Brand challenges with today’s consumer
The main challenge for brands lies in knowing who our customers are, how they behave and what their needs are. At Fnac we have been operating in Spain for more than 25 years, and this knowledge is still a fundamental aspect of our business, as well as one of our distinguishing values.
At Fnac, we were pioneers, being one of the first retailers in Spain to sell online, but customers are now no longer simply “Online” or “Offline.” For several years, we unified our databases to create the concept of a “unique customer,” allowing us to put consumers at the center of our brand and gain detailed knowledge of their purchasing patterns (both On and Off) so we can send them ad hoc and customized content according to their needs. Today, 25 percent of our customers are multichannel, accounting for 50 percent of our online sales. In fact, the conversion rate for multichannel buyers is 20 percent higher than that of traditional ones.
“For several years, we unified our databases to create the concept of a “unique customer,” allowing us to put consumers at the center of our brand”
As a brand, it is essential to enhance the shopping experience—both in-store and online—while offering expert services and differentiated products. Our specialized salespeople have detailed knowledge of our products and independent prescribers, only recommending what customers are looking for and what best suits them. We have incorporated this experience into our online channels by using CulturaFnac, our platform of expert vloggers, and sharing events via streaming.
On the other hand, with digitization and changing consumer habits, we rely, from the beginning, on social networks to listen to our customers’ needs and establish direct contact, allowing us to improve their experiences. In addition to having a communications tool for our cultural activities, events and contests, our social networks also have a Twitter channel dedicated to customer service where we address any questions, suggestions or complaints that may arise. Through this, we have been able to get to know customer concerns and needs, improving company-consumer communication.
Monthly, we do “Customer Listening” reports. Through them, we filter and analyze all insights received from our various channels. These reports are then sent to the Management Committee, and we follow up with each department to adapt our selections, prices, campaigns, etc. All these measures help us interact with customers, respond to their questions and requests and, ultimately, get to know them better.
From my perspective, in a highly competitive environment saturated with supply, brands should focus on four key points that help them to differentiate:
- Shopping experience. This is one of the most important aspects, and at Fnac, we are specialists, curating this experience not only in our 36 physical stores throughout Spain, but also on our Fnac.es website. For example, at Fnac we do an average of 5,000 events a year, making us one of the leading cultural players in the country.
- Qualified advisory. While it is true that today’s consumer has access to a lot of information and knows what they want to buy, sometimes there is an information overload, so many customers are grateful for independent specialist advice. This advisory is also integrated into the digital world. For example, our experts use YouTube to share their knowledge and qualified advisory with users through our vlogger program.
- Flexibility. At Fnac, our multichannel options allow customers to choose how they want to receive their purchases. Click & Collect allows you to buy online and pick up your order in-store, or have it shipped to your address. With ClickinStore, you can shop in a store at another location and pick up the purchase there, or have it shipped to your home. Using Reserve & Collect, you can have us hold all your purchases online, then pick them up at your local Fnac center in just one hour. We also offer Same-day Delivery, for those who want to receive their purchases at home on the same day. However, what we offer our customers above all is flexibility, allowing them to receive or collect their orders when they want and where they want so they can plan their shopping freely.
- Brand confidence. Businesses should seek a balance between personalization and privacy. At Fnac, we use CRM and Big Data to truly get to know our customers and ensure we only offer them content that fits their needs, thus avoiding saturating them with emails or mobile phone messages with useless information. Beyond the amount of data, it is correct use of it that can make the difference between companies.
Finally, it is important that, as a brand, we make our customers “feel special.” For example, Fnac has a fidelity program that is one of the main drivers of the company’s activity, offering its members essential priority. Club Fnac has been a pioneer in Spain since it started business in 1993, and it currently has more than 650,000 members. This program aims to offer the best prices and shopping experiences available. Among its advantages are permanent discounts on all purchases; two years of free 24-hour shipments; invitations to premieres; reserved seats at our Forums; special discounts; reduced prices on film platforms and music on demand via Rakuten and Deezer, respectively; and exclusive content from Kobo by Fnac or discounts on our Micro Clinic service.
“We work to strengthen our unique personality, everything that defines us as a brand: innovation, shopping experience and expert advice”
Of course we are interested in winning new customers, but we also put a lot of effort into adapting to our current consumers’ needs and tastes. They have been loyal to us for 25 years. And through all this, we work to strengthen our unique personality, everything that defines us as a brand: innovation, shopping experience and expert advice.