tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/ecrm Latest CRM & loyalty programs content from Econsultancy 2016-10-20T16:10:00+01:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/3008 2016-10-20T16:10:00+01:00 2016-10-20T16:10:00+01:00 Internet Statistics Compendium Econsultancy <p>Econsultancy’s <strong>Internet Statistics Compendium</strong> is a collection of the most recent statistics and market data publicly available on online marketing, ecommerce, the internet and related digital media. </p> <p><strong>The compendium is available as 11 main reports (in addition to a B2B report) across the following topics:</strong></p> <ul> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/advertising-media-statistics">Advertising</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/content-statistics">Content</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/customer-experience-statistics">Customer Experience</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/web-analytics-statistics">Data and Analytics</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/demographics-technology-adoption">Demographics and Technology Adoption</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/uk/reports/ecommerce-statistics">Ecommerce</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/email-ecrm-statistics">Email and eCRM</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/mobile-statistics">Mobile</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/search-marketing-statistics">Search</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/social-media-statistics">Social</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/strategy-and-operations-statistics">Strategy and Operations</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a title="B2B Internet Statistics Compendium" href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/b2b-internet-statistics-compendium">B2B</a></strong></li> </ul> <p>Updated monthly, each document is a comprehensive compilation of internet, statistics and online market research with data, facts, charts and figures.The reports have been collated from information available to the public, which we have aggregated together in one place to help you quickly find the internet statistics you need, to help make your pitch or internal report up to date.</p> <p>There are all sorts of internet statistics which you can slot into your next presentation, report or client pitch.</p> <p><strong>Those looking for B2B-specific data should consult our <a title="B2B Internet Statistics Compendium" href="http://econsultancy.com/reports/b2b-internet-statistics-compendium">B2B Internet Statistics Compendium</a>.</strong></p> <p> <strong>Regions covered in each document (where available) are:</strong></p> <ul> <li><strong>Global</strong></li> <li><strong>UK</strong></li> <li><strong>North America</strong></li> <li><strong>Asia</strong></li> <li><strong>Australia and New Zealand</strong></li> <li><strong>Europe</strong></li> <li><strong>Latin America</strong></li> <li><strong>MENA</strong></li> </ul> <p>A sample of the Internet Statistics Compendium is available for free, with various statistics included and a full table of contents, to show you what you're missing.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68326 2016-10-17T14:54:56+01:00 2016-10-17T14:54:56+01:00 Three brands succeeding in connecting online and offline experiences Ben Davis <h3>Topshop</h3> <p>Topshop's recent '<a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68305-runway-to-retail-how-fashion-brands-are-introducing-see-now-buy-now/">Retail to Runway</a>' initiative integrated London Fashion Week (LFW) with the retailer's stores and digital properties.</p> <p>For its young audience, Topshop is truly a multichannel experience (with <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66389-what-does-the-ideal-click-and-collect-service-look-like/">click and collect</a>, free WiFi in store, a social-enabled ecommerce app with barcode scanner), but Retail to Runway took this a step further.</p> <p>The launch played out as follows: </p> <ul> <li>Consumers could watch the Topshop catwalk show livestreamed on Topshop.com and on playback thereafter.</li> <li>Pieces from the show were available to buy immediately in selected stores, online and a pop-up showspace.</li> <li>The Topshop website ran plenty of editorial about LFW and allowed consumers to sign up for updates via email.</li> <li>The Topshop app provided notifications to users of all the LFW news.</li> </ul> <p>The merging of online and offline continues apace at Topshop, with the identity of the website (with its quick turnover of content and integrated social) matching the feel of the Topshop stores.</p> <p>Topshop plans to debut a 100% shoppable range at the next Fashion Week in February 2017, as it makes fashion ever more accessible, both online and offline.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9496/Screen_Shot_2016-09-23_at_16.54.29.png" alt="topshop unique" width="615" height="304"></p> <h3>Hilton</h3> <p>Whilst <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68375-airbnb-how-its-customer-experience-is-revolutionising-the-travel-industry/">Airbnb gets the plaudits in travel</a> for a unique UX including its peer review system, Hilton is fighting back.</p> <p>By adding functionality to the Hilton HHonors app, the hotelier is removing some of the more frustrating elements of using hotels.</p> <p>Users can choose a room in selected hotels and check in via the app, unlock rooms with their app's digital key, and book a cab via Uber.</p> <p>Customer service with a smile at the front desk can always be compromised in a busy period, but these app improvements help to empower customers to customise and control their own experiences, beyond the online booking journey.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9526/Screen_Shot_2016-09-23_at_17.33.24.png" alt="hilton app" width="615" height="622"> </p> <h3>Starbucks</h3> <p>It's easy to dismiss Starbucks as just another big brand example of great CX - don't they just have plenty of money to throw at digital technology?</p> <p>Such an attitude would do an immense disservice to a brand that has been at the forefront of online/offline experiences for a number of years.</p> <p>Starbucks was the first store to widely offer free Wi-Fi and is, of course, known for letting customers dwell (which has become the default for all coffee shops).</p> <p>The coffee giant nailed mobile payment &amp; loyalty early, with its app that uses a barcode system launching in 2009.</p> <p>A staggering 21% of US transactions take place via the app and in 2015 the brand launched <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66997-starbucks-new-click-collect-app-is-it-any-good/">click-and-collect coffee</a> for those that don't want to wait in line.</p> <p><em><a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-03-30/starbucks-takes-its-pioneering-mobile-phone-app-to-grande-level">Chart via Bloomberg</a></em></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9527/Screen_Shot_2016-09-23_at_18.31.18.png" alt="starbucks mobile sales at 21%" width="615" height="414"></p> <p>Starbucks' digital marketing reaches into stores, too. Just a few initiatives include: </p> <ul> <li>The brand has used location-based app notifications (seen below),</li> <li>Starbucks' famous music playlists are available exclusively to rewards members on Spotify, where users can suggest their own tracks for in-store.</li> <li>An active <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/topics/email-ecrm/">email marketing</a> and social media programme pushes seasonal specialities and offers to rewards members.</li> </ul> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/0789/Location-Based-Mobile-Marketing-Example.jpg" alt="starbucks notification" width="350"></p> <p>Overall, Starbucks' investment in stores (<a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67085-starbucks-new-london-digital-concept-store-puts-focus-on-customer-experience/">including concept stores</a>) is just as impressive as its investment in its digital capabilities, making it a truly multichannel brand.