Blog

#autobond: Sure Product is Important But What Else?

Posted by Chris Travell

Jul 19, 2016 9:01:34 AM

I’m a big fan of Formula One—it amazes me that hundreds of sensors are gathering information on the cars' performance in real time, sending it back to Milton Keynes, Maranello, Brackley or wherever, making it possible for crews to make changes on the fly to gain that 2/10s of a second per lap. It's incredible when you think about it.

In the same way, there are numerous sensors in the marketplace that provide input into a brand’s make-up and health. In our context, the understanding and interpretation of information from these sensors allows marketers to build strong, relevant and differentiated brands. 

I had a chance to sit down with Kyle Davies, Director of Marketing Research at Bond, to talk about the recent release of the Automotive Brand Telemetry Report

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Topics: Brand Loyalty, Loyalty Marketing, #autobond

Three Steps to Better Personalization

Posted by Maria Pallante

Jul 13, 2016 9:10:26 AM

Your dentist has a file on you. One that includes your name, birthdate, address and other personal details. You visit your dentist regularly, and tell your friends about your experiences with him. What if your dentist never used your first name? What if he never referred back to your visit history or dental records?

Apply this concept to a brand’s loyalty Program. When you enroll and participate in a loyalty Program, you’ve likely given up a good amount of personal information—and it’s not always put to good use, or at least not overtly. Consumers have noted this disconnect. The sixth annual survey by Bond Brand Loyalty has found that only 22 percent of loyalty program members are very satisfied with the level of personalization they’re receiving from brands. This highlights a tremendous opportunity for brands as satisfaction is 8X higher when programs are highly personalized. The thing is, personalization does not have to be complicated to yield this kind of payoff in satisfaction. Here are three steps to improve your personalization efforts today:

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Topics: Loyalty Program, Loyalty Report

5 Things You Need To Know About Loyalty From the 2016 Bond Loyalty Report

Posted by Bond Brand Loyalty

Jun 17, 2016 5:04:51 PM

Make no mistake: Building authentic relationships with consumers is hard work—and getting harder by the day. Consumer expectations continue to rise. The pace of change continues to increase. The need to stay relevant is more important than ever.

Our latest research from the 2016 Bond Loyalty Report, shows that consumers continue to value Loyalty programs—programs that pay dividends back to brands in the form of loyalty, advocacy and increased spend. It’s time for marketers to start paying closer attention.

If you’ve taken a “set it and forget it” approach you’ve likely overlooked what matters most to your program Members. Taking a closer look now might land some relatively quick wins.

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Topics: Brand Loyalty, Loyalty Program, Loyalty Report

#autobond: Marketing Intangibles and Intangible Marketing—Lessons for the Automotive Industry

Posted by Chris Travell

May 26, 2016 3:22:13 PM

Back in 1981 the economist and Harvard professor Theodore Levitt published his landmark article in the HBR, “Marketing Intangible Products and Product Intangibles.” It’s a great read since his insights relate directly to many of the challenges marketers face today. 

When prospective customers can’t experience the product in advance, they are asked to buy what are essentially promises—promises of satisfaction. Even tangible, testable, feelable, smellable products are, before they’re bought, largely just promises.

Largely just promises. Doesn’t that just encapsulate the challenge marketers face?

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Topics: Customer Experience, #autobond

Bond Brands Loyalty with Harley-Davidson®

Posted by K. Dee Howard

May 16, 2016 11:10:36 AM

On the only Friday the 13th of the year, I stopped at a small-town Tim Horton's on my way home about an hour outside of Port Dover, waiting in line behind two gentlemen in riding gear. They saw my Harley-Davidson t-shirt, started up a conversation, and thirty seconds later refused to let me buy my own coffee—and not because I said I worked at/with/for H-D, but because I was in Port Dover and was wearing an H-D tee and was, therefore obviously in some way a part of the Harley-Davidson MC family. They asked me to sit and have a coffee with them. They showed me their photos with Karen & Bill Davidson from the morning. They asked if I knew Randy.

