#208: Keeping Customers Happy and Engaged (Short Summary Show)

In this short summary show, “Let’s Talk Loyalty” looks back on an interview with Mark James, the CEO of Customology in Australia who shared some insightful outcomes of some consumer research he had conducted in early 2021.

Mark shared the challenges for loyalty marketers when new customers are prioritised over existing ones with better offers.

Mark also shared some insights on the most effective communication strategies to keep customers happy and engaged.

Show Notes:

1) Previous Episode: #74: Australian Consumer Loyalty Research – Mark James CEO Customology

2) Mark James, CEO, Customology

Audio Transcript

#208: Keeping Customers Happy and Engaged (Short Summary Show) (6m)
Welcome to Let’s Talk Loyalty an industry podcast for loyalty marketing professionals. I’m your host, Paula Thomas. And if you work in loyalty marketing, join me every week to learn the latest ideas from loyalty specialists around the world. Hello and welcome to this week’s short episode of Let’s Talk Loyalty where I’m looking back at my conversation in January, 2021, with Mark James, the CEO of Customology, a customer consulting firm in Brisbane, Australia. Mark had recently conducted some comprehensive customer research and started our discussion by reminding us that it does call sometimes up to 10 times as much to acquire a new customer than it does to keep an existing one.

Paula Thomas

Perhaps something that we, as loyalty professionals know better than anyone else. Mark’s key concerns include the issues caused by loyalty programs when they are not implemented thoughtfully. And he believes sometimes they can have the effect of doing the exact opposite of what they were designed to do many customers don’t trust brands and believe they are being treated unfairly. For example, we talked about an emerging issue called the loyalty penalty where customers realize that new customers are getting a better deal than they are, even though they are the ones that are already a customer.

Paula Thomas

It really is a fundamental problem in so many industries all over the world. So it’s no wonder that so many of us just don’t trust that brands have our best interests at heart. Another key concern that Mark discussed is how he believes that less can be more when it comes to contact emails, surveys, and coupons, he thinks that many brands are simply sending too many emails or including too much information in them sometimes including all of that data about a customer’s behavior or their purchase history can really be very off-putting.

Paula Thomas

A great case study Mark mentioned was when he worked with a brand to segment out some customers and run some split testing. In that case study, they found that a simple thank you email, going out to a new customer was actually more effective than the same. Thank you, email with a coupon attached for their next visit. I think this was a really amazing insight on something that all of us working in loyalty should be thinking about. Of course, we know that loyal customers do want better deals and coupons from time to time, but just as importantly, they want to sense the integrity of the brand and really have a simple, authentic experience.

Paula Thomas

We then talked about how brands in certain industries can build trust and loyalty by actually encouraging their customers to spend less, rather than more some great examples are energy and insurance companies who can really help themselves retain their customers by simply giving them a fair deal from the outset, as opposed to waiting until they threatened to leave for a less expensive competitor. And clearly we’ve been training customers to behave like this for so many years. If that’s the pattern offering the best deal then seems dishonest and creates doubt in the customer’s mind.

Paula Thomas

And I, for one, I’m certainly delighted that at least a few brands have begun to realize the damage they’re doing to their business and the longterm with that approach, as Mark said, where there is doubt there simply can’t be any trust. This was a fantastic episode filled with tons of great insights that I think all of you listening can benefit from. So if you haven’t heard a judge, you can certainly go back and listen in full it’s. Quite simply LetsTalkLoyalty.com/74. That’s it for today guys. Tomorrow I have a wonderful episode with Ravindra Bhagwanani co-founder of the Loyalty and Awards conference, the largest annual conference for loyalty managers in the travel industry.

Paula Thomas

And then on Thursday, I reviewed Cheetah Digital’s 2022 Global Digital Consumer Trends Index and their survey data on what customers expect from brands in the post-pandemic landscape.


This show is sponsored by The Wise Marketer, the world’s most popular source of loyalty marketing use insights and research. The Wise Marketer also offers loyalty marketing training through its Loyalty Academy, which has already certified over 245 executives in 27 countries as certified loyalty marketing professionals. For more information, check out TheWiseMarketer.com and loyaltyacademy.org.

Paula Thomas

Thank you so much for listening to this episode of Let’s Talk Loyalty. If you’d like us to send you the latest shows each week, simply sign up for the Let’s Talk Loyalty newsletter on LetsTalkLoyalty.com. We’ll send our best episodes straight to your inbox, and don’t forget that you can follow Let’s Talk Loyalty on any of your favorite podcast platforms. And of course we’d love for you to share your feedback and reviews. Thanks again for supporting the show.