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68341 2016-09-30T11:45:26+01:00 2016-09-30T11:45:26+01:00 Reimagining customer loyalty: Why it's about more than just a store card Ben Pask <p>It comes as no surprise, as macro-economic forces drive customers to seek better value in some of the more considered purchases they make each day.</p> <p>However there are indications that the market for loyalty scheme membership, is reaching <a href="http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/money-saving-tips/11912823/Shoppers-waste-6bn-of-loyalty-reward-points.html">saturation</a>.</p> <p>How can it be the case that one person can amass 16 loyalty cards, and not redeem any points?</p> <p>Both halves of that sentence seem a little bonkers to me, but perhaps the way that the marketing industry imagines loyalty to be, isn’t solving the problem it’s trying to fix.</p> <p>Before going into detail on whether loyalty schemes work or not, it’s worth defining what we mean when we say loyalty.</p> <p>True loyalty considers two important elements: A positive attitude and repeat patronage towards a brand.</p> <p> <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9587/Dick_and_Basu.png" alt="Dick and Basu on Loyalty" width="359" height="218"></p> <p>To understand how to create loyalty, we need to understand where it comes from.</p> <p>In a recent piece of research, it was identified that the drivers of customer loyalty are ‘brand likeability’, ‘delivering on brand promise’, ‘product quality’ and ‘ease of use’.</p> <p>Four in five customers <a href="https://www.marketingweek.com/2016/07/13/are-loyalty-schemes-broken/">identified these elements</a> as important in driving customer devotion.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/9586/Chart_-_drivers_of_customer_loyalty.png" alt="Drivers of customer loyalty" width="549" height="326"></p> <p>A good example of creating customer loyalty through these drivers <a href="https://erply.com/case-study-how-you-can-copy-nordstroms-secrets-to-massive-retail-success/">comes from Nordstrom</a>. The retailer is synonymous with excellent customer service.</p> <p>The culture of a customer-first approach to loyalty is apparent through the company's DNA - with all staff embodying the three core standards:</p> <ol> <li>Why the service is of value (why we’re doing this in the first place).</li> <li>The emotional response the customer should feel.</li> <li>The expected method for accomplishing the service in question.</li> </ol> <p>With these three standards in place, employees are empowered to create great customer experience, by any means possible.</p> <p>This helps achieve some of the main components that drive loyalty - ‘quality’, ‘ease of use’, ‘likeability’ and ‘delivering on brand promise’.</p> <p>Nordstrom is successful because every decision is about encouraging an emotional response from the customer, simply to make them feel good.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/NTqBhdUnisI?wmode=transparent" width="640" height="360"></iframe></p> <p>This is a key differentiator compared to many of the traditional rewards programs we see today, with their points and discounts providing benefits that are easy to rationalise.</p> <p>By focusing on the emotional reaction and feeling of the customer Nordstrom makes loyalty a culture, not a route to market.</p> <p>There is a case for reimagining what loyalty means in categories that are associated with low involvement. Take Insurance as an example.</p> <p>David Moth’s <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68273-is-customer-loyalty-extinct-in-financial-services">assessment of the Insurance category</a> presented some anecdotal evidence of a category struggling to get to grips with market forces beyond their control, leading to the commoditization of service through price comparison sites and new apps on the market.</p> <p>In such categories, brands need to consider the value they create, as opposed to the value they offer.</p> <p>One powerful example of this comes in the form of Oscar, a health insurance provider in the US. Oscar promises its customer hassle free insurance with personalised tariffs.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/eBNEKu-dH3Q?wmode=transparent" width="640" height="360"></iframe></p> <p>By issuing out wearable tech Oscar incentivises healthy behaviours and adjusts the insurance premiums it offers to customers based on their behaviours.</p> <p>Oscar has gained a name for itself by focusing on the implicit drivers that create loyalty.</p> <p>As highlighted in a recent <a href="https://www.hioscar.com/">Econsultancy report</a>, one of the biggest barriers to CX success is a lack of understanding of the customer journey.</p> <p>To understand what loyalty means, brands need to go back to understanding their customers' needs (“what is most important to me”), motivations (“why is this important”), and finally behaviours (“what am I doing when…”).</p> <p>Again perhaps one of the pitfalls of the way loyalty is imagined in many marketing departments is the lack of psychographic and attitudinal data to augment behavioural data such as customer lifetime value, frequency of purchase, etc.</p> <p>Don’t get me wrong, loyalty schemes have their role and have proven to be effective for some brands.</p> <p>The problem with brand behaviour around loyalty schemes is that there is often an assumption that ‘doing a loyalty’ scheme will magically paper the cracks of a poor brand experience.</p> <p>This, coupled with the idea that many marketing departments attempt to copy-paste the approach of others, leads to market filled with ‘me too' propositions.</p> <p>To do loyalty right requires a customer-first culture that flows through the business, which requires more than a store card.</p> <p>As people, we are only limited by our own imaginations when we think about loyalty, and perhaps the industry needs to readdress what loyalty means to them.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68132 2016-08-16T15:15:10+01:00 2016-08-16T15:15:10+01:00 10 key challenges facing CRM marketers Ben Davis <h3>1. Too much data, not enough action? </h3> <p>In 2015, Econsultancy's <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/measurement-and-analytics-report/">Measurement and Analytics report</a> showed that 40% of executives found more than half of their collated analytics data was useful for decision-making.</p> <p>That proportion of marketers dropped to 33% in the recent 2016 survey, due perhaps to an increase in complexity, particularly in advertising, with new technology hitting the market.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8066/Screen_Shot_2016-08-16_at_10.48.02.png" alt="how much data do analysts use?" width="615"></p> <p>One other explanation could be that mid-tier organisations are getting more of their data in order, but haven't quite worked out what to do with it yet.</p> <p>This seems to be the story when I speak to Ivan Mazour, CEO and founder of Ometria.</p> <p>The company started out in data and analytics, combining data for clients to create <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65425-what-is-the-single-customer-view-and-why-do-you-need-it/">a single customer view</a> (from ecommerce purchase data, to website data, marketing data, offline data etc.).</p> <p>However, Ometria changed direction a couple of years back, realising that when many of its customers got their data in order, they weren't entirely confident how to act on it.</p> <p>In Ivan's words: "Just getting the data didn't solve any of their problems, they wanted to take the next step."</p> <p>So, Ometria developed a cross-channel platform aiming to create unified customer communication journeys (through email, web, social) based on customer data, with a focus on retention and lifetime value.</p> <p>This data-driven CRM retention strategy is what many brands are currently working towards.