How a manufacturing company that doesn’t have direct sales, can make friends with a customer?
To survive and stay profitable in the modern economy, businesses need to maintain a positive emotional relationship with customers. Ideally, a manufacturer should have built communication under the classical scheme: attract customers, collect information about them, perform customer segmentation, conveniently communicate with each segment, analyze the results – and repeat the loop.
But here’s the catch!
Between the manufacturer and the customer, there is a layer of an entire distribution chain with storages, logistics, and retail clusters. Within this chain, a manufacturer and its customers can communicate only in retail stores. But most often, retail stores have their specific commercial interests and do not want to share their customer base with manufacturers.
Joint marketing activities of a manufacturer and retail stores provide information about a narrow segment of a customer base. Most often, such activities turn into just a promotion of a new product or clearing warehouses from older or expiring items.
So, manufacturers have no choice but to build communications independently.
To start building such communication with customers, you need to exchange contact information with them. This can be done not only at the checkout of a store, distracting the already burdened cashier: inCust platform offers a number of tools that allow collecting information with customer participation.
Imagine a unique certificate, placed on the label, the packaging, or on the product itself. A certificate can represent bonus points (cashback) — customers understand that they receive back the part of the money upon the purchase. Or, it can represent reward points or a coupon for purchasing another product. A customer scans the QR code of this certificate using the inCust app for customers or registers the code online. If a customer registers the code on the website, they specify the mobile phone number, and the certificate becomes bound to the customer account. From now on, the customer only needs to use their phone number for identification at the checkout.
When a customer uses a certificate, they immediately receive a message, telling them where and how to spend these bonus or reward points. As a manufacturer, you can offer several options. For example, you can welcome the customer to your e-shop, where they can use bonus points as a discount, or to buy certain goods with bonus points.
But the most interesting option is to send a customer to your partner’s store. InCust has tools that help to learn if the customer visited the point of sale and purchased goods. In this case, the inCust platform acts as the clearance platform for different partners.
The fact of purchasing goods with the help of the inCust platform can be registered in three different ways.
The first option is to install the inCust Terminal module on a tablet or a smartphone of a salesperson. inCust Terminal is the salesperson’s workplace software, which allows registering the fact of redeeming of bonus points at any time.
The second option is used when it is not possible to install our software at a point of sale. The inCust Kiosk solution comes to the rescue. At the checkout, a tablet is installed with the screen facing a customer. A customer can enter their phone number manually or scan their inCust digital card from the inCust mobile app for customers. The number of bonus points earned and available coupons appear on the tablet screen. One can use the coupons by clicking the “Use” button. Right at this moment, inCust displays the discount code in the salesperson’s accounting system. This approach works much like a scratch card, from which the security code has been erased at the checkout, and a unique discount or coupon code has been found. A customer gives it to a salesperson, and all parties are aware of the redemption.
Thus, the manufacturer and the seller will receive information about the purchase and can return some part of the cost to the customer, building the foundation for the next visit.
The third option does not require any additional hardware and is based on a catalog of gifts. A customer with bonus points on account visits a retail point of sale and asks for a gift catalog. After scanning discounts and gifts using the inCust app, a customer receives a message like “Tell the cashier code 123 and pick your gift.”
Why would partners be interested in one of these three options? Because from among your partners, you choose the stores to which you send your customers. And you will reimburse the costs of keeping the loyalty to both the store and your goods.
As a result, you build a database of customers from all around the country and can work with it very efficiently, analyzing customer preferences and purchases, offering new products, communicating with customers, and also trying to maintain the emotional background in communication with customers at the proper level.
By the way, Maxim Ronshin, the CEO of inCust, is the author of several patents that can solve two more problems for you. The first one is the problem of creating a unique product codification in such a way that the code becomes a part of the package, and it is impossible to tear off the code from the product. The second is the problem of determining that the product was purchased and not just scanned inside the retail store.
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