Here at SessionM, our clients want to engage and nurture their customers in timely and meaningful ways. There are several key requirements to do this. One of them is to collect all the actions and events that your clients take across channels, such as transactions at the POS, video views on your website, or sharing content from your mobile app. Each action–however large or small–is an important piece of the puzzle to understand your customer and market and message to them effectively.
Collecting the data is the easy part, and most companies have a variety of systems to collect the data in each channel they operate. The harder part is associating those actions to specific customers. Most actions are anonymous. Even POS transactions typically don’t have any kind of customer identifier attached. So how do we get customers to identify themselves?
A well designed customer loyalty and engagement program will offer the customer two major incentives to “raise their hands” and identify themselves.
Value can be given to customers in a variety of ways such as coupons, promotions, and offers. These incentives might be redeemed online or in-store. Marketers often send out coupons and offers to everyone or specific groups of people. This might drive additional sales, but does not require customers to identify themselves as part of those transactions.
Another strategy that could be used is providing offers only to those who have signed up for your loyalty program. If I’m going to get discounts that save me money, I’m more willing to sign up and be known to the company. SessionM can also power offer codes that are unique to each customer. When they are redeemed that transaction is tied to the customer. The customer gets value from the offer; the company gets to identify who that person is.
People are busy. If we can make their lives a little bit easier they are more willing to identify themselves. Open your phone and look at the apps you have installed. Why do you have them? Which ones do you use the most? How do they make your life easier? For example, travel apps make our lives easier by allowing us to find and book flights, hotels, and cars. Restaurant apps make it easy to make reservations and/or order food. Finance apps make it easier to check balances, transfer money, and make payments. A well designed app or website can provide functionality while also requiring the user to create an account he has to sign into to use that functionality. If an app is helpful and makes our customers’ lives easier, they will be more willing to log in and identify themselves.
We can’t force customers to always identify themselves. But by providing them value for doing so, and utility to make their lives a little easier, we can provide incentives for them to raise their hands, and simultaneously uncover more data to drive greater engagement and loyalty.