Kellogg's 16-digit loyalty codes, unique to each package, signal
product type, size, and flavor, in addition to the store where
consumers purchased items and store location. The codes are on
around 2.5 billion individual packages.
"It enables us to know exactly what the product is," for
instance, a 10 oz. box of Special K Red Berries featuring a
"Monsters University" promotion, said Maria Keller,
director-application solutions, digital marketing and IT at
Kellogg. "It's that level of detail."
Kellogg ties the loyalty codes to its "K Numbers," the company's
internal product codes. In the past, when consumers submitted codes
for special promotions, it was unable to match them back to actual
products, said Ms. Keller, who noted that gleaning customer
information is difficult because "we don't own that relationship
directly." She added, "This is the first time ever… we've
ever understood exactly what the consumer is purchasing."
In 2010 Kellogg partnered with Epsilon to build its CRM database, which has
information on 18 million consumers who receive targeted email
offers. When the company realized it could be engaging the people
in that database even better through a Kellogg-wide program, so it
partnered with loyalty firm Aimia in June 2012. The 3.5 million Family
Rewards members are a subset of that larger CRM database. Aimia
handles the backend, enabling online code entry by Family Rewards
members, and providing discount and prize offers.
"I have not seen a lot of other CPG players be able to get the
traction within the organization" to run a portfolio-wide program,
said Michelle Davis, VP-group account director at Aimia. "They
can't quite figure out how to make that work."
The system enables Kellogg to integrate its promotions, which
previously were managed separately by business units handling
particular brand sets like the "morning foods" category.
"More companies are moving toward platform-based programs rather
than brand-specific programs … but it's a slow move," said
Haluk Nural, senior VP- manufacturer practice at Dunnhumby USA. Added Kellogg's Mr. Keller,
"The main obstacle isn't money and resources: It's … "the
current marketing structure and dependency on brand funding to run