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Recent reports state that in order to drive customer loyalty, brands must have a loyalty program in place. We disagree! 

Don’t get me wrong, we think some loyalty programs are fantastic. As long as they have a clear purpose, a strong strategy behind them and deliver value to both the customer and the brand, loyalty programs can be highly effective.

However, there are many brands who don’t have a loyalty program, yet still drive loyalty. These brands are still marketing directly to their customers. They’re still putting a program of communications in place to influence and change customer behavior. 

Loyalty program or customer program? – Things to consider 

Many loyalty programs out there are really ineffective. They are not thinking or delivering on what’s best for the customer, they’re not supported by the business, so they fail. There’s plenty of things in the value scale for customers, it’s a case of finding the ones that make sense to the different types of customers for the brand.

A big challenge for a lot of programs is that many of them are geared to actually not reward the customers who are most loyal. They’re used as a hook to get people in and then you actually get less benefits the longer you are loyal to the brand, which essentially defeats the purpose.

If you are considering a loyalty program for your brand, firstly you need to consider how the loyalty program would fit into your existing customer program. Other factors to consider include:

Resources – you’ll need to dedicate vast amounts of time to successfully launch a loyalty program – from market research through to implementation. You’ll also need budget to build the program, and to effectively market it. 

Lack of internal buy-in – everyone across the business must be supportive and understand the value of the program – to them and to the customer. This can be particularly challenging across franchise networks, as franchisees may see a loyalty program as ‘just giving away discounts to customers who were going to buy from us anyway’. It’s important that franchisees have a consistent GTM message to ensure maximum effectiveness for the brand. 

Strategy and Infrastructure – when you start to consider a loyalty program for your business, one of your first thoughts may be ‘we need an app’. Having an app is not a necessity for a loyalty program, however you will need to have some form of infrastructure to support and deliver the program, so that customers can identify themselves – and something which doesn’t add too much congestion at the point of sale. You also need a strategy to feed into the program, they don’t run by themselves – they need attention and ongoing evaluation to ensure they are meeting the customer and business needs.

Thriving without a loyalty program

Ranked the world’s most valuable brand in 2019¹, with arguably the world’s most loyal customers behind them, Apple have achieved phenomenal success – all without a customer loyalty program. 

Apple has, however, been very innovative in the way they drive customer loyalty. Apple continuously innovate for their customers who want to own the latest, shiny piece of tech. These customers are guaranteed to buy a new product (and its expensive accessories) as soon as it hits the market. Customers even go as far as camping outside of the store to ensure they will be one of the first in the door. Then there is the cloud storage platform, iCloud, which essentially locks customers in, making it difficult for them to leave, as they would lose access to all of their content. Finally, Apple’s Genius bar, which is in fact, a genius initiative – adds value to customers by offering free support and start-up sessions to demonstrate how they can make the most of their new product. It’s also a place to go if something goes wrong. 

How to drive growth without a loyalty program

Recognise the customer

Customers want to feel individually appreciated, and valued. Think of ways in which you can add value – across the entire journey. This may be as simple as knowledgeable staff members explaining/demonstrating products and offering tips and advice to help the customer. Empathise with the customer, be responsive, support them every way you possibly can.

Use data to personalise

Data is vital. The more times a customer shops with you, the more data you are able to collect, helping you to get to know the customer better. This enables you to anticipate their future needs and continue the conversation with the customer – putting them on a path to re-purchase.

Focus on the customer experience

Customers are time poor, they expect made-to-measure experiences, and they expect them in real-time, on the go. Customer experience is now seen as the new battleground. Customers today have endless choices, if they receive a poor experience it’s easy for them to switch brands – and for them to tell others. Deliver an outstanding customer experience and they won’t have a reason to look elsewhere.

Have a strategic communications strategy in place

Just because you have a customers email address or phone number does not mean you can abuse it by sending out irrelevant messages whenever you feel like it. Customers are people, not numbers on a mailing list. Remember, one button (the dreaded unsubscribe) can lose you that customer forever, no second chances. Only contact the customer when you have something relevant to say, this will dramatically increase the success of your engagement.

