Articles Tagged with: Personalization

The little rules engine that could: Creating the ultimate customer journey

The little rules engine that could: Creating the ultimate customer journey

Amrith Ganesh

MarTech Blogger | May 17, 2022

When dealing with customers digitally, it’s important to create a well-planned-out journey. This ideal set of interactions will keep people on the right track as they engage with the brand and deepen their loyalty over time. Creating this journey, however, can be a challenge.

Too many companies are spending excessive amounts of money to keep their customers on a preferred path. Rather than using an automated rules engine that will set rewards and triggers for loyalty and rewards programs, they’re working with expensive and restrictive manual efforts. These major expenses cut into the return on investment, offsetting the value and usefulness of loyalty programs and other engagement features.

What your organization needs to get out of this pattern is an effective, affordable rules engine. With the right rules in place, you can lay out a suitable path for your customers while keeping up a strong ROI.

More time conceptualizing, less time executing

Getting customers to engage with a brand in a specific way can be difficult and time-consuming if there are too many manual processes involved. When a business doesn’t have much automation in place and customer outreach is handled on a case-by-case basis, employees are investing time that could be better spent elsewhere.

A business that is manually guiding customers from one engagement to the next may be losing its ability to pull back, look at the big picture and form a strategy. Ironically, these companies spending more time controlling the customer journey end up with less control, because they can’t create an overarching plan.

Creating a smooth customer experience, where users are guided naturally from one interaction to the next, should be a major priority for businesses today. This is especially important because Gartner research has found that customer expectations are rising and 81% of marketers envision CX as the competitive battlefield of the future.

How can your business create a positive CX while performing less manual outreach? It all comes down to automation, powered by a strong rules engine. The custom triggers and outcomes programmed into the engine determine the path of a customer’s journey, with less intervention from your team. No matter how sophisticated your customer engagement strategy is, there’s an automation solution for you.

An continuous customer journey

When designing an automated, rules-based customer journey, you should make sure there are no obvious off-ramps for your customers. This means eliminating the inconveniences that may make a person stop engaging with the brand.

An off-ramp can be anything that hurts a customers’ enjoyment, such as an irrelevant reward, a long wait before re-engagement or a bad mobile experience. Ideally, each contact will lead to further engagements, with the customer setting their chosen pace. Each micro-experience is strung together into the next, creating a continuous and seamless journey.

Each time a customer engages with a brand, the interaction should be positive and resonant. CMSWire quoted Harvard Business School’s Gerald Zaltman, who states that 95% of customers’ buying decisions are emotional, rather than coldly logical. If your brand is making people feel good, they’re more likely to stay loyal.

CMSWire added that personal touches are a valuable element of the customer journey, as long as they are added seamlessly into the journey, and in ways that improve interactions. This is another area where automation is better than heavy manual intervention. Customers should be getting tailored experiences by default.

A rules engine is the behind-the-scenes technology that makes a never-ending, personalized customer journey possible. A good engine will allow your team to create an intricate system of triggers and outcomes to keep customers engaged indefinitely through earn and burn or loyalty points, rewards and hyper-personalized experiences that are immediately relevant to them.

With varied game mechanics for earning and using points on customized rewards, you can win the CX war and keep your audience interested.

Actions equal triggers, milestones equal rewards

Building out a loyalty strategy on a rule engine means creating customized loyalty actions. Common interactions serve as triggers, and when customers reach milestones in their engagement with the brand, they receive rewards.

These reward allotments and the triggers that activate them will differ for each brand, and they give you the chance to lead customers down ideal paths for long-term loyalty. Salesforce noted that rewards can be more interesting than just discounts on future purchases. Your brand can offer free subscription services to customers who reach a loyalty threshold, or even invite them to exclusive events.

When you’re using a rules engine to plan out a strategic loyalty and rewards program, you’re free to go more in-depth about what you offer to your most engaged customers. Your choice should reflect customer data and intensive research, so you can be sure you’re giving them rewards and experiences that fit their goals and lifestyles.

Loyalty programs may even include offers that don’t go directly into your customers’ pockets: Salesforce added that some compelling engagement programs involve charitable components. By engaging with your brand, people are contributing to worthy causes they care about.

Perx has the rules engine you need

To get started building the automation-driven customer rewards journey of your dreams, you can invest in the Perx Lifestyle Marketing Platform.

The rules engine enables deep customization without time-consuming and difficult manual adjustments. You can design compelling reward earning and redemption scenarios that encourage customers to interact with your business in specific ways, leading them on a journey that suits both their preferences and your objectives.

Customized rules can be based on the real-time information coming in from real customer interactions. This means you can tweak and optimize the program based on actual information rather than assumptions. Such a level of precision allows you to shape the customer journey and experience in ways that will deliver results.

Rather than having to build a rules engine from scratch, the Perx Lifestyle Marketing platform gives you this capability right out of the box. Request a demo to learn exactly how it works.


Future-Proofing Customer Experience Personalization

Future-proofing customer experience personalization:

6 essential strategies for your rewards program

Amrith Ganesh

MarTech Blogger | April 29, 2022

Your customer data management process is critical to the success of your business. Without a customer data platform designed to support your digital marketing strategy, your rewards program will be ineffective at best.

What makes personalized customer experiences and engagement critical to achieving your business goals? According to one study, customers who are 90% engaged buy 90% more often and spend 60% more per transaction. Therefore, your data management and analysis processes are vital to creating highly customized customer journeys that drive continual engagement and revenues for your brand.

6 data-driven steps to a highly effective rewards program

Customer experience personalization is key to an effective, long-term digital marketing strategy. These six strategies are essential to building future-proofed, hyper-personalized customer experiences.

1. Consolidate your data

Data is frequently stored in separate ERP, MRP, CRM, marketing automation, web analytics, call center platforms, and other systems. As a result, most customer feedback analytics programs are inefficient since many of them waste a significant amount of data.

Using a centralized customer data platform can help you make sense of the data you’ve collected. Once your data is consolidated, cleaned, sorted, and segmented, you can leverage it to build the highly personalized experience journeys your customers crave.

