Facebook has my birthday so I assume every other retailer and their first born also has it available to make my day extra special. If they can re-target and follow me with Instagram ads using beacons after I walked into their store, then the possibilities are endless!
My birthday was just a few days ago, on December 7th. I began to receive birthday offers from stores on December 1st. Perfect timing! It made me think about how brands can take advantage of this opportunity to gain a new loyal customer or enhance the budding relationship.
“A study by Germany-based customer engagement company Hybris, conducted by Forrester Consulting, shows a gap between consumers’ expectations of personalized marketing and what marketers are delivering. The study shows that while 66 percent of marketers rate their personalization efforts as “very good” or “excellent,” only 31 percent of consumers say companies are consistently delivering personalized, cross-channel experiences.”
Based on this study and what I have experienced, I agree. Retargeting on Facebook and Instagram is standard compared to an overall personalization strategy that can deliver a birthday experience that is relevant to you, your purchase history, consistent across channels, and accessible to your employees.
Compete on experience instead of racing to the bottom of price. A birthday is the best time to make a difference. When someone is passionate about your brand and has a connection, they don’t look for the low price, they get value in other ways — like the birthday gift you send them via snail mail. I will pay more for a good quality brand that I trust.
Here is what brands need to get right in order to win the race to the top of experience. Kudos to Tory Burch for getting it right!
The Right Timing
One of the offers I received was for $10 off within the next two weeks for a service. Come on! Give me some breathing room - especially for a service that doesn’t even need to be that frequent. That offer is definitely a bigger win for the brand, not me.
I received my Tory Burch birthday email gift on December 1st with NO EXPIRATION DATE. Perfect timing!
The Right Offer
I recently attended the ‘Connect Shopper’ webinar hosted by Salesforce which highlights
“79% like it when they receive complementary product offers or promotions based on their purchasing histories from a retailer, indicating a desire for more personalized shopping experiences.”
In the offer content, demonstrate your personalization skills and highlight some recommendations, while also leaving the door open to purchase anything. I am a fan of the discount on total purchase as was presented in the Tory Burch offer.
The Chosen Channel
It isn’t about one channel - it is about the unified journey across all channels. As you can see from my Tory Burch birthday gift, she provides me specific instructions on how to use at the store or online.
It is a myth that Millennials are so-called e-commerce shoppers - 23% do research in-person - higher than both Generation X and Baby Boomers! In fact, they research on every channel which means you have an opportunity to grab their attention and enhance the overall journey across all channels.
If you are communicating on several channels, save your reputation and make sure it is uniform. Another stat from the ‘Connected Shopper’ report shows 47% of shoppers feel annoyed when they receive an offer via a separate channel for the same product that they purchased in store.
If you really want to go the extra mile with the birthday gift, send it snail mail. Last year, I received a merchandise birthday and Christmas gift from Tory Burch in the mail. Apparently, I didn’t shop as much this year…
The Right Tools
Make Sure Your Employees Have Access To Information! Salesforce is a great example of a tool that provides the ability to connect to your shoppers in the right way and seamlessly across channels.
I don’t know what tools Tory Burch is using; however, I was amazed by the experience on my visit during my birthday trip to the Hamptons. I was thrilled when I saw there was a Tory Sport store in East Hampton. Since the brand is fairly new and there are only a few physical stores, we just had to stop to complete my collection of golf dresses. I am right there with the 66% who prefer to touch and feel stuff in the store. My boyfriend told me to pick out something for my birthday.
Upon checkout, I remembered that I received the birthday email; however, I was having trouble locating it. While I would expect a certain level of service at my normal Tory Burch store in NYC, I was in a different store and brand - anything goes.
Since I am a fanatic about customer experience and technology, I notice when disjointed online and offline systems cause employees pain. I was not optimistic that the systems in place would enable me to use my offer. I was pleasantly surprised when the associate was able to locate MY PERSONALIZED BIRTHDAY email and code!
The Tory Burch experience is a perfect example of how brands have an opportunity to create an advocate and loyal customer through personalization. I don't purchase Tory Burch products at department stores or other distribution channels because the experience I receive direct at Tory Burch is best.
Remember that personalization is delivered by the STORE instead of the BRAND you purchase.
The distribution model adds a whole different challenge to a brand's ability to deliver a unified customer experience. I will leave that for a future discussion.
If you are not in B2C, this can still apply to you. Recognizing your main contacts birthday at the business or the company anniversary is a great complimentary strategy for B2B businesses.
What are the best offers you have received on your birthday?