"Salesforce delivers the capability to drive our transformation."

Cambell Holt,
Consumer Marketing Leader – Pacific

Making super human: Mercer channels Salesforce super powers for era of engagement

In the race to reimagine superannuation services, global consulting and financial services firm Mercer is leading a shift from the age of administration to the era of engagement.

Disrupt, or be disrupted. Everyone in business understands the dynamic – that changing consumer expectations and new technology have rewritten the rules of commerce. Recognising the immediate threat and the fantastic opportunity to reinvent itself for its customers and clients, Mercer launched a transformation programme across its financial services business in the Pacific to deliver world class experiences to the more than one million customers it administers.

Salesforce is driving Mercer’s transformation, shifting the company’s Pacific operation from self-described “super administration to super engagement.”

Two years into a three-year transformation programme, Mercer talks to customers and creates experiences in a profoundly different way that has laid down a new marker for the entire industry.

Lighting the fuse on transformation

For decades, a real competitive tension was missing in Australia’s now two trillion dollar superannuation industry, encouraging financial service providers to focus on efficiency and lowest cost-to-serve rather than innovation and the delivery of customer value. The seeds of change were sown when Australian workers were given the option to choose their own superannuation provider, opening the door to today’s era of competition and disruption.

Mercer is seizing the moment to shake up its own operating model and reimagine customer experience for the more than $50 billion worth of superannuation funds under its administration.

From super admin to super engagement

Mercer’s Super Genome Project launched a transformation programme to drive product innovation and new systems and processes that placed customers at the centre of a ‘new school’ approach to customer engagement.

Technology was the critical enabler for data analytics, websites, mobile platforms, CRM, marketing and customer experience tools.

With so much in play, Mercer called on the company’s global partnership with Salesforce to replace its incumbent CRM system with best-in-class cloud services from the Salesforce1 platform.

Together, Salesforce1 and Marketing Cloud manage Mercer’s customer journeys across the spectrum – from digital natives to the digitally disengaged; from workforce new entrants to those on the cusp of retirement – in a single system Holt describes as the “beating heart” of the marketing and customer experience effort.

Profitable action

Marketing Cloud tracks five “profitable actions” that customers must complete within 72 days of becoming a new customer or risk becoming disengaged with their retirement savings. Armed with this intelligence, Mercer uses Marketing Cloud’s Journey Builder to coach customers through the activities and actions, in some cases increasing sales conversion by 40%.

Marketing Cloud automation means Mercer’s marketing team is extremely quick on its feet. Where once it took Mercer months to plan and execute marketing campaigns, and months more to analyse results, today their campaign cycles are measured in hours and days.

Quick wins

Salesforce provided Mercer’s Pacific marketing team with the keys to unlock data, and clever tools that make customers feel valued and engaged.

On this front, Holt singles out Salesforce for what he calls “automated campaign interventions” – where data and predictive analytics automate campaign experience. He said conversations were “richer” when grounded in data and the associates customer insight, and had in some cases boosted sales conversion by 40% and delivered triple digit ROI increases.

With billions of consumer data points now living in Salesforce, Mercer is only scratching the surface of the possibilities. There are plans afoot to extend Marketing Cloud to additional business units and Mercer’s corporate clients across more than 40 call centres, providing agents with visibility of campaigns and customer actions across multiple channels, and feeding leads to the sales organisation.

“Marketing Cloud has transformed the way we convert consumer insight to consumer action,” he said. “Now we create immediate engagement and capture all the action that follows. The customer experience we’ve historically struggled to construct in a manual marketing model now flows naturally across all our channels in real-time.”

Products used by Mercer