Example: Perx has partnered with ONESIAM to help create a SuperApp. By bringing together more than 1,000 companies across various industries, opportunities are created to collate data into a clear picture of customers and their lifestyles.

This data can then be used to develop an overarching customer journey that is highly personalized and enhanced with gamification. Customer loyalty to any individual partner results in universal rewards (VIZ COIN) that can be converted and redeemed across any of the companies involved in the platform.

2. Dynamically engage customers and their evolving lifestyles

As conceptualized by Gartner, dynamic customer engagement is an alternative to reactive service. Companies using this method analyze customer data to turn every interaction into an opportunity to delight their customers and make them targeted, personalized offers. Such opportunities are plentiful because, as Gartner adds, only 9% of customers’ issues are resolved through self-service.

Organizations can invest in designing an elevated and seamless integration of offline and online experiences to offer meaningful and rewarding customer journeys that can continually adapt to future customers’ needs.

Perx’s partnership with ONESIAM supports a Universe of Extraordinary Experiences, and maximizes what customers gain from each spending by transforming existing Loyalty Programs into a value creation system.

The ONESIAM SuperApp can recognize patterns in user behavior thanks to AI-based technology. For example, the AI analyzes purchasing behaviors, predicts each customer’s next purchase, and curates a selection of products and services based on each user’s interests as part of hyper-personalized marketing.

Using data to engage consumers in this way dynamically drives the creation of campaigns that meet customer needs and enhance the integrated experience for robust customer engagement and retention.

3. Leverage data through gamification and customer loyalty programs

Develop a loyalty rewards program that offers hyper-personalized rewards that excite and engage users and create a shopping experience where purchases are made to elevate the quality of life and enhance potential.

Just as VIZ COINS in the ONESIAM SuperApp can be earned and spent with greater ease and excitement thanks to the gamified experience, individual brands can leverage the power of gamification to expand and improve their rewards program.

By reimagining how to engage and reward your most loyal customer, you can create future-proof fans of your brand who can also become brand ambassadors.

4. Personalize all engagement, but focus on digital-first

Build a digital-first framework that is designed to support ongoing customer experience journeys, not just one-off interactions.

McKinsey notes that “Today’s personalization leaders have found proven ways to drive 5-15% increases in revenue and 10-30% increases in marketing-spend efficiency — predominantly by deploying product recommendations and triggered communications within singular channels.”

Using data to create deeply personal, dynamic experiences for your customers will increase their trust for your brand and lead them to choose you again and again over other options put before them by your competitors.

Concentrating on digital channels helps make your messaging part of their daily lifestyle, until checking their progress in a game or what rewards they have unlocked becomes as natural and routine as getting dressed in the morning.

5. Exhibit digital empathy to leverage your customer’s emotions

Leading with compassion is critical to succeeding on digital. Cold and sterile offers won’t work; you have to connect emotionally with your audience.

According to Deloitte, 90% of customers find personalization appealing, and 4 out of 5 customers are more likely to purchase from a company that offers personalized experiences.

“The combination of convenience, customer understanding, and emotional engagement drives loyalty in customers and increases returns for organizations. Emotionally engaged, loyal customers not only spend twice as much as those who are not engaged, but 80% of them will recommend the brand to friends and family.”

When you connect with your customers on a basic level, they feel that you truly have taken the time to get to know them, and you can build on this customer relationship to drive actions and revenues.

6. Reap the benefits of hyper-personalization via gamification

With a solid customer data management strategy, you can focus on establishing a digital lifestyle ecosystem that drives business toward sustainability through the co-creation of shared value.

Maximize revenues through detailed product targeting and deployment of a robust and informed recommendation engine that can deliver individualized pricing and offers based on customer purchasing behaviors.

Lower customer acquisition costs by improving retention rates through increased brand stickiness and turning loyal customers into brand advocates. Additionally, reduce operational costs by implementing workflow automation streamlining customer interactions.

Elevate and future-proof customer experience personalization with in-moment customer journeys, 24/7, tailored customer service, and real-time customer segmentation. By delivering continual, consistent, and exciting customer experiences and rewards, you can build brand stickiness that won’t be beat.

Perx can provide the lifestyle marketing and customer data platform you need and the tools to build customer experiences and rewards programs that will stand the test of time.

Download the ONESIAM / Perx partnership case study to learn more about how you can improve customer engagement and elevate your loyalty program through gamification.


How a Personalized Customer Experience Increases Revenue and Loyalty

How a Personalized Customer Experience Increases Revenue and Loyalty

Grace Alexander

MarTech Blogger | April 14, 2022

You know what your customers want, what they’re interested in, and how they like to communicate. That is, if you’re using data effectively. But how can you turn that information from points on a graph into real-time actionable fuel for top line growth in loyalty and revenue generation?

The key lies in the kinds of customer experiences you create. In an era of constant digital communication between people and companies, having hyper-personalized and meaningful interactions with consumers is what stands out.

Surprise and delight your customers by proactively acknowledging and fulfilling their asks.

Building revenue and brand loyalty with personalization

One of the first points to understand about personalized customer experiences is that shoppers have come to expect this level of custom treatment.

McKinsey reported that personalization has moved from nice-to-have to need-to-have. People expect customized content, and they may devalue companies that don’t offer it. In retail, personalization can lift brand loyalty while lowering marketing expenses by 10-20%. Even in the grocery space, where companies deal with large customer bases and must launch all their programs at scale, a customized experience can lift sales by 1-2%.

Personalization is tied to a few of the other concepts that have powered retail in recent years, namely the increasing use of data and the development of effective rewards schemes for a brand’s most loyal shoppers.

McKinsey’s report added that personalized interactions aiming at customers who are already repeat buyers can drive powerful return on investment, at three times the rate of efforts that target all customers. From there, these customers repeatedly provide data as they return and interact with the company multiple times, making purchases or redeeming rewards. That information further fuels personalization and deepens the bond of loyalty.

