Would you rather do business with someone who knows a lot about you, and demonstrates they have your best interests at heart, or some stranger, enriching themselves?
Pretty obvious answer, so why do so few retailers seem to be able to respond?.
The ability to collect data is no longer much of a competitive advantage, everyone can now do it, the advantage has moved towards the analysis of the data, development of a customer proposition from the data, and most importantly, the capability to deliver on that proposition.
In Australia, both major FMCG retailers are busily copying international retailers, particularly Tesco in the UK. Tesco’s analytical and customer proposition development capabilities has driven the huge success of their category marketing initiatives. They have collaborated with researcher Dunhumby, leveraging the data emerging from their loyalty card to tailor their offers down to the level of to individual consumers, rewarding loyalty with compelling offers. The Aussie FMCG duopoly and other major retailers are still in the dark ages. The retail offer is still all about price, and a race to the bottom, but there has to be a limit, as costs are squeezed out of the supply chain at the expense of the weakest links, and on-line sales explode.
Tesco has, by contrast, moved beyond the numbers, and is concentrating on delivering to their customers, particularly their loyal ones, and the results over the last few years have been pretty good. They are managing by customer, not number, and other retailers have a lot to learn.
Listen up Gerry, stop whingeing as the business model that made you a billionaire becomes redundant, and make the changes that can keep the money rolling in by redirecting your efforts to your customers.