Posts Tagged ‘Customer

01
Sep
08

Case Study: How Harbor Sweets uses customer data effectively

Harbor Sweets is a Massachusetts-based gourmet chocolate company that offers a variety of premium sweets. In 1973, the company emerged from humble beginnings when Ben Strohecker set out to create the “best piece of candy in the world.” The result was Sweet Sloops, a sailboat shaped piece of almond butter crunch, covered in white chocolate dipped in dark chocolate and crushed pecans. Over the years, the company grew to feature additional candy lines and retail outlets across the U.S. Harbor Sweets also added a significant mail-order catalog division.

Their catalog program was successful in delivering sales during key holiday buying seasons, but the company also wanted to ensure that holiday campaign mailings – the main driver of catalog business – were maximizing sales.Harbor Sweets needed a solution that would efficiently turn existing customer data into actionable next steps. Essentially, Harbor Sweets wanted to find out if removing a single mailing to “active customers” from the holiday mail schedule – which included mailings every month from September through December – would conserve marketing resources, while refraining from negatively impacting revenue or overall response rates.

Harbor Sweets conducted a suppression test, assessing how effective the holiday campaign mailings had been at driving sales. Harbor Sweets mailed the catalog to everyone in December and ran a suppression test for September, October and November. The results were surprising.Harbor Sweets was actually hurting sales by mailing too many catalogs to customers during the holiday season. The results also found that the cadence for the catalogs could be reduced to three, while still achieving similar results.

Additionally, Harbor Sweets learned firsthand that it is imperative to be open to analyzing data and customer behavior in new ways.The more information available on existing customers, the more effective the software is in its results, whether it is predicting customer’s next steps or customers at risk of defection.

The results allowed Harbor Sweet to develop a long-term marketing process for the future. The revenue saved by removing one mailing is now applied to another mailing during non-peak times to provide customers with a more effectively targeted, timely catalog.

Source: DM review

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31
Aug
08

Customer Experience – Firms fail to deliver

According to CCF online, obtaining customer loyalty through quality experience is high on the corporate agenda, yet companies still fail to understand customer expectations, according to new research.

Although the study indicates that 80 per cent of the executives strongly agree that customer strategies are more important to companies’ success than ever before, firms fail to design and deliver those strategies and, as such, lose customer commitment and loyalty.

According to the study:

• Only 43.9 per cent (up from 40.0% in 2006) believed that their companies deserve their customers’ loyalty.

• 34.8 per cent indicated that their company has a dedicated customer experience management role.

• Just 27.2 per cent of the respondents said that the definition of the customer experience is well-defined and communicated in their companies.

24
Aug
08

Delivering Customer Experience – Good news & bad news

1-to-1 Media has some interesting perspectives on the challenges companies face to deliver a seamless customer experience. Take a look:

What do you believe is your organizations biggest hurdle in delivering an excellent customer experience?
Departmental silos 35.2%
Commitment from the top 17.0%
Recruitment and training 15.9%
Technology 14.8%
Focus on reducing operational cost 10.2%
Lack of investment 6.8%

…..how well customer-centricity has permeated their organizations. On the good news side, the majority of attendees work in organizations that think delivering an outstanding customer experience is everyone’s job. The bad news: 5 percent actually have no one responsible for ensuring that customers have a positive experience.

Who is responsible for customer experience in your organization?
Everyone 64.6%
All front line employees 15.2%
Contact centre employees 7.1%
Customer experience team 8.1%
No one 5.1%

How would you rate your company’s performance against its competitors in terms of customer experience?
Much better 12.3%
Better 32.9%
The same 38.4%
Not quite as good 13.7%
Worse 2.7%

Interesting, right?

24
Aug
08

Automotive Loyalty – A huge challenge

Automotive customer loyalty at the manufacturer level has dropped by 9.2 percentage points, from 49.1% in 1998 to 39.9% in 2008, and costing some automakers more than US$3 billion in annual sales, according to a study by Experian.