Creating truly unique experiences with hyper-personalization

While companies have been using limited forms of customized outreach for years — segmenting their audiences and tailoring experiences based on interests and demographics — modern personalization is different. The era of hyper-personalization is here, where each individual has unique brand interaction experiences.

What’s the fundamental difference between doubling-down on segmentation and adopting real hyper-personalization? According to Deloitte, a real commitment to modern customized customer experiences means changing the entire way a business thinks about the customer journey and its relationship with its audience.

A hyper-personalized experience could start with a recommendation engine powered by advanced analytics categories, such as artificial intelligence (AI). This allows companies to create truly unique suggestions from each individual. From there, the use cases become more advanced, from personal pricing to products designed for a single person.

Example: Cadbury’s social media success

As a real-world example of its customer experience research, Deloitte reported that the confectioner Cadbury created highly personalized display ads based on customer data, provided with consent through Facebook. These custom marketing messages earned click-through rates of 65% and conversion rates just over one-third.

Probing the psychological link between personalization and brand loyalty

Personalization has the power to deepen the loyalty of existing shoppers and even, as in the Cadbury example, to win over new prospective customers. The key to getting these reactions, rather than making customers uneasy with the level of data companies are using, is to focus on positive experiences.

When personalization goes right

When are people most likely to willingly share their data and get customized experiences in return? According to PricewaterhouseCoopers, the key is to provide products or services that people truly value. In those cases, 63% of consumers are more willing to give companies personal information. This is significant, as 43% of people are generally opposed to data collection by businesses.

When a brand is closely aligned with a person’s lifestyle and interests, there is room to create a deep and lasting relationship. A customer who feels a brand appreciates them is willing to pay up to 16% more for that business’s services and goods, and will stay more loyal over time, according to the PwC data.

When personalization goes wrong

Just as there are companies that use customization effectively, there are those that make mistakes. Psychology Today noted some of the tactics consumers don’t like. Sometimes, a business can attempt to create a connection with audiences but fail, because they’ve gone too far. People who feel manipulated by a business, or who did not realize how much of their information a marketer has, may feel unhappy about losing control of their data.

While trying for a deep connection can backfire, so can shallow efforts at personalization. When a business makes a recommendation that is seen as stereotypical, that can drive customers away. The same goes for trying to give people information they already have. These surface-level efforts at customization don’t suit the preference for real understanding and mutual trust.

Taking customer engagement and personalization to the next level

How do companies get started personalizing their interactions with customers? A separate McKinsey report recommended that brands can begin their efforts sooner than they may assume. Rather than launching new efforts to organize or rethink data, businesses can use existing interaction data from their customer relationship management (CRM) systems.

Early efforts to personalize the customer experience should reach consumers through many different communication channels, rather than just one. There should be mechanisms in place for the business’s teams to collect real-time data on their new, personalized interactions and adjust on the fly based on their findings.

Personalizing customer experiences with Perx

If you’re hoping to join the many companies embracing personalization as a pillar of customer engagement marketing, Perx is the perfect customer engagement platform for you. Perx is a lifestyle marketing platform, meaning that customizing offers based on customer data is in the technology’s DNA.

The crux of the Perx customer loyalty management system lies in using data to generate rewards, experiences and interactions that will delight loyal customers. This, in turn, gives your organization further data to deepen your connection with your audience.

To see this cycle for yourself, request a demo.


Know your customers, so they say no to your competitors

Know your customers, so they say no to your competitors

Sundeep Keramalu

Director, Marketing Content | January 20, 2022

When comparing conventional influencers to everyday social media users, according to recent research from Bazaarvoice, 56 percent of social media users choose to follow “everyday” social media users, such as friends, family, and peers.

It’s not about paying influencers to sell your product; it’s all about paying attention to your end customers so that they can sell your product for you without having to pay for it.

Covid has continually reshaped consumer behavior. There is no longer any distinction between online and offline transactions. When all touchpoints and experiences are interconnected, the best results are achieved. Customers want everything, and brands must provide it. Shopping is expected to be quick and efficient. Experiences are expected to be rich and immersive. Payments are expected to be intuitive and straightforward.

That’s not all, though. What brands used to believe people wanted is no longer what customers wanted. More than 1,000 U.S. consumers polled by First Insight and Wharton’s Baker Retailing Center indicated that 68 percent were willing to pay more for sustainable products. What’s more surprising is that 94 percent of retailers believed customers preferred brand names to sustainability!

Want repeat business? Don’t repeat your mistakes.
Is your solution a problem?

If your solution is intended to solve a specific problem but fails to do so, the customer will no longer buy from you. However, even if your product does not meet their needs, if they continue to use it, it is just until they find a better alternative.

Your support sucks?

Poor service will drive 96 percent of your customers away.

God help you if you have a lousy product and poor support customer service!

However, if your product is subpar but your customer service is excellent, you have a chance to retain the customer and enhance your product.

But if your service is terrible and your product is awful, your consumers will not put up with such nonsense.” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>Eighty-six percent of consumers will tell others about a horrible experience they had with a product.

If you want to be top-of-mind, don’t put your customers at the bottom.
Sell a relationship, not a product.

The most important indicators for assessing new-age organizations are customer lifetime value and customer acquisition costs.

According to a Bain & Company research, 60-80 percent of satisfied consumers do not return to conduct further business with the company that first satisfied them.

Having a solid relationship with your customers is a great way to build brand equity. This is a substantial part of brand equity, but it is also the hardest to achieve and sustain. As a result of their emotional attachment to your brand, customers are more likely to buy from you again in the future. As a result, they may serve as brand ambassadors by participating in social media discussions on social media and brand community forums.

To be in touch, increase touchpoints.

Robert Zajonc, a social psychologist, came up with the Mere Exposure effect in the 1960s. It says that when people are used to something, they like it more. And if they have two choices, they’ll choose the one they’ve been exposed to the most, even if it’s not as good as the other one.

Designing a customer experience that promotes sales, retention, and referrals requires a thorough understanding of brand touchpoints.

Know your customers before they want you to stop knowing about them.
Build trust; don’t ask them to adjust.

