Commentary

Amazon's Prime-Day Takeaway: It's All About Customer Relations

All eyes were on Amazon during Prime Day. As some customers paid for Prime subscriptions solely to take advantage of deals, Amazon was under pressure to impress — and did, with Prime members purchasing more than 100 million products during this year’s event, according to the company.

Beyond driving sales and engaging shoppers once Prime Day arrived, Amazon was tasked with creating demand in advance. We now know it may have created even too much demand -- but let’s focus on how the company accomplished that massive amount of interest, and how B2C and B2B marketers across all industries can take notes as they prepare for upcoming initiatives.

Establish customer relationships beyond the transaction. Prime memberships indicate that customers aren’t going away after a sale. For Amazon, this means keeping customers happy and engaged at all times.

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Offering a subscription model or a service that customers will need to come back to more than once is a strategic way to ensure customers are engaged beyond the first touchpoint.

The key lies in finding a way to establish a relationship with the customer so it’s not a one-and-done experience. Provide an incentive for them to come back. And when they do, the experience need to be worth their while.

Understand your audience and provide value. Brands that have repeat customers and subscription models, like Amazon, have an even better opportunity to collect visitor data. The data collected from onsite browsing behavior, preferences selected and purchase history allows marketers to personalize engagements.

While a major event may vary across industries, it’s equally as important to leverage data to intelligently inform engagements across channels prior to an event. In advance of Prime Day, shoppers may have received personalized recommendations for relevant on sale items via email, social promotions, display ads and on the site itself.

The objective is to make the experience as personal and relevant for buyers, which can only be done effectively by tapping data to understand what each individual customer prefers. Consider which channel customers prefer, what time of day they are most likely to interact, which part of the world or country they live in, weather, and more.

Maintain relationships throughout the entire customer journey. Going back to the need for customer relationships to extend beyond a sale, it’s critical for Amazon to continue its momentum after Prime Day.

We’ve already discussed the value of subscriptions, but beyond the business model itself, it’s necessary to map and react appropriately to what happens next in a customer journey. Emerging channels — from social media to voice activation — and the increase in self-service mean every journey is unique, with the customer steering the direction.

Following a major event like Prime Day, customers may have a question on their purchase and seek chatbot or call center for support, or maybe come back to the site for another order, or they have a return. It’s important to maintain relationships and not only focus on the sale or engagement spike. If every shopper was unhappy and couldn’t get a hold of customer service for a week, the entire sales spike might be worthless.

Marketers, take note: Prime Day success comes as a result of tapping customer data for targeted engagements and establishing relationships that extend beyond a sale.

1 comment about "Amazon's Prime-Day Takeaway: It's All About Customer Relations".
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  1. PJ Lehrer from NYU, August 8, 2018 at 10:05 a.m.

    Website functionality matters too.  More here...
    http://pjlehrer.blogspot.com/2018/07/does-your-company-need-bring-mom-to.html

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