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Campbell-Ewald: R-E-S-P-E-C-T Spells Loyalty
>Abstract
Campbell-Ewald, the Detroit-based marketing communications company, part of the global Interpublic Group of Companies, is an award-winning consultancy. This case describes the research behind its effort to measure and improve customer loyalty and the development of its five respect principles that lead to enhanced customer commitment. www.campbell-ewald.com

>The Scenario
Much has been written about satisfaction research in the last 20 years. But only recently has the seeming disconnection between customer satisfaction and customer loyalty been getting increasing attention. For two years, Campbell-Ewald1, the Detroit-based marketing communications company and part of the global Interpublic Group of Companies, studied one aspect of the disconnection: respect. As a result of its findings, the agency is passionate about helping firms reforge respect bonds with their customers as a primary business strategy. Campbell-Ewald is no stranger to this concept, which the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, elevated to the measurable standard for relationships. Twice in this millennium, the agency has been selected by AdWeek’s Midwest edition as its Agency of the Year. In lauding CampbellEwald, AdWeek noted that it has an average client relationship exceeding 20 years, while the average in the industry is a relationship that lasts only 5.3 years.2 David Lockwood, senior vice president and director of account planning, says what started as an attempt to understand the disconnect grew into a major research initiative. It ultimately resulted in the identification of five “People Principles” for maintaining long-term relationships that are helping Campbell-Ewald clients transform their business practices and their sales:3 • Appreciate me. Customers are the reason a firm is in business; they should be made to feel appreciated. • Intentions don’t matter; actions do. What a firm does is important, not what it thinks or what it says it will do. • Listen, then you’ll know what I said. Companies that listen to customers have the ability to adjust plans. Companies shouldn’t just collect information but should actually take direction from what customers say. • It’s about me, not about you. What the customer needs is more important than what the firm needs. • Admit it, you goofed! The customer deserves an apology when the firm fails, even if the failure isn’t the firm’s fault. Customer relationship management (CRM) has been a mantra for the last decade, and understanding the status of CRM was where Campbell-Ewald started its quest of discovery. “Research from Gartner Group and Accenture told us that traditional CRM solutions—the large-scale hardware and software investments that track, then model customer contact points (‘touch points’)—weren’t working,” revealed Lockwood. “Published research indicates 60 percent of CRM initiatives are not meeting user expectations. In addition, more than half (55

Used with permission of Pamela S. Schindler © 2006.

Business Research Methods, 11e, Cooper/Schindler

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Campbell-Ewald: R-E-S-P-E-C-T Spells Loyalty

percent) of these programs are not delivering any demonstrable ROI. This may be due to the fact that often such initiatives are assigned to the IT group in a firm, the group that has the least contact with the customer.” So when the purported solution seemed to sometimes exacerbate the problem, Lockwood’s team decided to look elsewhere. “Basically, loyalty is about personal relationships, not technology. So, we started by reading anything we could find on relationships—not business relationships, but people ones. We read everything: Dr. Phil (Phil McGraw—relationship guru and talk show host), Steven Covey (author of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People), even the ancient philosophers, to identify the tenets of strong personal relationships.” In this early stage, Campbell-Ewald turned to two waves of Synovate’s TeleNation,4...
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