Use it or lose it
Your customers are precious. Every business knows that. The audiences you have built around your product offer and your real estate are yours, you attracted and won them over. The offers and brand partners you share with them should be carefully selected to ensure you are adding value to their lives and satisfying their desires.
So what would you say if another business started soliciting your customers, uninvited, without permission? You’d be outraged. How dare they? We built this group up, we are paying for the real estate, we are giving them what they want, when they want it. Or are you?
I would suggest Westpac could learn a great deal from the renegade community board behaviour of local residents around their ATMs (see image above). Rather than get mad and take the Guitar Lesson posters down they could see this as an amazing opportunity to connect with their customers by turning their ATM hoardings into a branded community board.
We saw what success and brand notoriety ANZ had with GayTMs around Mardi Gras and CBA using their ATMs for a nationwide survey, so here’s a great opportunity for Westpac to use one of their most powerful, high-reaching and frequently-used channels as a useful communication vehicle rather than just a cash machine for transactions. If they don’t, others will continue to leverage the valuable connection opportunity at Westpac’s expense.
Whether it is ATM-squatting or some other form of audience hijacking, if it is happening, you should take it as a compliment. It means your audience is highly valuable. This should act as a wake-up call for you to do a better job of engaging your customers at your owned channels or risk someone else doing it for you.