</p> <h3>2. Avoiding short termism</h3> <p>As any CRM expert will tell you, some customers are worth more than others, and that's something that has to be borne in mind when creating a contact strategy.</p> <p>Jill Brittlebank, senior director of strategy and analytics at Zeta Interactive (a big data and analytics company) sums up the challenge of short termism:</p> <p>"There can be a lot of focus on day-by-day trading metrics, so if trading's down, marketers might send a message or create a campaign, rather than asking themselves 'are we growing our overall customer value?'</p> <p>"'Are we increasing frequency of purchase, basket size, certain category purchases, etc.?' These are the things that grow sustained performance.</p> <p>"Yes, you have to keep the funnel fed, but understanding your acquisition - what is driving the highest value customers as well as highest volume - is really important.</p> <p>"As attribution becomes more accessible to the mid tier, they understand better the value of each contact"</p> <p>Brittlebank's comment on attribution echoes some findings from our Measurement and Analytics report, which shows the proportion of marketers who state that they are using an attribution model has risen by 16% in 2016.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/8072/Screen_Shot_2016-08-16_at_11.31.55.png" alt="attribution model usage" width="615"></p> <h3>3. Bridging the gap between acquisition and retention</h3> <p>Acquisition strategies have become more complex, particularly when it comes to programmatic advertising, now available across major social channels.</p> <p>Jill Brittlebank, Zeta Interactive, points out that there's a disconnect between acquisition and retention strategy, which mirrors the disconnect between sales and marketing in many organisations:</p> <p>"Typically customers are most likely to buy when they first engage with your company, and that's when you know least about them.</p> <p>"The challenge is to pull through the data from acquisition (cookie pools etc.) to influence growth and retention.</p> <p>"Many companies are using DMPs and have the ability to be targeted at a prospect level; the next win is to bring that through into your customer marketing. </p> <p>"There's a break - you have really rich targeting, but then the slate is wiped clean once the customer lands." </p> <h3>4. Behaviour-based personalisation</h3> <p>Targeting is becoming a much-debated topic in advertising and marketing.</p> <p>Only recently, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68182-what-can-p-g-and-facebook-teach-us-about-the-reality-of-targeting-and-the-future-of-tv-ads/">P&amp;G admitted it had gone too broad</a> with its Facebook advertising, and many creatives argue that the big idea trumps poorly created micro-segmented content.</p> <p>There's another consideration when it comes to retail in particular, and that's the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67250-seven-avoidable-marketing-automation-mistakes/">inadequacy of broad persona-based marketing</a> - assumptions about a particular age or sex of customer are always going to be just that, assumptions.</p> <p>Jill Brittlebank says that much of what companies need to do is "removing dissonance."</p> <p>"As consumers," she continues, "we get less and less tolerant of irrelevant messages. Younger users particularly.</p> <p>"So if I get a 'half term' style message when I've never shopped the kids category, I'm right to ask 'why?'</p> <p>"If I've shopped at Ocado for years, for example, they should know enough about me by now, what I'm buying etc., then talk to me like Arkwright from Open All Hours. The ultimate goal is to recreate that old retailer relationship."</p> <p>This difference between persona- and behaviour-based marketing is something Ivan Mazour, Ometria, sums up succintly:</p> <p>"It doesn't matter if the customer is a 45-year-old woman based in Clapham, we should be making decisions based on the fact that she only ever buys men's clothing with us.</p> <p>"Not random probabalistic hopes about what she wants, but actually knowing what she's looking at, how often she comes to the website, across all devices."</p> <p><em>A Shutterfly email faux pas - <a href="http://www.thehubcomms.com/news/shutterflys-email-faux-pas-when-marketing-automation-goes-wrong/article/347359/">wrongly assuming someone has given birth</a>.</em></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0005/5265/shutterfly_original_email_grap_594069.jpg" alt="shutterfly" width="553" height="663"></p> <h3>5. Optimising email content</h3> <p>Having decided to target customers based on their behaviours, the next question is what content to target them with and when.</p> <p>Retailers must set rules - how many times does a customer need to look at a category or product before we send an email?</p> <p>Mazour highlights two strategies for the content of these emails, either "templated around a category, which includes a browsed product, so it looks like it has been visually merchandised. Or a mix of categories."</p> <p>This is the type of content optimisation that any company can employ, using "unsubscribe and conversion rates to create an optimisation routine."</p> <p><strong>The 'nudge'</strong></p> <p>The skill in content creation is subtletly, according to Jill Brittlebank.</p> <p>She says its about maintaining "the thrill of discovery, like finding something in the boutique off the high street - the perception of value is higher."</p> <p>"So the challenge," she adds, "is using technology as a predictive tool but also nudging customers towards the next product with subtlety, without saying 'look, you're going to buy this next'."</p> <p>Brittlebank also points out how important content is in modern ecommerce:</p> <p>"[Editorial such as] 'Ways to style', 'one dress three ways', 'daytime to evening', all that sort of stuff, it drives engagement. It doesn't necessarily drive the next purchase, but if the customer isn't in active purchase, you're looking to inspire them."</p> <h3>6. Optimising email frequency</h3> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/62997-send-more-email-make-more-money/">More email, more money</a> is an <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63747-why-more-emails-at-christmas-almost-always-means-more-money/">oft-heard mantra</a>, and one <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64165-email-frequency-how-much-is-too-much/">we've discussed plenty</a> on the Econsultancy blog.</p> <p>Ivan Mazour, Ometria, is straightforward on the issue: "We agree with that. All research shows that over one email a day is optimum, assuming they're quality."</p> <p>Of course, that doesn't mean that all retailers do this, and one contact frequency for all customers may not be desirable.</p> <p>Hannah Stacey, marketing manager at Ometria, points at that companies "can segment on top of email - leave out VIPs from basket abandoment for example. Or leave some segments out from incentives."</p> <p>Care is needed, particularly in some sectors. Mazour says that "the fallout for a luxury brand, for example, can be big when sales emails land after somebody has purchased."</p> <p>Frequency is something that can be tied to a number of factors - purchase patterns and engagement.</p> <p>Jill Brittlebank, Zeta Interactive, gives a very practical example:</p> <p>"Look at groups of customers who only buy in the lead up to the holiday period at the end of the year.</p> <p>"You could gently nudge these people to purchase something pre-summer holiday perhaps? But really you want to market to them during the time they traditionally purchase."</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0004/2084/unsubscribing-blog-full.jpg" alt="email frequency" width="615" height="325"></p> <h3>7. Integrating social into a contact strategy</h3> <p>Mazour discusses the effectivenes of using first-party data to target lookalike audiences on social media.</p> <p>However, email continues to be the main channel that customers want to interact with (more than 70% of consumers prefer email, accoring to an Ometria study).