Creating loyal brand fans hinges on the 360-degree experience of your company.
When it comes to rewards, delivery is the very first point of real human contact. That’s right. The courier delivering your reward has the power to change the perception of your brand. Needless to say, you want to gain leverage over that milestone.
Cultivating human-centric strategy
Each time someone comes into contact with your brand there’s an opportunity to create loyalty and engagement. From discovery to research, the first reward program encounter and every single micro-moment in between.
What’s more, your suppliers, employees, customers (happy or not), brand advocates and brand custodians are all stakeholders in your brand relationships.
With so much going on it can be tough to control all the moments that could make or break the experience of your offering.
Have no fear, you can rely on automation, digitisation and the current climate of human-centric strategy to get you there.
The delivery logistics industry is on your side
By 2021 global eCommerce sales are expected to increase by 246.15% (statista.com).
Thankfully, that boom has created a demand for logistics like ‘same-day delivery’. Ushering in a highly-energised delivery industry working hard to meet the challenges of those demands.
Sebastian Steinhauser, CEO & Founder of Parcelly says that “hyper-local fulfilment and delivery is the future in urban logistics.” The idea being that the closer you are to the source, the faster and more reliable your service will be.
Amazon has, of course, taken the lead with over 100 million people invested in their Prime offering (shipping perks, discounts and more). Which highlights the perceived value of the best, fastest, most convenient delivery option.
Last year the company opened new shipping centres in major cities so as to ensure last-mile delivery solutions. Google, Target, and Walmart have also joined the race. And with those heavy hitters forging the way, there are now concrete formulas to follow when it comes to your own processes.
Tip: Partner with delivery startups or even use physical locations (like stores) to speed up delivery times without having to acquire more fulfilment/distribution centres.
The delivery gap promise
A reward is a gesture meant to delight and ignite loyalty, but if it doesn’t arrive on time, intact and with a smile, the entire experience is derailed. Therein lies the delivery gap promise.
And the risks of a failed delivery model are the same – where expectations aren’t met, negative perceptions and decreased engagement abound.
What’s more, tech-savvy consumers have lots of options and are quick to look elsewhere. Don’t forget, said consumers are your employees, suppliers, channel partners and clients too. Which means these factors ring true for not just the B2C space, but B2B and B2E rewards programs as well.
Tips to optimise reward delivery
Unpacking delivery as a key milestone in a customer/employee-centric journey is a powerful exercise. It allows for objectivity. You can then apply best practice solutions to take control of the delivery moment.
Here are some questions to help get you started as you develop your customer/employee journey narrative:
- What actions will be taken by the reward receiver during the moment of delivery, and how can you make them better? For example, look at the technology involved in the signing process, how the parcel is tracked, ways to personalise the post-delivery process and go the extra mile.
- What questions will the reward receiver be asking at delivery? How can you prepare your supply channel partner to best serve your brand in those moments?
- What are your delivery touchpoints? Does your channel partner have enough reach/fulfilment centres? Can you empower your partners to improve delivery timelines and management?
- What emotions will the people receiving the rewards experience at delivery? Can you find ways to make that experience that much better for them?
- Looking objectively at your current delivery standing is important. If you’re aware of weaknesses, you can grow and change.
- Who or what is ensuring the reward delivery process is a positive experience? Those are key stakeholders that you need to turn into brand champions.
Creating value every step of the way
Could the experience of the delivery be as important as the nature of the reward itself?
A simple truth is that brand experience feeds revenue streams.
That’s why the current business climate has a strong focus on creating value – during every milestone, at all touchpoints, and within an omnichannel environment. No small feat.
Closing the delivery promise gap certainly creates value. So perhaps the question is not about the importance of delivery. Rather, how and when to prioritise innovation and excellence in delivery logistic partners?
Human-centric strategy + 360-degree experiences = gaining brand fans during delivery and all other brand moments.
About Alana Moyes
Alana is a content creator and consultant who helps business owners find their authentic brand story.