October’s guide to the most interesting things happening in the world of advocacy marketing

The problems with 5-star rating systems and how to fix them

Does your business rely on a 5-star rating system for feedback? New research suggests you might want to rethink this approach. The truth is that 5-star systems are good at weeding out very low-quality businesses or products, but they make it hard to separate the good from the great. Why? Well, the 5-star system has built-in selection biases. Without incentives to rate businesses or products, most customers who leave feedback have either had a very good experience or a very bad one. Also, some businesses inflate their ratings system, meaning that 4.8-star average score might not be as exceptional as you think. The solution? Show customers an average rating for products or suppliers in that sector. Or, adjust user ratings based on differences in their reviewing behaviour. Follow the few easy tips laid out here to make your rating system more meaningful.

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Carrefour: winner is served

Carrefour is on a mission. Within the next three years, the world’s second largest retail group wants to change the way it does business: rationalising its campuses, exploring new partnerships and reducing costs. It wants to change the way we eat: au revoir to planet-killing crap; bonjour to healthy, sustainable nourishment. And it wants to change the way we shop – a process that’s already underway in the group’s homeland, France, with the integration of all its services under one digital roof: Carrefour.fr.

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first direct takes its referral programme to the next level with Buyapowa

first direct

It’s hard to believe that 2019 marks the 30th anniversary of HSBC’s first direct hitting the scene. But, three decades before the challenger banks, fintech disruptors and open-banking of today’s landscape, there it was – changing everything with 24/7/365 always-open phone banking. And first direct has continued to innovate ever since, leading the way with online banking, SMS banking, mobile banking and even next-gen wizzbangery such as voice recognition to help verify customers’ identities.

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Our irregular guide to the most interesting things happening in the world of advocacy marketing

Employee perks at a 12-year low

The total number of people receiving taxable job perks from their employer fell 600,000 to 3.6 million in the last year, the lowest point since 2007. The reason? Corporations are cutting costs as a response to the threat of economic uncertainty from the 2008 crisis and, more recently, Brexit. Confusion around which of these perks are tax-exempt has also likely pushed a lot of small businesses to leave employee perks in the past. When done right, employee perks can slow turnover and encourage staff performance. However, it looks like many businesses are viewing the cost and hassle as too high to justify the gains.
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