Ninety percent of Americans consider customer service when selecting whether or not to do business with a company. Eighty-nine percent of customers say they are more inclined to make another purchase after having a good customer service experience.

Additionally, note that 70% of shoppers base their purchasing choices on brand trust.

Customers find you reputable and want to do business with you when they trust your company. Customers will be more vocal, loyal, and engaged due to this. This sets the tone for your company, and as consumers advocate for you, you’ll be able to attract additional customers who are willing to invest in your product.

Zero-party data – the real hero.

Understanding and experiencing your current customer’s journey firsthand is the first step towards changing consumer behavior.

Brands may acquire zero-party data – information that a consumer voluntarily provides a brand, such as purchase history, product preferences, size, and other relevant features – and then use that information to deliver tailored content such as product suggestions and special offers.

Perx was used by a top telecommunications company, to improve customer engagement. With Perx’s dynamic interactions, the telecom company achieved a 99 percent engagement rate in just 100 days after being live.

After slicing and dicing customers into the company’s audience personas, Perx began by investigating actions that customers had previously undertaken but went unreported. Next, we identified appropriate rewards based on customer data to incentivize these customers to repeat these actions. Then, using unique engagement mechanics, Perx merged several of these activities. Finally, on the Perx platform, all of this was wrapped in a gamified in-app experience layer that users interacted with.

Know your customers, so they say no to your competitors

Your most significant influencer is your customer. However, unlike endorsers and influencers, you cannot pay your way with the consumer. Instead, you must establish a connection with your consumer and get to know them. Take one step forward, and they will take two steps towards you.


Want To Be A Super Brand? Be Super Nice To Your Customer

Want To Be A Super Brand?
Be Super Nice To Your Customer

Sundeep Keramalu

Director, Marketing Content | December 21, 2021

The red light green light game killed 255 players in Netflix’s Squid Games. Players in the first game didn’t know what they were getting into. They didn’t have a chance other than to play the first game. But before the second game could begin, the contestants had a chance to back out from playing any more games. Some took that chance to walk out, and some remained. Then something interesting happened.

The players who opted to stop playing saw that getting out of the game had changed nothing. They were back to their miserable lives. In contrast, the players who wanted to continue playing had a chance of getting out of their misery. But when the ‘I-want-to-stop’ players got a second chance to return, they did. 93% of players returned. They knew that death was certain if they didn’t win a certain game. Yet this was them making an informed decision.

When your audience is desperate, and you give them what they are desperate for, they come. They come not for the love of you; they come for the love of what you are offering. And if you provide it enough, you might get them to fall in love with you.

Customers love brands that love their customers.

There is nothing taboo in brand-customer love. It needs to be the right kind of love, though. Nothing crazy. Nothing weird. The wrong type of love will chase them away.

Let me give you an example.

The 90s Bollywood movies worshipped this plot. So, the male lead stalks and harasses the unsuspecting female lead. He then tells her that he loves her and cannot live without her. He also tells her that if she says no, he will jump off a tall building or cut his wrist or jump in front of a speeding bus and die. When the female lead tells him point-blank that she is not interested in him, he thinks she is playing hard to get. He tries harder. He begins to harass her in every unimaginable way until she decides to give in. She decides to give in not because he has persuaded her to give it a shot. She decides to give in because she doesn’t have a way out of all the harassment.

78% of millennials are willing to switch to a company that offers better loyalty programs. Only products may not be sufficient to maintain customer loyalty. Customer experience over products has a better chance of drawing customers. Amazon sells products. But what it sells over products is convenience. The convenience of having the product delivered to your doorstep. Hassle-free. That convenience is a reward in itself.

Some brands don’t know where to draw the line. Some brands see where the line is, but they don’t know how to stop themselves from crossing it. The line between what brands can do and cannot do is thinning. At the same time, that very line is broadening. A brand’s motive behind pursuing a customer defines whether a line is thin or broad.

The line is thin for a brand that wants to listen to its customer before it can make an attempt to be heard.

Customers love brands that love their customers. But you know what customers love even more? Customers love brands that try to understand what their customers love.

Brands spend millions of dollars on product research. But they don’t spend even a quarter of it researching what their customers love.

Privacy regulations are getting tighter than strings in an action movie. But editors get to remove the strings in post-production. Likewise, brands can remove the strings attached to privacy concerns. And today, customers are willing to let brands remove those strings. All they expect in return are transparency and better offerings. And, of course, a little something for their efforts.

That’s fair, though, right?

That’s the beauty of zero-party data. You don’t have to stalk your customers. You don’t have to worry about getting caught with your hand in the damned cookie jar. No guesswork from tons of behavioral analytics!

Zero-party data is milk from the cow’s teat. As pure as they come.

I know a friend who shops on an e-commerce website for protein supplements. It seems three out of five times he placed an order, he got vouchers for baby food and baby diapers. He is single and doesn’t have kids. He told me he has never browsed anything related to “baby” stuff on the app. He stopped placing orders on the app and switched to another e-commerce company. He tells me he is happier with the second company for his protein supplements needs. This is despite the fact that the second company does not offer as high discounts as the first one. The second company offers him scratch cards with gym wear discounts. Now that is a company that understands him better.

Brands have an obligation to understand customers. When they don’t know what customers want, customers feel obligated to look elsewhere.

Offering an app alone with random discounts to unrelated products is not enough. Offering the right kind of products and rewards around the customer’s lifestyle matters.

Zero-party data doesn’t cost zero. It costs a lot more, but a lot less than one can imagine.

To get closer to customers, brands must pay attention to what customers are closer to. You can do that as easily as ABC with super-apps.

Super-apps are not blind rage. They are a meaningful rage designed to engage customers at every stage.

Take a look at what one of our clients is doing. Siam Piwat, Thailand’s leading mall operator, is revolutionizing the shopping experience.

They were ahead of the curve in reinventing their retail business. They are now pivoting to new business models through strategic partnerships. Perx Lifestyle Marketing Platform (LMP) will help co-create the transformational ONESIAMP SuperApp.

The super-app will build communities around customer interests. This will create effective marketing campaigns, promotional activities, and loyalty programs.

