Driving growth through deeper relationships with existing customers
Driving growth through existing customers should be an imperative for any business. Loyal customers spend more, more often, and can be your organisation’s most powerful advocates. However, not all customers are created equal when it comes to their capacity for increasing spend with you or acting as agents of growth for your business.
We have more conversations with the world’s consumers than anybody else – and a unique understanding of what makes them tick. We can identify the customers that have most value – and most potential value – for your business, and show you precise strategies for leveraging them to unlock new growth opportunities.
Find out how we have helped our clients:
Our client, a well established retail chain was starting to lose sales. At the same time a major competitor was experiencing record growth and new chains threatened further encroachment.
The ConversionModel was used to measure commitment, identify the underlying reasons for poor relationships, pinpoint problem areas and identify appropriate solutions.
Weak commitment to the client’s chain was clearly identified as the cause of the decline in sales. Customers were attracted to the competitor, whom they saw as superior in two key areas: customer service and store ambiance. These insights informed a new programme of customer service training and directed investment in upgrading store appearance.
Plans for growth
Competition remained strong, but the chain held its own. Commitment improved in the following year and annual sales grew by 8%.
Our client had been the most successful new entrant in a highly competitive telecoms market with many successful, established brands. However, it was struggling to increase market share beyond 2-3% and was suffering from low retention rates. Clear direction was needed to understand how to increase retention rates and attract new customers.
Using the ConversionModel we explored the comparative strengths and weaknesses of the brand at a regional level, including retention, trial and conversion rates, as well as image perceptions. We found that the low retention rates were due to weak signals and late delivery of SMS’s. These issues were also a barrier to acquiring new customers. Those who stayed with the brand were predominantly very young and willing to trade off low prices and financial incentives against quality issues. The client was not addressing the important drivers in the market which included value for money and network efficiency.
Precise plans for growth
The client’s market share doubled. Although still lower than competitors, retention rates improved by 50%.
Our client, a premium ice cream manufacturer, wanted to grow market share by increasing spend amongst their less loyal repertoire buyers.
They needed to understand the conversion rate of frozen desserts and luxury ice cream categories and establish how merchandising could be improved to trigger increased spend among existing customers.
An ethnographic approach combined filming, eye tracking and interviewing shoppers. The focus was on the precise interruptions that would trigger conversion and increased sales within the category.
Previous research indicated decisions were based on price, but actual at-fixture decision-making focused on flavour variants which were not easily seen, hence our client’s brand suffered from poor visibility. Shoppers fixated very little on the point of sale and only a fifth who interacted with the category actually bought. While loyalists sought out the client brand, repertoire purchasers often missed the brand.
We established exactly how to improve the fixture to trigger higher conversion and provided recommendations for location, merchandising and structure of the categories from entrance to exit.
Precise plans for growth
Brand signage was improved from a distance and at the fixture. The pack was re-designed to improve visibility, particularly the variants, and there was increased communication of variants off-shelf.
Our recommendations were implemented and the POS design and format was rolled out to top grocery multiples. Sales increased by almost a third in the test region.
Our client, an automotive manufacturer, wanted to improve customer experience with its after sales services in order to increase sales of additional products or services and encourage customers to purchase more expensive items. The effectiveness of different measures needed to be evaluated regarding their impact on customer experience and spend. A further objective was to ensure that centrally defined quality standards were better met by the dealers.
Using the TRI*M Customer Experience methodology, TNS developed action planning workshops at the dealership level. The main drivers of customer retention were individually identified and discussed with staff and management at 40 participating dealerships. The required actions were prioritised according to relevant weaknesses identified by the TRI*M Grid. The individual workshop results and concentration on specific key drivers allowed a clear focus and strong buy-in by the client facing staff. Systematic action planning, based on key drivers and quality standards, delivered the individual actions needed to increase operational efficiency and to meet the required standards.
Precise plans for growth
Implementing the actions developed in the individual dealer workshops further resulted in the defined quality standards being met significantly more often by the dealers in parallel the TRI*M Index for these dealerships increased significantly compared to non-participating dealerships.
A European leader in telecommunications network equipment and services was losing customers within an important B2B segment. They were facing decreasing revenues, difficulties in cross-selling and an increasing level of negative feedback from their customers. The company’s growth strategy was at risk.
They needed to identify the reasons for this situation and precisely understand what they had to do to put it right - with a limited budget.
A TRI*M Customer Experience survey was conducted to assess customer retention and its drivers. The survey focused on one of the client’s key accounts, interviewing representatives from various divisions. Additionally a 'mirror analysis’ among staff compared customers’ service experience with the employees’ perception of their own performance.
The research confirmed a low level of customer satisfaction, with a TRI*M Index of only 27, clearly below that of its competitors and among the bottom third of TRI*M database benchmarks.
The TRI*M Grid results showed that the client needed to clarify the responsibilities of project management and sales most urgently. The results of the mirror survey gave staff a realistic idea of their own performance, which they overestimated - stressing the need for better customer service.
Following an action planning workshop based on these insights, customer service responsibilities were assigned more clearly between sales and project management. Task management and information flow were improved and new call management technology was installed.
Precise plans for growth
Our client significantly improved experience delivery at these critical customer touchpoints resulting in an overall strengthening of customer retention levels and a significant reduction in churn – with positive impact on the company’s entire customer base.
The increase in the TRI*M index led to growth not only from reducing customer churn rates, but also through increasing the average spend per customer, and recommendation from loyal customers further attracted new customers. This led to an estimated value to the business of over €35 million.
Head of research
Client Service Manager
d: +40 31 805 53 62/63