In today’s retail landscape, competition is just a click away. That means retailers need to offer more than just the right merchandise — they need to build meaningful relationships with customers.
What is the key to those relationships? Data, made smarter with automation. Marketing teams can now deliver value with wide-ranging campaigns, while the service team can turn a problem-focused conversation into deeper loyalty — and, in turn, the company grows these moments into lifelong customers.
Take retail Trailblazer True Alliance. During World Tour Sydney 2022, Ken Kennedy — True Alliance’s Group Head of Digital ANZ — explained how the retailer is using highly integrated marketing campaigns to bring international brands like Gap and Banana Republic into the Aussie market. Find out how True Alliance is building smarter marketing and service to help turn moments into relationships.
Complex relationships made easy
No matter where the customer first contacts the brand, all the interactions are gathered in one place via Marketing Cloud. This helps create a seamless experience for the customer, whether shopping online or in person. The game changer has been to combine the power of Service Cloud and Marketing Cloud to truly follow the experience of the customer.
It’s not just the end customer who needs a seamless experience. The retailer also needs to ensure close working relationships with their international partners, requiring smart use of data and automation. This is where True Alliance shines as a partner that distributes retail products on behalf of international brands.
True Alliance is now one of the largest retailers, distributors and licensees of premium accessories, fashion, sports and outdoor brands in the Australian and New Zealand markets. To keep up with the marketing and sales cycles, Marketing Cloud is vital.
Ken Kennedy explains that at True Alliance, “We have very close relationships with our international brand partners. We effectively are the brand when it comes to Australia and New Zealand. It’s very important that we are aligned to the brand strategies, ethos and mentality that they have globally.”
The team uses streaming insights and actions to stay close to the customer requests in real-time. For luxury brands, this level of tailored care is crucial — for example, if a product requires special handling, the service team is notified to follow up with the customer.
Data is your guide for a personal experience
For each brand, the team creates a quality customer experience. To tailor and personalise each interaction means using the right data to personalise each interaction.
This hyper personalised experience helps marketers adapt to changing customer needs and inspire action and loyalty by humanising every moment in real time. The data fuels everything from email marketing, to paid search, to affiliate marketing, to social channels.
“We’re all consumers at the end of the day. I shop online and in stores. As a marketer, my best advice is to put yourself in the shoes of a consumer and say: What shopping experience do I want, both in store and online? Do they know who I am, what I purchased and what I am interested in?” says Ken Kennedy.
“Ultimately, if you don’t understand your customer, you’re never going to be able to scale your business. You won’t be able to deliver what a customer expects.”
To create a personalised experience for our customers, which includes smart automation, True Alliance’s technology stack is their foundation. Ken notes that Salesforce has been a key partner, with the organisation introducing Commerce Cloud and Marketing Cloud.
However, customers’ experiences don’t stop with one business function. For many retailers, it’s common for customers to see a marketing communication, but then feel like they’re interacting with a totally different business once they encounter a problem and need to speak with a service rep. That’s why True Alliance has also turned to Service Cloud to get the full 360° view of a customer.
With these insights, the business now has a single source of truth, stitching together a moment-by-moment customer journey. This starts with marketing and outreach, all the way through to servicing different purchases and showing new-season products ahead of time.
Start with a digital-first approach
Companies are adjusting to the digital first landscape quickly. Before you dive into the technology, Ken suggests that the organisation take a step back and explore the gaps in your business. Asking questions on what you want to achieve and the gaps you are filling. Then you can shift to the digital first approach, where the channels technology work in tandem to suit your goals.
“To find the right digital first approach, experimentation is absolutely key. Don’t assume that you know — know that you know — by testing new ideas. Throughout the whole customer journey, from the website, to your CRM and your digital marketing, use the data to test your assumptions,” suggests Ken.
Creating a next-level experience for customers
The True Alliance team specialise in creating a luxury fashion experience for customers, and the digital experience touches every part of that journey.
Customers want to be treated as individuals, with unique tastes that are matched by seamless experiences — in-store and online. With insights available on Salesforce, the team can create moments that matter for the customer at every step of the journey. This includes every interaction, in every channel. To achieve this at scale, retailers will need to find ways to bring marketing and service together, and to create a comprehensive, 360-degree view of every customer.
Hear about exciting new updates to Marketing Cloud and Service Cloud from the World Tour Sydney 2022 keynote.