In New Zealand, fuel is an incredibly competitive and price driven category. Consumers are heavily influenced by fuel discounts, and a large number of retailers now offer cents per litre discounts. This means that consumers do not remain loyal to one fuel brand and can easily be swayed by any number of factors - price, convenience, accessibility and service.
In this highly competitive fuel category in New Zealand, Caltex is one of two fuel partners in the AA Smartfuel programme, offering consumers fuel discounts for shopping at participating retail outlets. All communications with cardholders are managed via the programme, which means Caltex does not have a direct relationship with them.
How could a direct relationship be built with customers to sway them away from BP to refuel at Caltex every time? A personalised and local relationship was created to connect with customers beyond ‘just an annoying pit stop’, in order to drive loyalty and capture motorists’ share of tank at Caltex.
First, the master brand relationship had to be reversed so that Caltex communications reinvigorated the Caltex brand rather than reinforced the AA Smartfuel brand. Working with AA Smartfuel and Caltex, a new look and feel for all Caltex communications was created, making Caltex the dominant brand. A series of 22 eDMs was rolled out over December/January/February. The ‘Summer of Cricket’ was launched to all cardholders in the AA Smartfuel database, offering 10 cents off per litre at Caltex after every BLACKCAPS win, supported by BLACKCAPS merchandise prize draws and collectable player cards.