, uh, yeah. So thank you for that. So I’m super excited to hear all about Renfe. Um, I am actually very passionate about trains in general, and I keep looking for the longest train journeys I could possibly book myself on. So I have to confess I haven’t, uh, done too much as yet, but, um, I know there’s some extraordinary work that you’re doing there in the Spanish market and there’s lots of change going on as well. So we’re gonna talk about the role of loyalty. I guess, in, uh, trains for the first time. So very exciting from my side. So to kick us off Javier, as you know, we always start by asking about a favorite loyalty program. And I think you mentioned you might have two favorite loyalty programs. You’re gonna tell us about today. Yeah? 


Yeah, that’s right. I’m two very different, uh, loyalty programs. Okay. But both of them, I am using them a lot. I could say one of them is Amazon Prime. I mean, because at least, uh, well, probably this is the one I use more. Okay. And I believe that this program was very disruptive at some time as a paid loyalty program. Yep. And also it’s value for. It’s really high. And as a consumer I’m member of this program, I feel that it pushed me somehow to buy more at Amazon instead of in other retailers. Yeah. And I still feel that the value for money is quite good and even they are increasing for every year. So this could be the, the first of the programs and then the second one, which is completely Different. Uh, could be the Carrefour Club, in Spain, this is one of the biggest retailers in Spain, and this is a very traditional, uh, loyalty program with cashback in every purchase, but the way that they are taking care of every communication to the members, the, um, They’re trying to create, or to be like community with their members. They have already 8 million members in Spain and we have to take account that Spain has around 50 million inhabitants. So there’s a huge percentage of people in Spain using this program and is like a very familiar, a very close, uh, problem to everybody, so both of them would be my favorite one. Yeah.


Yeah. Both. Excellent examples, Javier, uh, certainly Amazon Prime has been mentioned before. I think we’re all, you know, very comfortable when the, you know, small, monthly fee comes out and, yeah, it’s funny because I do remember the first time I was thinking about all of this recurring revenue and how incredible it was, what they had managed to convince everybody to pay this, uh, monthly fee. And in my, you know, initial thinking, you know, and you’ll appreciate this as a commercial officer. The first thing that occurred to me was this was, you know, all new revenue, but actually, I did read that, of course, Amazon used to charge very high, you know, shipping fees for every single individual parcel. So, In fact, the reality I believe is that they gave up a lot more revenue initially, um, replaced it with this kind of fixed monthly fee. But obviously, the commercial rationale is that increased spend in terms of much more frequency of purchase. So every single product now, like, I don’t know about you, but for me, I might only need an in cartridge today and before I might have waited to go and order later together or something now, every single thing I need, I just immediately order it. It’s with me the next day, probably. And yeah, it’s incredibly, um, efficient and powerful. 


Yeah. And the mindset of the consumer, for example, when you are, um, asking for some product. The the free shipping is, is really convenient because yeah. Otherwise in case of being paying, I don’t know, five or six euros. Yeah. Which is well, is not so high, but it’s like more convenient to pay, uh, yeah. A fixed amount and not to have to pay in each and every order.


Yeah, for sure. And I also believe from a, I suppose, a psychology point of view, particularly in times of let’s say, you know, recession or global crisis, you know, something that’s predictable, the customers, I think really value it a lot more because you know, it’s something we feel we have a little bit more control over perhaps than we wouldn’t normally have. 


Yeah, sure. For sure. I mean, and, and also because, well, when you are considering to buy something, as you have already paid for this, uh, loyalty, some cost. Yeah. Also so, well, uh, if you have to pay one, two euros more or whatever it is, it makes sense because you will already, uh, you are already paying for the membership. 


Yeah. Yeah. Super powerful. Yeah. And the other one Careffour, absolutely sounds like a, a really, really well-executed program as well, Javier. So we’ll have to try and get them on Let’s Talk Loyalty at some point, we haven’t spoken to Carrefour in the past, but listen, let’s move on the train industry. I know it’s something that, uh, is also fairly new for you. I did see a very strong background in management consulting and the cruise industry. Another one of course, very close to my heart is somebody who loves to travel. But I think you’re fairly new to take on direct responsibility for a loyalty program. Am I right? 


