Mobile is the area where brands can make significant inroads toward enhanced customer engagement and customer loyalty, according to Lee Moreau, director, loyalty marketing and captains club, Celebrity Cruises.
“I think mobile is THE area where businesses can focus and should focus to garner attention to their products and services,” Moreau told Loyalty360. “We all live on our phones and can’t live without them, and these devices are usually the ‘first look’ or first stop for a business. Perhaps I’m reading an email from a company and I read it and want to learn more, I may or may not go to it right then and there on my mobile device, but if it’s easy, I’m more likely to. In either scenario, this device is the gateway to us. These touch points are the first impression. That first impression is everything!”
Celebrity Cruises recently launched a new website with new mobile functionality.
“Although we don’t have a loyalty app yet, we do hope to have one integrated into a brand app over the next 12-18 months,” Moreau explained.
Celebrity Cruises earned a Platinum Award (CX & Engagement) at the Loyalty360 Awards held last month at the 10th annual Loyalty Expo.
Moreau said the company provides Modern Luxury cruise vacations to almost 1 million guests annually. Celebrity Cruises is the premium cruise line to its sister brand, Royal Caribbean.
Moreau said the company’s Captain’s Club loyalty program has 3.5 million members. But, given the long periods of time between return trips for customers, the challenge is real and apparent. As a result, the phrase ‘customer journey’ carries special meaning to Celebrity Cruises.
“For us, ‘Customer Journey’ is very different than for others in retail,” Moreau explained. “Our customers will often decide on their purchase eight to 2 months in advance of actually ‘getting what they paid for’ and stepping onboard our ship. So for us, the journey begins in the pre-purchase, ‘consideration’ phase, and then once booked, it’s critical that we engage with them in a way that is meaningful and relevant to them. It might be something as simple as an email that talks about ‘Things to Know Before You Go’ or an email to guide them through all of the things they can do and sign up for ahead of time like Shore Excursions in their ports of call. That journey continues beyond their cruise and into a ‘Thank you for Sailing with us’ message, and then personalizing all future emails/contacts and promotions with their details.”
For Moreau, the best part of her job is being out on the ships with guests, face to face, and listening to their feedback.
“I tell them that ‘good, bad, or otherwise, I want to hear it,’’’ she said. “Our motto is: ‘You ask, we listen.’ In business and in life, communication is key! Two-way communication that is!!! I have an ‘open-ear’ policy and want to hear what they have to say. Fortunately, most of the feedback is positive or constructive. The best is being able to take their suggestions and turn them into reality. Like a benefit tweak. As for how I am listening, that has definitely changed over the past 18-24 months with the rise of social media. Aside from the more traditional methods of email, phone, and white mail, I now have my own Twitter (for work), and we have a Social Media team that is constantly monitoring all of our sites for any comments or feedback. When they see something about loyalty, they bring that to my attention immediately, and we respond immediately. The more communication the better, but a key to the success is to be able to monitor and manage all of the channels and to ensure a timely response to our guests!”