Give them a reason to come back to you

Many brands offer incentives to drive customers back into the store. We recently shared a story about Walgreen’s ‘get a shot, give a shot’ program. This incredible initiative brought customers back into stores (increasing sales by 500%), while offering their customers the opportunity to help a child in need. Think of a valid and beneficial reason for the customer to return to your store.

Consider the customer lifetime value

You need to look beyond today’s sales, and think about the long-term value of the customer. It costs 10x to acquire a new customer, than it does to retain an existing customer. Determine the value of the customer, and invest in ways to keep them happy. We suggest dedicating at least 10% of your marketing budget to activities which keep existing customers happy, whilst driving them back in-store or online.  

Summary

Essentially, customer loyalty comes down to having strong relationships with your customers, knowing and understanding who they are. Anticipating their needs, wants, desires and keeping communications relevant and timely. A loyalty program could enhance the relationship, however it’s not a mandatory requirement to drive loyalty.

Data is the key to customer growth – not an app, or the latest tech. Capitalize on the data you already have, and grow from there, each transaction brings you a little closer to the customer. Only by having this depth of customer knowledge will you be able to truly personalise their experiences with your brand. Recognise the customer, and where they are in the customer lifecycle – continue the conversation with each customer, don’t have the same conversation with all of them.

Customology are specialists in customer lifecycle management. Contact a Customologist today on 07 3902 7700 or hi@customology.com.au for more information on how we can help you build a communications strategy or customer program designed around the customer lifecycle.

¹ https://www.forbes.com/powerful-brands/list/

The post Growing customer loyalty without a loyalty program appeared first on Customology.

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The customer decision making process has changed dramatically in recent years. There are now many more influential factors which brands need to be aware of.

Customers have more power than ever before. They can now take time to fully research a product before purchasing. This research goes way beyond a quick Google search, and it’s not just price that they are benchmarking, they’re reading customer reviews, online forums and asking their own communities for recommendations and feedback. With most customers owning a smartphone, this research is now being done on the move. 

These shifting decision-making patterns mean that brands must have response strategies at the ready. When focusing on customer experience design or journey mapping strategies – how many of you really take into consideration what the customer may be thinking, feeling AND doing at each stage? What are the driving forces behind the decisions they are making? And importantly, how can brands use the decision making process to their advantage?

Customer decision making process

Needs Recognition

The stage in which the customer becomes aware of the product or service they need or desire. Often, the customer might not have been aware of the product. They may have seen a promotion/advertisement which prompted the decision or desire to purchase. 

Considerations

Marketing communications play a huge role at this stage. The messaging needs to land with the customer, how will the product or service meet their wants, desires or needs? Promote the solution, not the product. You need to be where your customers are, ensure you are promoting in the appropriate channels.

Information Gathering

Once the customer identifies a product or service they would like to purchase, they then go into research mode; where can they purchase the product from, have other customers purchased the same product and where did they purchase it from, what value adds did they receive, what was the customer experience like, what kind of post-purchase support/follow-up did they receive. 

Considerations

Make sure your website is functioning, responsive and up to date. Customers are impatient, if a website is slow to load, they won’t wait, they’ll move onto the next.

Have you researched your own product or service? What information do you find? Do you encourage customer reviews, and respond to those who do take the time to provide one? Find out how your brand is being perceived in the market, be active in these channels. Also benchmark against your competitors. As mentioned, you need to be where your customers are, if that’s social media – then a strong social voice is a must.

Evaluation of Alternatives

The customer will then evaluate, compare and benchmark the various information they have gathered before they make a decision on who they wish to purchase from. The bigger the purchase, the longer the evaluation. 

Considerations

The customer may have questions they wish to ask ahead of purchase. Ensure you have a support function who can respond to any queries and put the customer at ease. Many websites have a dedicated FAQ for this exact reason. You could also take this opportunity to retarget the customer – remind them why they should purchase from you. 

Purchase Decision

Once the customer has decided who they wish to purchase from – they will make the purchase either in-store or online. This is the conversion stage.

Considerations

The buying process needs to be seamless – everything should be designed to make the experience as easy as possible for the customer. Imagine a potential customer has spent time researching a product, reading countless review sites to support their decision, however when they go to purchase the product from your brand, either the website crashes or the store attendant is rude to them – it changes everything.