</p> <p>But "if someone is not opening emails and you want to reactivate them, you can target them in social," Hannah Stacey comments, "then as soon as they start opening emails, you can switch that social targeting off."</p> <h3>8. Creating mobile experiences </h3> <p>Mobile user experience is something that most people are now fully aware of when it comes to web and email design.</p> <p>However, Jill Brittlebank points out the potential of mobile for rich customer insight.</p> <p>That's because users are more likely to browse on mobile, and the functionality of the device (e.g. swiping) is something that could be utilised to greater effect, presenting users with experiences that can build out their profile for the retailer.</p> <p>We've already seen retailers like Missguided <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67600-missguided-launches-tinder-inspired-app-experience-review/">integrate Tinder-style experiences</a> into apps, but there's perhaps more to be done here, to engage users on mobile web, particularly those that arrive from email.</p> <h2> <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/2583/IMG_2661.PNG" alt="swipe to hype" width="300">  <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/2584/IMG_2663.PNG" alt="swipe to hype" width="300"> </h2> <h3>9. Getting hold of in-store data</h3> <p>This is the holy grail for retailers. Though a select few do have a fantastic <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64758-how-in-store-tech-improves-customer-service-for-schuh/">view of stock across stores</a>, customer data is another thing entirely.</p> <p>Ivan Mazour comments that "most of the challenge is how do you get hold of in-store data. Anything with delivery works well (e.g. furniture) because you need to ask for details, or anything with a warranty (e.g. Jewellery).</p> <p>"But it's difficult for low ticket items, even if it's as simple as asking for an email address for an e-receipt.</p> <p>"It's hard to incentivise the store associate to get that email address. And it's hard to persuade the consumer, because the value exchange of an e-receipt is okay if you're Apple and selling tech, but not for a £15 purchase."</p> <h3>10. Integrating with legacy infrastructure</h3> <p>A last point to consider and another mentioned by Ivan Mazour - lots of existing retail systems update overnight (e.g. store systems).</p> <p>However newer systems like CRM and ecommerce are closer to real-time, making the two harder to integrate.</p> <p>This perhaps isn't a pressing concern but may ultimately affect some parts of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/creating-superior-customer-experiences/">customer experience</a> (e.g. the speed at which retailers can offer click and collect).</p> <h3>In conclusion...</h3> <p>Companies are now <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-role-of-crm-in-data-driven-marketing/">much more data-driven</a>, even fairly traditional retailers. The battle for boardroom approval is largely of the past.</p> <p>But there's still plenty of work that organisations need to do to optimise sophisticated contact strategies, particularly as technology in areas such as retargeting is still advancing.</p> <p>There are likely many more challenges to add to the 10 I have listed above. Please continue the conversation by adding a comment!</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68114 2016-08-01T15:36:11+01:00 2016-08-01T15:36:11+01:00 Six tips for loyalty program success Patricio Robles <p>Here are six tips for brands looking to build successful loyalty programs.</p> <h3>Don't overplay the discount card</h3> <p>Discounts are a common part of loyalty programs and probably always will be. But just as discounting outside of loyalty programs isn't always effective, discounting inside loyalty programs isn't always effective either.</p> <p>For example, when a loyalty program provides a discount to a customer already likely to make a purchase, the program really isn't engendering loyalty and moving the needle.</p> <h3>Find ways to make members feel special</h3> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66128-consumers-demand-experiential-rewards-from-loyalty-programs">Consumers are increasingly demanding experiential rewards from loyalty programs</a>.</p> <p>As Director of Search Marketing at 17 Agency and Econsultancy contributor Andrew Broadbent explained, "Simple discounts do not give people an experience that touches their five senses."</p> <p>But emotional, memorable connections <em>can</em> be developed through experiences, such as access to exclusive offers and events.</p> <p>What's more: these experiential rewards are far more likely to be promoted by customers on social media.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/0129/experiential-rewards-sparks-loyalty-program-engagement.png" alt="" width="470" height="429"></p> <h3>Understand the customer and personalise accordingly</h3> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67070-why-personalisation-is-the-key-to-gaining-customer-loyalty">Personalisation</a> is key to gaining customer loyalty, and savvy brands <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67839-how-l-oreal-uses-personalisation-to-increase-brand-loyalty">like L’Oreal</a> take advantage of this.</p> <p>While personalisation should be employed broadly, brands often have the greatest opportunities to use it in loyalty programs because the data collected through the programs gives brands the ability to understand customer behavior in great detail.</p> <p>With that data, brands can implement effective, personalised discount strategies, as well as experiential rewards that really resonate with specific customer groups. </p> <h3>Avoid unnecessary complexity, but recognize your VIPs</h3> <p>Loyalty programs should offer a clear and compelling value proposition to customers, and that usually means that less complex is better than more complex. But customers aren't created equal and it's important to make sure that the most valuable customers feel valued. </p> <p>Numerous programs have tiers, and as customers establish their loyalty, they can move into tiers that provide greater rewards.</p> <p>For instance, beauty brand Sephora has a three-tiered program and members in the highest tier have access to free two-day shipping, custom makeovers and invitations to private events.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7426/sephoratiers-blog-flyer.png" alt="" width="470" height="354"></p> <h3>Be thoughtful and careful about changes</h3> <p>As with any initiative, loyalty programs should be monitored closely and adjustments made when appropriate. Sometimes major changes are required, but it behooves brands to be thoughtful and careful about such changes. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Hey <a href="https://twitter.com/Starbucks">@Starbucks</a>, your new <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/starbucksrewards?src=hash">#starbucksrewards</a> is NOT about loyalty anymore, but gouging your loyal customers $62.50 for a free coffee. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GoodBye?src=hash">#GoodBye</a></p> — Jeff Johnston (@jeff_a_johnston) <a href="https://twitter.com/jeff_a_johnston/status/702189442006515712">February 23, 2016</a> </blockquote> <p>Case in point: <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67568-starbucks-shows-perils-of-loyalty-program-changes">when Starbucks updated its rewards program</a> earlier this year, tying rewards to dollars spent instead of visits, it upset many of its customers, creating a backlash that the company had to weather.</p> <h3>Put a time limit on it</h3> <p>In some cases, brands with specific goals can consider implementing short-term loyalty initiatives <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68015-chipotle-launches-a-loyalty-scheme-to-win-customers-back">like the one Chipotle recently announced</a>. </p> <p>Its Chiptopia scheme, which is running for three months only, was launched to help the restaurant chain recover foot traffic after E. coli outbreaks dented its business.