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Optimizing the Customer Journey Through Mobile Engagement

July 20, 2021

Loyal customers are a brand’s biggest asset. Typically, up to 80% of a brand’s revenue comes from just 20% of their customer base.

Studies show that a 5% improvement in retention can yield up to 95% increase in profits. Optimizing your customer journey is critical to nurturing and retaining loyal customers. The best way to do that is through mobile engagement.

We recently held a webinar on optimizing your customer’s journey through mobile engagement with Plexure’s Chief Product Officer, Richard Fraser, and Russell Harwood, Customer Success Director.

Here we share the highlights of the discussion and how Plexure can help high-frequency, repeat purchase retail brands to engage their customers throughout each step of their journey.

Connect With Customers via Their Most Personal Device

Mobile engagement refers to the interaction between a brand and consumer via a mobile app. Our mobile devices are our constant companions. We rely on them for more and more of our everyday activities. They are our most personal and trusted devices.

Why mobile?

  • 85% of adults own a smartphone
  • There are over 5 billion unique mobile users worldwide
  • Mobile commerce sales hit $2.92 trillion in 2020
  • The average time spent per day per person is 3 hours, 43 minutes

It’s not enough to just have a mobile-optimized website. Mobile apps provide a superior consumer experience and increased opportunities for brands to grow, retain, and reward their customer base.

With a Plexure-powered mobile engagement solution, you can curate content and offers for each specific user, gain valuable customer transaction data, and deliver campaigns at scale, which can be interrogated, iterated, and optimized using our analytics platform.

It enables the constant flow of information, including closing the loop with transactional data (using Point of Sale or Payment integrations), to inform not just marketers but the wider business on their consumers' preferences, habits, and trends.

Data-driven Customer Engagement

The ultimate goal of customer engagement is to grow the lifetime value of your customers. By tailoring the experience and providing customers with relevant and timely incentives and experiences, you maximize the relationship with those most likely to purchase from your brand.

When marketing efforts are focused on those loyal customers who have the biggest impact to your bottom line - they shop more frequently, spend more, redeem fewer unnecessary discounts and cost less to serve.

Conversely, marketing efforts focused on activating less engaged users will produce new loyal users – driving higher lifetime value across your customer base.

To truly engage your customers on a deeper level, you need to understand what works and what doesn’t for each individual at their precise stage of the customer lifecycle.

This is where data is key.

Customer data allows you to gain a deep understanding of your customers – what are their preferences, motivations and purchase patterns?

The more transactional and behavioral data you can collect, the more insight you have to enhance and optimize the offering for them. Insights lead to better incentives and curated content so you can deliver the ultimate customer experience.

Data enables you to make informed decisions, taking the guesswork out of marketing. For instance, if a Quick Serve Restaurant (QSR) consumer consistently orders vegetarian items, any meat product offers are going to be seen as irrelevant noise.

If a grocery customer doesn’t have children, then baby products offers will be of no interest to them. Personalizing offers through the use of data results in increased frequency of visits, share of wallet and order size. The process creates stickiness and over time becomes a cycle, acting as a data flywheel.

Every time the customer engages with the app, more data is gathered to further personalize their experience.

Give Customers a Reason To Engage

To harness the power of your customer’s data, you need to give them a compelling reason to engage with your app. What’s in it for them?

The top two attention-getters: saving money and time.

MoneyOffering discounts or loyalty rewards represents monetary savings for customers.

For instance, Plexure recently worked with a grocery chain that had been using paper-based vouchers. We moved them to a content-rich mobile app, serving relevant content and offers, requiring their customers to scan to redeem.

They realized a 55% increase in average basket size for app members in just 3 months and they are just at the start of their optimization journey.

Time. Make it easier and faster for them to do things, within or outside of the mobile experience.

Mobile Order and Pay (MOP) is a great example of a timesaving incentive. We instigated this with McDonald’s Japan when Covid hit last year, allowing their customers to order and pay in-app for curbside pickup, table delivery, and take-out.

They report seeing more return customers with higher average spend. MOP remembers previous orders, offers custom menus, and uses location triggers and geofencing to have the order ready at the precise moment the customer arrives.

Plexure powers apps that encourage regular interaction, through loyalty cards, special offers, MOP, push messaging, relevant content such as recipe suggestions, and enabling gamified reward experiences. As the app gathers more and more data, the mobile experience becomes richer and more meaningful.

Personalized Moments

Delivering content that represents real value to the consumer – saving time or money – is a great incentive for them to share their usage data.

Plexure helps brands deliver this via moments of magic - when customers feel that what they are presented with has been designed just for them. They feel recognized and appreciated, not like they are being sold to.

A magic moment is:

  • Relevant
  • Timely
  • Personalized

Plexure’s core proposition is developing a path to personalization with cloud intelligence, leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) models embedded at key moments throughout the customer journey.

Combining behavioral, contextual and transactional data and overlaying ML and AI, a mobile app can identify what a person might want to purchase, down to the level of time and day.

It can assess what actions they take when they are in specific locations and deliver timely, relevant and personalized incentives or engagements, making moments of magic easy for your brand to create at scale.

Measuring Success

The beauty of Plexure’s mobile engagement platform is that you have the data at your fingertips to measure success, both for individual campaigns and overall performance.

The analytics platform captures customer data and presents actionable insights that inform future campaign activity.

Insights into customer retention rates, spend movements, cost to serve, campaign performance and more tell you what’s working and what isn’t, so you can fine-tune the customer journey and ultimately increase customer lifetime value.

You can see how each piece of content is performing, trends, areas for improvements for both engagement and sales, and of course help inform strategies to win back unengaged or lapsed customers.

And that’s just the beginning.

If it sounds complicated, don’t worry. Plexure also offers consulting and managed services to help you build a strategy and then implement it.

We can help you get started or work with your current initiatives and give you support around insight generation and data science.

The sooner you start capturing data, the sooner you can optimize your customer journey, and the sooner your customers will be raving about their remarkable experience with you.

Key Takeaways

  • Mobile engagement refers to the interaction between a brand and consumer via a mobile app.
  • 85% of adults own a smartphone, there are over 5 billion unique mobile users worldwide, and mobile commerce sales hit $2.92 trillion in 2020. 
  • The ultimate goal of customer engagement is to grow the lifetime value of your customers by tailoring the experience and providing customers with relevant and timely incentives and experiences. 
  • Data-driven customer engagement allows you to gain a deep understanding of your customers so you can make informed decisions about marketing efforts focused on activating less engaged users or retaining loyal customers. 
  • To harness the power of your customer’s data, you need to give them a compelling reason to engage with your app – such as saving money or time. 
  • Creating personalization moments involves delivering content that represents real value to the consumer so they feel recognized and appreciated instead of like they are being sold