On November 18, 2020 I was interviewed by Which-50 for the below article “Experience Breeds Loyalty, says Volkswagen Australia CMO”.
A copy of the article is below and you can read the original article here.
In the article I explore how as the Chief Customer and Marketing Officer at Volkswagen Group Australia I led the introduction of a customer focused eCommerce solution enabling over $36 million in sales in under 9 months.
Read the full article below.
The product may make the initial sale but experiences creates brand loyalty. That’s the view of Volkswagen Australia’s Chief Customer and Marketing Officer Jason Bradshaw, who has spent the last half decade developing a data driven customer experience culture and strategy at the automotive manufacturer.
This year Volkswagen Australia began selling vehicles online for the first time in Australia, extended its service plans to older vehicles and made them available online, and launched the “world’s smallest dealership” – an augmented reality tool for consumers to view vehicles in their own driveways.
The changes are the culmination of a multiyear strategy to use data from both employees and consumers to inform workplace, product and service experiences. Bradshaw argues it’s working.
Since April, Australian consumers have purchased over 460 new Volkswagen cars online and more than 800 prepaid service plans, generating over $36 million in revenue at a time when consumers are rightly cautious about large buys.
“I think experience really cements loyalty,” Bradshaw told Which-50.
“That product experience in a physical goods world like [Volkswagen] is important. It has to be dependable, it has to be the expected experience. But the true loyalty to the brand comes from those touch points, those interruptions in the ownership cycle – whether desired interruptions or otherwise.”
Those experiences reinforce the consumer’s brand decision and encourage future business, Bradshaw says.
For an auto manufacturer, chief among the interruptions to the ownership cycle is the purchase of a vehicle, where a frictionless experience is critical. Volkswagen has established customer and employee standards for its network of dealers around the country. The ones that exceed the experience standards are making double the profit on average, according to Bradshaw.
But there are also opportunities to cement loyalty later in the ownership cycle, Bradshaw tells Which-50.
“Every time a customer gets their vehicle serviced, then is that reinforcing that they’re valued? That this is the right choice for them? Is this the experience that they believe delivers value to their life?
“And so, for me, that experience is what sells the second, the third, the fourth, the fifth vehicle.”
Volkswagen Australia undertook research to understand the value buyers place on service packaging, using the feedback to overhaul its own “cookie cutter” offering into one “100 per based on” buyer customer feedback.