</p> <p>Chiptopia offers members free entrées after a certain number of visits, and customers who visit Chipotle 11 times in three consecutive months even receive free catering for a party of 20. Such generous rewards are probably not warranted, or sustainable, over the long term, but if the brand has its way, Chiptopia will help it get customers back into its stores.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68117 2016-07-29T15:40:31+01:00 2016-07-29T15:40:31+01:00 Wells Fargo turns to Amazon as a marketing channel Patricio Robles <p>Case in point: last week, Amazon and Wells Fargo <a href="https://www.wellsfargo.com/about/press/2016/amazon-student-offering_0721/">announced</a> a partnership that will allow members of Amazon Prime Student to receive an interest rate discount on private student loans.</p> <p>Amazon Prime Student is a version of Amazon Prime for students that was launched in 2010. It gives students access to the benefits of Prime at a reduced cost of $49/year, half the price of a regular Amazon Prime membership (and Amazon offers a six-month free trial).</p> <p>Through the relationship with Wells Fargo, Amazon Prime Student members who apply for and receive, or cosign for, a private student loan will receive a 0.50% interest rate discount.</p> <p>They can reduce their interest rate further by setting up automatic monthly payments and taking advantage of any Wells Fargo global promotions they're eligible for.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0007/7477/wf-temp-hero-1500._v284462174_-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="" width="470" height="212"></p> <p>According to John Rasmussen, who heads Wells Fargo's Personal Lending Group, "We are focused on innovation and meeting our customers where they are – and increasingly that is in the digital space."</p> <h3>A sign of things to come?</h3> <p>While affinity and relationship discounts are not new to financial services industry, the Wells Fargo-Amazon partnership is an interesting one for a couple of reasons.</p> <p>First, the market for private student loans is relatively small compared to the overall student loan market. <a href="http://measureone.com/reports">According to</a> the Q1 2016 MeasureOne Private Student Loan Report, private student loans make up well under 10% of total student loans outstanding. The vast majority of student loans are federal.</p> <p>Private student loans don't have the best reputation and are generally more expensive than their government-subsidised counterparts. That makes it a tough market for lenders like Wells Fargo, so if the Amazon Prime Student relationship can help drive loan volume, it could be a real boon to Wells Fargo's private student lending business.</p> <p>Second, Wells Fargo's decision to market its private student loans through Amazon Prime Student offers yet more evidence of the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67202-what-s-the-future-for-big-banks-in-a-fintech-world">unbundling</a> of financial services.</p> <p>Historically, large banks like Wells Fargo <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67613-what-banks-can-learn-from-mondo-s-record-breaking-1m-crowdfunding-campaign">have used their leverage over customers to be all things to all customers</a>. The internet has changed that, and large financial institutions can't count on their customers to turn to them for all of their needs by default.</p> <p>That's why Wells Fargo is looking for ways to meet customers where they are.</p> <p>While it remains to be seen just how productive the Wells Fargo-Amazon Prime Student relationship will be, don't be surprised to see other players in the financial services market turn to digital channels in a similar fashion going forward as they seek to compete in increasingly competitive markets and deal with consumers who put service and price above loyalty.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68093 2016-07-28T12:43:06+01:00 2016-07-28T12:43:06+01:00 Three surefire ways to maximize your CRM’s effectiveness Shaun Haase <p>While some features are overly complex or not fit for every business, there are key components that can deliver tremendous value if you can get your sales team over the initial learning curve.</p> <h3>Create automated actions </h3> <p>Automated actions allow you to easily set up, assign and manage tasks for your sales team.</p> <p>These simple actions can help streamline the collaboration between different team members while eliminating the tedious process of checking in throughout the day for status updates. Rather than having every team member update the system manually, a CRM can help automate these actions to create a more seamless workflow.</p> <p>In addition to internal task management, sales teams also engage in external communications when liaising with customers or partners. One critical part of this process is the follow-up.  </p> <p>With task automation, team leads can set reminders that will ensure that these follow-ups take place at exactly the right time – but in a way that’s not overly distracting.</p> <p>During times when everything seems like a priority, sales teams have to juggle multiple tasks. To prevent them from dropping the ball, team leaders can help by creating reminders for each step of the process to better organize and prioritize tasks.  </p> <p>A few examples of rules to set for your sales team may include:</p> <ul> <li>Reminders to send out collateral materials to a customer after speaking on the phone;</li> <li>Scheduling an in-person meeting after communicating with a lead more than three times; or </li> <li>Following up to make sure everything is OK if the lead goes silent for a week.  </li> </ul> <p>You can set up tasks and reminders for every step in the sales cycle that would automatically initiate the action that you want your team to take.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7538/Screen_Shot_2016-07-28_at_12.29.14.png" alt="reminder" width="450"></p> <h3>Use tags to quickly retrieve information</h3> <p>Tags are custom labels that can be applied to CRM contacts and sales leads. You can add as many tags as you wish to an entry, and the goal is to make it easier to search for and retrieve contacts based on a specific filter such as regional leads, future opportunities or top customers.</p> <p>If location plays a big role in your sales and marketing strategy, you can add tags like: Southwest, Northeast, Midwest, etc.</p> <p>For instance, a sales manager working in a swimsuit business might find value in being able to extract a list of existing or potential customers based in the Southwest region to better target them during the fall.</p> <p>Alternatively, if you’re in a highly saturated industry where competition is high, your CRM can help identify opportunities where the stakes are lower. By using your CRM to help focus resources on lead generation, you’ll be able to convert more customers and make more sales.</p> <p>Top customers can also be labeled with appropriate tags such as “VIP”, “power user” or “early adopter”. These tags can come in handy when trying to quickly identify customers who may be inclined to beta test your newest feature update or take an early look at an upcoming product release. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7539/tags.jpeg" alt="tags" width="225" height="225"></p> <h3>Manage customer inquiries with the sales pipeline feature</h3> <p>A sales pipeline can be great for tracking new or open deals. Alternatively, it can also be used to manage inbound inquiries and requests by customers or partners.</p> <p>If a customer sends in a detailed product inquiry, you can easily input it into the CRM and assign it to a new sales pipeline.</p> <p>Rather than going through your typical sales oriented stages, you can add relevant milestones such as “under investigation”, “responded” and “resolved”.