Super-apps are super effective when it comes to delighting and exceeding customer expectations. It’s a way to give them what they want in the way they want so you can get what you want — better data. And as you already know, data is the new oil!

Take a look at Tencent’s WeChat. It started as an empathetic messaging service. Soon, it was the “app for everything.” You could chat, pay, book tickets, open up a store – it gave the consumer the power — to do, create, and empower. In 2018, it was the ‘world’s largest standalone app’ with 1 billion monthly active users (MAU).

Super-apps may not bring down customer acquisition cost (CAC) to zero, but they can lower CAC. With the ability to cross-sell and upsell, you can make out like a bandit in the long run.

Perx Lifestyle Marketing Platform is a brand that helps you harness zero-party data. It can help you strengthen your bond with your customers.

You can immerse users, exhilarate them, and amplify connections in the evolving universes. Give the right rewards to your customers with our integrated advanced gamification elements. Hyper-personalize rewards that match customers’ lifestyles with rewards and merchants management. In short, Perx enables you to transform customers into super fans!

Want To Be A Super Brand? Be Super Nice To Your Customer

It all boils down to offering rewards that matter to your customers. When you do that, you can drive customer actions that matter to your brand.


The Road To A Brand’s Victory

The Road To A Brand’s Victory Is Paved With Small Wins For The Customer

The Road To A Brand’s Victory
Is Paved With Small Wins For The Customer

Sundeep Keramalu

Director, Marketing Content | December 16, 2021

You know I was thinking about what would be a wonderful approach to draft an article about gamification. I mean, isn’t it ironic? Gamification is the pinnacle of engaging someone in the way you want them to be involved in achieving a goal. And I am attempting to do so using a bunch of words. I will not deny it. This will be an arduous task. What say you? Allow me to open a fortune cookie and see what awaits me before I proceed. Let us see what my fortune cookie has to say.

Feed the ants in the anthill before you conquer Everest.


That was intense. Just the kind of motivation I needed. Thank you very much fortune cookie. I understand exactly what you mean!

If you want customer stickiness, you better not just have a glue gun, you got to own the whole damn glue factory!

Remember, you may have a fantastic product that offers excellent quality and unequaled convenience, and most importantly, a great value at a great price point. However, suppose you focus on all the fundamentals. In that case, you will ignore the “non-essentials,” such as customer engagement and retention, which, ironically, are the essentials that drive a brand’s growth and market share. It generates sales when you properly engage your customer. It boosts your brand’s visibility and loyalty. Above all, it helps with retention.

Existing customers are 60-70 percent likely to make a purchase. Unfortunately, the possibility of a sale with fresh prospects is only between 5% and 20%. As a result, customer retention and keeping your customers hooked are critical.

The Road To A Brand’s Victory Is Paved With Small Wins For The Customer

Nov 7-13 was #InternationalGamesWeek.

If you want a one-of-a-kind customer loyalty, you must give your customers a one-of-a-kind treatment.

When StarHub, a leading South-East Asian telecommunications company, wanted to cut through the competition in the post-pandemic market and make an impact on modern-day consumers, it went on a mission to build a unique one-of-a-kind digital rewards program for its customers.

To accomplish so, StarHub needed first to grasp the current trend, which saw a rising number of customers incorporating digital technology into their daily lives.

Second, StarHub is evolving from a telecom to a full-fledged digital life and digital services provider, offering customers the most rewarding connectivity, entertainment, and other lifestyle experiences, as well as innovative business solutions, all with seamless digital engagement at its core.

The Road To A Brand’s Victory Is Paved With Small Wins For The Customer

The Perx platform allows you to plan, customize and deploy campaigns on a whole new level.

Third, StarHub was aware that the telecom business had a high churn rate, despite telecom companies consistently offering attractive deals to entice new customers and retain existing customers. As a result, it was clear that it needed to address the significant issue of customer retention.

If you don’t want your brand’s growth to be static, you need to have a dynamic rewards program.

Once StarHub had finished understanding and analyzing their challenges, as well as having an unclouded vision of where they wanted to go, they partnered with Perx and established a dynamic rewards program, where customers could receive incentives digitally, seamlessly, and most importantly, instantly through the MyStarHub App.

When you transform a static customer-brand engagement strategy to a dynamic one, the journey of the end consumer is sprinkled with personalized rewards and gamified engagements that nudge actions along the way. As a result, making everything simple to absorb and digest for the end user is critical for customer adoption.

The Road To A Brand’s Victory Is Paved With Small Wins For The CustomerEvery Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., customers could spin the Wheel of Treats for a chance to win at StarHub Snapping Saturday.

Consumers were divided into three membership tiers based on their minimum monthly spending:

Green (less than $200)

Gold (more than $200 for six months)

Platinum (more than $200 for six months)

Green members were given fewer chances to spin the Wheel of Treats, while gold and platinum members were given more chances.

What was the outcome of the treat wheel?

The Road To A Brand’s Victory Is Paved With Small Wins For The Customer
The customer received a star each time the treat wheel was spun. The stars were treats. With 20 stars, a customer could enjoy a pastry. If the customer liked pizza, he/she could collect a few stars and exchange them for a pizza.

If you want to shine like the brightest star, you need to make your customers feel like stars.

Perx made sure StarHub’s rewards were not solely based on instant gratification. In the reward configuration, Perx designed it so that StarHub could reward its customers on specific days and at specific times. The date-bound and time-bound rewarding mechanism included special days too such as birthdays, anniversaries, and festivals.

The gamified rewards were tailored to each customer segment’s lifestyle preferences.

Personalized rewards are a surefire way to win your customers’ hearts. For the first time, like your customers, your loyalty program (if it had a soul) would thank you for resurrecting it from being just a glorified bookkeeper of points to enabling it to actively engage with your customers. Customers are more likely to join your loyalty/rewards program and adopt your products or services if you offer incentives. For the customer, the more individualized the incentives are, the more appealing they are.

The Road To A Brand’s Victory Is Paved With Small Wins For The CustomerIf you want customers to adopt your brand, you need to adapt to their lifestyle choices.

