September 16, 2020

The Pumpkin Spice Effect

The pumpkin spice latte points to a bigger principle that can be applied to just about every industry to create loyalty and long-term customer relationships.

As the autumn season rolls in, it brings with it a cooler breeze, festive décor, and the now-expected annual “Pumpkin Spice” craze. The extreme popularity of this seasonal treat may cause you to ask “Why do we like pumpkin spice so much?” And you are not alone. In an NBC News article that discusses the popularity of this quintessentially fall beverage, Sensory Neuroscientist Dr. John McGann says that it’s all about connection. “Smell anatomically has a more direct connection to classical memory regions in the brain.” In other words, the taste and smell of pumpkin spice means more to us than the beverage itself. It connects us to nostalgic feelings of home, holidays, and happiness. That is a lot of cognitive work for one hot beverage to achieve!

The pumpkin spice latte points to a bigger principle that can be applied to just about every industry. In the nearly two decades since Starbucks first released this seasonal treat, it has become an identifier that many coffee drinkers want to align with because they see in it as a representation of an important part of themselves. A daily pumpkin spice latte may now be accompanied by a pumpkin spice mug, pumpkin spice tee shirt, even a pumpkin spice bumper sticker! This fierce sense of identity all started with an interesting principle…customization.

Gone are the days when a coffee shop sells just… well… coffee. Vanilla Latte. Caramel Cloud Macchiato. Caffe Mocha. The wide array of choices are all customizations of the central product of coffee. Sure, you can still get a good ole plain cup of joe, but with just a little customization – some syrup, some sugar, some milk – you can create a tailored experience for you that builds loyalty.

Much like coffee, a customized banking experience can go a long way to creating a long-term relationship with your account holders. Slight variations to the traditional financial services can feel like so much more to the individual customer. You can get a checking account, or you can get a senior checking account, or a checkless checking account, or a student checking account. All these slight variations to a traditional account feel like a more personal product that is more closely aligned with one’s identity. Well, guess what, that’s because they ARE.

And loyalty is rewarding. By adding some banking “flavors” to your mix, you can create relationships that go far beyond a financial transaction to garner the kind of long-term customer connections that every industry envies. From seasonal promotions to targeted campaigns, relevant data-driven marketing offers a tailored user experience as specific to the needs of the individual as their favorite cup of joe.

DeepTarget enables financial institutions to plan and design data-powered campaigns one time and use them to engage their account holders in unique digital experiences across all digital app spaces. The COVID-19 pandemic has not slowed the need for digital engagement with customers. In June 2020, the DeepTarget Digital Experience Platform served up more than 260 million impressions to 1.93 million digital banking customers resulting in over 12,100 new deposits, loans, and card acquisitions and these statistics show a steady increase month-over-month, increasing customer engagement, loyalty and revenue.

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