The Customer Engagement Recap - December 18

By Brandon Carter | Updated on Dec 18, 2015 9:00:00 AM


The news and trends affecting consumer engagement that caught our eye this week. 


In this week's customer engagement recap:

  • 18% of Shoppers Want to Shop on Christmas Day
  • Inside Netflix’s Plan to Boost Streaming Quality and Unclog the Internet
  • Employee Engagement: The Value of Face-to-Face Interaction
  • Investing in loyalty: How a family-run chain may just upstage big brands
  • Re-Inventing Ancillary Revenue


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  • 18% of Shoppers Want to Shop on Christmas Day (Colloquy)

Okay, but 58% said they would never shop on Christmas day, and 24% said that a store opening for business on Christmas day would cause them to not shop there nor recommend it to any friends or family. Retailers are surely desperate to wring every penny they can get out of the holiday season, but some steps are a bit too far. 

The bigger takeaway from LoyaltyOne's survey is the consumer expectations: 

  • 94% of all shoppers surveyed said they expect retailers to take extra measures to keep checkout lines moving during the holiday rush.
  • 80% of shoppers said they blame the retailer if they have to wait because of another customer’s coupons, returns or customer service problems; except in the millennial demographic, where four out of ten said they resent the other customer, not the store, for making them wait.
  • 89% of all shoppers said they expect retailers to take extra measures to keep departments orderly despite the busy season.
  • 59% of shoppers said holiday gift return policies make or break their opinion of a retailer.
  • 20% of shoppers reported an unhappy experience during last year’s gift-buying season that completely ruined their holiday mood; for young millennials (18-24) that score soared to 40% and for older millennials (25-34) it was 30%.

In other words, open wallets doesn't mean sins are instantly forgiven. People are more open to where and how they spend, but they're also willing to hold a bad experience against a retailer for the other 11 months of the year.

  • Inside Netflix’s Plan to Boost Streaming Quality and Unclog the Internet (Variety)

Earlier this year we hosted a webinar on The Membership Economy, and one of the key points of being a "membership" company is the need to constantly innovate and improve the experience. This is a great example, as Netflix is changing their encoding to allocate more data to higher priority content and save bandwidth for everyone involved. The change will improve performance for customers with slower data networks without hampering high capacity customers.

The article even hints at possible future innovations from Netflix, perfectly encapsulating Membership Economy Principles.

As many parts of the US hit winter weather season, a lot of workplaces will be doing mini test drives of telecommuting. Flexible working is a great corporate perk to offer employees, but it has some serious risks - and no, productivity isn't the scariest, by far. 

HEB's loyalty investment? It's in employees. They're giving shares back to employees to engender loyalty, because it costs 30%-50% of an hourly worker's salary to replace them. The chain saves money on wages and training, and the customer experience is improved by engaged, knowledgeable employees. 

Look, loyalty marketing is a great industry to be in, and it's a complicated web of factors. It's something you can throw money at all day long, but if your employees aren't bought in, your customers won't be. Look inward first.

Airlines are making big bucks, and consumers are generally pissed about it. We think there's a middle ground; an opportunity for airlines to enhance the traveler experience in a way that they'll be willing to pay for. Ancillary revenue should result in ancillary benefits for customers, right? 

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Topics: Customer Engagement, consumer trends

Written by: Brandon Carter

Brandon is a writer and marketer for Access Development. He's a frequent blogger on customer and employee engagement & loyalty, consumer trends, and branding.

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