According to Epsilon research, personalization increased purchase intent by 80%.

Brands must keep in mind that the notion of rewarding customers should not appear to be a charity or feel impersonal. Instead, by understanding your customers’ requirements and lifestyle preferences, you can customize your rewards to fit their lifestyles, and that is when you have a winning formula.

In the customer engagement space a winning strategy is measured by customer adoption. StarHub’s previous customer acquisition goal was to onboard 10% of existing StarHub Singapore households into the New Rewards Loyalty Program within 30 days of introduction.

With Perx, StarHub had surpassed its goal by more than 100%, onboarding 20% of StarHub households in 30 days. This figure has climbed from 20% to 50% of all StarHub Households in Singapore in a few months.

Thanks to Perx’s unique mix of next-generation in-app customer experiences, dynamic incentive-led campaigns, and injecting the concept of gamification into every last-mile customer connection on the MyStarHub App, 4,465,889 rewards have been issued to customers at the time of writing this article.

Even though the fortune cookie I had at the beginning of the story was imaginary, the fortune cookie remains one of the most impressive innovations. It could have simply been a regular cookie. But here is a cookie that can tell you your fortune. It is not like you are going to sue the cookie if what the cookie predicts doesn’t come true. It is the intention that counts. The cookie gives you something to look forward to when you are going to eat it. Isn’t that delightful? See? That is all you need to focus on. You must provide something that your clients are not anticipating. This is the essence of gamification. It is not some esoteric jargon. It may be something simple, effective, and beneficial for both the customer and you, the brand.

Customers have the power to make or break a brand. Even if you are a brand that is made, you will still have your milestones to achieve to get to the next stage. Whether you are a new or established brand, we must not make the mistake of assuming that a consumer will continue to pay for our goods regardless of how we treat them – which is to say, by not treating them. There is, quite frankly, no better way to reward your customers in this era driven by instant gratification and smartphones than through gamification. To put it another way, give them something to do that fits their lifestyle choices, and they will gladly pay for your goods even if they had the option to go with your competition. They win, you score.


How Retailers Can Win The Holiday Season By Truly Going Customer-First

How Retailers Can Win The Holiday Season By Truly Going Customer-First

How Retailers Can Win The Holiday Season By Truly Going Customer-First

Sean Foo

MarTech Blogger | December 06, 2021

As a retailer, the holiday season should be a cheery time of the year where stores would be packed and products flying off the shelves.

However, the current pandemic has changed customer behavior forever, rendering the time-tested marketing strategies of retailers to become increasingly obsolete.

How do you compete in an environment where margins are razor-thin and customers are notoriously fickle?

The solution lies in genuinely understanding what your customers desire, engaging them directly one-on-one, and influencing their decisions to drive what really matters — sales.

The First Step Is To Analyze Your Customer Data

How well do you really know your customers?

While many retailers can easily cite the customer demographics and the products or services that contribute the most revenue, knowing the exact preferences of your shoppers is essential.

Starbucks, for example, utilizes the data collected from their rewards program and mobile app to understand the purchasing habits of their millions of users. The rewards themselves, represent over 36% of US company-operated sales in 2017.

The data intelligence gathered allowed them to better personalize the Starbucks experience for their mobile app users, suggesting highly relevant products and new offerings that each customer might be uniquely interested in.

Through your point-of-sale (POS) system and loyalty programs, you can also start to build preferential data points around customers, segment them into distinct personas and let your customer engagement campaigns deliver a personalized treatment.

This allows you to recommend the right types of products they might be interested in instead of simply broadcasting a message that might reach everyone but pleases no one.

Engaging Your Customers Where They Are, Is A Must

When was the last time you made a conscious effort to go window shopping around a mall, hoping to spot the latest and most fantastic deals?

Sure, the Christmas trees on display in the mall might attract shoppers, but it is undeniable that retail store footfall has been steadily decreasing globally, and the pandemic has all but slowed it down to a trickle.

Online shopping & the digital floor space has taken over.

Most shoppers today live on their smartphones, and retailers will need to capitalize on this by engaging with them where they spend much of their attention.

Through targeted campaigns with highly personalized offers, brands will be able to actively engage their prospects to increase foot traffic to their physical stores or digital storefronts.

How Retailers Can Win The Holiday Season By Truly Going Customer-First

The Perx Lifestyle Marketing Platform allows retailers to target the right audience and hyper-personalize how your brand engages with your customer to influence the shopping cart naturally.

Imagine, your customer getting a digital scratch and win card just before Christmas that entitles him or her to claim their favorite drink from your cafe. The experience is unique, it is gamified and it is instantly gratifying.

It is how one retail chain in the Philippines managed to achieve a 700% increase in customer engagement on their loyalty program and how Thailand’s largest mall operator experienced a double-digit rise in footfall and revenue.

Solving Cart Abandonment Is Mission-Critical

Customers today enjoy an abundance of options; you are not the only retailer in town with a unique brand or quality products.

All too often, this leads to shopping cart abandonment that spikes to an all-time high, especially during the holiday season, where customers are being blasted with a continuous stream of offers and promotions.

How Retailers Can Win The Holiday Season By Truly Going Customer-FirstIn fact, a 2019 research has found that the average shopping cart abandonment rate is an astounding 69.57%.

From a long checkout process to the allure of comparison shopping and the lack of additional last-minute discounts, many factors could suddenly spur a prospective customer to abandon their purchase.

While it is impossible to eliminate cart abandonment fully, you will have to go beyond just optimizing the checkout process and removing roadblocks to a swift conversion. The key is to engage your customers both on-site before they leave and off-site should they exit your checkout page.

By analyzing your customer data and engaging them during the checkout process, you will be able to trigger excitement and influence your prospect towards the sale.

A first-time customer at your checkout page? Let them spin the wheel to win an additional 10% off their first purchase.

A loyal customer about to checkout? Let them shake a virtual tree and reward them with a sweet discount on their next purchase in the same shopping session!

A prospect that left the shopping session prematurely? Engage them through your store’s app with a reminder tied with gamified rewarding experience.