Yes, I, I was for 20 years working, as you said, in management consultancy, and also in the cruise industry, and just in January 2021, I joined Renfe, which is the main rail operator in Spain. And I’m trying to learn every day, something new about the rail industry and there is a lot of things in, in well, uh, and a lot of history in this company that already has 80 years, so.


Wow. Okay. Lots of, a lot of history and legacy and nostalgia. So, what is the journey with loyalty then for Renfe? Um, I mean, has it been around for a long time? Tell us a little bit about the program and its evolution so far.


Yeah. Well, the origin of, I could say that the loyalty in this, in, in our company probably could be in 20-25 years ago when someone decided to do, uh, a paid loyalty program. Indeed. 


Wow. Amazing.


I mean, it was, yeah, it was a card called Golden Card. Okay. And it is for senior people. Okay. And you are paying an annual fee and you will get 25% discount. Okay. So they were paying in advance for this discount. So what they were doing well, it was in every trip. They were planning, always the train was in the top of their mind because they have already paid for this, this program. And this is very powerful for us. We have, uh, around 2 million people now, uh, already with, with this program paying for it. And then, we did the same with the young people, uh, up to, uh, well, uh, 25 years old and they were able also to pay for an annual fee of 50 Euro and they will get a, a 30, uh, percent discount in each and every trip. So it was very convenient. And then some years later I will say, well, uh, around, um, 10 years ago. Well, no, actually 15 years ago they started with a small loyalty program when Spain launches their first high-speed train in 1992. Okay. Uh, so 30 years ago. Nice. Uh, And now 30 years later, we are, we have the second largest high-speed network in the world just behind China. Amazing. Um, yeah. Yeah. It’s, it’s very convenient in Spain because it’s, and every city, almost every destination is connected in less than two and a half hours from Madrid. So it’s, it’s very nice. And you can go in, uh, train by 300 kilometers per hour is more or less 186 miles per hour. So, uh, at some point with this high-speed train, uh, well we started a program, uh, only for this, uh, high-speed train called, uh, Ave in Spain, which means high-speed train of Spain. Okay. Um, And well, it was increasing and increasing and it started to be applied to the rest of the, to the, uh, trains that we are operating and well, it was. Uh, it was used, but, um, as we were the only rail operators, I mean, we were not, uh, very, very active, uh, trying to promote it. And well, it was more reactive, uh, uh, marketing using with it. And now since last year, we are facing a completely new scenario. So we are com uh, facing the newest scenario in Spain. When, uh, we have more operators of the rail industry. We have competitors now. Okay. So as it happened 50 years ago in the, In, in the airline industry in us. Yeah. We are facing the same situation and we are using the same, uh, levers that somebody, uh, took 50 years allowing US. Yeah. And we are using the loyalty program as a, a key pillar or a clever for competing and for making the travelers to stay with us and to, to travel with us instead of any other option. 


Yeah, I was going to say, and I was just, as you were explaining that, Javier, thank you very much for the explanation you’re absolutely right. The industry clearly is being disrupted there in terms of the amount of train, uh, competition that that’s going to come through. But I guess you do already compete with other forms of transport, Uh, first and foremost, um, cars are probably the first one that you have to compete against on a regular basis, maybe for intercity travel. Um, I guess airlines then, and I said to you, before we came on air, I’m hoping to get to Amsterdam on the way to, uh, the loyalty and awards conference in Madrid. And I would love to go by train if I could do it. Um, it seems in that situation, I might have to fly, but it is definitely, um, a big challenge to convince people, I think, to take the train sometimes, you know, um, when they often have their own car and that’s sometimes just the default behavior. Is that fair to say in Spain? 


Yes. I will say that you are completely right. I mean, uh, for sure we were competing with other, uh, types of transports, uh, private car is, uh, is a more, most popular of course. Yeah. And well, it, we are trying to get more people on train because of, uh, a lot of things. And also because of sustainability, because, well, we are the most sustainable, uh, way of transport and, and then also then with buses and airlines. Okay. But with airlines probably we were competing at some point, but then in those route that we are competing with an airline, we are, taking probably 70% of, uh, passengers there. So, wow. We are more powerful than airlines in the, in the domestic route for, so what we are doing is, well, they are competitors for sure, but they are also partners.

