Author: Christopher Ratcliff

Christopher Ratcliff

Christopher was the Deputy Editor at Econsultancy. He runs pop culture site Methods Unsound and you can hound him on Twitter @Christophe_Rock.

Seven customer experience case studies that generated loyalty and ROI

Delighting the consumer is the number one priority for all customer-facing companies.

Right now, consumers have never had more choice, but when there’s an endless array of businesses offering similar products and services, how does any company stand out from the crowd?

By offering a personalised, relevant and completely human relationship that goes far beyond a single ecommerce transaction. 

A whole lifetime relationship between a customer and a company can be fostered under the customer experience (CX) banner, but this kind of loyalty can’t exist without first shaping a sustainable consumer-centric culture and delivering them compelling experiences.

Join us at our Festival of Marketing, a two-day celebration of the modern marketing industry held in November, where we have an entire stage devoted to CX so you can learn how successful marketers optimise experiences to increase satisfaction and loyalty.

In the meantime, let's take a look at some other useful case studies.

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What makes the Adidas basket abandonment emails so good?

When compared to its sporting goods rivals Adidas has a rather lacklustre ecommerce site.

There’s a lack of personalisation, there are no multichannel return options, delivery options are non-existent and the free delivery minimum spend is exceptionally high. All this plus a rather clunkily designed site mean that Adidas needs to up its game when it comes to ecommerce.

That being said, since exploring the site one week ago, I’ve found that Adidas is doing excellent work in the field of email marketing, in particular basket abandonment emails. Let’s take a little journey into my inbox…


Spectacular and other over-hyperbolised things we found on the internet this week

All the best stuff from the internet we found this week, presented in an easily digestible form.

Think of us like a mother sparrow and you as our hungry little sparrow babies while we lovingly regurgi… no I refuse to carry with that metaphor. Apologies.

Here’s the weekly round-up. I guarantee nothing featured here has passed through any of our digestive systems.


Eight brands scaring your pants off this Halloween

Better lock the doors, turn off all the lights and cling to your favourite comfort blanket, Halloween is getting closer.

Whether on video, social, or just giving their website a spooky little makeover, brands are doing some fittingly disturbing things this year.

Here’s a round-up of some of my favourites.


A thoroughly entertaining beginner’s guide to data and analytics

Confused by cross-channel analytics? Bewildered by big data? Stupefied by structured data?

Well I’m not surprised. Who wouldn’t be?

It’s a big world of complicated words, terms and phrases that can intimidate even the most digital savvy of webmasters wishing to dig deeper into the information their website has been quietly amassing over the last few years.

Help is at hand though, in the form of this very beginner's guide.

I have written it in the form of a glossary, as it seemed the clearest method of presentation. Not only is it alphabetical but it should also make logical sense if you read it in order.

This is for anyone whose had a rudimentary glance at Google Analytics, or spent a little time in the Site Stats of their WordPress site, or has a copy of our Measurement and Analytics Report but has yet to open it. 

We call these people the intrigued but slightly baffled. Welcome, you’re in good company!


How five popular beer brands use Twitter ‘responsibly’

Alcohol advertising in the UK is subject to some of the most stringent rules in the world.

They place a particular emphasis on protecting young people. Alcohol ads must not be directed at people under 18 or contain anything that is likely to appeal to them by reflecting youth culture or by linking alcohol with irresponsible behaviour, social success or sexual attractiveness.

These mandatory rules, as independently regulated by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) apply across all media, whether offline or online.

Which brings us to social media. How does an alcoholic beverage brand successfully run a social media channel, full of appealing content and personal engagement while sticking to the right side of the regulations?

Lets take a look at some of the most popular brands in the UK.


18 reasons to love Virgin’s BLAH Airlines content marketing campaign

Every once in a while a campaign comes along that just puts a massive smile on this churlish blog team’s face. 

Virgin America is having an excellent year in the digital world. In June it managed to turn the process of booking a flight into a joyous process with its brand new website (as thoroughly documented in Ben Davis’s 30 little things I love about the new Virgin America website).

It’s also excelling itself in the world of social video. I'm a huge fan of its branded Instavids.

This week sees the launch of a gigantic multichannel, world-building content campaign that is as hilarious as it is inventive. It’s also kind of boring and an expert lesson in what not to do on almost every digital channel in existence. 

Welcome to BLAH Airlines. Here's why it's so brilliant.


What are Rich Pins and how can you use them?

Pinterest marketing for retailers has gotten a whole lot more interesting.

Quite simply, Rich Pins offer more details than your standard Pinterest pins, therefore making them more useful.

If you’re a retailer you can include product information such as real-time pricing, stock availability and direct links to the product page.

Rich Pins are a very similar concept to ‘rich snippets’.  If you’re already aware of ‘rich snippets’ then you’re half way to understanding Rich Pins.

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What is customer experience and how do you measure it?

Can you even measure it? Taken at face value, customer experience (CX) seems like a rather intangible term, one that you'd think could only be referred to anecdotally.

"I visited a website, I found what I was looking for, I purchased the item, I received it. All went smooth enough without any kind of hiccup or annoyance."

You could therefore say I had a good customer experience, but how does a retailer or service provider really know?

We’ve just launched a fantastic series of briefings called Masters of CX which are all free to download and cover a range of topics written by six industry experts. 

My question above however goes right back to basics…


Your one-stop shop for rampant distraction

All the best things we found online this week that we felt were okay enough (i.e. ‘not too offensive’) to share with the rest of our beloved readers.

Come back after midnight when things gets a little ‘racier’.

Disclaimer: you will need a secret password to enter after midnight. The password will be revealed to you as soon as you’ve shared this post on five of your social networks.

If you look under 34 years old we will ask for ID. Please note that if ID or social sharing can’t be proved we do accept millionaire shortbread by way of bribe.



Death to the trailer: the 10 most shared movie promos of the last 12 months

Cinema ticket sales are down 8.8% in the US alone this year so it’s becoming increasingly vital for movie studios to use online video to drive box office numbers.

However it’s not just about uploading a trailer to YouTube and sitting back and and waiting for the views to rack up months prior to a release date. Almost half of a trailer’s shares are achieved in the first 24 hours of upload.

In fact the most shared promotional content for a film isn’t even just the standard trailer anymore. It’s other more innovative and intriguing types of movie marketing content like prankvertising, music videos or standalone short films relating to the movie.

The good news is that one in three people would buy a cinema ticket after watching an online trailer or ad. The internet has become the key arena where the attentions of cinemagoers are fought for, however as it gets increasingly crowded and box office figures continue to drop, studios will have to work even harder to improve their strategy.

Unruly has just published some research on the current state of online movie marketing. Here’s a look at some of the stats and advice contained within.


Nike vs. Adidas: which provides the best ecommerce experience?

Lace up your sneakers, put your sweat bands through the washing machine, make a pitiful attempt at a couple of lunges and let’s go for a run.

Don’t worry, I’ll catch you up later. I just have some work to finish around… this… uh… hot-dog.

Nike is the world’s most valuable sports brand according to Forbes. It has a market value of $71bn, $19bn of which is estimated to be pure brand value. Nike also commands 62% of the US athletic footwear market.

Impressive stuff, but what of its nearest sporting rival Adidas? Has it been left puffing and wheezing, meters behind its striding opponent as it desperately rummages around its kit bag looking for an inhaler?