Digital strategies for slow moving products

How can you encourage customer loyalty towards a brand which offers slow-moving products?

Digital loyalty strategies can be used not only in support of Fast Moving Consumer Goods – FMCG, sectors with a rapid product turnover on the shelves and where the consumer frequently has the opportunity of encountering the brand. Digital loyalty, in fact, can be a valuable tool also for services which are renewed on a regular basis, or for goods with a longer shelf life. This is the case of seasonal products, household items, personal care, jewelry, the automotive industry, bank and insurance services, electrical appliances or furniture. The list of these players could be even longer, however they share a common denominator: they are all part of the “Slow” Moving Consumer Goods – SMCG sector, an area of loyalty where specific rules apply.

Based on the underlying concept of Progress Marketing, in both sectors the brand-user relationship is built over time though mechanisms associated with sell-out, whereby users are engaged and guided along a loyalty path which offers customized opportunities based on their behaviors.

If the logic remains constant, the strategy needs to be adjusted to the goods or services in question. In the Fast Moving sector, the relationship is driven by the sell-out frequency: engagement is usually associated with the purchase of a product and the relationship is consolidated through subsequent calls to action which encourage the repeated purchase of products of the same type or from similar groups. In Slow Moving, on the contrary, the relationship with the user is based on real-time loyalty. The initial engagement is generally disconnected from the purchase and different touch points are integrated, such as adv plans social, games, apps, events, as well as other forms of brand-user relationship aimed at establishing loyalty over time, based on edutainment and gamification actions. The brand returns growing advantages, based on responses to stimuli and collects useful information to promote a customized dialogue, keeping up the attention for a long period of time. This “careyalty” phase, the Care before loyalty,  is functional to knowledge and loyalty on the part of the user and culminates in the brand’s ability to sell a product or service in line with individual requirements. The automotive sector is a clear example of how these concepts are becoming increasingly relevant: the average time for changing a car, in Italy, ranges between 3 and 10 years; the potential customized advantage, therefore, needs to be acknowledged and appreciated by the user before the decision to buy a new car is made, so that – when the time comes – the choice is geared towards one brand instead of another.

Also in the Slow Moving sector, therefore, mention can be made of digital strategies associated with sell-out, but in this case the process leading to a purchase is slower in developing and comes at the end of a real-time loyalty path which is built over time, also thanks to the brand’s ability to gain the trust of potential consumers before a purchase is made.

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