#439:UAE Telecoms Giant "Etisalat" Leverages Customer Loyalty for Growth (Short Summary Show)

In this weeks episode of Let’s talk “a little” loyalty Tom reviews the original podcast where Paula was joined by Antonio Ricciardi, SVP Consumer Intelligence & Engagement at Etisalat by e&, who’s responsible for leading their Smiles Program.

Tom highlights Antonio’s key learnings from his journey to evolve from simple loyalty concepts to become a compelling consumer marketplace achieving even greater customer engagement and loyalty.

e& have a long history of constant evolution and innovation, which includes developing propositions focused on driving customer loyalty.

Show Notes:

1) Antonio Ricciardi

2) e&⁠

3) Smiles Program⁠

4) #249: UAE Telecoms Giant “Etisalat” Leverages Customer Loyalty for Growth

Audio Transcript

Paula: Welcome to Let’s Talk Loyalty, an industry podcast for loyalty marketing professionals. I’m Paula Thomas, the Founder of Let’s Talk Loyalty. Today’s episode is hosted by Tom Peace, Managing Director of The Loyalty People, a strategic consultancy with a laser focus on Loyalty, CRM, and customer engagement.

The Loyalty People also runs a free global community for anyone working in the loyalty industry. If you’re working in loyalty marketing, Make sure to join Let’s Talk Loyalty every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday to hear the latest ideas from loyalty experts around the world.

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Tom: Hi, I’m Tom Peace, Managing Director of the Loyalty People and presenter of Let’s Talk A Little Loyalty. Welcome to this week’s short summary show. In this week’s episode of Let’s Talk a Little Loyalty, I’m reviewing the original podcast, where Paula interviewed Antonio Ricciardi, SVP, Consumer Intelligence and Engagement, at Etisalat by ePlus. Antonio is responsible for leading the SMILES program and I’ll be highlighting Antonio’s key learnings from his journey to evolve from simple loyalty concepts to become a compelling consumer marketplace, achieving even greater customer engagement and loyalty.

Smiles is a great program. It’s really innovative in its approach and has created a solution that transcends the business’s core product benefits, and even that of traditional loyalty. Antonio and the ePlus team have worked extremely hard to transition the business from a telecom supplier to a service that provides everyday solutions for their members.

ePlus is not in the business of telco. They are in the business of creating smiles. The first part of this, as Antonio says, was to transform the customer engagement to a future focused and digitally led experience. This is exactly in line with with the customer’s expectations for a telco brand. So this was the first and highly important step over the last 10 years.

Smiles has gone through several iterations to get to the point where the program has actually become an ecosystem that members use every day for a variety of different uses. Members can access personalized offers, order grocery deliveries, and engage in gamification among many other benefits. By doing this, Smiles has taken the engagement away from a telecom service and created a customer focused platform providing lifestyle solutions.

Antonio also talks about how important it is to provide instant gratification these days, not just in the telecom sector, but in general, as customers are getting tired of what he calls the points marathon. Smiles delivers this through their offer marketplace and through innovative gamification that give.

Members the opportunity to enjoy instant value. Antonio also talks about how much data they collect on members and how useful this is in talking to the member in a relevant way. The data powers the deals for you solution for members where offers are matched to behaviors and purchases. The insight can also be used to engage members contextually and based on location.

This is a highly engaging way to communicate to members and a good reason why SMILES has become so popular as an ecosystem for life in general. The data can be used to create communities of like minded members and offer highly targeted offers based on who you are. The time of day where you are currently and the things you enjoy.

This has been a great show and it really made me want to check out the smiles program in more detail. You can find the main show at www. letstalkloyalty. com and first aired on the 14th of July, 2022 episode number 234. Thanks for listening. I hope you enjoyed the summary show all the best and speak to you soon, Tom.

Paula: This show is sponsored by The Wise Marketer, the world’s most popular source of loyalty marketing news, insights, and research. The Wise Marketer also offers loyalty marketing training through its Loyalty Academy, which is already certified over 500 executives in 38 countries as certified loyalty marketing professionals.

For more information check out thewisemarketer.com and loyaltyacademy.org.

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