Post-Purchase Evaluation 

Assuming the customer had a good buying experience, they will be feeling very positive about the brand. We refer to this period as the moneymoon. Brands need to take advantage of the customer’s current mindset to activate the path to re-purchase.

Considerations

Once you’ve made a sale, the next step is to continue the conversation with the customer. Don’t email them before they have even left the store asking for information solely to support your NPS. Thank them for purchasing from you – think of other ways you can add value, without expecting anything in return. Your goal is for them to skip the first few steps of the decision-making process for their next purchase. 

Capture customer data throughout the decision making process

Each stage of the decision making process enables you to capture invaluable customer data, which will help you get to understand your customers better. Use this data to learn your customers behaviour, look at every touchpoint they had with your brand – from online research to in-store purchases, what they bought, why they bought it, how they bought it. The more data you have, the stronger personalised experiences you can deliver in the future and the greater chance you have of securing them as a repeat customer. 

Summary

Understanding the science behind decision making is fundamental to your communication and positioning strategies. We (humans) can change moods in a heartbeat, if something is not happening as we expect it to, the impact on our behaviour can be huge.

When designing customer journeys consider the 5 stages of the decision making process. Go through the experience yourself. This will give you a clearer view of what your customers are thinking, which will help you find ways to differentiate your brand.

Customer data captured during the decision making process will help you stay abreast of your customer’s emotional drivers and behaviours – which, in turn, will empower you to continue the customer conversation.

Customology are specialists in customer lifecycle management. Contact a Customologist today on 07 3902 7700 or hi@customology.com.au for more information on how we can help you design a strategy around the decision making process using the customer data you already have.

The post Customer decision making – The science behind the buying process appeared first on Customology.

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Leading laser, skin care and cosmetic specialists, Laser Clinics Australia (LCA), have engaged customer lifecycle management specialists, Customology, to help them better understand, keep and grow their customers.

Since launching in 2008, LCA have achieved significant growth, providing treatments to over a million customers across Australia. LCA is on a rapid network growth trajectory, having recently opened their first stores in New Zealand.

Customology have been engaged over a multi-year partnership to:

  • Help LCA leverage customer, transactional, and behavioural data to drive decisions
  • Realise opportunities for revenue growth within the existing customers
  • Activate the path to repurchase, influencing the right customer behaviours
  • Enhance the overall customer journey and experience with the LCA brand.

LCA’s Head of Marketing, Louise Chamberlain stated “by working with Customology we’re taking control of the customer lifecycle, creating a path to repurchase that continues the conversation with customers, in a relevant way that ultimately influences repeat treatment behaviour, taking the pressure off operations and builds sustainable growth”

Customology’s General Manager, Michael Barnard added “we are really looking forward to supporting LCA in their customer growth. The work which we have already completed has provided unique insights into LCA’s broad customer base and identified many growth opportunities for the brand.”

– ENDS –

About Laser Clinics Australia

Laser Clinics Australia is a leading laser, skin care and cosmetic clinic that provides safe laser hair removal, cosmetic injections and skin treatments. Established in 2008, the brand now has over 120 locations across Australia, and have recently launched in New Zealand.

Contact:

Lynsey McGregor, Marketing Manager

07 3902 7700, lynsey@customology.com.au

The post PRESS RELEASE: Laser Clinics Australia invest in customer growth by partnering with Customology appeared first on Customology.

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Customology’s Head of Growth, Michael Woodruff recently presented at the Franchise Advisory Centre’s Management Forum in Brisbane.

Michael’s presentation included valuable insights on:

  • The difference between a customer program and a loyalty program, and the value of each to a franchisor.
  • How understanding customer behaviour can help drive foot traffic to stores, increase purchase frequency and improve customer retention.
  • Practical examples of how Australia’s leading franchisor networks have achieved significant growth.

Thank you to the FAC for facilitating such a great event, and a big thank you to everyone who attended.

If you’re interested in having Customology speak at an upcoming event or would like to learn more about our presentation, please feel free to get in touch.

The post SPEAKING ENGAGEMENT: Franchise Management Forum appeared first on Customology.

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Our co-founder Mark James recently joined the Network Brisbane panel, sharing his thoughts on customer journeys. Fellow panel members included Michael Joo, General Manager at Datarati and Suzanne Carr, Customer Strategy Director at Customer Frame.

