Jul 15, 2020 5:26:54 PM

Our Marketing Expert Reveals His Formula For Building An Award-Winning Team

Employee Engagement, Employee Rewards, My Entertainer Story, Blog Posts, Top Tips, the entertainer business, meet the team
An interview with Mike Rich
International Marketing Director, the ENTERTAINER


Experiences and lifestyle purchases are extremely sentiments linked, how has the ENTERTAINER adapted in the current situation?

It's about successfully managing change, and our culture begins with one fundamental belief; experience is everything. Through this foundation, we've developed a set of robust updates to make lives more affordable during times of crisis, both to end users and businesses.

Over the past week, we've opened our 25% off delivery offers to non-member across the UAE, and waived delivery commissions for our valuable merchant partners. Our brilliant teams are working hard to ensure all strategies meet the needs of our current climate.


What role does data play in decision making at the ENTERTAINER?

As I look back on my experience managing brands of all shapes and sizes, my most significant learning is that the predictor of a company's success is its ability to innovate its company culture.

Our executive team consistently models a data-based decision-making culture. When employees see high-level data-based decisions, they naturally mirror it in their role. We also put our users at the forefront of strategies, which gives us a knowledge base of behavioural spending, personalization and relevancy.

As data-based decisions are at the forefront of our culture, we've built an impressive data and insights team in South Africa that serves the entire business - making it one of our most significant people investments to date!


Where is the fine line between privacy and deep customer understanding?

By viewing data privacy as a competitive differentiator rather than a compliance activity, we protect and treat our customers' data like it's our own. We comply with all GDPR regulations, and ISO 27000 compliant. In essence, we take privacy very seriously at the ENTERTAINER and we will never share any data, ever!

We refrain from asking for too much data up-front and emphasize on building a personalized experience by incrementally collecting data and using our analytics to enhance it.

With the rich information collected from a digital footprint and behavioural redemptions, we can understand customers at both a demographic and individual level and provide relevant communications and offers.

We also use our technology to understand behaviours and ensure the right teams are in place to address evolving needs. For example, in the past, we noted a large number of prospects opening the app and closing it in certain areas where offers were sparse. Based on this data, we then placed a substantial sales focus on that area to sign up more merchants!


Social, Influencer or Content Marketing, what has worked for you & why?

We combine influencer marketing with content and social media marketing to maximize our effectiveness and ROI.

Historically, social media marketing has always been at the heart of our campaigns – it's aligned with our brand and is our voice to the world - we can target the right people at the right time with the right content.


What has been the best technology investment that you made?

For us, it's about targeted interactions across multichannel environments, and our CRM tool plays a huge part in the success of this.

In terms of CRM, I work closely with our CIO to drive growth and improve accountability. Its all about that precious 'micro-moment' – delivering the right message at the right time in the right place; the moment of truth. And our data shows that this comms based behaviour makes a huge difference in conversion and actions.


What was the biggest mistake, and what did you learn from it?

Let's face it; we all fail sometimes! But, requiring our people to 'fail fast' is an important attribute of our culture. At the ENTERTAINER, our 'fail-fast' approach means we will try something, receive fast feedback, and rapidly inspect and adapt it for success.

So, as paradoxical as it may seem, failing fast actually enables us to succeed sooner! I genuinely believe that's one of the reasons why we are so good at what we do.


Three shifts that will disrupt your business and what are you doing about it?

The first would be delivery, at the moment it is king.

Over the past 12 months, our data has shown significant upwards trends in delivery, with the current situation only solidifying it. In response to this data, we've launched a delivery platform that features both 25% and 2-for-1 discounts.

The second shift would be Personalization and AI automation

By 2025, 80% of marketers who have invested in personalization will abandon their efforts due to lack of ROI and customer data management. Even now, in 2020, cluttered inboxes and phone notifications lead us to ignore even the most carefully personalized communications.

Third-party data isn't enough anymore. Creating experiences that power loyalty and retention means understanding and responding to the wants and needs of our customers. For us, there's no better data than first-party data which we use to leverage each interaction with our product.

Our strategy is rooted in the intelligence found within our first-party data which we use to invest in technology upgrades that create unique experiences. We aim to build customer segments of just one where we can predict and create a profile based entirely on individual behaviours.

The third shift is integrated bookings and payments

A huge focus for us in 2020 is integrating all merchants for bookings and payments through the app.

We know customers want to be able to book, reserve and pay whenever it's convenient for them. So we're focusing on creating an experience where they can quickly see appointment/table/attraction availability in real-time, book and pay directly through the app with the discounts automatically applied.


Like I said – this is an economy of experience and we want our members to have the best experience ever!


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