When it comes to the customer journey, there are multiple elements in the process to take into consideration. This is from loyalty programmes and deals which are personalised – to highly targeted performance marketing strategies. Both strategies, however, make up the overall journey for the customer.
Sharing his views during a recent Digital Performance Marketing conference, Ryan Lim, principal consultant and founder at QED Consulting, said that loyalty makes up a bigger part of the customer experience. Performance on the other hand has a tendency to narrow itself down to the transaction part of things.
“The customer journey goes from the starting point with the customer, and goes all the way to customer and service recovery. It also comprises of the actual delivery of the product and how the brand lives up to its promise. So the loyalty journey is the whole journey,” Lim said.
Meanwhile, he said, performance tries to “make the qualitative, quantitative”. As such, it makes it easier for marketers to understand and justify the results. But both need to come together for a holistic customer journey.
“While one is slightly more transactional, both are part of a bigger thing which is essentially customer experience,” Lim said.
As such, loyalty and performance teams need to sit together to come up with a shared identity when it comes to customer acquisition and retention. He said:
Both teams need to start talking, or better still, be one team instead of separate ones.
To bring loyalty and performance together, Laura Kantor, head of marketing at foodpanda, said the company as an organisation looks at the return rate of customers.
“To measure how effective our marketing campaigns were, we look at the new customer acquisition numbers and 30-day return rates to judge how various tactics drove growth and customer loyalty,” she said, adding:
Campaigns can become very expensive if you end up acquiring a huge number of customers, only for them to order with you once.
She added that the dynamic at foodpanda is extremely fast paced, and the marketing team drives all offline marketing, PR, strategy and partnerships for the Singapore market. When asked about whether or not senior management puts pressure on the team, she said that as a start-up, foodpanda is very “ROI-driven”.
“This means that every activity has to be measured closely to calculate the cost-per-engagement or cost-per-acquisition. Every campaign has a global benchmark, and in order to be successful, we need to ensure we hit costs below this number," she added.
Are loyalty and performance in competition?
Also weighing in on the topic was Baris Unal, country manager for Hong Kong at APSIS. Talking about the issue from a business-to-business perspective, he described the business development teams looking for new business as the “hunters”.
“They are the ones cold calling, going out there for sales meetings. They create fantastic presentations and close the deals,” he said.
Meanwhile, there is a different team for partnerships and creating longevity of the acquired relationships.
“These teams are the ‘farmers’. They are good at talking to existing customers and growing their portfolio. As such, the hunters bring in the new customers to get started, and after a certain amount of time, these customers get handed over to the other team,” he said.
He added that at the end of the day, it is all about the customer. As such, before transitioning the relationship over to a new team, it is also important for the sales team to sit down and communicate with both the customer and the partnership teams to set the right expectations and make the transition smoother. He added:
I also think it is the company’s responsibility to set the right KPIs, to ensure the transition is seamless for the customers – because the latter comes first.
Moreover, when you are talking about loyalty, marketers need to try and look at the journey from the customer’s perspective.
“Don’t just sign a deal with someone and pass them on to your colleague, go out and introduce yourselves with both the ‘hunters’ and the ‘farmers’,” he said.
He added that brands needed to build that relationship and talk about what has been accomplished so far. They also need to cover what needs to be done so the customer feels like someone is taking good care of them.
“The goal here is to make it as seamless an experience for the customer while also looking at things from the internal side. While there is, for sure, friction points and internal challenges faced by the two different teams, as long as the customer is placed first, both teams have a common aim.”
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