The Role of Technology in Promotions Personalization – Voucherify & OVO Energy Webinar

The Role of Technology in Promotions Personalization – Voucherify & OVO Energy Webinar

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Thank you all for coming. I'm Mike and  today with my guest, Victor, we'd like to   talk about how technology can help you  sell more through personalized promotions.   Within the next 30 minutes, we're going to tell  you about what is a personalized promotion,   why it's important today, and what does it take,  technology-wise, to make personalized promotions   an essential marketing tactic. We're going to  share some experience from top consumer companies One will be JustEat and another OVO energy,   after we discuss it, I'd like to open a  Q&A session so if you have any questions,   you can write them in the chat on the  right-hand side and we'll address them later on.   A little back story – I'm a co-founder of  Voucherify. We're an API-first Promotion   Engine for digital teams and today we work  with more than 300 customers around the globe,   including Vodafone, DB Schenker, Burger King,  EasyJet, and OVO Energy. OVO is an energy  

retailer that helps more than five million  customers in Europe to save money, to cut their   carbon footprint and they have an ultimate goal  to become a net-zero carbon business by 2040. The Netguru Disruption Forum is all about  trends and today I want to talk about the   trend that has been materializing for some  time already and this is about deals –   our research shows that people love deals,  they always seek coupons before buying,   they prefer businesses that reward  them for being a loyal customer, and this is the trend that is with us for  some time already and personalized promotions   are an answer to this phenomenon. This is even more important today in  the light of recent privacy changes to iOS and   Android. We can see that consumer businesses  that collect and process first-party data   to personalize the shopping experience are on  the rise and they use it with great success. So, what is a personalized promotion?   Well it's a marketing-based strategy  that uses an incentive or a reward   to increase the conversion rate, for example for  customer acquisition and for customer engagement   which is driven by consumer data and these  data include several things – it can be   customer preferences, order history, location,  customer touchpoints, payment method,   and any different channel that is relevant for  the shopping experience and we can see that customers love personalized experiences,  especially when they receive   personalized promotions. This comes down to  several tactics. This can be a coupon, this  

can be a cart-level discount, this also includes  loyalty programs and friend referral schemes so   the range of personalized promotions tactics  is wide and we'll talk about it in a minute. Today some DTC brands use personalized promotions  to a great extent. You can see here Shein,   which is a fast-fashion business from Southeast  Asia. They used 7 deals on their landing page only  

if you start shopping with them. If go to  product pages, customer profiles, checkouts,   you will discover that there are many more deals  prepared for customers to incentivize them,   to re-engage them and Shein is not the only  company that uses this strategy to incentivize   customers. Another one is JustEat and this is  why I invited Victor, who worked for JustEat   previously and he was responsible for growth  there. We'd like to share his experiences   now. Hello, Victor. Hello, Mike. Thanks  for having me. Can you tell our audience   why promotions were important to JustEat? Just  very briefly for those who don't know – JustEat is   an online takeaway company, basically, it allows  you to order food delivery from restaurants nearby   and vouchers were really big for JustEat for  a couple of reasons. One, the market is super  

competitive in food delivery, it was also  when I was working there, there's this thing   of economies of scale and the first player takes  all. You can see many second players in countries   leaving the market because they're the second  and they need to be the first to make a profit.   Because I was working for the Spanish brand  and culturally Spain, Italy and Southern   Europe was a very price-sensitive market  in general and then also the players   in the food delivery industry flooded the whole  market with vouchers so we set the baseline to   the point that if you were not offering vouchers,  people wouldn't even consider ordering from you.   In many cases we had the same restaurants,  the same food as other takeaway companies so   to differentiate, to be better, you'd need to use  vouchers. It's true because people love discounts   but they are fed up with mass discounts,  like one-size-fits-all. I guess that  

you won't be satisfied with a coupon for a burger  if you're vegan or you need a different discount   for pizza and sushi, so can you tell a bit more  about how you personalized your promotions and   how did you experiment to figure out what  works and what doesn't? Basically, we did   a lot of testing in this aspect, not only from  the customer's point of view, like if they are   vegan then give them a voucher for something vegan  but also from a business point of view – you wanna   make sure you work on the right metrics, so  for example for growth you want to acquire   so vouchers for new customers. You want to reduce  churn then you have to be a customer that hasn't   ordered within x amount of days. Revenue, how  could we increase the revenue of the business?   Just increase the frequency – if you order  three times within x amount of days then   you can use this voucher. If you are there just  twice then you don't get the full discount.  

