Closely Blog

Bringing the Best Customer Forward

At the BIA Kelsey Group’s Deals 3D conference, we are previewing a key new component of our Social Commerce platform, centered on converting commerce transaction activities into simple and powerful social promotion programs.

Connecting Best Customers and Social Networks

Our product mission is to help small businesses stimulate demand in bold new ways via real-time and social media. Promotions can be published anytime, and can be distributed smartly in targeted ways to improve business performance.

We’ve extended social marketing well beyond the obvious methods with Facebook and Twitter.  These “social gestures” signal familiarity and receptivity, and form a great new approach to creating your own audience.  However, this model fails to capture the value of a known customer, especially when it can be coupled with known purchase behavior.

Cranking Up the ROI Deal Campaigns

Closely recently launched Social Select, designed to drive the right return visit behavior from your best visitors and customers.  Social Select addresses the single biggest complaint of merchants with Daily Deals – the poor performance in return visit behavior of a deal’s trial customers.  Daily Deals deliver leads and walk away.

I’m pleased to report that merchants love the combo of Social Select and Daily Deals!  Coupling the two into an integrated model of campaign + conversion drives an increased ROI and converts a burst of leads into a social marketing asset.

What Makes a Best Customer?

As merchants began to use Social Select, it’s been fascinating to see an increasing creativity in deal design.  We’ve seen Deals targeting large spending, group behavior, time of day and day of the week – all great examples of Best Customer behavior characteristics.  While the industry has obsessively focused on frequency-based loyalty marketing, we’ve been learning that many, many other characteristics drive who, when  and how a business wants to drive demand. A carpet cleaner has a different definition from a wine store, which is different from a bistro.

We’re bringing this learning into our newest tool – the Best Customer List.  The first thing Merchants asked for was a way to capture the email addresses, so they can “put them on their list”.  We countered with some great “imagine if” discussions, and pretty soon our product began to form.

While email marketing is a proven model, it has never really lived up to its potential for a variety of reasons.  We know that our model of social commerce, where we combine transactions, time/day, social reach and business generated consumer content, forms a much richer model of everyday social commerce.

A Few Highlights

In the screen shot below, you’ll see a few things that begin to separate the Best Customer model from a simple approach of capturing a consumer’s email or social media contact.  I’ll highlight five things that we’re most intrigued with.

  1. Customer Ratings & Tags.  The point of deal redemption creates a great opportunity for the business to record simple contextual information about a customer.  A simple rating, perhaps selecting from 2-3 descriptive tags (such as party size, family vs. friends, etc.), can be a simple click action recorded when the transaction is fresh.
  2. Time and Date.  We obsess about helping merchants stimulate demand when it’s most valued.  Knowing day and time patterns allows you to focus a promotion on these dimensions of Best Customers.
  3. Social Scoring.  We’re beginning to evaluate all of the great new third party API’s to append social reach scoring, to drive maximum impact, and to target social oriented offers.
  4. Smart Filters & Groups.  It’s one thing to create a flexible list; it’s another to make it super-simple for targeted promotions.  A set of “Smart Filters” give you unique group views of your customers in one click.  Groups are custom collections of customers for private deal distribution.
  5. Integrated Groups and Promotion Distribution. At any time a business can push a customized Social Select deal to a list of individuals.  Want to drive early week traffic?  Create a group of 2 and 3-star customers who have completed a transaction more than 30 days ago, on Sunday-Wednesday, and deliver your saved “Off Peak” promotion.  Measure, rinse, repeat!

So, as it should be, this is just the start.  We’d love to engage with partners that see the value we’re creating, and want to combine forces for powerful customer solutions. We’re here to be a high impact companion product that completes that circle with social marketing agencies, deal publishers, merchant service applications and local media publishers.

2 Responses

  1. perryevans

    Hey, thanks for the blog comment. Please email me via perry.evans@closely.com and we can discuss more of what you have in mind.