So for example, if you want to travel from Amsterdam to Málaga or to Soria or to Valencia, you can use a product that we are launching now with Iberia, for example, with the main airline in Spain, that you can take the, the flight from Amsterdam to Madrid and then the train from Madrid to, uh, another city and it’s only one ticket’s. It’s only one, uh, travel experience. Okay. So we are, we are, we have a partnership to, to. To increase the mobility of the people. Okay. Uh, and we are doing the, the, the short haul of the domestic trips and they are doing the long haul trips.


Lovely, lovely. And I loved the point about sustainability as well, Javier, because I think you told me that all of your trains are actually electric trains, yeah? 


Yes, we, our high-speed trains, they are electric trains. We are using a hundred percent, uh, renewable energy. So, Renfe is the first, uh, consumer in a Spain of, uh, electricity. And, and we are saving, uh, uh, well, millions of tons in CO2. Yeah. Uh, we are well, uh, the equivalent to 15, million inhabitants of what 15 million habitats are producing in CO2. Wow. So this is, uh, very nice. And I mean, and in this time that most of us, we are. Um, trying to reduce our footprint and, and trying to, to, to help others. Well, this is, uh, uh, a very good point for everybody. Yeah, 


Definitely. Definitely. And you quoted some wonderful numbers as well. Javier, I’d love you to share them with the audience. I suppose on both sides. First of all, you know, your kind of passenger numbers on an annual basis is incredibly impressive. And then I know you’ve been, um, in this loyalty role as chief commercial officer. Um, for, for, I think it’s just over a year now, as you said, since, uh, early 2021, and you’ve managed to grow the loyalty base significantly as well in that time. So maybe it shares, just, uh, give us a sense of the scale of the business and the program. 


Yes. Well, the business is, is, is really high. I mean, I was amazed when I was in the data because we are moving every year before the pandemic, uh, in 2019, for example, we were moving in all the Renfe trains uh, more than 500 million passengers. Wow. So that is a lot of passengers. Yeah, for sure in this figure, we are including the commuters. And if we are taking out the commuters, we are moving, uh, around 55 million passengers every year. So, uh, with this number of passengers, opportunity is great for us because we have a huge opportunity to make these people to, um, be part of our program and to increase our database. Okay? so this is something that we were doing since the first day. And, well, the first goal for me in this program was well let’s capture every passenger, every traveler that we have with us let’s make him or her, uh, part of our community, our family of  Más Renfe. So we are having now, uh, well, since, uh, I would say last 12 months. Um, we have increased around 800,000, uh, members in this program. Okay. So this is a, a huge figure. Yeah. And this is very great because, well, we are seeing that we are increasing every month, uh, our database or our community with, uh, five times more people that what we used to have in the previous months of some changes in communication and in the brand that we were carrying out. And also because, uh, well, um, This is normal because in some months ago we were under the pandemic and it means also three times more than what we used to have before the pandemic. So well, people is joining the program, which is great. Yes. Well done. And then we have this next challenges that is, uh, where we have to engage them in our program as well.


Yeah. So I think you said about two and a half million members now in the program. Yeah?


Yeah. We are all worried. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. So that’s very nice. Yeah. 


Super exciting. Yeah. So two and a half million members. Um, and you also have the paid program as well, as you mentioned, Javier. Yes. We have both that’s yeah, yeah with 2 million, one of them, the other one is less popular, let’s say. Okay. But, so we have, well, they’re not only in one program because they can serve both programs. Okay. But yeah, a lot of people, yeah. 


And tell me, is it, uh, a program, like, is it, would you say it’s digitally-led or is it more traditional in terms of a card based approach? Um, just love to get a sense of what the expectations are of Spanish consumers and, and passengers. 


Yeah. Well, we used to be, uh, not digital program. And now we are moving to a digital program. Okay. So, but we are mixing both approaches because for sure, we all the. Uh, purchases and activities can be, uh, done online. Yeah. Uh, there, there is a physical card for those who wants to have a physical card, but most of our, uh, community are using the password to have their card and to use them. Most of our communications are online, but then we are trying not to lose the offline. Okay. So we are trying to start some actions, take it, advantage that when some people is using our services probably is, or she’s going to be with us one hour and a half or two hours and a half. So we can mix both, uh, activities. So I would say that it’s a hybrid model. Which is very, yeah. Is very popular the hybrid model scene in all the jobs. Of course. So this is a hybrid model as well. 