By sprinkling dynamic engagements within a single shopping experience, you will increase your brand touchpoints in an authentic way that influences their decision to purchase by incentivizing it.

This will allow you to reduce your cart abandonment rate and upsize the shopping carts to drive even more revenue per customer and increase the share of wallet.

Fight Against Lowered Margins With Hyper-personalized Offers

As a retailer, you know the drill when it comes to holiday promotions.

1-for-1 deals, 30% off store-wide and flash sales are classic promotional strategies retailers use to drive revenue and stand out amidst the fierce competition.

Sure, these deep discounts are great for your customers but a nightmare to your margins! Furthermore, relying on the loss-leader strategy is not always sustainable and does not guarantee additional purchases once you grab your customers’ attention.

What is more powerful (and profitable) is to hyper-personalize your offers and engagements to the right audience at the right time.

Amazon, for example, uses its customer purchase history and buying behavior to recommend the right promotions and products that matter to the buyer instead of a blanket discount.

You can do the same, too, by leveraging your customer data and sending personalized offers just as the holiday season begins!

A terrific way to gamify and personalize such an experience is a 12-days of Christmas scratchable calendar that can be integrated with your customer loyalty programs.

This allows customers to wake up and anticipate a new ‘present,’ which could be a targeted promotional product or a gift that they love, throughout the Christmas period.

Instead of just slashing prices store-wide, retailers should aim to gamify and personalize their customers’ shopping experience to increase their brand touchpoints while preserving their margins naturally.

Place Your Customer & Their Experience First This Holiday Season

Discounts and promotions alone do not win the day; prioritizing your customer experience and their needs do.

By leveraging your customer data and crafting interactive experiences that blend well with their lifestyle, you will be able to create unique brand touchpoints that go beyond just mere suggestions and indeed influence their purchasing decisions.

Ready to transform the way you engage with your customers this holiday season?

Learn more about the Perx Lifestyle Marketing Platform and how we have helped brands elevate their customer engagement strategies, transforming them from just another brand into an influencer in their customers’ lives.

Get in touch for a tailored demo and discover how you can influence and drive customer actions today.


The Right Customer Engagement Trick? Treat Them Right!

The right customer engagement trick? Treat them right!

Despite the fact that the campaign was launched a decade ago, it continues to haunt me.

Sundeep Keramalu
Director, Marketing Content | November 01, 2021

Was Coke crazy to put random people names on its ‘#ShareACoke’ campaign? Yes. No. No. Yes. Yes, when one considers the campaign’s general desperation. No, when you consider how it made people feel. And no, when you consider the campaign’s stated purpose. And yes, when you consider how Coke was catapulting addiction to new heights.

While Coke’s amazing taste is refreshing, we must keep in mind that even the great ice age reached a point where it was no longer cool.

Share A Coke was no doubt a sweet campaign. That is, having your name appear on a billion-dollar brand. How frequently do you see that? What bothers me is that Coca-Cola is a well-known brand. It has its own name. It has taken decades and hundreds of millions of dollars to get to this point. And suddenly, it was willing to gamble with its identity by putting random, unknown names on its bottles to boost sales for one summer in Australia? It is self-evident that Coke has the absolute right to do anything it wants with its bottles. But, if you know that your product is not exactly health-beneficial and has addictive elements, you want to enable your customer to be disabled from being addicted — not the other way around.

Brands cannot capitalize on the unconditional condition unless they are willing to allow their customers to explore the condition of conditionality.

The goal of any brand is to make the customer fall in love with it unconditionally. Unfortunately, brands cannot capitalize on the unconditional condition unless they are willing to allow their customers to explore the condition of conditionality.

Simply put, to receive anything, you must first offer something. While Coke’s amazing taste is refreshing, we must keep in mind that even the great ice age reached a point where it was no longer cool.

The ethical question remains whether a brand can go as far as to entice consumers to purchase a product simply because it bears their name.

To keep consumers’ hearts warm for the brand, even a “cool” brand must step up and do something genuinely cool that also ends up being a warm gesture for the brand. Coke’s “nice” gesture was to put people’s names on its bottles. Of course, Coke, like any other marketing campaign, had its own agenda. Putting random people’s names on its bottles would be akin to a jilted Bollywood lover in one of those 90s movies engraving the name of the lady in his blood — since she does not feel the same way about him or, worse, has no idea who he is to begin with! Coca-Cola did not want a one-sided relationship. During the summer of 2011, it sought to increase sales in Australia.

Influential personalities and multimillion-dollar deceptive marketing messages are damaging to one’s willpower when it comes to resisting unhealthy and harmful lifestyle choices.

As much as people enjoyed seeing their or their loved ones’ names on Coke bottles, the question we must ask is if it was the proper experience. True, the ethical question remains whether a brand can go as far as to entice consumers to purchase a product simply because it bears their name. However, when a brand is aware that its product is bad enough to be a good pesticide, I believe it should refrain from influencing people in this way — from persuading them to share something this bad.

As it is, influential personalities and multimillion-dollar deceptive marketing messages are damaging to one’s willpower when it comes to resisting unhealthy and harmful lifestyle choices. In any event, when compared to Kendall Jenner’s ‘Live for Now’ Pepsi fiasco, Coke’s ‘Share a Coke’ campaign was more thoughtful and positive.

When you are a brand that is bad for the body and bad for the mind, you cannot give people any more reasons to buy it than they need. There is a very thin line to walk. This means that you should not compel your customers to adopt your brand. Rather than that, develop incentives for people to adore your brand. There is a significant difference, but the line is really thin. I am not being a snob and slamming the idea of sharing a Coke with a close friend. It is just that you would not want to share anything harmful to your health with someone you care about. That contradicts the point of the campaign’s purported goodness.

Brands that make essentially harmful products to one’s health have additional avenues for customer engagement. Coke tricked its customers into purchasing more Coke. And, mind you, this was done in the name of “treating” its customers. Did not expect this from you, Coke!

Even for a beauty brand that wants to reward its customers, it cannot be skin-deep in its approach to rewarding them.

