Recently, our own Kelsey Jones, Global Head of Product Marketing, was hosted by Gwen Lafage, VP Marketing, Global Brand and Content at Sinch, to talk about all things loyalty and retail on the Sinch podcast, CX Education. They recorded a 30+ minute session discussing the state of customer loyalty today, different forms that it can take, and what marketers can do to win loyalty not just in the short term but for the long haul.
Sinch is a trusted partner for SAP Emarsys. The Sinch platform empowers marketers with a suite of APIs and SDKs to better leverage an array of communication channels. Here at Emarsys, we love all things omnichannel, so it’s a match made in heaven.
Read on for key highlights from the podcast, which you can also watch on-demand.
Key Highlights: Driving Loyalty through Personalized Value Exchanges
Long-lasting customer loyalty — it’s the goal, the shining beacon, the target of every brand because when customers become truly loyal, you get sustainable, predictable revenue.
As Kelsey and Gwen discussed loyalty, they came back again and again to one of the key ingredients behind developing loyalty: the value exchange. Every time a brand engages with a customer, it’s an opportunity to create an exchange of value, no matter which channel it happens on (email, SMS, web, or other). For brands to provide value with every customer engagement, they must rely on technology, using customer data and AI insights to create personalized, relevant experiences.
Drive loyalty in a time even when loyalty is on the decline
Consumers are feeling conscientious about the cost and quality of the goods and services brands provide. We saw the fallout of that in the survey for our Customer Loyalty Index 2023: this year, 66% of customers around the world say they’re “loyal” to certain retailers, compared with 76% in 2022.
That decline might seem a little discouraging… until you consider that “20% of consumers have become more loyal to brands offering the best personalized deals over the last year” (source: Customer Loyalty Index 2023). Watch this short clip for added context:
With loyalty becoming harder to drive, one of the best things marketers can do is ensure that communications are relevant and personalized. Above all, don’t waste their time with spam. By respecting the customer’s time and taking a thoughtful, strategic approach to using customer data, marketers can build a relationship with customers that’s based on an exchange of value. And that value will keep the customer coming back for more, time and again.
Make good use of SMS — and all your channels!
In the following short clip, Gwen makes excellent points about omnichannel strategy:
As Gwen explains, “Consumers are on those different channels, but they don’t have the same expectation for each one.” It’s up to marketers (and their martech platforms) to meet customer expectations.
But what do consumers expect of a channel like SMS? Gwen had more to say about that:
To meet customers’ expectations, marketers need to understand their customers by looking closely at what channels they’re using and how they’re using them. Then marketers must apply that understanding to an omnichannel strategy to create seamless journeys that are convenient and relevant for customers every step of the way.
Ensure you have the power to engage customers across channels
In order to drive loyalty and make value exchanges possible with customers across channels, marketers need the right customer engagement platform in place, one that powers automated, data-driven customer experiences. But is “more channels and more power” really all it takes to succeed?
Actually, there’s more to the story than that. Hear what Kelsey has to say about B2B martech vendors:
Let’s revisit this quote from Kelsey right away:
“We [B2B vendors] need to make it easy for brands to turn on channels that make the most sense for them.”
Kelsey Jones, Global Head of Product Marketing
It’s critical that marketers select a vendor and a platform that is forward-thinking and adaptable, capable of turning on new channels quickly and easily so that marketers can continue to meet customers where they are. Technology isn’t static, and neither are customers, so martech needs the room to grow and react to the market by activating new channels — rapidly, within weeks or days, not months.
Take a close look at the channels and omnichannel integrations that your martech has to offer. If what you discover doesn’t leave you feeling confident, it might be time to ask tougher questions about how your platform is performing and providing ROI. (Our 2024 MarTech RFP Guide has a list of example questions that can help you — you don’t even have to issue an RFP to make good use of the questions!)
The podcast with Sinch was filled with so many great moments it was difficult to pick just a few key highlights. We hope you found these clips helpful, and we’d love to encourage you to watch the complete podcast for more great content as Gwen and Kelsey also discuss:
- Transparency and setting clear expectations for shoppers
- Customer service, conversational channels, and AI
- The complete, end-to-end customer journey and how to optimize it
- Holiday seasons and how to make the most of the influx of customer data
Together, Sinch and Emarsys help marketers boost cross-channel customer engagement and retention efforts with effective messaging campaigns. You can learn more about our partnership or visit the Sinch website to learn more about how Sinch is making it easy for marketers to build meaningful connections with customers across SMS, voice, email, video, and verification.
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