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Ben & Jerry’s stores integrate social, mobile to drive customer loyalty

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November 19, 2012

Ben & Jerry's is leveraging social media data for mobile offers

Ben & Jerry’s retail locations in Oregon are integrating social media with mobile marketing to deliver targeted offers and behavior-based promotions to customers.

The strategy, which Ben & Jerry’s began piloting this summer, enables it to input from both social and mobile platforms and, based on this data, create offers and promotions that are delivered on both platforms. The strategy enables Ben & Jerry’s to connect with customers over their preferred channel while providing an affordable way to acquire new customers. 

“Social and mobile together provides to the marketer more insights about customers’ interests,” said Daniel Dreymann, CEO of Mowingo, Palo Alto, CA.In the case of Ben & Jerry’s, it could be which flavors they like, if they prefer smoothies over ice cream.

“The more input you can get for the targeting decision, the better,” he said. “Customers who like only a certain product on Facebook can get push notifications from Mowingo for that product.

“For customers who love the brand, this shows that the brand is being specific to their needs and their channel of preference.”

The mobile and social media solution being used by Ben & Jerry’s integrates Mowingo’s mobile CRM platform with Social Candy’s Facebook promotional management tools.

Mobile social synergy
The program consists of targeted offers, behavior-based promotions with sharing, commenting and “Liking” features as well as analytical tools.

The integration with Social Candy enables Ben & Jerry’s to have a customer profile for customers who follow the company via Facebook and, when someone likes a specific post, the merchant can push an offer based on what they like to the Mowingo app.

Mowingo is an app that consumers download onto their smartphone enabling merchants to push out offers.

Ben & Jerry’s can also see which offers are being redeemed in the mobile app and, based on this information, decide what its next campaign on Facebook should be.

Prioritization is key
The strategy was piloted at Ben & Jerry’s locations in Oregon using the Mowingo app. Social Candy and Mowingo are now making the solution more broadly available to enable retailers, restaurateurs and service providers engage their customers synergistically in multiple channels.

While Ben & Jerry’s deployed the strategy using Mowingo’s app, merchants can also chose to offer a similar strategy through their own branded app.

“It is still very early in the game and social media and mobile are just emerging now,” Mr. Dreymann said. “There is still the need to educate marketers about the capabilities.

“One of the opportunities can also be a problem because there are so many things you can do with the tools, it is really about prioritizing what you should be doing,” he said.

“On days when we send out a push notification about a new deal, we see a spike in redemption and usage at that store. But, if you overdo it, you run the risk of people getting annoyed and removing the app.”

Final Take
Chantal Tode is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York

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