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Brand and Customer Experience

Brands are under pressure to develop emotional connections and relationships with consumers and business decision makers.

Success relies on delivering experiences that resonate with our clients’ target audience(s), across every experience point that consumers have with a brand, products or services.

We help our clients enhance their brand and customer relationships by analyzing and optimizing the emotional imprint – the customer experiences that drive immediate purchase decisions, as well as long-term connections. And we provide this at local, regional, or global level.

Our brand and customer experience (BaCE for short) research addresses the many touchpoints across the customer journey, creating lasting emotional connections.

Success Stories
  • Shaping consumer segmentation for the digital age

    Shaping consumer segmentation for the digital age


    We partnered with Orange to help drive its strong customer experience strategy by enhancing its consumer segmentation model for the digital age.

    The client

    Orange is one of the largest operators of mobile and internet services in Europe and Africa and a global leader in corporate telecommunication services.


    Richard Clarkson, Head of Segmentation Research, Orange: “Our vision of Orange is to provide the best customer experience and connecting customers to what's essential in their lives. Our customer segmentation was simply too old; it was five years old. It needed a change. It needed to be updated, particularly in the light of what's happened over the last five years with smartphones and the changing competitive environment with over-the-top providers and also online low-cost providers. We asked GfK to help because of their industry understanding of technology, but also their expertise in segmentation and their understanding of advanced analytics and modelling.”


    Richard Clarkson: “Our segmentation brief to GfK had some challenging parameters. Firstly, we needed a model that would work across our marketing activities and loyalty activities with customers, but at the same time helping inform our innovation department, our technocenter, on what customers might need in the next two to three years’ time. Another key parameter was that we needed a model that would work on a country level in places like Romania and Poland, which are very different to Spain and France. We wanted to try to keep consistent with one model so we had one voice and one segmentation that everyone within the group could be talking about.”


    Raniv Dale, Head of UK Technology, GfK: “One of the really delightful aspects of the segmentation was how successfully it was embraced by the local markets. A key part of that was having our GfK expertise on the ground to support the delivery and make sure it was meaningful for the local businesses.” Richard Clarkson: “Working with GfK has helped us embed the segmentation within the business, both at the group level, but also at a country level. And now we're working with GfK to develop another segmentation for our EMEA region.”

    Click here to download the success story

  • Efficiency and measurability in out-of-home advertising

    Efficiency and measurability in out-of-home advertising


    We use mobile data to bring reliable standards for evaluating the performance of advertising to a struggling segment of the media landscape.

    China Unicom, the second largest Chinese wireless operator.


    The out-of-home advertising (OOH) industry lacks the reliable performance metrics that today’s media planners and marketers seek before committing money to a placement. OOH companies do not have reliable data and analytics tools to demonstrate the reach, frequency and return on investment their channel can offer. In most cases, they still rely on manual data collection, which is expensive, time-consuming and sometimes inaccurate.


    We have created a win-win partnership with China Unicom to leverage its authorized big data collected from its subscribers to help OOH companies and their clients track performance of outdoor advertising in Shanghai.

    We analyze this aggregated, anonymized data and deliver the insights in a format OOH providers can use to price, measure and optimize performance in a scientific way.


    At last, the OOH industry has a viable alternative to the traditional method of measuring OOH reach and performance. Our approach provides reliable reach and frequency numbers that enable OOH providers to effectively calculate their audience ratings and compare them to television and digital advertising.

    By delivering an industry-standard set of key performance indicators, we can help revitalize the OOH industry. The success of this venture also illustrates the potential for other sectors to profit from our solutions that turn their big data into smart and valuable information.

    Click here to download the success story.

  • Evolving a luxury car brand in Europe

    Evolving a luxury car brand in Europe


    GfK rolled out a brand tracking program for an auto manufacturer that wanted to improve brand relationships with consumers.

    The client is a manufacturer of luxury vehicles.


    This carmaker has been struggling to command brand presence in the media and in consumers’ minds in the largest European markets for premium motor cars.


    We implemented a brand tracking program in Spain, Germany, France, Italy and the UK for this client. Our purchase funnel model gave it rich insight into the car buyer’s decision-making process. Applying our ConX methodology, we evaluated the vehicle manufacturer’s customer experience at various touchpoints. This painted a picture of how negative, positive and memorable these brand experiences were from the consumer’s perspective. The GfK Brand Vivo methodology underpinned our analysis. It uses human relationships as metaphors for the connection between brands and consumers.


    Our solution enabled our client to track brand performance in its most important markets over a year. We found that its investments in marketing yielded an improvement in short-term funnel performance. However, it was not yet succeeding in strengthening longer-term relationships with consumers. We recommended that the client evolve its marque in the following ways:

    • Increase branding in all marketing activities
    • Focus on shifting the technocratic tone of its communications to a more emotional one.

    Click here to download the success story.

  • Improving the customer experience in high-end fashion

    Improving the customer experience in high-end fashion


    We helped a retailer assess adoption of anew service model in the luxury clothing market.

    One of the world’sleading fashion retailers.


    Our client had just introduced a new, technology-based service model and needed to
    understand customers’ utilization of the platform and its impact. Senior leaders at the
    company believed that stores were underusing the new option, which was rolled out brandwide.
    Our client also wanted to find out more about how stores were implementing the new
    approach as well as how it was affecting the shopper experience.


    We conducted around 200 mystery shopping exercises in the retailer's top 100 stores. This
    helped us understand how stores applied the model and utilized the methodology.
    Concurrently, we used the company’s existing customer experience tracking program to
    quantify the new model’s impact on customer experience as well as application across the
    brand. We collected data from 12,000 consumer surveys.


    We found that utilization of the model was just below 50%, which is higher than the client
    expected. Our research revealed it was highly successful where it was implemented and
    that it had a positive effect on the customer experience. The use of the new model
    increased performance by up to 18 points across key metrics such as overall satisfaction
    and likelihood to recommend.
    Our client communicated the findings to its stores, emphasizing the model’s value and
    reminding them to use it from the beginning of the selection process through to pricing

    Click here to download the success story.

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