So we played a lot with that and the thing is we  started with standalone codes. For those who don't   know what standalone codes are, basically it would  be like a very generic term, like JUSTEAT15. That   could be a standalone code. We started with this  kind of voucher codes but as soon as you reach  

a critical mass you cannot play around with that  kind of vouchers anymore because you lose control,   they get leaked, people on forums start  putting them there, so we had to switch to   dynamic vouchers that were specifically for  the customer we wanted to receive that voucher.   That's basically what we did at JustEat and then  the next step after that was creating the referral   but it worked a little bit weird because  it was like a completely separate platform. Speaking of that, what did it take to  launch personalized coupons technology-wise?   Technology-wise it was a quite  complicated structure at JustEat. We had  

a central team in the UK that was serving the  technology of all the markets and, of course, the   needs of the Netherlands or Canada, or Australia  are very different from the ones in Spain.   This team managed to create a very strong  voucher tool but the problem was that   it had very little local responsiveness and it  was made very rigid. This rigidity is positive   because you limit how much marketers can screw  up their own work, like the tool, for example,   once you set an expiry date for  a voucher you couldn't move it.  

It was good because you can prevent errors  from the marketing team but at the same time   if someone had made a mistake and needed to move  the expiry date of a voucher, we would need to   contact the tech team in the UK and that would  take forever, so it was a very complex tool.   Plus the way it was created, first we started  with standalone codes, then another tool was   created on top that allowed us to do dynamic  and then the referral. It was quite complex. I see, so you had the flexibility to some  degree but the more complex your campaign became   the more communication overhead and waiting you  had. Exactly, also flexibility for marketers   would imply fragility in the tool so if  you are able to do a lot of things then   it would take longer to develop, plus developers  have to take into account that the expiry   date is always after today, that you cannot put  like one in the year-ago, things like that. It   was a very complex tool. This sounds familiar to  me because our customers complain about the same   things, right. When we take a look at  the technology space, especially for  

promotions, you can see a pattern of similar  problems – you have many customer touchpoints,   that you need to integrate, you have new marketing  channels that you want to connect to when there is   a trend or something. Also, problems coming from  inter-departmental communication and many data   sources. Today a modern marketing team uses more  than, I guess, on average it was like 30 tools,   so you have a lot of tools, a lot of data  isolated that you need to connect to make your   shopping experience personalized and we hear about  this kind of issues more and more and decided to   create a tool for that and you are a user of this  tool, right? So can you say how you managed to run and maintain promotional campaigns today at  OVO. Yeah, as you mentioned before, OVO Energy  

is an energy supplier, in the UK it has like  10 years of history, in Spain just two and   the structure is a little bit different from  what we had at JustEat in the sense that we have   a very small team of developers but they're very  country-oriented so it is good because you have a   lot of responsiveness business-wise. If you  need something you have the tech team that   knows exactly what you need, the problem is the  size of the team, so with such a limited size team   it's very complicated to create a tool that would  allow us to create a voucher or a referral program   in-house, it would be impossible really. What  we saw is we had a very good Net Promoter Score,   also our customer service team here in Spain  is one of the best, you can see like the Google   ratings and everything, it's amazing – plus,  in the energy industry trust is a big factor,   word-of-mouth. If you're gonna change electricity  company you have to trust that company and   the best thing is if a friend recommends it.  It's not like a takeaway that you can order  

and if it ends up not arriving then you lost  20 Euro. Here it is a little bit more tragic,   you are playing with the  electricity supplier of your house,   so taking into account those two factors –  that word of mouth is really important and   the fact that we needed to grow fast and we didn't  have the resources, we started looking for tools   that would allow us to create a referral  program outside the tech team, that we   wouldn't need tech reliance. And I guess you  found Voucherify and you introduced it as your   promotional tool. How did you design your referral  program and why Voucherify was useful? Actually,   we were doing a little bit of benchmarking and  we got the tip from our colleagues in Australia   that recommended you and said we've been talking  with Voucherify, and it looks like a very powerful   tool. I didn't know that it was possible to  have a referral tool in one with vouchers   and our core focus was referrals. I decided  to do a little bit of benchmarking looking at  

what our competitors are doing,  is it one-sided, is it a two-sided   referral program, how much are they giving, what's  the amount, is there any capping because capping   is an interesting one – if you don't cap it  in the short run you get a lot of traction,   people can start recommending  like crazy, but in the long run,   when you want to cut it you have a problem,  you have people that made up to 1 000 Euro   thanks to the referral program and sometimes it's  scams so a lot of work in the benchmarking. Also,   my experience told me that if you get it  right from the beginning it's much better than   trying to change referral programs, not because  of the complexity, like operationally but also   from the user point of view. If you start changing  the conditions it can create a lot of problems.   That's right, by the way, I can share that  recently we launched an ebook on how to design   referral programs so if anybody is interested  in learning best practices on how to design it   in the best way possible from scratch, then just  go to our website and visit our promotion hub to   find it. I would have loved to read that one, it  would have been super useful. Let's talk about   results, how did it go basically with your  referral program? Results-wise we couldn't   be happier, right now one-fifth or one-fourth of  the sign-ups that we have at OVO Energy come with   a redemption that could be either from referral  program, standalone codes, or dynamic codes,   but the largest piece is the referral program, so  we're really happy. We even tested a flash sale so  