Activating at Canada’s largest one-day motorcycle rally comes with a few first-timer expectations (yes, the ‘thong guy’ was there and going strong), but the giant orange exclamation mark I am left with is that this community really is something special. They are fun, polite, welcoming and accepting—even in crowds of a hundred thousand—and they would live and die for their passion.

Harley-Davidson is one of the most inked brands on the planet (if not the most…that is a title I might bet my money on), and we had a feeling that, if we gave our guests the chance, they would prove it.

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Topics: Experiential Marketing, Live Brand Experiences

#autobond: The Importance of 2nd Delivery Nights

Posted by Chris Travell

May 13, 2016 9:08:49 AM

Picking up a new car is magical. The new car smell. The technology. The enhanced performance. Brands and dealers that place an increased emphasis on the delivery (and do it well) increase the chances of a higher rating on their CX surveys. And when you think about it, it makes sense. It’s the last impression a customer has before they drive home and share their experience–hopefully positive–that they had at the dealership.

However, the bloom is still on the rose when the customer picks up the car. Even though they were shown how to pair their phone, operate the NAVI, or use voice commands, it doesn’t always stick. And if it doesn't stick, the result could be lower CX scores both on the brand’s internal program and on syndicated studies like JD Power. The technology may work as planned but if the customer doesn’t know how to use it, they think something is wrong with the car and offer up a poor score.

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Topics: Customer Experience, #autobond

#autobond: Towards Tomorrow by Toyota—The Brand Gallery Concept

Posted by Chris Travell

Apr 20, 2016 12:08:44 PM

I’m a big fan of live brand experiences. They’re informative, different, and fun—and they give you a chance to see how bad you really are at driving a car in virtual reality.

I had a chance to sit down with Cyril Dimitris, Vice President of Toyota Canada, to discuss the Towards Tomorrow by Toyota brand gallery. This "pop-up" experience has brought Toyota direct to the consumer (specifically those hard to reach millennials), garnering valuable facetime and engagement outside the dealership environment. This is something many automotive brands are still struggling to do effectively. 

Initiatives like this one allow customers to be exposed to the brand when they might have dismissed it in a different setting. 

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Topics: Live Brand Experiences, #autobond

Westjet—You Were So Close!

Posted by Chris Travell

Apr 7, 2016 1:43:09 PM

 

Flew back from NADA in Las Vegas on Sunday on Westjet 1117 (in case you’re reading Westjet). For what should have been a routine flight, the experience turned into a considerable delay resulting in an arrival in YYZ about 12:30 a.m.

In a touch of serendipity, I sat next to Sham Ahluwalia, an executive with General Motors who has a ton of experience in the world of CX. As the afternoon and evening unfolded, we dissected and discussed the way the airline handled the situation. A great learning exercise.

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Topics: Customer Experience

#autobond: The Importance of the Front Line

Posted by Chris Travell

Mar 31, 2016 4:25:16 PM

I’ve been involved in measuring the customer experience (CX) for over 20 years. It’s critical to get the voice of the customer to understand where a brand, dealer, salesperson, service advisor etc is strong or weak so they can improve. I get that in spades. However, over that time one of the areas that has been noticeably absent from the public discourse on this stuff is measuring the employee CX on an ongoing basis. This is odd because these individuals are absolutely critical in delivering the brand experience. They’re on the frontline so wouldn’t we want to hear regularly what they have to say so we can continuously improve?

My observation has been that the employee survey is done about once a year. Tick that box.  

My call today is to incorporate measuring employee CX into your overall CX strategy. Yesmeasuring how the customer feels is criticalbut let’s start putting a little more emphasis on what our frontline people have to say, and doing it on an ongoing basis.

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Topics: Customer Experience, #autobond

#autobond: Fuel Efficiency, 2016 Forecast, and the Connected Car—In Conversation with Dennis DesRosiers

Posted by Chris Travell

Mar 23, 2016 11:47:59 AM

Dennis DesRosiers is the leading automotive analyst in the country. Even though he is often controversial, he never fails to provide insight and the proverbial "something to think about."

In this week’s #autobond, Dennis talks about fuel efficiency, his sales forecast for 2016 (and potential concerns), and the connected car and what it means to a small southwestern Ontario town.

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Topics: #autobond