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Kum & Go uses MarketDial to validate customer adoption of mobile app during COVID-19 pandemic

By admin / Nov 01, 2021

For four generations the family-owned convenience-store chain has focused on providing exceptional service and exceeding customer expectations. Established in 1959 in Hampton, Iowa, the chain has since grown to employ 5,000 associates in 400 stores across 11 states in the Midwest and the Mountain West.

Kum & Go released new fuel payment functionality to their mobile app in May 2020. After its release, Kum & Go began testing customer reaction and engagement of the new technology to ensure the spend for the launch aligned with its expectations. The COVID-19 pandemic, however, made this difficult as consumer behavior shifted drastically, rapidly, and unreliably. Through working with the MarketDial team, Kum & Go determined that their software provided a cost-effective method for increasing customer engagement. With this knowledge, Kum & Go invested substantially in the marketing and launch of its new technology, driving impressive results.

“At a time of significant disruption, MarketDial proved to be a reliable insights partner.” – Stuart Taylor, VP of Business Insights & Analytics at Kum & Go

The Challenge:

Kum & Go designed a new mobile app technology to improve customer retention, loyalty, and customer experience. The technology allowed customers to go “touchless”—meaning the customers could skip the keypad at the pumping station and inside the store, instead activating the pump or register on their phone.

The unique and pandemic-driven consumer behavior complicated Kum & Go’s ability to quantify the true impact of the technology.

The engagement with the app changed dramatically as customers quickly moved to “touchless”.

The Solution:

The MarketDial team worked closely with Kum & Go to determine an effective way of reducing the data variance brought about by consumer behavior during the Covid-19 pandemic. To more accurately determine the impact of its new mobile app given the complexities that the pandemic raised, MarketDial would re-design the test so that, instead of experimenting by using test and control stores, it would use test and control customer segments.

MarketDial and Kum & Go worked together to develop a control group and test group from customers with similar buying behavior and characteristics, changing the ultimate design of the test and improving confidence in the results significantly. With this redesign MarketDial was able to reduce noise and interruptions in the data, allowing Kum & Go to accurately quantify the true impact of its new technology.

The Results:

Kum & Go and MarketDial accurately measured the differences between the early adopting customers and the MarketDial-selected control group. This methodology identified that early-adopters purchased more gallons of fuel at Kum & Go and were more likely to frequent Kum & Go’s locations. While the pandemic caused rapid changes in customer behavior, by leveraging MarketDial’s customer control matching and running the experiment for an extended period (3 months), Kum & Go reached >99% significance in test results giving the team confidence to support the new technology with increased marketing spend. This new-found confidence allowed Kum & Go to move forward confidently with fuel payments on the Kum & Go mobile app, increasing adoption of the technology and driving profitable business results.