</p> <p>As part of a sales team, you’ll likely also receive requests from customers about new product features that they want and could help improve their business. With a CRM, you can treat these requests as you would a new business opportunity.</p> <p>If enough customers request similar types of features, you can add this to a development pipeline to take action that will support the development of the requested feature or product. </p> <p>Finally, it’s inevitable that your customer will switch to one of your competitors. If this can be identified early on using a CRM, team leads can build in a strategy for retaining customers and rewarding them for their loyalty. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/7540/pipe.jpeg" alt="pipeline" width="259" height="194"></p> <h3>In conclusion...</h3> <p>CRMs provide a wealth of features that can optimize the operation of your team.</p> <p>While these features may seem overwhelming at first, sales teams who can commit to learning will reap the benefits that come with organization and foresight. </p> <p><em>More CRM implementation tips:</em></p> <ul> <li> <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64905-crm-implementation-tips-from-the-experts-part-one">CRM implementation tips from the experts: part one</a> </li> <li> <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64910-crm-implementation-tips-from-the-experts-part-two">CRM implementation tips from the experts: part two</a> </li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68058 2016-07-12T14:51:07+01:00 2016-07-12T14:51:07+01:00 Has Amazon Prime Day 2016 made up for 2015’s #PrimeDayFail? Nikki Gilliland <p>Despite some initial fanfare, social media was soon flooded with complaints about laughable discounts and naff products, with consumers gleefully using the hashtag #primedayfail to highlight everything that went wrong.</p> <p>Today, the sales event is back, with Amazon promising even more bargains to tempt consumers.  </p> <p>But has Amazon learnt from its mistakes? Here’s the situation so far…</p> <h3>Who’s eligible?</h3> <p>The clue is in the name. The biggest and best deals are only available to Prime members. </p> <p>With last year’s event resulting in the most Prime sign-ups in a single day (and a subsequent 19m US subscribers since) – the event is clearly just a vehicle to grow Amazon's member base.</p> <p>For regular consumers, this has the power to repel rather than pull people in, especially since the retailer has been intent on hammering home the ‘exclusive’ message on all its main email, website and social media copy.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6950/exclusive.PNG" alt="" width="700" height="218"></p> <p>It has to be said, there are <em>some</em> deals accessible to all, but they are extremely limited and very hard to find.</p> <p>It took a good few minutes for me to figure out that the ‘Featured Prime Day’ savings were eligible to me (a non-member).</p> <p>And let’s be honest, they’re far from exciting. (Unless vitamins and minerals are your thing...)</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6942/prime_day_deals.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="243"></p> <p>Ironically, if you’re not a Prime member, you’re the consumer that Amazon probably cares about the most today.</p> <p>However, its heavy-handed targeting means that you might feel more inclined to avoid the whole thing rather than tempted to sign up. </p> <h3>Social promotion</h3> <p>If you follow Amazon on any of its main social media channels, you’ll have seen its attempts at building excitement around the event. </p> <p>A series of countdown tweets and Facebook posts means that the event has been well signposted and cleverly executed.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Only 5 days to go!<a href="https://t.co/pRdR7iWm6z">https://t.co/pRdR7iWm6z</a> <a href="https://t.co/6O9TMNVmmD">pic.twitter.com/6O9TMNVmmD</a></p> — Amazon.co.uk (@AmazonUK) <a href="https://twitter.com/AmazonUK/status/751113558352691200">July 7, 2016</a> </blockquote> <p>While the Facebook ads are slick and well-designed (with a simple and effective call-to-action for a free trial on the main site), the fact that it's so heavily geared around exclusivity surely means that non-Prime members are likely to ignore it.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6945/facebook_prime_day.png" alt="" width="550" height="588"></p> <p>In terms of emails, I only received one on the morning of the event itself.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6946/Amazon_email.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="522"></p> <p>Instead of promoting the discounts, I did find it slightly off-putting that it only showcased the products – an obvious attempt to get consumers to click through to learn more.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6947/Amazon_email_deals.PNG" alt="" width="600" height="772"></p> <p>Whether or not that click converts to a purchase, again, probably depends on Prime membership status.</p> <h3>The discounts</h3> <p>One of the biggest complaints from consumers last year was that the biggest discounts were not properly promoted on the site.</p> <p>Eventually, it emerged that Amazon used a broad algorithm to select the deals, leading to a lot of random items such as tupperware and dishwasher detergent.</p> <p>This year, it’s not entirely clear how it’s been set up, but according to a company spokesperson, Amazon has ‘increased the number of deals and at the same time, increased the volume of inventory behind those deals.’</p> <p>With a dedicated homepage, showcasing a variety of categories and filter options, there is a clear attempt to give the user greater direction.</p> <p>Navigation is simple, with good signposts to point customers in the direction of 'deals ending soon' and 'recommended deals'.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6949/amazon_homepage.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="654"></p> <p>In terms of savings, there does appear to be a decent amount of products on offer, with the best being discounts being on electronics and home appliances.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6939/prime_day_deals_tech.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="481"></p> <p>However that algorithm must be working its evil magic again... I also spied far too many irrelevant items for my liking.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6941/Amazon_deals.PNG" alt="" width="780" height="510"></p> <h3>In conclusion...</h3> <p>It’s probably too early to say for sure if this year’s Prime Day has been any more successful than the last.</p> <p>While clearly an attempt to bag even more Prime memberships, what the retailer fails to realise is that the hype might do more to put people off than draw them in. </p> <p>Similarly, there's already an amusing amount of social media backlash, so Amazon clearly hasn't done much to sort out that algorithm issue.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Thanks <a href="https://twitter.com/amazon">@amazon</a>! This is just what I needed! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/PrimeDayFail?src=hash">#PrimeDayFail</a> <a href="https://t.co/mIiNUs4l6u">pic.twitter.com/mIiNUs4l6u</a></p> — Martin Untrojb (@MEUntrojb) <a href="https://twitter.com/MEUntrojb/status/752805002884898820">July 12, 2016</a> </blockquote> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68041 2016-07-11T10:21:35+01:00 2016-07-11T10:21:35+01:00 Nectar MD, Will Shuckburgh, on loyalty in a mobile-first world Ben Davis <h3>Mobile has fundamentally changed loyalty.</h3> <p>Mobile has fundamentally changed the dynamics of Nectar's service.</p> <p>Will explains:</p> <p>"Instead of the old model with Nectar where we used to push out paper mailing giving people offers, telling them what is available three times a year (with an average of 10 offers per mailing), we’ve built a program totally designed around the customer, where they can access it wherever they want it.