Mark focused on the retention stage of the journey, revealing the lack of strategy and missed opportunities to prevent customer churn.

A huge thanks to the highly engaged audience. This event provided the opportunity to network with like-minded marketers. Watch this space for a podcast recording of the event – coming soon.

If you’re interested in having Customology speak at an upcoming event or would like to learn more about how we can help your business create customers for life, please feel free to get in touch.

The post SPEAKING ENGAGEMENT: Networx Brisbane – Customer Journey appeared first on Customology.

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Wikipedia’s definition of a loyalty program is:

‘Loyalty programs are structured marketing strategies designed by merchants to encourage customers to continue to shop at or use the services of businesses associated with each program.’

If you were a customer about to sign your details up to a program and read this definition first – would you hand over your details?……….we thought not.

In our view, a loyalty program should be described as a structured customer strategy to help build a stronger relationship between the customer and the brand. Providing a value exchange between the brand and customer, beyond the product and services paid for.

Customer loyalty programs – the good, the bad, the ugly

In previous articles, we have shared powerful statistics on the cost of customer acquisition vs. customer retention. According to Gartner 80% of your future profits will come from 20% of your existing customer base. In other words – you need to look after your existing customers.

Brands are investing in loyalty programs to help increase customer retention, generate loyalty, provide a point of competitive differentiation, and ultimately get customers back in to store. Many, however, miss the mark when it comes to looking after their existing customers. Some brands offer loyalty programs which do not actually benefit the customer or are difficult to use, others offer loyalty programs purely as a marketing ploy.

Many loyalty programs actually have a bad reputation. The customer thinks they will be spammed with offers, the business carries the points risk and staff are reluctant to ‘sell’ the program to customers.

If implemented and managed properly, loyalty programs have so much potential. They enable brands to get to know their customers better – the more the customer shops with them, the more they reveal about themselves, making it easier for the brand to continue the conversation with the customer.

What does genuine loyalty look like?

It’s important to establish what genuine loyalty looks like. Customology defines loyalty as “where a customer would still choose your brand over others when given the choice (and incentives).” It’s a two-way relationship between the brand and the customer.

There is a clear difference between behavioural loyalty and attitudinal loyalty. A customer who shops regularly at the same place may be described as behaviourally loyal, whilst a customer who tells their friends how fantastic a brand/product is would be referred to as attitudinally loyal. The two are not mutually exclusive – it’s possible to have a customer with both traits. They are your best type of customer (or should we say advocate).

Advocates are guaranteed to be back, and they will bring their friends with them. They’ll promote the brand any which way they can – including social media and online reviews sites. More and more customers are referring to customer reviews first when researching a new product or service, so you need to look after this elite customer group.

When determining customer loyalty, ask yourself the following question: Will the customer still choose you if other things are equal – price, value adds, if something goes wrong? If the answer is yes – then you have a very loyal customer – hold onto them.

Don’t mistake convenience for loyalty

Today’s customers are time poor, they want an easy life, so more often than not, don’t spend time shopping around for better deals or benefits. This does not make them loyal to a brand. Don’t mistake habit for loyalty.

It’s important brands monitor repeat transactions and identify habitual behaviour. This will enable you to be more effective in your marketing communications.

Best practice loyalty programs

There are many different types of loyalty programs. Some offer rewards, others offer incentives, some you pay for. We have identified what we believe to be three of the best global loyalty programs:

Vitality Rewards

As stated on their website, “we encourage you to lead a healthier life and reward you for doing so.” As health insurance providers, Vitality reward their active members with incentives. On joining, each member (customer) undertakes an online health review, setting goals for themselves. Vitality suggest ways and means to help the members meet these goals. In addition, they encourage members to track daily activity (and offer discounted activity trackers such as Fitbits) for walking, running, cycling, swimming or going to the gym. Members who earn enough points will be rewarded with a Starbucks coffee or cinema tickets. This is a very clever way of ensuring their members stay healthy and engaged with the brand. Typically, when you buy health insurance, the policy just sits in your inbox.

