As competition intensifies amongst brands, companies have to innovate and differentiate themselves by delivering customer centric campaigns and experiences that give their target audience a compelling reason to become customers.
Customer experience has evolved from an interaction between brand and customer, to an important factor in brand perception. In fact, in 2017, Walker found 86% of buyers are willing to pay more for a better customer experience. Today’s consumers not only prefer a positive purchase experience; they demand in.
And with 62% of companies recognizing customer experience as a key competitive differentiator, marketers definitely don’t want to miss out on the advantages it can bring to their business, such as repeat customers and bigger basket size.
Delivering a standout customer experience is all about marrying online and offline data and initiatives, and creating an emotional connection between brand and customer by engaging them and putting them in the center of their strategy.
Here are some unique and engaging examples to inspire your brand’s customer experience strategy!
1. Coca-Cola’s #ShareACoke Campaign
In 2011, Coca-Cola replaced the traditional Coke logo on one side of their bottles, with the phrase “Share a Coke with”, followed by a person’s name. Initially launched in Australia, the campaign grew in popularity and was eventually rolled out to 80 markets worldwide, and brought back in different reiterations over the next decade.
Following #ShareACoke’s massive popularity with consumers, Coca-Cola grew their sales for the first time in 10 years, with a whopping 150 million personalized bottles sold in 2014 alone. The company has also been reported to increase their advertising budget by $1 billion from 2014 to 2017.
Why It Worked
#ShareACoke turned an otherwise ordinary occurrence of consuming soft drinks, into a highly personalized and shareable customer experience. With over 600,000 posts on Instagram to date, it also helped to keep Coca-Cola top of mind with their customers, while maintaining share of voice against competitors.
2. Tesco’s Virtual Stores
Knowing the hectic schedules of working adults in South Korea, Tesco launched virtual grocery stores in public areas with high foot traffic, such as subway stations, where customers could use a mobile application, Homeplus, to scan an item’s QR code and schedule its delivery.
The Homeplus app was downloaded 900,000 times in less than one year, making it the most popular shopping app in South Korea. Online sales increased by 130%, and app users increased by 76%. As a result, Tesco became the country’s top online retailer, with overseas sales bolstering the company amidst falling domestic profits.
Why It Worked
Instead of waiting for customers to visit their stores, Tesco innovated and brought a digital customer experience to them. By doing so, Tesco used their knowledge of local consumer behavior and tech savviness to their advantage, and successfully adapted to these trends.
3. McDonald’s Store Overhaul
In addition to upgrading its store interiors for a more sophisticated look, McDonald’s introduced digital self-order kiosks and table service in late 2016, in order to cut queue times for customers.
As McDonald’s adopted a new ordering system, analysts at Cowen have predicted the fast food chain’s efforts to pay off in 2018 – with an improve in comparable sales by nearly 100 basis points. Similarly, BTIG projected a 4.1% same-store sales growth in early 2018.
Why It Works
Lunch and dinner time crowds are never ideal for hungry customers, and can put them off ordering altogether. McDonald’s initiative showed their understanding and responsiveness to such situations. Furthermore, with fast food fads rising and disappearing quickly, coupled with how easy it is for competitors to introduce similar offerings, McDonald’s store upgrade helped elevate its overall customer experience.
4. Hershey’s Happygrams
Hershey’s Happygrams was a real-time social media campaign that ran in Manila in 2015. The brand monitored tweets that expressed frustration and unhappiness, and responded with personalized messages called Happygrams; a microsite was also set up for internauts to create and share their own Happygrams.
Not only did the campaign achieve its initial goal of reminding customers about Hershey’s 1903 mission to “make everyday moments better”, it also resulted in earning over 92,000 impressions on Facebook and Twitter, as well as 60% growth in market share for the brand.
Why It Worked
Similarly to #ShareACoke, Hershey’s customer experience strategy created interactions that were personalized, relevant, and appropriate to the moment, which led to positive associations for the brand without verging on overly salesy.
5. Musicians Sell Merchandise Through Chat Bots
Axwell /\ Ingrosso, a Swedish DJ duo, sells merchandise directly through their chatbot. They also launched a new product exclusively via this channel, and sold out within minutes.
On top of selling over £10,000 worth of merchandise via Facebook Messenger in just a couple of months, Axwell /\ Ingrosso’s team reduced reduced marketing spend by 80%, with calculated cost per click (CPC) at £0.25 (compared to the industry standard of £1.24).
Why It Worked
Over 1 billion people are using messenger apps every month; over 56% of customers surveyed by Nielsen would rather message a business than call customer service. Axwell /\ Ingrosso’s messenger bot not only streamlined the purchase experience; it also made fans feel engaged and rewarded, with timely responses and exclusive merchandise launches.
In an age where consumers are always connected and on the go, it is important for brands to shift their strategies, to reach their audience at the right moments.
Pro Tips For Your Customer Experience Strategies
Customer experiences are what people remember most about your brand. Here are a few simple steps marketers can take to propel their customer experience strategies:
- Respond to customer feedback: A good brand listens to its customers, and fine tunes its strategy to meet their needs and preferences. A simple tweak in your operations or campaigns, can go a long way in showing your brand prioritizes their experience.
- Put your customers at the heart of your strategy: Deliver experiences that are not only relevant and engaging, but also value adding, and your customers will come to view your brand in a positive light, or become loyal advocates.
- Be where your customers are: The most well designed customer experience will be for naught if it doesn’t reach its target audience. Don’t forget to consider key trends in customer behavior, both online and offline!
- Focus on creating seamless experiences: With the customer journey becoming increasingly fragmented, it important to ensure all customer touch points are optimized and tied together. For example, a consumer who taps through your “shop now” button on an Instagram post, should be able to access your e-commerce store and locate the item of his or her choice easily.
Social media can be a gold mine of consumer insights and engagement opportunities that will yield profits if you act on them. Furthermore, with social listening tools that enable data gathering and aggregation in real time, marketers are empowered to react and optimize customer exprience strategies with greater speed.
Bonus: See how using social intelligence can help you deliver the purchase experience customers want, by detecting their preferences and sentiments in real time. Request a free trial or demo of Digimind Social!