True Shopping Stepping Up the Game with Data Enrichment - Seeing Customers as a Single Individual
Customers today have more confidence in TV Shopping and Home Shopping businesses after they have bought more and more products from online channels. Inevitably, the consumers’ lifestyles have changed and digital industry is growing at a rapid pace. As customers realize that they can buy products online safely, they can also do the same on TV. Seeing the product description, demonstration, satisfaction guarantee and return policy, they are confident enough to buy the products.
Moreover, there is a change of direction in advertising budget on media platforms among many manufacturers. International companies in particular have been advised to cut budget on TV ads by 30-40% and turn to online media instead. Previously, the time slots for advertisements on TV channels used to be fully booked are now empty. Originally, there were only 6 digital TV channels, but now there are now 21 channels. This means there are more time slots for TV Shopping and Home Shopping ads. Therefore, it’s no surprise that this has become another direction for advertising and time slot occupation among digital TV channels: producing programs to introduce products from TV shopping and home shopping industries. And more of these programs are on the way and still going strong. With all these factors in mind, we can forecast that the TV shopping and home shopping market might expand by 15%, worth 13.5 billion baht - an increase from last year’s market value of 11 billion baht.
This challenge prompts True Shopping, founded in 2011 and operated by True GS (a joint venture among True, The Mall, CP and GS Shop from South Korea), to turn to a new strategy called Data Enrichment. This particular technique can match data that are related to consumer behaviors in details. Right now, there are two types of True Shopping programs on air. The first type is on the True Shopping channel itself and the other is on almost 10 digital TV channels. The products available on True Shopping are basically consumer goods. What makes True Shopping special? The answer is it can offer better prices. To elaborate further, if customers want to buy products via an offline channel, they actually have to travel to the shop to get them. The customer may buy the products at normal prices or with just small discounts, but True Shopping can offer the same product with more values as it has direct contacts with manufacturers and will deliver to the customer. This is the business concept of True Shopping.
True Shopping offers service around the clock. It has a 24 hour call center for customers who are interested in buying certain products or want to ask for more information before buying at any time of the day. Most importantly, True Shopping is a non-store retailer which means it has no shopfronts and provides service for customers without having to leave the house at all. Customers can call to order, change or cancel the products at the comfort of their homes. Plus, they don’t have to go anywhere to get the orders because everything will be delivered to their doorsteps, which is highly convenient.
What we did
Turning crisis into opportunities
Because the consumer behaviors have changed and the digital industry has substantially grown over the years, the competition in the market has also intensified. Luckily, True Shopping is one of the leaders in the TV Shopping market so it has a solid customer database. True Shopping has collaborated with True Analytics to come up with strategies and launch campaigns that match target customers better. With the help from Data Enrichment and Data Matching, the company now has the useful data that is more related to consumer behaviors such as buying behaviors and product interests. In the end, this data shows insights that contribute to better precision of behavioral data. When the business has precise behavioral data, there is a higher chance of conducting marketing activities or producing contents that match the target customers. Consequently, they can be used to communicate with the target groups via various platforms or plugged-in to find look-alikes in various channels as well. The process of Data Enrichment like this is analyzing buying behaviors and patterns from the data. If an individual buys a product in this group, then moves on to buy another one in that group, what is the product that this person will likely buy next? These types of data will be transferred to the telesales team or operators so that they can call target customers to suggest products that match their interests. It turns out that the customers analyzed by True Analytics and sent to True Shopping have a higher response rate than normal customers. Normally, out of 100 customers that the operators call, only 50 pick up the phone and engage in conversations. But after True Analytics analyze the entire database and send the information to the operators to call 100 customers just like the first time, customer response increases to about 60. And later on, these 60 customers become actual buyers. This promising conversion rate is what makes True Shopping able to expand the business.
Knowing your customers to reach the target group better
In the future, True Shopping is planning to use Big Data like this to conduct recommendations and predictions for e-commerce business of True Shopping as well. For example, Big Data can provide basic credit card information of customers for retailers to add commonly used payment methods on their platform. Furthermore, Big Data also provides buying patterns of customers. After analyzing these patterns, True Analytics can predict the product interest of certain individuals based on their 10 past product interests. Later, this information will be transferred to retailers for sending product offers that match the interests of certain individuals. However, the limitation of TV Shopping business is that customers have to order first in order for the company to obtain the data. But this is a different case with e-commerce business. From the day the customer visit the website or use the application, the company can see their journey and basic information from their profiles such as where they are from, their ages, genders and other information. Even though the customer have not bought anything from the company, it can send recommendations back to the customers after they have left the website. All of these use Big Data in the analysis.
Peera Lucksanapirak, Chief Commercial Officer of True GS Company Limited, said, “As for Big Data, I think it’s highly important for the retail business. This is because we deal with a lot of customers in the database. Analyzing, reaching and understanding all customers to categorize them into groups, classify their behaviors and making recommendations are very important for the retail business. Of course, we can use our employees or staff for conducting analysis, but it would take years to analyze customer database as individuals like this. Now, with the help from Big Data and Machine Learning, the system continues to learn until it can understand and analyze the data better than humans. It used only 20-30 minutes to conduct the analysis, but it still needs some adjustments. I feel that it helps save a lot of time which enables our team to use the knowledge and ability elsewhere and do other jobs that add even more value to our business. That’s why I think Big Data is such an important part in our business.”