Toms Passport Rewards

TOMS shoes are recognised worldwide. They offer two levels of reward programs; explorer, and trailblazer, offering a number of incentives, such as: member discounts, sweepstakes, exclusive sales, early access to new products and anniversary gifts. Members collect points on each purchase. When you reach a certain amount of points, you instantly move into the trailblazer program, and receive additional benefits such as free shipping and TOMS freebies.

What some people may not know about the TOMS brand, is why the brand launched in the first place, what their original purpose was. Founder Blake Mycoskie was travelling in Argentina back in 2006 when he recognised the hardship of local children who did not own a pair of shoes. TOMS introduced their ‘one for one’ program. For every pair of shoes purchased, TOMS donated a pair of shoes to a child in need. Today, TOMS have delivered over 60 million pairs of shoes to children in need around the world. TOMS have also expanded the way in which they support global societal and ethical issues, investing in providing clean water to those in need, campaigning to end gun violence, fighting homelessness, supporting mental health and working towards equality and women’s rights. TOMS announced recently that customers can pick which cause they would like to support when they make a purchase.

There is certainly a feel good association with the brand, in the sense that whilst you may be purchasing a nice new pair of shoes or glasses, but that thanks to you someone else will be benefiting too.

Amazon Prime

We certainly couldn’t forget Amazon Prime. It was recently reported that US retailers are investing millions of dollars into revamping their loyalty programs in an attempt to compete with Amazon Prime.

Whilst the full list of benefits changes slightly for each country, Amazon Prime is a paid for loyalty membership. In Australia, Amazon Prime costs $6.99 per month (or $54.00 a year). This cost includes; free two-day domestic delivery, free standard international delivery on eligible orders over $49, Amazon Prime Video, Prime Reading and Twitch Prime.

For the online shoppers out there, unlimited free delivery for $6.99 a month is an absolute bargain. Amazon continue to find ways to innovate and differentiate. I’m sure the list of Australian benefits will have doubled by this time next year.

Summary

Whilst these are great examples of loyalty programs, it’s not mandatory to have a loyalty program to drive customer loyalty. Think of brands such as Apple and Disney – they don’t have loyalty programs, and instead are more focused on the customer experience. There are other ways to recognise and reward customer loyalty.

Before you invest in a customer or loyalty program, determine your objectives and ask yourself:

  • Will it benefit the customer?
  • Will it enhance/strengthen your customer relationships?
  • Will it enable you to understand the customer better?
  • Will your customer talk about it with their friends?
  • Can it be easily managed and maintained?
  • Will it be worth the time and investment?
  • Will it provide an opportunity for you to keep the customer conversation going?

Loyal customers visit more often, spend more and bring their friends. So remember, no matter what your solution, always bring it back to the customer.

Customology are specialists in customer lifecycle management. Contact a Customologist today on 07 3902 7700 or hi@customology.com.au for more information on how we can help your brand design, build and execute a customer or loyalty program.

The post What is a customer loyalty program? appeared first on Customology.

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Customology’s Co-founder Mark James presented to 80+ marketing professionals at the ADMA Breakfast Guru event on data-driven marketing techniques in Brisbane. The Iconic’s CMO, Alexander Meyer also presented at the event.

During his presentation, Mark shared techniques on how to effectively measure behavioural trends and insights from customer and transactional data.

Mark also shared insightful case studies on how to activate the path to repurchase, and continue the customer conversation. His number one tip for brands was to ‘think like a customer’. The audience were highly engaged in the topic.

If you are interested to learn more about this subject, please feel free to contact us.

The post SPEAKING ENGAGEMENT: ADMA Breakfast Guru, Data-Driven Marketing Techniques appeared first on Customology.

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Many people make the assumption that a digital wallet is predominantly a solution for making transactional payments. Yes, they do have that capability…..but they also have many many more!

A digital wallet is exactly what it says it is – a digital version of your wallet/purse using just your smartphone, instead of carrying a physical wallet with you. Your digital wallet is an app that comes pre-installed on the majority of smartphones. On iPhone it’s called Apple Wallet, on Android it’s called Pay or Passes.

Think of all of the items you have in your wallet right now – cash, bank cards, membership cards, loyalty cards, tickets – your digital wallet can carry all of those for you in one central hub.

         

The rise of the digital wallet

Over 253 million people world-wide are currently using Apple Pay. 43% of global iPhone users have enabled Apple Pay, which is up from 36% in September 2018, and 20% in December 2017¹. It will be interesting to see what this figure will rise to later in 2019.

