Posted by on Feb 23, 2015 in Fullsix London Blog, Opinion | No Comments

Dean Lanzman, Head of Data and Loyalty talks ‘relevancy’ and why he’s flogging off his son’s Optimus Prime


Let me start by winding the clock back a few months to last Christmas.  What was once a pleasant and self indulgent experience, pre arrival of our son, has now become an all encompassing and somewhat painfully stressful period.

On the lead up to last Christmas, for our son, Leon, it was all about the world of Transformers. There was nothing else that could come close to his new love. He even helpfully mentioned to me “Daddy, you do know they’re available in all leading toy retailers”. As obliging (weak) parents we naturally went on to purchase a couple of items from the season’s range.

Wrapping up his presents, along with a bunch of reasonably considered, but considerably less expensive nick nacks, I was picturing the scene of Leon being blown away by our thoughtful generosity, that was Optimus Prime (or OP if you’re in the know).

And then on Christmas morning, post breakfast, Santa pays a visit and low and behold, Leon goes straight for the largest of all presents, Optimus Prime.

I’m there, iPhone at the ready to capture his overwhelming reaction of amazement and expressions of gratitude. And then, without a moment’s hesitation he blissfully goes on to the next toy.

“Not to worry”, I told myself, “Once he opens up all the other stuff, he’ll come back to OP”.  Cut to February 4th, not withstanding me putting OP to the top of his toy box, he forcefully places it to the side, in favour of one of those ‘nick nacks’ we got him.

Where did we go wrong?  He wanted the damn thing. He asked for it. He told us where to get it. We got it.  And still, nothing.

So of course I tried to figure it out.  I thought to myself how it’s often commented that the purity of a child’s mind provides marketers with the behavioural insights to unlock new ways of thinking.

The truth is that as humans we are neurologically wired to desire the unexpected and unachievable. It keeps us always wanting more.

As marketers in a new world of big data, we live in a place where anything is possible.  We talk of the likes of CRM, Omni-Channel marketing and behavioural science.  And we’re all trying to prove our worth by demonstrating how we can be even smarter by being even more RELEVANT to our customers.

We’re all continually trying to demonstrate how we can personalise our messaging to give our customer exactly what they want, when they want it and how they want it.

And yet, even when we do this, we’re never achieving 100% loyalty.  Leon clearly wasn’t impressed with that flippin’ Optimus Prime.

My belief is that the answer to this lies in the unexpected.  And for the sake of expanding the never-ending marketing glossary, I’m calling it

Unexpected Relevancy’.

The insight, simply put is driven by the fundamental human desire for the unexpected, over the naturally expected.

Unequivocal loyalty will always be the culminating result of having a far more complex and contextual understanding of each customer.  We should listen and understand their overt behaviours.  But importantly we should overlay this with broader lifestyle data.  To better understand customer motivations. To better understand how they engage others. To better understand their emotional drivers.  And the list goes on.

The ambitious output of all this is that we can have a deep and loyal relationship with our customer and that we continually provide them with inspiration.  Not only with more of what they already know and want, but also with the unexpected that will keep them engaged, now and forever.

This Unexpected Relevancy is the strategic output of knowing what the customer would genuinely appreciate, albeit they may not necessarily be aware of it.  It’s of value to them, but not necessarily of value in itself. It could be  tangible or intangible. And it’s something that would certainly take them on a journey and earn their emotional loyalty.

Last night, for about the 6th night in the row, Leon took to bed that nick nack, his beloved piece of ribbon that was part of an arts & crafts pack he got for Christmas.  Now, had he have set his sights on this and nagged us to buy it, just like he did that OP, would he really love it like he does today?

At FullSIX UK, using our proprietary, but importantly open-box methodologies, we overlay contextual data on-top of a more traditional RFM model in order to understand  and act upon individual customer behaviour.  This broader insight has helped our clients to create unquestionable value, both through improved customer loyalty and business growth.  We call it 4D and if you’re interested to learn more, then I’d love to talk more about it…

By the way, if you’re in the market for an unboxed, but hardly used Optimus Prime and are quick to react, then you’re welcome to join the auction at ebay. 

Dean Lanzman