Yeah, yeah, no, you’re absolutely right. So it sounds like there’s maybe membership forms on board to trains, is there? in order to encourage people when they have maybe a bit of downtime and you know, maybe they’ll register when they’re traveling is it?


Yes. Well, we are something that we were doing is to communicate in every step of the customer journey, uh, to those people that they were traveling with us. And they were not part of our program. The benefits of the program and the simplicity of being part of the program. So we are increasing these points. Okay. And then let’s say that, for example, for the, some actions that we are planning for some special dates, That will our crew on board will help us to make some activities to surprise our, uh, travelers, our customers and to make something that, well, probably in some special days, they are awaiting for some online messages, but let’s try to do something offline as well.


Okay. In terms of, uh, rewards and, and, uh, recognition for the members? 


Or emotional communications. 


Okay. Okay. Can you give us an example of, of what you’re thinking? 


Well, for example, something that we are launching right now is that, well, when you, when it’s your, uh, your birthday. Okay. Yeah. Well, eh, normally you will receive, uh, on your email some days before some gift for you in terms of, uh, points or, or rewards or whatever. But if you are traveling with us in some of our trains, well maybe we, we will give you in person like a gift. Okay. So we are not, it’s not going to be a. A very, um, special gift. Only a detail. Okay. Yeah. Yeah. But we want them to know that, uh, we are taking care of them and we are very happy to share that special day with us. And this is something we, uh, that we want to start to increase and to go and to mix both approaches the, the, the physical and, and the, online. 


That sounds very operationally challenging Javier, because, I’m thinking about, you know, I, I don’t think I’ve ever flown on my birthday, for example. So, um, I’m not necessarily aware of what the airlines, if they do anything, for example, if they know that it’s actually your birthday, maybe for the top, top, top tier, perhaps that I’m not a member of, maybe it happens there, but, um, it sounds like you’re actually proactively looking for that data, looking for people traveling of the day is that you’re saying and, uh. yeah. Yeah. Wow.


Exactly. Yeah. So as you say, this very challenging in terms of operation, but yeah, this is something that I really believe that, this will be a, a well moment. Yeah. And the cost itself is not going to be very super high. So it’s more emotional than, uh, the investment itself. 


It’s it’s very powerful. And I think you’ve used the right word, Javier. I think it is a wow, because it does require, you know, you or, or, you know, whoever is, is doing this thinking I’m guessing it is you to, to literally have that intention to, to look for the data, find the opportunity to wow. The customer build the operational solution around it and then execute, and I think, you know, consumers are pretty savvy these days and they realize that that’s actually very complex to do at such scale, you know, with what did we say, two and a half million members and 500 million passenger journeys, you know, to, to actually marry up the two pieces of data and deliver something in the moment is, is super impressive.


Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. It’s it, it is taking some time to prepare and to develop the action. So it is not easy, but, well, this is one of, of these actions and then we, we will try to, to do some next steps and yeah. Something new. 


Yeah, of course. So what other rewards then is part of the Renfe Program? Javier for, you know, I guess it’s an earn and burn proposition. Is it with a, with a, a miles or a points currency? 


Yes, this is, uh, well, the origin of the problem is earn and burn points. Uh, so it’s classical, uh, program in the travel industry, I would say. and then of course, we are trying to give some benefits. You need to step up the, um, journey let’s say. So we are giving, depending on the tier, uh, some benefits like the free parking in the training stations, like access to the VIP launches in the stations as well, some free upgrades as well, some free tickets, uh, for them just to, uh, well, have the chance to provide, uh, a card with, uh, one of these, uh, well of the upper tier. Cool. to another person, if, for example, your Platinum or Gold member with us, so, yeah, this is some of the points that we are, uh, trying to facilitate. And then from this point, we are trying to increase and to extend the benefits to all the parts of the, of the journey let’s say, and, uh, or the trip. Okay. So not just in the train, but also in some other points of their experience. 