Australian banks are finally responding to customer demands and getting on board with Apple Pay. However, it’s not just banks who are having to think about this huge shift in digital behaviour. Brands across the globe have begun to take advantage of this route to the customer.

A new route to the customer

Over 17 million Australians own a smartphone (which means they also have access to a digital wallet). So how can brands take advantage of this route to the customer?

Your first thought may be to build an app. However, an app might not be the best investment for your brand. Let’s be honest, mobile real estate is extremely competitive with 77 percent of users never using an app again 72 hours after installing². It just sits unused on the customers phone.

An alternative digital solution to reach this audience is a digital card. Digital cards are more cost effective, yet enable you to deliver hyper-personalised customer experiences. They are stored on a mobile device and provide the ability to heighten customer engagement.

How can a digital card improve your customer lifetime value?

  • Route to the customer – Once downloaded, 85% of digital cards are never removed. Bear in mind your average customer only uses 30 apps at any one time. 69% of customers said they are more likely to use a loyalty card if it is on their phone³.
  • Enables you to connect digital to the in-store experience – having a seamless presence in both can help your brand stay on top of mind to your customers, whilst attracting new customers too.
  • Enables you to stay front of mind to customers through geo-location targeting – your card can show time and location based notifications, so when they’re walking past your store you can nudge them with a reminder or incentive. Messages appear on the lock screen of the phone when in proximity. For example, a Pizza chain sends a targeted message to a customer’s phone with an offer, at their named closest branch – all they have to do is show the message whilst ordering.
  • Help you to capture customer data to enhance personalisation – as we’ve stated several times before, the more data you have, the more you can understand your customers and deliver enhanced personalised experiences. Once the customer begins to use the card, it captures all of their purchase behaviours and preferences.
  • Ability to up-sell – this links back to staying front of mind. You can actively reach out to the customer at specific times when you know the chances of them engaging are higher than normal.

 

Customology’s Head of Engineering, Derek Rogers states Digital card solutions are great because of their low technical barrier and low cost of ownership ongoing (compared to an app for example). The many different types of cards will meet any brands’ customer program needs and provide an additional communication touchpoint for their customers. I believe it should be the default offering when designing your customer retention strategy.

Digital Wallet Examples (source, PassKit)

Remember, digital isn’t king – the customer is

All of this sounds very exciting, but you must always remember to bring it back to the customer. Have a clear strategy about how your customer would benefit from a digital wallet solution.

Digital is an enabler for you to continue the conversation, however not all customers are equal. Not all customers want a digital card – you need to be where your customers are and ensure you focus on and cater for these customer groups. McDonald’s were recently slated in the press for discontinuing their paper-based loyalty cards. Disgruntled customers felt as though their needs and wants were of less importance to the brand than those who are digitally active.

As we’ve said before, it’s not technology first, but customer first!

Summary

Use of smartphones and digital wallets continue to rise – at an increasingly fast pace. Today’s customers are seeking connected experiences. They want personalisation and convenience.

Digital wallets enable brands to harness data in such a way to help them deliver personalised and timely offers to their customers. They also provide powerful ways to drive both customer loyalty and sales.

Think about how your brand can take advantage of mobile as a channel to market and target your customers. But remember to always bring it back to the customer – how/will your digital offering benefit them?

Customology are specialists in customer lifecycle management. Contact a Customologist today on 07 3902 7700 or hi@customology.com.au to find out how we can design and build a digital solution to enhance your customer experience, and help you create customers for life.  

 

¹ Apple Insider

² Android Authority

³ Urban Airship

The post The rise of the digital wallet and the potential impact on your customer lifetime value appeared first on Customology.

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When we use the term Voice of the Customer (VoC), most people will automatically think of Net Promoter Score (NPS) or some form of customer satisfaction measurement tool.

VoC actually refers to the way a brand captures customer feedback, and how they analyse and interpret these customer insights to improve the overall customer experience (CX).

Not all brands are effective in using VoC. When capturing customer feedback, more often than not, a brand’s core objective is actually to learn how great the customer thinks they are! You will be familiar with the questions; would you recommend us? would you visit us again?