during x amount of days if you invited a friend  you would get double the incentive and it worked   really well so we couldn't be happier. Also for  companies like OVO Energy in Spain where we have a   limited budget, we're not over in the UK that has  more strength in terms of budget, for companies   that have to look a little bit at the budget,  it's actually very helpful that it's affordable.  To put it in a nutshell, the referral scheme is  a core strategy to acquire new customers, but you   experiment with other channels, like standalone  coupons to incentivize even more customers, right?   Yeah, that's a cool thing that with the same  platform you can do both, so in the end, I started   with the referral program which was the core  focus, but now I'm using standalone codes a lot.   One use case, for example, is that we have  agents picking up the phone and trying to   help customers, people that call sign up, and we  give them a standalone code and if they see that   they cannot sign up the customer, they can use  this voucher as something exceptional, so it is   really really clean because it is either the agent  putting it in on our website or they give the code   to the customer and they can sign up on their own  whenever they want. That's that's a nice way to   incentivize the customer, so basically what I can  learn from your story is that Voucherify became a   central tool to run your promotions and this is a  pretty common thing that our customers start with   one tool and then they experiment to figure  out what works what doesn't and Voucherify   enables them to make it smooth, so they don't  need to wait for the tech team to react,   they can manage it on their own, at the same  time developers aren't bothered with requests,   like "hey, please delete this voucher because  it's getting overused" and the managers are   happy as well because the time to market is fast  and they don't need to wait a couple of months to   implement a promotional strategy. Can you say how  long did it take to launch your referral scheme?  

It took a couple of months, maybe three  or four, but because of my time and the   product manager that was helping me to  think about the logic behind it, but   tech-wise it was incredible, we just needed  the placeholder on the website where the   customer could put the voucher and that's  all tech requirements, so that has to call   Voucherify API to validate and then the redemption  takes place in the page that we specified and   that was it. The rest it was work from the product  manager and myself, like thinking about the logic,   also learning how to use the tool, the fact that  Voucherify gives so many options, so much freedom,   it also means that you have to learn a  little bit how it works, for me, for example,   one lesson from the referral program or using  standalone code is the fact that I included zero   in capital letters, sorry o in capital letters  and zero and that created some problems with   customer service with codes when people didn't  know if it was an O or 0 so if I was to redo the   referral program or the codes, always leave out  certain letters so there's no confusion there.   We should make it bolder in our campaign manager  too or perhaps this should be a default option.  

Yeah, it's crazy that you even have that option in  Voucherify, it's like I wouldn't have imagined, so   yeah flexibility-wise it is really good. I  hope this doesn't sound too promotional but   I'm obviously a happy customer. To  me that's a perfect way to conclude   our webinar, so now I'd like  to move to the Q&A session if   anybody wants to ask me or Victor something  then just use our chat or you can try to ask Hopin to share your mic  and ask it on air, so to say,   so let's wait um a minute. Mike, there's  a question, I think it's more for you. Okay, let me address that – do you think the  trend of mindful consumption (will reduce   the need for promotions?) Well that's a tricky question, I don't know  how to answer it just on top of my head,   well when I see companies like Shein or  Pomelo which is actually our customer   and when take a look closely at their  traffic and the volume of their sales   it's pretty far from mindful consumption,   so I guess it's not the case or at least the trend  doesn't look like like a mindful consumption.  

If I may Mike, at JustEat we did the customer  research to see what people thought about   our competitors and people were saying  that drivers are not paid well enough   and then we asked them "would you be willing  to pay 5 Euro per delivery instead of 2 Euro?"   and they all said no, so in the end, there's  like this duality that people are becoming   mindful and sustainable, very responsible,  but at the same time price is a very strong   incentive. I think it's going to be become  wider, that group of people that are   mindful, but the big current I think it pushes  towards price, I can see it in the energy   industry, the energy we're serving  is the same as with another supplier,   the energy is the same, so really the big  differentiator is price. That's what I see   and I guess this relates to promotions and  discounts but when it comes to loyalty I guess   it can come hand-in-hand, right?  So okay we have another question,   actually, it's a reply to the previous question.  That's very true. Are there any other questions?   Right, if not then I'd like to thank  you, Victor, for being with me today.  

Thank you, this was a really nice lesson  on promotions across consumer business,   different categories, because JustEat and OVO are  different but it seems like promotions can be a   universal tool for both of these businesses.  Thank you all for coming and I invite you to   visit our website to learn more. Thanks  for having me, Mike. Thanks, everyone. Bye.

2021-11-06 21:46

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