</p> <p>"And we enable them to access between 100 and 150 offers per week, personalised to them. </p> <p>"But the important thing is that’s on the customer’s terms - the volume and value is totally different, and all when they want it."</p> <p><em>Nectar's mobile app</em></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6838/nectar_1.jpeg" alt="nectar" width="300">  <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6839/nectar_2.jpeg" alt="nectar" width="300"> </p> <h3>Marketing is changing. Brands need to have more respect.</h3> <p>Will frequently used the word 'respect'. His view is that customer enablement through mobile is part of a wider revolution in customer-centric marketing.</p> <p>"The whole marketing industry is going through a period of change... The fundamental driver is that the balance of power between brands and consumers has structurally changed.</p> <p>"Customers can very easily compare brands, compare choices, understand what their options are. So, brands across the industry need to change how they build relationships. Customers want... brands who respect them and reward them for their long term choices.</p> <p>"The typical marketing from the '70s, '80s, '90s, early '00s, was brands telling customers how to behave, what they should do, what offers were available.... [Now] there’s a need to enable customers, to respect their power."</p> <h3>Promotional rewards are just the tip of the loyalty iceberg.</h3> <p>"Customers are savvy," Will continues, "they understand where short-term promotions are just trying to win business. That doesn’t mean those brands will fall into the consideration set over a longer period of time.</p> <p>"Recognising people on an ongoing basis is about appealing to a base human instinct.</p> <p>"Who are the friends you interact with the most? They’re the ones that have been around the longest, have been most respectful, and make the effort to know you well."</p> <p>This idea of a business getting to know its customers is central to Nectar's platform. The more customers use its offers, the more the platform 'gets to know them'.</p> <p>Will argues this is "letting consumers shape the experience themselves, to make it even more personal."</p> <p>It's not just transactions that Nectar seeks to understand when doing this. Will explained how Nectar has sought to "widen the relationship", with other ways of earning rewards, similar to <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67930-12-outstanding-mobile-customer-experiences/">Walgreens loyalty and its Fitbit integration</a>.</p> <p><em>Walgreens' Balance Rewards</em></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/6837/Screen_Shot_2016-07-07_at_12.25.30.png" alt="walgreens balance rewards" width="615" height="211"></p> <p>"We’re always trying to explore how we can partner with brands in ways that customers find useful and isn’t just about spending money to get points."</p> <p>Over the past few years, Nectar has explored partnerships to encourage exercise (via Fitbug and through local council gyms), recycling, reviewing of products, healthy food purchases etc. </p> <p>Will admitted that Nectar will "...continue to try more in that area, and when customers like them, we’ll roll them out at scale."</p> <h3>Tech must meet customer needs (not be implemented just because it can be).</h3> <p>Nectar's mobile app fundamentally meets the customer need of those that download it, as Will concludes from looking at engagement and satisfaction.</p> <p>"People who engage with the app earn more points and have much better knowledge of the programme. We have the highest NPS we’ve ever had. </p> <p>"It’s an illustration of where businesses need to be today - the customer is front and centre, with tech driven by customer needs."</p> <p>But Will also highlights the danger of tech for tech's sake when it comes to new developments such as iBeacons.</p> <p><em>iBeacons used by the MLB</em></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0005/0762/MBL_ibeacon.jpg" alt="ibeacons" width="515" height="450"></p> <p>"iBeacons are a great example - we’ve had a massive focus on building up our innovation capability over the last couple of years, [within our] Nectar Beta department.</p> <p>"iBeacons are one of a number of interesting bits of tech - but because it’s there <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65221-ibeacon-trials-13-brands-trying-to-find-a-use-case/">doesn’t mean we should use it</a>. We need to think about how we can be useful to real customers in real situations.</p> <p>"Which messages do they appreciate, which do they not? How does that change by customer and by brand?</p> <p>"We see potential - but we want to see how it helps customers before we roll it out." </p> <h3>Psychographics are more important than demographics.</h3> <p>Facebook's <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67970-how-to-integrate-search-social-it-s-all-about-curating-audiences/"><em>psychographic</em> targeting</a> of ads has brought the term into more popular use recently.</p> <p>Will explains what psychographics means when it comes to profiling customers through their data: </p> <p>"One of our partners has a lot of data and previously they used to target customers for acquisition based on their demographics. They profiled the perfect customer.</p> <p>"But we understood that demographics weren’t the key factor, it was actually the psychographics - what they felt was important, how they reacted to things etc.</p> <p>"For that particular brand, the perfect customers were people who were deal seekers. Far more than any other demographic, this made them the perfect customer. </p> <p>"That’s a simple example but it makes perfect sense. If you pick 10 pieces of info about yourself, that doesn’t give you the depth of colour about who you are, what choices you will make, what’s important to you etc.</p> <p>"That’s where we’re trying to get to. We’ve got a lot of factual information and enough experience to know that there’s a huge amount to do to understand personalities.</p> <p>"If you’re really customer-centric as a business, you have to make sure you're catching that depth where possible. We’re only at the beginning of that journey."</p> <p>Will adds that getting this perfect profile of customers also entails "asking them to help shape their experience as well."</p> <h3>Brands can differentiate themselves on more than just price.</h3> <p>I took the opportunity to ask about supermarket price wars, in the wake of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68001-how-will-brexit-impact-digital-businesses-and-marketers/">the Brexit vote</a>.</p> <p>"We’ve actually run a campaign called savvy shopper for quite a while," Will said. "We ask people to share their tips on how they get the most out of their spending. That’s given us a real understanding of how savvy customers in the UK are.</p> <p>"People are smart - some people will always search out the best short-term financial deals, but all across the world with Aimia our parent company, we see brands that invest in long-term customer relationships are winning.</p> <p>"Underneath, customers are savvy - the brands they will always consider are the ones that treat them with respect and thank them for the choices they make.</p> <p>"Price has always played a big role in people's decisions. Price competition continues to get more intense in most sectors, but more and more brands are looking to differentiate on more than just price."</p> <p><strong><em>July is Data Month at Econsultancy. Go <a href="http://hello.econsultancy.com/datamonth/?utm_source=econsultancy&amp;utm_medium=blog&amp;utm_campaign=econblog">here</a> to see all our related blog posts and reports.</em></strong></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/67926 2016-06-09T00:00:00+01:00 2016-06-09T00:00:00+01:00 Increasing customer loyalty: Strategies from Shanghai Jeff Rajeck <p>To find out, Econsultancy invited dozens of client-side marketers in Shanghai to discuss this and other <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/customer-experience-statistics/">customer experience</a> (CX) topics over roundtable discussions.