BAT had identifed an urgent need to create a central medium through which to communicate to their retailers in order to convey news, brand and product information, polls and interviews. The challenge was then to find the right company that would create the best solution for them.
As the preferred digital supplier to global advertising guru, G2 Amsterdam, Glasshouse Multimedia was chosen to fulfill the brief and scope of the BAT project. With their understanding of website design and web based applications, Glasshouse proposed a concept and design that was perfectly tailored to the existing BAT operational spectrum.
Using Ruby on Rails, MySQL and the Chrysalis Content Management System, Glasshouse created an Extranet (entitled exXtra) whereby individual retailers could log in with a unique username and gain access to an overview of their individual sales data. Additionally a rewards system was developed for retailers to register and accummulate points by sales, generating competition and increased sales.
Commenting on the value of the platform to increase revenue, Eduardo Green, BAT's Retail Communications Manager said, “exXtra is truly a tool that retailers can use to help them sell more of our products, bring them closer to our head office and even closer still to their field representative. Retailers can now view their own sales performance of our Global Drive Brands and actually participate in their sales growth.”
Critical to the success of this communication platform, which is also used by internal staff members as well as retailers, is that it is simple to navigate. As such, Glasshouse designed all the navigational elements with the novice computer user in mind.
According to Green, “What the retailers don't see are the extremely complicated design elements which have been integrated into the exXtra website giving us far greater insights into our retailers than we have ever had before.”
The BAT team view their partnership with G2 and Glasshouse as an ongoing collaborative process and are thrilled with the results.
“The exXtra website is really the golden thread that ties all of our marketing activities together for our tobacco channel retailers”.
For the Glasshouse team, this project is exciting confirmation of their vision to be a globally respected digital agency by 2009. And it's a proudly South African one at that.
For more information call Glasshouse on +27 21 487 6960 or go to www.glasshouse.co.za