Don’t Get Stuck in the 1990s: Design a Better Online Video Store (Part 1 of 2)
Back in the “dark ages” of the 1970s, television had a handful of channels; new movie releases had to be seen in a theater, and only at the end of the decade did VHS and Betamax battle it out to bring more home viewing and time-shifting options. Today’s home entertainment consumer has lots and lots of choices. Every year there are new generations of viewers, and selling to these tech native shoppers means focusing on what brings value to them, and consequently revenue, to your business.
In this two-part blog series, you’ll learn five ways of making these consumers favorite your business while lowering your customer acquisition costs and increasing your profits.
In home entertainment, there’s a lot of competition for eyeballs and wallets. Differentiating and focusing on customer needs is vital to help your business thrive right now. “Say you’re the head of digital distribution or a pure play digital retailer. Why would a customer come to you versus Fandango, their cable box, Amazon, iTunes or Redbox?,” asks Mike Sid, Chief Strategy Officer at Mediamorph. “Consumers have so many choices; it’s about driving differentiation and loyalty.” Here are two steps to help you do just that.
How to Create Differentiation and Loyalty for Your Online Video Store
1. Seek Merchandising Help
Offering a storewide discount, creating a special campaign to match what a studio is doing or having incentives to entice customers based on their purchase history, drives more business. “You definitely need a mechanism for working with the studios and letting them give you help on merchandising,” says Sid. To do this, you need a system that’s going to allow you to set up merchandising rules on your site to schedule things in advance. Today, there is technology which can help with this.
“Some places don’t even have the technology to schedule a price change in the future. They have to sit there, wait for 12:01 AM, make the price change, and two weeks later they sit there, wait for 11:59 PM and push a button. I’ve literally seen people doing that, and it’s crazy.” What’s also crazy is making customers work hard to use your site, which brings us to our next step.
2. Create a Loyalty Program
E-commerce sites have prospered based on a number of things they have done to foster deeper relationships with their customers. Video retailers, on the other hand, haven’t done much to reward their best customers, and for the most part, they’re not all that creative in their incentives to sign up new ones. The first thing all successful e-commerce sites should have is a loyalty program.
The loyalty program gives visitors incentives for providing their contact information. “Many loyalty programs offer discounts for members and the ability to collect points based on purchases,” says Sid. “It can be as simple as rent 10 movies, get one free. Maybe there’s also a social sharing feature where you can let your friends know about what you bought and receive points for referrals or gamification.” In addition to points earned for every dollar spent, special birthday offers, and double points days are successfully used in retail. Members who reach a “high level’ status could be given early or exclusive access to content and events, concierge services, and even points earned on outside purchases. Building this customer program makes customers much more likely to come back and gives you details about them and what their interests are. Additionally, the new generation of consumers are looking for unique experiences, so you need to offer more than “earn and burn”. Today, you need to “surprise and delight.”