Holistic data - it's a simple concept that has reached a fever-pitch: data-driven loyalty programs thrive off omnichannel efforts because more touchpoints feeds more data...and as more data on consumers is acquired, the reality of these consumers is clarified. For example, why does that organized weekly shopper consistently make Sunday afternoon grocery trips a habit? If a new loyalty app is targeted to this individual, geographic data collected from the app could reveal that this hypothetical shopper always spends Sunday morning at the beach right beside their favorite grocery store...opening a new window into the life of this person (and a pandora's box of strategies to engage them).
If the entire consumer was a richly detailed painting, each data point would be a dab of paint, and each program touchpoint a brushstroke on the canvas. The big picture becomes truly distinguishable when every element of an omnichannel ecosystem works to feed the data pipeline harmoniously.
The Big Picture
At first, the phrase "Single Customer View" was a hushed murmur, protected carefully by loyalty innovators ahead of their time. This murmur has become a deafening roar as the omnichannel loyalty environments of today are enabling better ways of tapping into the increasingly complex path-to-purchase. Given that multi-banner loyalty strategies with diverse, targeted touchpoints are now an expectation, what factor really sets apart programs that go above and beyond in their ability to actually produce loyal consumers? The growing consensus is that overarching data analysis is the backbone of loyalty program success, and as the "Single Customer View" approach to loyalty becomes more prevalent, data-driven programs become even more essential...as well as challenging to execute.
The Only Thing That Matters (Drumroll Please….)
Great data analysis is merely a means to an end; finding better ways to keep consumers loyal should always be the name of the game. At the end of the day, the data must work towards bettering the consumer experience. Consumers themselves are open and honest about their expectations from loyalty programs; as reported by Eagle Eye's "shifting loyalties." report on Canadian consumers, those that disclose additional data on themselves expect more in return, such as:
- personalized communications (45%)
- rewards (35%)
- improved omnichannel customer service (25%)
- communication in the channels they prefer (25%)
And according to SmartBrief, Single Customer View strategies such as cross-brand engagements should ideally provide insight into overarching consumer preferences for later retargeting.
The Devil Is In The Details
The reality is that the complexity of such an analysis is staggering; thousands (or even millions) of consumers engaging with dozens of touchpoints yields more data than many loyalty marketers know how to manage. While novel technologies are putting data analytics tools into the hands of anyone willing to take a quantitative grasp on their marketing, perhaps the most important takeaway from the surge in data-driven loyalty is to keep the end goal in clear perspective. The best data-driven programs use data from across the entire omnichannel ecosystem to create a Single Customer View that truly satisfies the shopper's needs and wants.
Lanndon Lindsay is a Reporter at The Wise Marketer.