As much as we would like to believe that the #ShareACoke campaign was an engaging sales-increasing, brand-building, emotionally-engaging campaign, the reality is that it was not as engaging as it could have been. So, the deal was that Coke gave a platform for people to share a virtual Coke with pals or, if they were lucky, find a bottle of Coke with their or their friend’s name on it.

All of this, you see, is still quite transactional. In the end, it is just a name on a bottle! That is all there is to it. When the campaign ended, the transaction concluded. When you invest millions of dollars in advertising a campaign, you spend far more to market and nurture the campaign so that people remember it.

While beauty is in the eye of the beholder, the beauty of a reward is in the embrace of a participant.

Rewards cannot be superficial. Let me give you a perspective. Beauty is considered superficial, right? But even for a global cosmetics brand that wants to reward its customers, it cannot be skin-deep in its approach.

How did a global cosmetics giant under Louis Vuitton increase its in-store sales with the Perx Platform? They did not go around handing out random rewards or sample cosmetics to the passing crowd. Instead, they incentivized regular in-mall footfall to visit their stores

It was a simple and straightforward approach. With smartphones being the single common denominator across shoppers in developed countries, QR-coded posters were placed throughout a highly popular mall. Customers were rewarded every time they scanned the QR code. However, to receive the reward, they had to enter the store — the point of sale.

The dynamic campaigns connected offline footfall, incentivizing them to walk into the store, where purchases were built and launched using the Perx platform. In addition, Perx’s advanced gamification and engagement mechanics transformed the whole experience into a gamified and instantly gratifying one.

Before launch, the brand researched customer footfall and buying patterns before designing the experience around them. They wanted to reward them for their intention to buy something from the brand. Even if they did not intend to do so, the dynamic mobile engagements influenced them to engage with the brand. In other words, I am attempting to convey that, in light of the example, the reward offered should not be based merely on the customer’s pleasure; rather, it should be based on the customer’s intent.

It is true. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Therefore, Coke’s #ShareACoke campaign might have made the day for some of its customers. But at the end of the day, we must remember, while beauty is in the eye of the beholder, the beauty of a reward is in the embrace of a participant.

A disconnect or a pause between you, the brand, and your customer will cause them to seek another brand that meets their requirements.

While each beginning and each campaign should have a conclusion, the reality is that engaging customers is a continuous process. Brands are required to engage in a never-ending cycle of evolution, progress, and improvisation. A disconnect or a pause between you, the brand, and your customer will cause them to seek another brand that meets their requirements. This is why brands must focus on engaging their customers in ways that transcend beyond transactional interactions — something that keeps the connection going for a long, long, long time — how about forever!

Treat the relationship with your customer as though it were a long and happy marriage and not a one-night stand.

Treat the relationship with your customer as though it were a long and happy marriage and not a one-night stand.

Given that you have read this far, we are here to assist you if you are looking for a superpower to build that long-lasting, deeply-engaging relationship with your customers. Now keep in mind that we do not help you treat your customers just for the heck of it. Instead, we assist you in treating them genuinely and sensibly – you know, for the right reasons!

We work on making sure your customers do not just remain customers, instead we turn them into level-headed superfans.

It all boils down to giving you the satisfaction of knowing that you as a brand did not trick your customers and that you treated them appropriately. And understanding that will help prevent your conscience from being haunted.

Here is to a #CleanConscience!


How the World’s Most Popular Game Failed to Put a Smile on its Players’ Faces

make your customer smile

How the world’s most popular game failed to put a smile on its players’ faces

Sundeep Keramalu
Director, Marketing Content | October 01, 2021

The primary lockdowns in 2020 were hard for all of us. Numerous brands reinvented themselves and achieved extraordinary success. And some became extinct in a matter of days during this time. Then some outliers created solutions and products to capitalize on the possibilities and dominate the market in response to disruptions in consumers’ lifestyles.

What is the point of being tall if you are not going to make the people who made you tall sit on your shoulders and feel elevated?

Genshin Impact (GI), an action role-playing, free-to-play (F2P) game, having only launched in September 2020, profoundly affected the whole gaming industry. For a world that had been shut down, an open-world game appeared to be a faraway universe’s answer to a desperate cry from the heart.

GI became the only game in history to earn a billion dollars in just six months. The gamers were crazy about the game, and the game developers made sure their game was incredibly good to keep the players from getting enough of the game.

Each time it released a new character pack, the most obsessed players generated a cool $12 million (in a single day) in revenue for GI.

Everything in the GI universe was going fantastic, until GI decided to celebrate its first anniversary, at which point things became real… and ugly!

When brands re-energize their customer engagement strategy and loyalty initiatives by aligning them with the everyday life choices of their consumers, they increase retention and create superfans.

Fans of the game expected great prizes for their dedication on the game’s first anniversary. Instead, GI offered only a quarter of a gacha doll’s price. What is the point of being tall if you are not going to make the people who made you tall sit on your shoulders and feel elevated?

When players started complaining about the measly rewards from GI on the official forum, the game’s publisher deleted the complaints. This led to the players expressing their frustrations on the app’s review section on the Google Play store, plunging Genshin Impact’s score from 4.5 to a meagre 2.8.

If GI could have duly, appropriately, and timely rewarded its players, it might have deepened its emotional ties with them.

It is a terrible irony that a gaming company that excels in enticing players to purchase fantastical accessories and levels fails to amaze where it counts most – ensuring that hooked users stay hooked through meaningful engagement strategies.

Steps that could have kept GI on its exponential trajectory

If GI had implemented tailored rewards for its estimated three million users through gamification, it would have had happier players and not disappointed fans on its anniversary.

GI failed to go the extra mile. It was the occasion to make its players happy by circumventing the rules, adding extras, or offering contextual rewards for their in-game actions. If GI could have duly, appropriately, and timely rewarded its players, it might have deepened its emotional ties with them, transforming happy users to a loyal tribe.

Maintaining a transient and transactional relationship with customers is no longer sufficient. GI is no doubt an awesome game. However, did it perform admirably when it mattered? Not at all.

A brand