Can you give us an example of that one? 


Yes, for example, uh, this is something that, uh, well, as I was saying before, the first step with our program was to, to enhance the people, to be members of the program. Yeah. And the next step is to engage people for being member of our program. So, we were already defining all the benefits and those, uh, were part of our benefits. And now, as I was saying, we are extending them to. Other parts of the trip. So for example, we are reaching an agreement, uh, an Alliance with, uh, Hard Rock Hotel in Madrid. Hard Rock is, uh, located, uh, very close to the main station in Madrid. So, just 300 meters away from the train station. So, all those members from our program, they will have also some special experiences or benefits if they are using this hotel. Okay. for example, they will, when they arrive at the hotel, they will have a special line for them. uh, but also they will have a free drink, uh, during their stay or they will have early check-in or late check-out if they want to use it, or they will have a special welcome in their, um, rooms when they’re arriving. So it’s to try to extend the experience that we are trying to deliver in our trains also to the hotel so we can, um, control at some point the experience also, um, Uh, on the hotel and this is some of the points. And then also we are working with museums, for example, the Prado Museum, which is, uh, now very popular, at least in Spain, because, all the prime ministers were having dinner last week during the NATO gala. So we are having some special benefits for all of our, uh, family of Más Renfe family there. That they will have priority access to the museum. And then, well, we are trying also to have some special experiences for our members in some musicals, some souls theaters, all the culture sided is very important for us. Yeah, 


Lovely. lovely. So sounds like a partnership strategy coming through Javier. And I can imagine for a brand like Hard Rock Hotel in Madrid, I’m sure it’s an amazing opportunity for them. Obviously, they’ve got the proximity, so it’s perfect for you guys as well, but I guess you are going to be encouraging your passengers to stay in that hotel because you know, they’ll have an optimized premium, I guess, um, you know, end to end experience if they do, you know, across the two, the two partner brands.


Yeah, there is a quote. I love quotes. There is a quote that say that “if you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far together.” Yeah. So this is the approach that we, we are taking. We want to go far. I would love to go far fast. Yeah. But this is not very easy. Yeah, we are. Well, we are going to go far. Yes. So we are going to go together. 


Wonderful. Wonderful. And you compared, I suppose, where the train industry is right now, um, to where the airlines were maybe 30, 40 years ago in terms of dramatic competition being introduced for the first time. And obviously one of the big, uh, revenue models for airline loyalty is of course co-brand cards. So do you think there’s opportunities for Renfe in Spain to, uh, to go that direction perhaps as well? 


Yeah, this is one of the steps that we were doing. Well, some years ago we launched our American Express Co-brand Card. Okay. And it was quite successful, I could say. Uh, but well, sometimes, some people they are not considering American Express because they are, I don’t know, using any the other type of cards. So while we are extending the options, For them. And now just, uh, one month ago we also launched, uh, MasterCard, uh, card. Okay. With, uh, one of the main banks in Spain. Okay. Uh, so this is, uh, well, uh, a challenge for us and the ideas I was saying is well, once we have, uh, all these people on board, let’s make them to, to, uh, get some points to earn points, not only with their trips but also with, uh, their ordinary life. Yeah. And this is the idea that, uh, in each and every purchase, I mean, we can, and we will have a lot of partnerships with, uh, some companies to earn, and burn points, for sure. but co-brands will give us the opportunity to earn points in each and every purchase. So this is. Yeah. On top of any strategy here.


Yeah. Yeah. Makes perfect sense. Um, sounds like there is some education required for Spanish consumers. I don’t think this model is as well established perhaps in Spain as it might be in other countries, um, from what I’m hearing. So definitely a huge opportunity for you guys. And you mentioned to me as well, Javier, that you are looking, um, around the world, I guess at global best practice, particularly in the airline industry, uh, given how many similarities there are.

And I’m guessing there’s probably some good loyalty programs in the rail industry around the world. Although I’m guessing, I think Virgin Trains might have launched something in the UK if I’m not mistaken, but are there other examples of loyalty programs in the rail industry that you’re paying attention to and following?