</p> <p>The roundtables were moderated by volunteer client-side marketers and subject matter experts from Econsultancy and our event sponsor Epsilon.</p> <p>Below is a summary of what was said throughout the day at the table entitled: <strong>Cultivating Loyalty - When Experiences Develop Advocacy.</strong></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/5742/4__Custom_.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533"></p> <h3>Customer loyalty vs. advocacy</h3> <p>The table first tackled the difference between customer loyalty and advocacy. </p> <p>Whereas a customer can be loyal through repeatedly purchasing products, there is no guarantee that they will become an advocate.</p> <p>Additionally, you can cultivate advocacy from customers who may not be considered 'loyal' by any other measure.</p> <p>Participants agreed, though, that<strong> a well-designed loyalty programme will encourage advocacy too</strong>, so most of the remaining discussions were about the things companies do to increase customer loyalty.</p> <h3>Steps to increasing customer loyalty</h3> <h4>1. Collect data</h4> <p>Attendees noted that in order to have an effective loyalty programme, it is necessary to collect customer data.  </p> <p>One brand marketer said that simply finding out a customer's birthday and sending them a 'happy birthday' email is a great way to start building longer term loyalty.</p> <p>Another participant said that marketers should try hard to get the 'right' data. <strong>Mobile phone numbers, for example, are among the most important customer data points.</strong>  </p> <p>Your customers' email addresses change periodically, but many people use the same mobile number for many years.</p> <p>Marketers also need strategies for getting customers to hand over their data.  </p> <p>One attendee advised that <strong>ecommerce sites should not make 'guest checkout' too easy</strong>. Encouraging customer to register when purchasing something is the perfect opportunity for brands to get the data needed for an effective loyalty programme.</p> <p>Customer surveys can also help in this area, especially for companies who don't have ready access to customer data, such as B2B companies who use distributors to reach consumers.</p> <h4>2. Understand customer journey and lifecycle</h4> <p>Participants also agreed that in order to encourage loyalty, marketers need to understand the customer journey. </p> <p>Knowing the steps that their customers take to purchase helps marketers find new opportunities to encourage existing customers to buy again, say with offers or other incentives.</p> <p>One attendee noted that <strong>marketers should also know the customer 'lifecycle'</strong> as well. That is, someone who buys a beauty product may become a repeat customer within weeks, whereas someone who buys a car will not be in the market again for three years.</p> <p>Understanding the lifecycles across different products and markets can also help marketers find opportunities to <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/11051-21-ways-online-retailers-can-improve-customer-retention-rates/">encourage customer loyalty</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/5741/5__Custom_.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533"></p> <h4>3. Collaborate for insights</h4> <p>In addition to collecting the right customer data and understanding the customer journey and lifecycle, marketers must also collaborate with other teams in order to gain insights.</p> <p>Delegates reported that working with customer relationship managment (CRM) specialists, business intelligence (BI) specialists, and sales people has helped them improve their understanding of their customers to a great extent.</p> <p>Working on a common project, such as mapping the customer journey, is a great way to start this collaboration, according to one participant.</p> <h4>4. Plan loyalty programmes</h4> <p>Once the loyalty project team is assembled, the data collected, and the customer journey is understood, planning the loyalty programme is the next step.</p> <p>Attendees came up with three main loyalty strategies:</p> <ul> <li><strong>Special offers</strong></li> </ul> <p>One of the easiest ways to encourage loyalty is to<strong> offer your existing customers something in return for repeat business</strong>. These offers do not always have to be discounts, either.</p> <p>Companies can also offer more efficient service or an improved 'VIP' experience. Offers should, however, be targeted at particular audience segments to be more effective.</p> <ul> <li><strong>Loyalty card</strong></li> </ul> <p>Another way many brands encourage loyalty is by having some sort of loyalty point programme. One participant from a large retailer said that<strong> its points programme had been very effective.</strong></p> <p>The delegate also noted that making it paperless and fast to activate was key to success.</p> <p>Another attendee pointed out that such schemes only work when customers buy from you frequently, otherwise consumers forget the programme and the effort is wasted.</p> <ul> <li> <p><strong>Education</strong></p> </li> </ul> <p>Another attendee pointed out that a continuous delivery of material which will educate your existing customers is key.</p> <p>Additionally, a regular flow of interesting information will keep your brand at top-of-mind and encourage future loyalty.</p> <p><strong>Other suggestions</strong></p> <p>Apart from any specific strategy, though, participants said that making small efforts to increase customer loyalty make a big difference.</p> <p><strong>Loyalty programmes should also be easy, fast and fun.</strong> Customers will make an effort to follow programmes if the reward is high enough (e.g. collect air miles), but if the programme has side benefits than the monetary reward does not need to be quite as high.</p> <p>Finally, the loyalty programme should offer something that customers cannot get elsewhere.  </p> <p>One example given was Amazon's Dash device which allows customers to re-order products with the click of a button.  </p> <p>Such convenience is not available from any of its competitors, and so customer loyalty comes naturally.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/5744/3__Custom_.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533"></p> <h4>5. Measure success</h4> <p>Even the most successful programme, advised one delegate, will be hard to sustain unless marketers measure and report successful numbers upwards.</p> <p>What this means is that before launching a loyalty programme, <strong>marketers should agree on key performance indicators (KPIs) with senior management</strong>.  </p> <p>Then once the programme is under way, marketers know what they should be working on to improve on and management will understand improvements.</p> <p>One participant noted that KPIs for loyalty can be completely different from those used for digital marketing.  </p> <p>Instead of click-through rates (CTRs) and cost-per-acquisition (CPA), loyalty programme KPIs can be metrics such as 'points accumulated' or 'redemption rate' or even 'net promoter score' (NPS) depending on the programme.</p> <p>Regardless of what you use, ensure that what is being measured indicates that you will have more repeat business.</p> <p>There is no point in improving customer loyalty unless it ultimately improves the bottom line, one attendee pointed out.</p> <h3>A word of thanks</h3> <p>Econsultancy would like to thank the client-side marketers who participated on the day and our sponsor for the event, Epsilon.</p> <p>We would like to extend a special thanks to our moderator for the Cultivating Loyalty table, <strong>Cedric Delzenne, Director at Founder Institute.</strong></p> <p>We truly appreciate all of the effort participants put into making this an educational day for everyone and we hope to see you at future Econsultancy events!</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/5743/6__Custom_.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533"></p>