Acxiom CRM helps Heathrow Airport control the customer journey

Heathrow now reacts to customer events in real time, then personalises one-to-one communications for passengers.

The client:

Heathrow Airport is a major UK international airport and is the busiest airport in Europe by passenger traffic. It is the third busiest airport in the world by international passenger traffic – surpassed by Dubai International in 2014 and Hong Kong International in 2016. In 2016, it handled a record 75.7 million passengers, a 1% increase from 2015.

The brief:

With 206,600 daily visitors, Heathrow wanted to improve customer satisfaction, creating a rewards membership and revenue growth for Heathrow and its retailers. The goal was to create a single view of customer that drives a better customer experience, grows Rewards membership and in turn revenue for all Heathrow business units, including Heathrow Express, Official Heathrow Parking, Heathrow Boutique and all Heathrow’s wide ranging retail concessionaires.

Heathrow, established the motto: ‘making every journey matter’ which is part of a customer centric initiative that goes well beyond actual flights to include, travel to and from the airport, foot traffic inside terminals, the airport’s facilities such as free Wi-Fi. And the online experience of planning a holiday or searching for shops and restaurants using the airport’s mobile app.

Before and during travel, and across Heathrow’s many business units and operations, Heathrow aimed to deliver a smooth, positive experience at every touchpoint. The airport turned to global data solutions provider, Acxiom, for help.

The solution:

Using Acxiom’s inbuilt expertise combined with Adobe’s technology-led marketing services, Heathrow is now able to use customer data, by reacting to customer events in real time and then personalising one-to-one communications for passengers and customers.

Transactional and engagement data from sources such as Heathrow Records, parking transactions, ticketing systems and airport Wi-Fi usage, was collated and consolidated into a single customer view. This enhanced insights from Acxiom’s Personicx data suite with data such as age, income, employment, demographics, geography and lifestyle. Using this enriched data populated Heathrow’s passenger engagement solution, allowing the airport to execute based on data-driven insights. Acxiom provided the airport with Adobe Campaign – part of the Adobe Marketing Cloud, which is an effective people-based marketing offering – the Connected Spaces solution – which allows physical destinations to identify, understand and engage with the thousands of people coming through their doors on a daily basis.

From there, the database was segmented into groups of similar individuals, which enabled the airport to send a highly personalised suits of communications with the objective of growing the value of each customer, acquiring new Rewards members, and providing valuable information to each passenger to ensure a smooth journey through the airport.

The result:

Through Acxiom’s CRM activity it resulted in connecting Heathrow’s passenger engagement solution to the wider enterprise including CRM. Now, Heathrow provides travellers tools and prompts to help the consumer plan ahead for: parking, terminal navigation, driving and shopping. Every month, Heathrow reaches out to about 9 million customers with communications, with each interaction and transaction, Heathrow gathers more about customers, enabling more personalised communications at every step in the customer lifecycle: acquire, on board, activate, grow and reactivate.

Now that Heathrow Airport has taken charge if shaping its travellers’ journey, figures have shown a:

22% increase in Rewards retail spending
19% growth in membership
20% growth in active membership
23% increase in spending per visit
34% increase in reactivated members

Due to the success of the project this has led to Acxiom working on a further CRM Strategy for Heathrow, leveraging Acxiom’s open garden approach to technology interaction, the airport will connect customer service teams and wider front line staff to the rich data asset, to transform the experience a customer will receive as they make their way on their business trip or holiday.

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