Retail brands are on a never-ending quest to capture new customers and better understand their current ones. But modern consumers are fickle. It takes more than a few holiday discount codes or clever ads to capture their affection for the long-term.
It’s becoming more and more clear that consumers want to do business with brands that personalize their shopping experiences and offers. And we know better personalization requires more data. However, consumers know their data is valuable — which means they’re holding onto it tightly. They aren’t likely to hand over their email address, preferences, or opinions without getting something in return.
So how can you create a more mutually beneficial relationship? And how can you deliver the experiences your customers demand when it’s so difficult to figure out what they really want?
Here are eight creative examples that show how retail brands are using interactive experiences to capture audience data. Hopefully they’ll spark some ideas for your next campaign and demonstrate why zero-party data is becoming the new normal for marketing.
To capture new leads/email addresses...
Run a sweepstakes
Luxury department store Nordstrom partnered with Delta airlines and Away luggage to offer a sweepstakes where consumers could win a $2,000 Delta gift card, a three-piece Away suitcase set, and a $2,000 Nordstrom gift card. To enter, contestants simply had to enter some basic PII data. This exciting dream vacation prize garnered more than 28 thousand campaign entries and provided all three brands with masses of potential new customers to add to their database.
To better connect their in-person gas stations with their online channels, Shell utilized the release of Avengers: Endgame to launch a cross-channel coupon campaign. Customers were given the opportunity to win prizes ranging from an all-expense-paid vacation to tickets to see the movie by entering codes found on product packaging and store receipts. This allowed Shell to capture PII that turned their anonymous customers into real people, allowing them to create more personalized offerings at the individual level.
To better understand your customers...
Share personalized recommendations
Point collection and discount app Nectar wanted to take the guesswork out of understanding their users’ travel preferences and intentions. To do this, they launched a short survey of six vacation-related questions including “What months do you intend to travel this year?” and “What modes of transportation will you take to get there?” The survey helped them determine the travel services, offers, and vacation recommendations each user would be most likely to take advantage of in the coming year.
Award loyalty points
As part of its loyalty reward program, Book Outlet published an Emoji Book Challenge quiz on their website with the goals of 1) driving consumer loyalty and 2) creating a fun experience for members that would boost engagement and increase time spent on site. This quiz allowed account holders to earn points toward their next Book Outlet purchase in exchange for a few personal details to confirm their entry.
Give VIP treatment
To gather customer insights and product preferences, Pets at Home tapped into its “My VIP Awards” program. In exchange for a chance to win a £100 gift card, VIP members were asked to answer various product and preference questions through an interactive, conversational form. Through this campaign, Pets at Home was able to capture 140K entries to better personalize offers to their most loyal customers.
To gather market research...
Create a product questionnaire
In an effort to improve their market research techniques, air freshener brand Air Wick launched a questionnaire to explore the concept of personalized fragrance creation. Targeting millennials, their “create a scent” and “personalize a product” campaigns took users through a series of questions. In exchange for their responses, participants were entered for a chance to win the product they’d created. These campaigns captured 15 thousand responses that informed Air Wick’s future product development for a new audience and replaced more costly research methods.
Share valuable information
Detergent brand Finish wanted to better understand its consumers in Brazil, a market with lower dishwasher usage. Taking advantage of Water Saving Day on March 22nd, the brand offered free detergent tablets to those who tried out their interactive water usage calculator. This four-question quiz provided valuable information to Finish, who gathered insight on customer habits and pain points, and to participants, who received their results along with useful tips on how to save water.
To improve their marketing campaign efforts, water bottle company CamelBak launched a user-generated content (UGC) competition. Customers were asked to show their CamelBak bottle in action by sharing their photos on various social channels using the #LivingColorful hashtag. This gave CamelBak an opportunity to understand the types of images that resonate with their customers and use them in their campaigns and shoppable links, leading to a 19.9% increase in bottle sales in just 5 weeks.
Today’s consumers expect marketing campaigns to be entertaining, personalized, and worth their time. If they're asked to share data as part of the campaign, they want to receive something of value in return. Cheetah Experiences, Cheetah Digital’s data acquisition solution, allows marketers to create experiences that gather permissioned, self-reported data at scale. Request a demo today to see how your brand can start capturing data in creative ways, too.
Bryn Smith is a Digital Marketing Coordinator at Cheetah Digital. Throughout her career, she has provided digital and content support for nearly every area of digital marketing, including lead generation, blogs, social media, websites, apps, email, and more.