Yeah. Most of them, I would say in Europe, at least, uh, most of them, they have their own loyalty program. Okay. Uh, some of them more complex or not, uh, there are some of them, for example, in the Czech Republic with Leo Express, which is a medium company that they have a, the small club that, uh, well, I like it a lot. I think they’re doing a very great job. but also the Swedish company they’re having a, a good program or Italo Train on Italy. So there are a lot of companies doing some good things. but not only in the rail industry, because I think that, well, as I was saying here in, um, In Spain. I, I like a lot, uh, the Carrefour Club and this is nothing to do with our industry. They are retailers and, we are transport companies. So, but you can take some lessons from them and also try to apply, apply it in our program. So. This is, uh, the same in the international field that we can learn a lot, uh, from any industry. 


Well, that’s exactly the reason that we’re all going to the loyalty and awards conference in Madrid, I guess. Huh? 


Yes, at least this is my purpose of, of being there to try to learn. 


Well, well, you know, I’m here to support them as well, so we’ll give them a nice plug there. Um, I’m definitely looking forward to it. I learned a lot at the conference in Dubai last year, so, so tell me, uh, what is the future of loyalty for Renfe? Would you say Javier? Um, or are you waiting till you, you go to the conference and find all the new ideas before you decide the next step? 


Well, I have my team with a lot of workers streams open. Okay. But I will I will summarize them in only one, uh, with, well, actually in two, uh, I would say that first of, uh, the strategies will be simplicity. Okay, so simplicity is the, you made sophistication, said Leonard Da Vinci. Yeah. So this is the point I’m. I mean, while some companies in the travel industry, they’re using a currency that you will never know what is the cost of each point? Yeah. Or the value of each point. And then you have blackouts and everything. We are very simple. I mean, you have 10 points and that means one Euro and you can spend them on every date, on every train, in every fair, whatever. So it’s simple. Yeah, probably, uh, they are getting more money with the programs than us, but I would love to go to the simplicity because I think when people is understanding better, the problem, they will use it more.


Definitely. And then the second point would be partnerships. So simplicity and partnerships and partnerships will help us to go far as I was saying, and to increase the value of the program. I mean, we have a very good, um, opportunity with us because in our industry, people is earning points in their business life, in their business trips, that they can use in their personal, uh, uh, life. Yeah. So this is a very good opportunity. Yeah, but not only with that, we want them to use our, uh, Renfe points as a currency to, uh, spending for, of course with us, but in any other industry in the day by day, uh, program and with the, the favorite program, uh, for most of our members.


Wow. So what I think I’m hearing there as well then is that you’re not looking for a lot of breakage. You’re actually encouraging redemption and hoping people will actually maximize the, the use of the points. Is it? 


This is, uh, one of the, the ideas on the KPIs that we are looking for, uh, uh, for sure, because we, we were facing a, uh, very high, uh, breakage during the pandemic. Yeah. Uh, we were, uh, keeping the same tier for, uh, our customers, but of course, we want them, uh, I mean, we don’t want to cheat them. So if we are giving them some rewards, we want them to use them because if they’re using them, if they are burning the points with us or with whoever, next time, they will have to make the decision of traveling. They will make the decision to travel with us. And this is the goal.


Totally totally. Well, I can see the excitement. I can hear the ambition. Um, and I, I think you’re very well prepared for this newly competitive landscape in the Spanish market, Javier. So that’s, uh, a wonderful story. Thank you for sharing all of your expertise. And I will look forward to hearing. Speaking at the event in Madrid. So, um, anybody who hasn’t already signed up I’m definitely of course, um, encouraging everybody there to go to the, the Loyalty and Awards.com website and thank them for introducing me to you. So, um, any more comments from the Renfe side Javier here before we wrap up?


No same than you. Thank you very much for inviting me to be in this podcast. And also, well, I hope to see you all, uh, all the industry in, in this Loyalty and Awards, uh, far that we are going to have for sure, a very good time, and we are going to share experiences and to learn so very willing to see you.


Looking forward. That’s amazing. Javier Marin Martinon, Chief Commercial Loyalty, and Customer Officer for Renfe in Spain. Thank you so much from Let’s Talk Loyalty. 


Thank you very much, Paula.


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