Saturday, 11 July 2009

10 Ways to Get the Most Out of Smart Technologies and Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

The following TOP TEN have been developed by Steve Beeceoft of Smart Stadia and have been published by Stadia here to see the full published article or click here to see the final published TOP TEN

1. Integrate all customer centric systems with CRM
To derive maximum financial benefit, fully integrate all customer centric systems with a CRM. This links islands of data making targeted marketing campaigns a reality rather than just a pipe dream. For example, once customers are in the stadium, they could be alerted of a discount or promotion through an SMS message or smart poster for NFC mobile phones.

2. Always retain ownership of the customer
Outsourcing complete services such as cashless or loyalty to a third party could result in the direct relationship with the customer being lost. Access to real-time data is often limited, restricting opportunities to dynamically created personalised promotions and offers via CRM. This reduces additional revenue and restricts the club’s ability to efficiently manage and nurture customer relationships.

3. Use a single smart token
The more applications that are enabled on a single token, smart card or even NFC enabled mobile phone, the more the customer values it. The more a token is used the more data that’s available, and the less it will cost both customers and the club. A single token properly implemented can have many uses in and outside the stadium and even with third party services. It is best to decide the potential applications very early so to plan efficiently.

4. Involve organisations beyond the gate
In addition to the services that the club offers working with local businesses, local transport provider, local authority and the wider community can also benefit customers. Promoting healthy eating in schools is always attractive to schools, clubs and pupils alike and so is a popular quick win.

5. Become a custodian of a cashless scheme
If a club is the custodian of the cashless scheme it benefits in terms of cash-flow from the funds deposited within it. It also ensures the club retains a direct relationship with the customer and autonomy over the day-to-day operation. A cashless system will provide the largest percentage of customer data of any of the systems used to support match days. In a scheme operated by the club, customers feel that they are truly supporting their team.

6. Improve the customer experience
A smart card scheme can help improve the customer experience. The Coventry City FC cashless scheme cut the average transaction time from over a minute to 20-30 seconds, drastically reducing queues. It also increased audience penetration at catering kiosks from 45% to 55%. Such effects alone provide justification for implementing a smart card solution. If that same card also took the customer to the stadium on the bus, through the turnstile and held loyalty points for redemption at the club shop that is truly improving the customer experience.

7. Invest in a future proof loyalty scheme
Loyalty schemes are a very good way of adding value to the card, benefit to the customer and giving data to the club. Build a scheme that is affiliate to multi national online retailers and national retailers so customers can collect points on a daily basis to be redeemed with the club.

8. Run targeted promotions using SMS WAP NFC
If targeted marketing encouraged every football fan to spend just £2 more per game attended, annual revenue for a Premiership football club with just a 20,000 gate at every league match would increase by £780,000. That’s how important obtaining and creatively using customer data via a fully integrated CRM is to a football club.

9. Focus on affordability
Ensure that any supplier configures the solution and the revenue model around stadia and visitor requirements. This will balance up-front investment with revenue generation and savings, allowing the optimum pay back period.

10. Insist on marketing support
To derive maximum benefit from CRM, ensure ongoing marketing support is available from the CRM providers as part of the package. Learning how to use the CRM is one thing but learning the how to deploy customised promotions specific to individual customers takes time, so eliminate the learning curve and generate more revenue immediately.

If you would like to find out how to Smart Stadia can help you and your organisation realise the the benefits from implementing smart card technologies which are fully integrated with your CRM then click or email

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