How Forty Winks is finding its omnichannel feet

Retailer's digital and ecommerce marketing leader shares the data-led journey it's on to connect the dots between bricks-and-mortar and digital engagement

Since its inception almost 40 years ago, national franchised bedding retailer, Forty Winks, has prided itself on providing exceptional in-store customer service.

But as many bricks-and-mortar retailers discovered during the pandemic, when viewed at a national level, each one of those stores became a silo of customer data, impending Forty Winks’ ability to deliver an omnichannel experience of the same level of quality. According to Forty Winks senior digital and ecommerce marketing manager, Kira Poole, getting customer data out of siloes quickly became a critical requirement.

“We recognised we needed to change and evolve from being that traditional bricks-and mortar-retailer to become more omnichannel focused,” Poole tells CMO. “What the pandemic did was made us realise that we needed to move at a much faster pace.

“Before the pandemic, we knew that a million people were walking into our stores every year. And we also understood and recognised we had no real way of building a long-standing relationship when they walked out the door. It was the biggest challenge for us, but it was also the biggest opportunity.”

Poole says this challenge was made greater by the long purchase lifecycle of its products, which can stretch out over seven years or more. This makes it difficult for store managers to personally retain knowledge of their customers. However, within this lifecycle there are other events that can trigger engagement with customers, such as the arrival of children.

“We wanted to be more relevant to consumers and communicate to them at the right time with the right message,” Poole says. “We’ve never been able to do that before. We have an amazing customer experience in store, and exceptional customer service, and we want to be able to translate that across all channels. We needed a tool to be able to do that.”

Finding the gaps

A technology review led Poole and her team to omnichannel marketing platform, Emarsys. She says the process of implementing Emarsys was instructive for not only helping Forty Winks bring together its data, but also for uncovering what was missing.

“A lot of the work on the implementation side was actually on our end, making sure we could get those data points and implement them into our own existing systems before we could actually integrate Emarsys,” Poole says.

Implementation commenced in April 2021 and ended in October. Poole says that while Forty Winks is still at the beginning of its journey with the new tool, the company has already unlocked several new customer journey initiatives, and is using customer data and insights to personalise communications.

“In the next six to 12 months we are going to unlock more and more of this into our marketing strategy,” Poole says. “We have seen direct impact from a revenue point of view in the activity that we have been able to unlock, but we are really at the beginning stage.”

One of the benefits Emarsys has delivered is the ability for Forty Winks’ franchisees to engage in local area marketing, using customer data paired with localised content. Poole says franchisees will be able to input their own data into the platform to further personalise communications for their customers.

“These are family run businesses, not big corporations,” Poole says. “We do have great stories behind the brand, and the people who run these businesses really care about their customers.”

This includes stories of store owners helping community members in response to the recent floods in eastern Australia.

“There are stories that can be told there at a local level that we can share, that you can’t do without having that localised data,” Poole says. “Now we can understand who our customers are, be more relevant to them, communicate and send more personalised content to them, and build their attention. There is a lot that we will be able to unlock in the future that I am really, really excited about.”

Don’t miss out on the wealth of insight and content provided by CMO A/NZ and sign up to our weekly CMO Digest newsletters and information services here.  

You can also follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, follow our regular updates via CMO Australia's Linkedin company page   

 

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments
cmo-xs-promo

Latest Videos

More Videos

Nice blog!Blog is really informative , valuable.keep updating us with such amazing blogs.influencer agency in Melbourne

Rajat Kumar

Why flipping Status Quo Bias is the key to B2B marketing success

Read more

good this information are very helpful for millions of peoples customer loyalty Consultant is an important part of every business.

Tom Devid

Report: 4 ways to generate customer loyalty

Read more

Great post, thanks for sharing such a informative content.

CodeWare Limited

APAC software company brings on first VP of growth

Read more

This article highlights Gartner’s latest digital experience platforms report and how they are influencing content operations ecosystems. ...

vikram Roy

Gartner 2022 Digital Experience Platforms reveals leading vendor players

Read more

What about this one FormDesigner.pro? I think it's a great platform providing a lot of options, you can collect different data and work w...

Salvador Lopez

Gartner highlights four content marketing platform players as leaders

Read more

Blog Posts

​Why we need to look at the whole brand puzzle, not just play with the pieces

Creating meaningful brands should be a holistic and considered process. However, all too frequently it’s one that is disparate and reactive, where one objective is prioritized at the expense of all others. So, what are the key pieces to the ‘good’ brand puzzle?

Marketing overseas? 4 ways to make your message stick

Companies encounter a variety of challenges when it comes to marketing overseas. Marketing departments often don’t know much about the business and cultural context of the international audiences they are trying to reach. Sometimes they are also unsure about what kind of marketing they should be doing.

Cynthia Dearin

Author, business strategist, advisor

From unconscious to reflective: What level of data user are you?

Using data is a hot topic right now. Leaders are realising data can no longer just be the responsibility of dedicated analysts or staff with ‘data’ in their title or role description.

Dr Selena Fisk

Data expert, author

Sign in