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36 At the time, these retailers were able to know each of their customers well. With the birth of the modern supermarkets came the benefits of scale - lower prices, more choice, along with the sacrifice of the customer relationship. The $ 64,000 question is: does being clever about customer data enable retailers to recapture that close customer relationship again? We would argue yes, it does. Because of the scale of retailers today, they need to find new ways of recreating a personal relationship with customers again. Modern technology enables them to do this in an efficient way. One of the most vivid illustrations of how customer data is returning retail to the good old days can be seen with Kroger's commitment to returning lost sets of keys to its customers. The US retailer returns more than 1,000 sets of keys each week, guided by the Kroger Plus card key fobs, which help locate the keys' owners. Kroger issues two key fobs with each Plus card; printed on the back of each fob is the request ' If found, please drop in any mailbox. Postage guaranteed.' There are many different stories of thrilled Kroger customers being reunited with their keys, including the Tennessee fisherman who watched helplessly as his keys sunk into Lake Cumberland. His keys were later snagged by another angler and returned to him via Kroger. Similarly, Tesco Clubcard customers who decide to buy their shopping online for the first time through Tesco. com are helped dramatically by the technology. Everyone knows that the first time you food shop online it can be a nightmare, taking ages to find your favourite products outside the familiar aisles of the local supermarket. Tesco. com can fill an online shopping basket with products based on what the customer has bought during their last four trips to the store. A simple offering that strips hours of hassle and stress from the customer's online shopping experience. This is old- fashioned retailing happening on a mass scale, offering a bespoke experience to valuable customers as well as it possibly can. It's not perfect. It's not the same as the intimate experience a shopper would have in their small, local deli, but it's a modern approach to building customer relationships in today's world. It's showing what personalisation can look like when you're a massive global retailer with millions of shoppers any colour you like as long as it's any colour you like

37 scattered all over the world, rather than a local deli with a few hundred customers who live down your street. Sir Terry Leahy, Chief Executive of Tesco has always said that what's important is Tesco being loyal to customers rather than customers being loyal to Tesco. One leads to another. Intelligent robust analysis of customer data ensures that every decision a customer- friendly organisation makes is driven by listening to its customers, rather than exclusively listening to analysts and shareholders. As Sir Terry Leahy says: " What creates loyalty is how much we understand your life and what we do about it that helps your life." Listening to customers around the globe has told us one irrevocable truth again and again - customers hate junk mail. In the next chapter we'll explain how customer insight is spelling the end of irrelevant marketing. custom experience