How Auntie Anne’s New App is Improving Customer Relations and Boosting Product Development

How Auntie Anne’s New App Improves Customer Relations and Product Development

If you’ve visited just about any mall in Metro Manila, you’ll be familiar with the sight, smell and taste of Auntie Anne’s pretzels. With its undeniable reach and appeal to customers of all ages, the brand has become a household name and a popular snack for Filipinos all over the country.

Auntie Anne’s originated in Pennsylvania in 1988, and was acquired by FOCUS Brands of Atlanta in 2010. Prior to that, it was brought to the Philippines as a franchise in 1995. When Pretiolas Philippines acquired the franchise and brought these much-loved pretzels into the Filipino scene, they hadn’t expected how well-loved and embraced these pastries would be.

But alongside the responsibility of owning a franchise came some unique challenges. Auntie Anne’s Operations Manager Rod Torres explains that their daily operations, products, systems and quality need to fit the standard placed by FOCUS Brands. Thus, with the opening of every branch and the prototyping of every product, they have to comply with the standards given to them by the US-based brand.

On the other hand, there a few challenges to marketing in the country as well. Marketing Manager Michelle Guballa says, “We need to follow certain product placements and [comply with] restrictions on the brand, use of the company name, and use of products in certain artworks. All materials have to be approved by the US, including store design, implementation [of services], products and programs we launch.”

How Auntie Anne’s New App Improves Customer Relations and Product Development

To help them solve these challenges, they have adopted new digital strategies that include real-time correspondence with the FOCUS Brand for quality assessment, and a brand new app that works two ways: rewarding their customers for better engagement, and gathering market data for better product development.

“The app gives rewards for every purchase, so for every P150 worth of purchase, a customer gets one point. They keep the points, and then they can exchange them for products,” Michelle says. Additionally, on the business end, “The app allows us to know who our customers are, because when they register we get their names, their e-mail, their age. We can also track how often they purchase, how much they purchase … so we get to know more about the customers.”

This app was produced for them by Globe myBusiness in connection with RUSH, who designed the app and uploaded it to Google Play and Android. Among the providers they found, Auntie Anne’s chose RUSH for its accessibility and ease of access.

How Auntie Anne’s New App Improves Customer Relations and Product Development

“With Rush, I remember they told me their app is like a Facebook account. It’s fixed already, and I’m the one who puts the design. It’s customizable, and I can edit or add features I want in real-time,” Michelle says. “Let’s say I want to put a promo today, or double the points. I can do that on my own just by logging onto the dashboard [...] so it’s very easy to manage for us.”

Thanks to the app created for them by RUSH, they gain better insight to their market and can create better programs, promos, and product offers. Of course, everything is sent to FOCUS Brands for assessment, and with their real-time connection and market data backing up their proposals, it’s that much easier to get approved.

“We’re lucky that our products are loved by a wide range of customers, from little kids to lolos and lolas,” Michelle says. “We listen to our customers as well. [That’s why] knowledge of what customers want is really important. Our app has helped us gain this knowledge.”

If you want to learn more about Globe myBusiness’ partnership with RUSH and how it can help your business, go to rush.ph/Globemybusiness.