Stronger Data-enabled Customer Relationships – Takeaways from AIBP Insights The Retail Revolution

As the internet economy becomes increasingly crowded, stakeholders of the internet economy strive to stand out and differentiate themselves from their competitors, where key areas to address include omnichannel customer interactions and digital customer loyalty.

Together with e-commerce stakeholders, we gained insights into the importance of quality over quantity of customer interactions in creating and maintaining digital relationships, as well as how data-driven insights can increase customer loyalty, and possible next steps and technology to augment customer relationships.

Quality over quantity of customer interactions

Customer interactions occur across multiple touchpoints, and retailers are seeking solutions to enhance the quality of customer interactions across channels. Alwan Ahimmat, Head of Strategy & Reporting, MYDIN, mentioned how different marketing strategies are used for online channels, and that identifying shopping patterns across channels will support the tracking and measurement of customer experience. In addition, to enhance in-store experience, self-checkout systems have been introduced in-store for the tech-savvy younger generation, while dedicated queues for senior citizens have served to ensure the health and safety of the older generation during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Budi Tedjaprawira, Head of IT, MAP Boga Adiperkasa, also mentioned that while online interactions are important, physical connection remains a key priority for Indonesians. He shared how providing customers with incentives outside of their immediate product offerings will drive customer engagement. In addition, he believes that the steps taken to retain customers following the initial touchpoint are crucial. Jeff Burlin, Director, Enterprise Innovation, Twilio, shared that building a digital network connecting all customer interactions will increase scalability of any data feed-in.

At SocietyPass (SoPa), a loyalty platform, the customer base is grown through acquisition of up-and-coming companies in lifestyle, F&B, online travel sectors to name a few. Dennis Nguyen, CEO, SocietyPass, highlighted the ability of a business to generate revenue which includes factors like market size, customer acquisition costs, the ability to onboard customers and merchants. He also observed that costs of customer acquisition for unicorns in the region remain very high.

In collecting customer data, Surya Santoso, Head of Data & Technology, JD.ID, mentioned the importance of communicating with the customer that the data they have been entrusted with is handled well and kept private and confidential. This is a key factor in building customer trust in the brand and company.

More importantly, retailers today must look further beyond customer segmentation as customers now want personalisation – something a 360 view of the customer will enable, but not without difficulty,

Pak Budi mentioned that despite having a good digital platform integrated with real-time 3rd party and supplier information, the challenge in the past 3 years lies in optimising customer loyalty. He is currently looking to enhance customer experience with the personal touch by empowering the data they have – something technology will greatly support.

Customer retention strategies evolve with time and technology

In today’s omnichannel world, customer experience and relationships require multi-pronged approaches on multiple channels.

For MYDIN, different types of innovations are implemented differently for different customer segments on different channels. Jefri Gabriel, EA Manager, Twilio, mentioned that communications across different channels will contribute to providing an understanding of what the customer actually needs.

While MBA’s customers may receive incentives from MAP’s loyalty card program, MAP Club, pak Budi mentioned that it is important for MBA (the F&b arm of MAP) to keep customer’s in-store preference at the top of mind, and to follow up with customers with speed. He also mentioned that while business processes remain largely unchanged in the past decade, customers are now accustomed to quick and personalised service, especially in the F&B industry where customers expect immediate delivery. To him, it falls back to thinking as a customer – “what do I want?”, and applying it to the business.

For digital native JD.ID, Surya brought up how it is much easier to measure and track online metrics for customer experience than it is offline, with net promoter scores (NPS) being used to measure customer satisfaction.

Moving forward, next steps for data-enabled customer relationships include the use of AI and development of algorithms with the data collected. The panel brought up how in tracking product browsing habits, purchase history and frequency, retailers may provide customer with personalised recommendations and promotions. In addition to quantitative data, Surya mentioned that qualitative data from customer surveys will serve to further support personalisation as well.

Along the journey of enhancing customer relationships lie the willingness to explore solutions to improve customer acquisition. The ROI becomes an important factor to consider in technology application for customer relationship management. Alwan mentioned that as a family-driven business, solutions that require more than 5 years to achieve returns on investment are simply not feasible. He highlighted the importance of “try and fail, and if you fail, fail fast”.

Moving back along the value chain, we discover the future potential of digital technologies, smart factories and cybersecurity at AIBP Insights The Digital Manufacturing age in the next 2 weeks. Find out more or register your interest here.


25 March 2022