The first step in investing in an effective loyalty programme is to understand the requirement and value that a powerful programme can bring. As discussed in part one of this blog series, once this initial barrier has been overcome, you can then sign customers up and begin to track and understand consumers and their buying habits. This data should be viewed as a valued asset and contribution to your business. The next steps are to then delve deeper - and track, extract and analyse this valuable information. You can then begin adding invaluable data to your marketing and business plans with retail analytics.
At this stage of your investment your marketing plans will encompass sending coupons and offers to all consumers, hoping for take up on the one offer that is being aimed at your entire market. While this may have been the traditional method of marketing thinking, by investing in modern methods you are effectively targeting these potential customers. Is it any wonder that according to Nielsen only 11% of marketers have high confidence in the audience they are targeting?
High Impact Not High Reach
By blitzing every lead with irrelevant marketing material you are confusing and excluding existing and potential customers. In this new world of technology and automation it is imperative that companies are now customer journey focused. 94% of customers have discontinued communications with a company because they had received irrelevant promotions and messages, a recent Blue Research study has found. Learn that high reach doesn’t equate high impact - you are frustrating your customers with irrelevant marketing messages.
The Always Connected Customer
However this now presents enormous opportunities to revamp your plans and modernize and monetize your marketing agenda. As a business you should always be targeting the ‘always connected customer’- customers who according to Forrester are the ‘42% of customers that are always addressable, accessing information across multiple devices, from multiple locations, many times per day’. So how can you effectively target and engage with these?
As you progress with your loyalty and engagement system, you will gather beneficial and profitable data from the transactions and interactions your customers are having with you. You can now analyse this data and draw some real insights from it - this is where you can draw value from your loyalty scheme by drilling down:
- Who exactly your customers are . . .
- What age they are . . .
- Where they are buying particular products . . .
- How they are engaging with you . . .
- When they are engaging with you . . .
- And any other questions you have about your consumers.
Customise Your Campaigns
Take for example you notice that the majority of the activity that occurs in your post office or retail store is between 9 - 11am & 4 - 6pm. This puts your stores and employees under increased pressure for these times, with less opportunity to interact fully with customers.
So why not create a campaign that offers double loyalty points or a coupon on their next visit if they come in store between 11am - 4pm, the normal downtime for your stores? This creates a more even spread of consumers visiting your store throughout the day rather than traditional peak times.
Alternatively, what if you can see that your mobile application has been downloaded mostly by the “Millennials” age group. They could be a potential target audience for a new product that you wish to trial or launch. By creating a campaign that is assigned to only these users in a particular store and as these consumers are interacting via mobile, they are all sent a push notification that informs them of their offer. You are focusing on the intended customer and concentrating on your intended purpose.
From a consumer point of view, they are delivering a customized and relevant offer direct to the palm of their hands where they can instantly take action. Once this campaign has ended you will have gathered more data that, can be used to further customize the offering and engagement options taken for each individual or segment. You will have also gained valuable market research on your new product or service which can enhance your offering before launching in the market.
Target With Technology
A second potential engagement is utilizing geofencing. Geofencing is a relatively new technology that been refined considerably over the last number of years. It is a location-based technology that allows users to target a geographic area and within this area, mobile users can be pushed a message detailing an offer or personalized message. This principle is also used in beacons. As opposed to geofencing, (which is based on geographic location) beacons are proximity based technology which allows you to target and engage with consumers within a certain store or location.
These new technologies allow more effective engagement with your consumers, via a medium that they want - mobile. Macy’s utilized this technology at their flagship New York and San Francisco outlets by leveraging beacon technology to communicate with shoppers via mobile devices. By offering personalised department-level deals, discounts, recommendations and rewards they further incentivize customers.
Mobile offers continuous opportunities such as utilizing beacons, geofencing and push notifications which are massively more effective at engaging users than traditional blanket media or blanket coupons and offers.
Leveraging this technology ensures:
- Targeted offers
- Reduced cost of running a campaign
- Higher success rates and powerful analytical tools (from with you can review and gain insights into consumer behaviour)
Doesn't that sound like a worthwhile investment?
We at Escher understand the power of these new technologies and how they can be applied to best serve your needs within a retail environment. For further information contact Niall Carty in our Interactive Services Division for more information.