Millennials have turned buying habits upside down, but the fact is that today, we all are Millennials. Why? Because we all have adopted their lead. So which store experience do you plan for your customers today? Which relational experience? Which loyalty experience? Here are five innovative approaches to a new customer relationship as of 2020.
1. Your positioning, your DNA, and your engagement will never have had so much importance.
New consumers want to give meaning to their purchases and are expecting a lot from brands in terms of responsibility. They want to join up with brands that have values closer to their own. 49% of Millennials leave a brand for a lack of ethics! New Retail makes us move into the “Don’t tell me, show me” era and consumers want to be able to check by themselves if the talk from the brand is actually real. Le Slip Français, a French fashion start-up, understood this well and waves its flag “100% made in France.” Through some real patriotic and funny communications, the brand puts forward its teams, providers and manufacturing processes. A winning combo!
2. Say hello to destandardization and retailtainment!
Boutiques without any concept no longer seek a place. Today’s consumers want originality, proximity, more creativity and are looking to spend more time in stores that go beyond their primary function. We think about totally immersive stores, stores that are becoming temples to brands, offering a combination of product and brand experiences. We think about happening stores where the store layout is such that these event spaces also happen to be stores selling products (and not the other way around!). We also think about hub stores, offering multi-space sites hosting activities that are not necessarily connected to their core business (a coffee place at the heart of your favorite fashion shop? It is now possible!). We finally think about feel-good stores which are extensions of our homes and lifestyles, both welcoming and comfortable. You need to rethink your stores to offer a creative and unprecedented customer experience.
3. Every channel leads to mobile, even the stores!
Customers are also marketers and represent the virality of your brand. At the age of mobile and social networks, you have everything to win by investing in the digitalization of your boutiques or in the e-commercification of your stores.
The store aesthetics must be impeccable and spaces should be instagrammable, meaning that they have been designed to be photographed: it is now the customer that digitalizes the store and promotes it online. Beyond the aesthetics aspect, innovation must also be present to delete any tedious steps (waiting lines at checkouts, carrying its purchases, etc.) by increasing the product offer (interactive terminals to purchase articles unavailable in-store, for example).
4. Everyone is a member of your Loyalty program!
What would be New Retail without a review of loyalty as we used to know it? New Loyalty puts forward the fact that every consumer must be perceived as loyal customers. No matter if they purchased once or ten times: you must see beyond the transaction. Today, loyalty is digitalized in the mobile wallet and even rewards consumers who never purchased your products in-store, but who like your social posts, check your e-commerce website and open your emails. Creating relational-based loyalty programs, available in real-time at the heart of your ambassadors’ and prospects’ mobile, in parallel to your transactional-based programs, will allow you to engage every people revolving around your brand.
5. Do you really read any emails that are not directly addressed to you?
Personalization is the key to conversion. Today, you must aim for a broad selection and know each of your customers, each person. Thanks to the scoring of your customers’ and ambassadors’ on & offline interactions, you will better know them and finally personalize your communications, on every channel, directly at the heart of their mobile. With the help of a pass or a loyalty card in your customers' mobile wallets, you will be able to send push wallet notifications – geofenced or not – to drive traffic in-store or to allow them to benefit from some exceptional promotions.
The objective of the customer relationship in the New Retail era is to show consumers that they are unique and that they are special to you.