These questions may help the brand boost their NPS score, but the responses are based only on customer intent. The power of VoC goes much deeper than this.

What do customers want?

Brands love referring to themselves as ‘customer-centric’ or ‘customer-obsessed’, but what does this actually mean? We think it means having the ability to ‘understand the customer’. But if some brands are too focused on trying to improve their NPS, then surely they can’t truly understand their customers, can they?

Customer demands and expectations are continuously evolving. Brands have a real challenge in keeping up with the customer. What was important to them last month, may not matter today. Don’t assume you understand all of your customers. If you did, you would have 100% retention rates.

Not understanding your customer prevents you from knowing what the customer wants to do next, which makes personalised targeting extremely difficult.

Add this to today’s competitive landscape – it’s a scary place to be.

Benefits of Voice of the Customer

Rather than asking your customers on their likely future intentions – if they ‘would’ do something. Use this opportunity to 1. Ask them about their experience and pain points, 2. Ask them about their needs and wants.

In doing so, you will realise many benefits, such as:

  • The ability to resolve customer issues and ‘fix things’ in real-time. In doing so, the customer will feel valued, appreciated and likely portray your brand in a better light than they did before something went wrong.
  • The opportunity to capture additional information on the customer. This will help to strengthen your customer relationships as the more information you have, the better you will understand the customer.
  • Ability to use this understanding to tailor future messaging, be more relevant and continue the conversation
  • Invaluable customer insight to help drive decision making. By understanding customer pain points, wants and needs, your brand can make strategic customer growth decisions and investments.
  • Learn how the customer perceives and values your brand.
  • Generate context for future customer experience strategy and design initiatives.

 

Using Voice of the Customer to understand your customers

For our Customologists, the ability to understand your customers is the strongest advantage a brand can have. Customers are demanding personalised experiences – this is nothing new, however, we’re now using the term ‘hyper-personalised’. This demonstrates just how fast personalisation demands are evolving.

Consumers who believe personalised experiences are very appealing are

10x more likely to be a brand’s most valuable customer –

those expected to make more than 15 transactions in one year¹

Think about the strongest personal relationships you have, I bet you have used phrases such as ‘I know you better than you know yourself’ or ‘you’re like an open book’.

Imagine having that level of understanding for your customers, an understanding that enables you to anticipate their future needs, before they have even realised what they need themselves. Think of the impact on customer advocacy and loyalty (not to mention your bottom line).

VoC provides the opportunity for you to better understand your customers. Use VoC to ask your customers what’s important to them, what interests them, what frustrates them and what their preferences are. This information can be fed into both your customer experience and marketing strategies.

Summary

To win the hearts of your customers, you need to succeed in delivering (hyper) personalised, targeted communications and experiences. This can only be achieved if you genuinely know your customers, and which stage of the customer lifecycle they are at.

If you’re going to invest in Voice of the Customer, you need to think much broader than customer satisfaction measurement or ‘close the loop feedback’. Rather, think about the invaluable customer data it enables you to capture. How it can help you strengthen the relationships you have with your customers. How it can help you continue the conversation.

You’re probably already spending a large portion of your budget on marketing automation platforms. Data captured from the VoC can add great value to the strategic input these platforms crave. Feed them the right data, and they will send the right message, to the right person, at the right time.

Customology are specialists in customer lifecycle management. Contact a Customologist today on 07 3902 7700 or hi@customology.com.au for further information on how we can support your brand in delivering tailored, personalised experiences to each of your customers.

 

¹ Epsilon

The post Using the Voice of the Customer to capture much more than an NPS score appeared first on Customology.

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Customology’s GM Michael Barnard presented to a room full of CX and marketing professionals at the recent Purposeful CX event on measuring the impact of customer centric practices.

During his presentation, Michael shared techniques on how to effectively measure behavioural trends and insights from customer and transactional data.

Michael also demonstrated how to segment your customers into distinct behavioural cohorts to identify targetable customer groups. This process highlights opportunities to activate the path to repurchase, with the objective of increasing customer loyalty and improving revenue.

If you are interested to learn more about this subject, please feel free to contact us for a personal demonstration.

The post SPEAKING ENGAGEMENT: Purposeful CX How to measure the impact of customer centric practices appeared first on Customology.

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