Loyalty challenge
“However, the increased number of available manufacturers and models make engendering customer loyalty a bigger challenge than ever before,” Waldron warned. “Automakers that have a firm understanding of what drives their customers to remain loyal will have a significant competitive advantage in such a challenging market.”

The company suggests that even a small rise in customer loyalty can lead to significant increases in revenue. For example, a manufacturer with 10 million current customers will have approximately 1.5 million of those customers return to market in a given year. A 1 percentage point rise in customer loyalty would produce 15,000 additional annual sales, or approximately US$405 million in additional revenue (based on an average vehicle sale price of US$27,000).

But if that same manufacturer could improve loyalty performance by the 9.2 percentage points lost since 1998, it would generate an additional US$3.726 billion in annual sales.

24
Aug
08

50 Golden brands that made a difference to the marketing world

1959 was the year The Marketing Society was founded and the birth of modern marketing. Today, The Marketing Society is the most influential network of senior marketers dedicated to championing marketing in the UK.

Selecting a brand for each of the past 50 years was not easy. Their shortlist was assembled using a variety of different criteria. Which brands were launched, relaunched or revamped? Who was winning awards? Who were the top spenders and the top sellers? And which brands encapsulated the zeitgeist of the year?

Take a look

17
Aug
08

Love your data, set it free!

Data services are freeing corporate data from the silos, allowing for its use on demand while providing security to the data’s custodians. The demand for more data more quickly is driving IT departments to rethink their entire systems architectures.

At Cequity, we have been helping clients work within the constraints of multiple -source systems while making data accessible for marketing when they need it. Our philosophy has been to make data more flexible and easy to access so that enterprises can take advantage of huge amounts of data that they accumulate today.

Dana Gardner writes:

In the past, data was structured, secure and tightly controlled. The bad news is that the data was limited by the firewall of personnel, technologies and process rigidity. Today, however, the demand is for just-in-time and inclusive data, moving away from a monolithic data system mentality to multiple sources of data that provide real-time inferences on consumers, activities, events, and transactions.

The move is in the ownership of data value to the very people who really need it, who help define its analysis, and who can best use it for business and consumption advantage. Analysis and productivity  values rule the future of data as services.The [new] model is of keeping the data where it belongs and yet making it available to the rest of the world.Our data is trapped in these silos, where each department owns the data and there is a manual paper process to request a report.

According to  Brad Svee”..Requesting a customer report takes a long time, and what we have been able to do is try to expose that data through Web services using mashup-type UI (user interface) technology and data services to keep the data in the place that it belongs, without having a flat file flying between FTP servers, as you talked about, and start to show people data that they haven’t seen before in an instant, consumable way.”

Read more

12
Jul
08

Customer Engagement – Best Practices

Companies always talk about customer engagement but many a times there is always a gap between planning & execution. What really differentiates the best from the not so good are the ones that identify the key levers and practice this consistently. Allegiance shares some best practices on customer engagement:

It is important to be able to quantify engagement for a number of reasons. Most importantly is by understanding where you stand with your customers—i.e. how many are engaged, disengaged or on the fence (swing)—you will be able to focus your efforts on developing products, services and programs that will help move people off the fence into your engaged customer group or possibly reverse negative perceptions of disengaged customers and help them become loyal customers.

Four primary economic measurements of engaged customers are:

  1. Share of wallet—Engaged people buy more products/services
  2. Positive referral—Engaged customers convert potential customers to switch
  3. Churn—Engaged people stay longer
  4. Feedback Response—Engaged people give more feedback, which in turn gives you the opportunity to address issues and concerns and preserve potentially lost revenue



At Cequity, we believe customer intelligence will be the biggest competitive advantage enterprises will have in the next decade or two. Successful enterprises of tomorrow will be the ones who can organize and leverage this information at speed to optimize their marketing performance, increase accountability, improve profit and deliver growth. Cequity insights will bring to you trends and insights in this area and it’s our way of sharing best practices so as to help you accelerate this culture and thinking in your organization.
November 2017
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