If you appear no different to your competition, why would anyone look twice at what you’re communicating? An example of this approach is Domino’s, as it reacted to market disruption caused by other brands with its own disruptive behaviour and fresh positioning. The Domino’s app allowed X-factor viewers to order direct through the show and enabled customers to save their customised pizzas. This approach was positioned alongside relatable feel-good moments, such as a girls’ night in. By engaging with customers’ everyday lives, Domino’s saw a 44% increase in repeat purchases.
This customer-focused approach goes a long way to achieving the brand stand-out that differentiation requires. It’s never been easier to get your brand in front of your audience, with so many different channels giving direct access to eyes and ears. But that isn’t enough to win business. The trick is convincing customers to linger over your messaging by tapping into their personal needs. If you’re able to demonstrate that you understand their individual needs and provide exactly what they’re looking for, you’re much more likely to secure a sale.
Mothercare achieved this through smart use of customer data, rolling out e-receipts across its 200 UK stores. Centred around the My Mothercare loyalty club, it was possible to log what a customer bought and anticipate forthcoming needs along a predictable timeline of pregnancy, birth and parenthood. Relevant events and special offers could then be tailored, securing interest, driving footfall and cementing customer loyalty, whilst positioning Mothercare as caring, knowledgeable and interested. The brand saw huge success with a revenue uplift of 275.46% in expectant parents’ events in-store, translating to a comparative increase for these events from £307,000 to £978,000 (Oct 2013 vs. Jan 2015).
We know that a multi-channel approach is key to securing differentiation as it’s such an effective means of communicating brand messages. 84% of US shoppers use their smartphone whilst in stores and 36% of shoppers are more likely to spend when interacting with multi channels. For this reason, the mobile and online content you provide needs to reflect the in-store experience, providing consistency, optimising impact and achieving maximum returns.
It’s all very well investing in your online presence and attracting customers, but if your physical stores or call centre experience remain in the last century, then your brand identity will fall short of expectations. Differentiation needs to carry through from online into the real world, so that your customers don’t feel let down and driven to disengage. Physical retail locations need to be more than transactional sites, they need to provide continuity and make service tangible.
Dune executed this effectively when its stores were redesigned to create the ‘wow’ factor and highlight the “affordable luxury” positioning of the brand. Central to the redesign is the inverted catwalk on the ceiling of each store to which shoes are attached with magnets. Not only does this align the brand with catwalk fashion, it is easily updated by campaign, keeping it current. In addition, large campaign images are displayed at the front and video walls scroll content, making the stores another facet of the broad multi-channel positioning. As a result, Dune saw a 70% increase in footfall and a 58% average increase of spend per square foot compared to old concept stores.
In summary, differentiation is vital for not just grabbing customer attention, but holding it, and the best way to achieve this stand-out is through a co-ordinated, multi-channel approach. This takes you further along your journey towards converting customers to fans, and prepares you for the next step – personalisation.
We’ll be writing more about this in the coming weeks and for now you can find more information about retail excellence in our infographic here: http://marketing.amadeus.com/retailingform
Contact your Amadeus account manager or email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to discuss the journey from travel agent to successful retailer and how Amadeus can help.