Monday, May 25, 2009

Everyday Rewards and Epumps

Many of us find it particularly exciting when they see a company leading in innovation and product development. Woolworths is no longer a groceries store but quickly becoming the corporate "corner store" and recently, its their petrol station revolution that has us blogging about today. 

Many of the Caltex Woolworths petrol stations are rolling out epumps (see locations here) which allow customers to pull up to a bowser, wave a credit card at the bowser, fill up and then drive away. No need to queue up, no need to get a receipt either because the receipt is emailled to your email account immediately. 

They've used the new epumps to also roll out: 
1. Everyday Money credit cards which give 10c off petrol so you can buy petrol at 98.9c in Perth
2. Everyday Rewards loyalty cards 
3. Subsequently causes you to see Woolworths stores as another opportunity to earn points. 
4. Makes you want to try out the self serve innovative woolworths check out stations in the City. 
5. Everyday Rewards website which has a communal suggestion box where people rate each others' suggestions and you can see how much you have saved shopping at woolworths etc

In a matter of one week signing up to the Everyday money credit card, I found myself at a Woolworths petrol station, shopping at woolworths and surfing on their website. That is one successful promotion.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Highlights of the week - SMSGlobal

When you have a competitive product, the challenge is to get that product out there. At the recent CeBIT expo, SMSGlobal were giving out cards offering 225 free sms when you sign up to SMS Global for free. That was the sort of deal people come back from expos with a smile on their face. 

Quickly, the offer became the  top offer on many bargain websites like OzBargain and TopBargain, increasing their publicity even more. I have no idea how many people signed up to SMS Global in the past week but I would not be surprised if 10,000+ people did. 

Once the 225 free sms are used up, users would find the 10c / SMS (cheaper if you order more than 100 sms in one go) a very reasonable price to continue using the service. Many of the triallers would definitely become paying customers, because: 

1. The price is right
2. They are already over the hurdle of signing up
3. The website offers many flexible ways of importing the mobile numbers from excel etc
4. You're happy. A happy customer is a good customer. Getting $22.50 worth of sms, puts a smilt on anyone's face. 
5. Many people don't know yet how to sms from their computer via their mobile phone so this will make life easier for them
6. You can make the sms come from a "Name" such as "Fred Flintstone", rather than just a random number. 

SMS global, good work! 

Twitter - why a bird sound makes so much noise

As someone who describes himself as quite internet savvy, I managed to resist the urge to join Twitter until only a month ago. I thought, what's the big deal about a social network that only allows you to update 160 characters at a time? You can't even put the URL links in that you are talking about, without turning it into a TinyUrl. 

So I joined twitter with two eyes open to identify what the big deal is, after Ashton Kutcher was the first Twitter account to have 1,000,000 million followers. 

Here are some things I found interesting about twitter, which are relevant to marketing people:

1. Twitter allows you to update your customers subliminally. Every time they log on to twitter, they see your company name and your updates.
2. Twitter increases your customer loyalty. You are talking to people at a personal level with twitter, even if you are a bank. 
3. Twitter allows you to search your company name  to see what people are saying about your company. (eg Getting a lot of "steak is crap at Harry's" twitter updates.. then its time to rethink that recipe)
4. Twitter can grow your following very quickly.
5. Twitter breaks down the barrier between company and Generation Z, who don't go to a store counter or call up on the phone. 

I'm still looking so these are some things I have found. 

Monday, May 11, 2009

Highlights of the week - Ubank

NAB's subsidiary which has aimed at the younger generation, getting itself on twitter and facebook. Recently offered free 1GB thumb drives to the first 1000 followers on Twitter. One week later, they still have 1,200 followers and they are giving daily updates about their call centre and other "behind the scenes stuff" and replying to individual twitterers which makes the bank a more friendly face on the net.

So what does a bank do with people following them? Have a look here or here are some of their twitters:

@jessnichols You're definitely on our list, hope our emails are not hitting your spam folder, it'll be posted soon. Thanks for touching base from web

Hello to all 1,300 of our Twitter friends. Thanks so much for for tuning in. Share your feedback anytime to @UBank, DM or from web

Hello, We've emailed all registrants for the UBank 1GB USB Drive, check your inbox folks, some of you may have some info to confirm. Thanks. from web

Why do we follow you when you follow us? It's simple. If you take the time to listen to us, we try our best to reciprocate. Tweet soon. from web

RT @bankingreview 7 tips on how to improve your financial knowledge and save money using Twitter Features @UBank... from web

An update for those *still* waiting for an email from us regarding USBs, we're running a bit behind with that, it'll be out later today, thx from web

The NAB website has a great little video on "What the budget means for you" as well as a fact sheet #AusBudget09 from web

@philipargy Thanks for your feedback, we'll take it on board, at the moment there are some privacy issues to consider with #Skype chat from web in reply to philipargy

Call queues to our Direct Banking Centre (13 30 80) have eased, no wait time now, thanks for your patience + sorry for any inconvenience :) from web

@philipargy We use #Skype for VoIP calls 24x7 to our Aust. Direct Banking Centre, we're not available via Skype Chat yet from web

If you don't want to wait on hold, you may wish to apply online at from web

4.51%pa for 3 months is causing a queue at our Direct Banking Centre, sorry for the delays folks, we'll get to your call as soon as we can from web

Money Box Webisode 6 - It's all about Superannuation, now with over 1,300 views, check it out on our YouTube channel from web

Happy Saturday folks, we're always open here and thought we'd say hello. Speak soon. from web

Positive rate change eff. 16 May. 6mo now 4.11%. 1mo 3.26%, 3mo 4.51%, 9mo 4.01%& 12mo 4.01% unchanged. Compare@ from web

Friday, May 1, 2009

Greatest Job in the World

We won't spend too much time talking about this stunt, except to say a $2m campaign attracted over $150m worth of free publicity in the world to advertise a $150,000 one year contract as an island caretaker and blogger. 

This publicity stunt has earnt worldwide acclaim with many touting it as the most successful publicity stunt in the world in 2009. Ok that's enough.