Over the past two years, fuel loyalty competition has seriously stepped up to a whole new level.
It started with the big spending traditional fuel players (Z, Mobil, Gull) followed by an unexpected wider group of non-fuel providers - airlines, loyalty schemes and supermarket retailers. Suddenly ‘loyalty’ - and winning the fuel dollar through loyalty - seemed one of the key ways to drive consumer behaviour and this was seriously challenging AASmartfuel.
All the more challenging because the AASF programme is complex - especially for those consumers who haven’t ‘learnt’ how it works.
The real value is delivered to cardholders that ‘get it’ - cardholders (Accumulators) who accumulate and carry forward their (usually) fuel savings credit balance earned at BP and Caltex (and other retail partners like Repco and Firestone). These people achieve major savings over time – including sometimes free petrol - but have to resist the temptation to take up the instant reward offered at purchase.
Not easy to accentuate the positive when history has shown people don’t get the promise. Remember we are only talking about fuel discounts, but through the unfolding characterisation of Edward - the Korean taxi driver – we see so much more.
Edward is the underdog and everyone roots for the underdog. When the drunken customer says “Ponsonby … Bruce (Lee) – chop, chop” we instantly side with Edward and want to respond inappropriately. But not our Edward. He keeps his cool, laughs out loud and then just quietly says under his breath: “ You’re so funny … long way home for you drunky…” .
Clearly the creative idea was to use storytelling and likeability to gain consideration for an offer that sounded too good to be true
The results surpassed all expectations; the campaign lifted awareness, drove huge increases in website engagement, caused ‘Accumulator’ growth, and new card registration levels more than doubled the targets set, which is unheard from a big base and given market conditions.