Choosing to offer subscriptions is an excellent way to provide your customers with a personalized customer journey. One merchant that has taken a very custom approach to their customer experience—with close attention to what information is shared with customers depending on their point in the customer journey—is Kettle & Fire.
In season three of our Hit Subscribe podcast, we had the opportunity to hear from Niccolò Gloazzo, Kettle & Fire’s Director of Ecommerce. Niccolò shared about Kettle & Fire’s subscription offerings, including the ample benefits of the seamless customer journey their subscribers enjoy.
Kettle & Fire sells bone broths and soups that are both nutritious and convenient for customers. Their products offer numerous benefits to gut health, digestion, joint mobility, and more. They use organic ingredients and were the first bone broth company with a shelf-stable product in the market in the United States.
Continue reading to learn more about Kettle & Fire’s subscription benefits and how they make each customer journey helpful and meaningful.
- To make subscriptions meaningful, pay attention to your customer journey map—and how you can help your subscribers at each step of the way.
- Approaching the customer experience with a focus on “surprise and delight” can mean higher customer satisfaction and loyalty.
- Meet and exceed customer expectations by providing ample benefits to subscribers.
Crushing subscriptions with a top customer experience
Kettle & Fire is winning the subscription game by creating an entire experience around their products, packaging design, and subscription plans, in addition to focusing on retention with a dedicated team. What makes the customer journey so great for subscribers is that they enjoy more interaction with the brand than a one-time shopper would. The customer experience is built out so that subscribers get exactly the information they need, when they need it. Plus, there are discounts and rewards to unlock along the way.
“Over the years, subscription became more and more an important part of our business because right now, we have a very big subscriber base of customers that really see a lot of benefit from the product from drinking one broth consistently.”—Niccolò Gloazzo, Director of Ecommerce at Kettle & Fire
Kettle & Fire subscribers enjoy these subscription benefits—all aspects of their stellar customer journey:
- Reduced pricing for subscriptions
- Points and discounts
- Early access to new products
- Nutritional information and recipes
- Personalized rewards
- Creative social media content
Merchants can follow Kettle & Fire’s example to make their subscriptions into an entire customer experience. Plus, there’s a lot to learn about retention from Kettle & Fire’s dedicated retention team.
The customer’s journey: All the benefits of subscribing
Let’s dive right into why the customer journey is so great for Kettle & Fire subscribers. As a business, they worked hard to consider customer journey maps—how shoppers interact with your products is crucial to building a personalized experience and sharing the right information at customer touchpoints.
Explore these various ideas for how to optimize the experience along the customer journey map to get inspiration for how you can make your subscription experience even better.
Points & rewards
Merchants offering subscriptions should consider implementing a loyalty program for their subscribers. When you’re mapping a customer journey, it’s important to incorporate elements of delight and pleasure for your shoppers. Not only will a points system encourage them to shop more, but it will give them a higher level of satisfaction and loyalty with your brand.
Kettle & Fire started rewarding their customers when they reached a specific milestone. These gifts show appreciation for their loyalty and are chosen based on their lifetime value. Plus, customers can earn points every time they shop.
Specialized content & information
Customer journey mapping is helpful for merchants to determine what information should be shared with customers at any given point in their customer journey. Future customers will have a lot of questions, meaning they should be directed to an FAQ page or informational product video. Existing subscribers might not need as much information, but will be looking for supplemental content like recipes, in the case of Kettle & Fire.
“We have a specific flow to guide those customers towards an experience or at least to learn more about the products, get more information about it, and yes, start to experience the product in a faster way to consume the product within the first month.”—Niccolò Gloazzo, Director of Ecommerce at Kettle & Fire
Because bone broth is an addition to customers’ daily routines—to see the health benefits, it should be consumed regularly—getting new customers going is a really important aspect of the customer journey.
Kettle & Fire has their customer journey mapping down—provided the proper information and content to their shoppers during the customer journey. With content strategies aimed at informing shoppers about their products, whether through email, transactional SMS, or package inserts, they have control over making the customer’s experience as informative as possible.
Social media engagement
Creating brand awareness is another way to reach shoppers and expand the customer journey into something greater. Using social channels to get a customer interacting with your company in a casual, easy way can encourage them to learn more about your products and eventually, make a purchase.
Kettle & Fire is reaching potential customers through their impressive social media presence—with almost 89,000 followers on Instagram and average monthly views on Pinterest sitting around 650,000. Niccolò shared that since last year, they’ve been focusing on brand awareness as part of the customer journey process, with a dedicated Kettle & Fire team member managing their social media.
“That’s something on our roadmap for this year [too]. We want to focus on TikTok, Pinterest, [and] more on Instagram influencers as well, so that’s something that really we want to push more specifically from an awareness and brand position standpoint.”—Niccolò Gloazzo, Director of Ecommerce at Kettle & Fire
Customer journeys are made better with this visual representation of a company on social media—from a customer’s perspective, there’s a whole wealth of information that’s free and easy to access to learn more about the company’s products. Investing in social media will enhance a buyer’s journey and give them access to your business long after they’ve purchased.
Incentives like discounts & early access to new products
When you put yourself in your customer’s shoes, it’s easy to see why subscriptions are made more attractive with price discounts and perks. Giving your subscribers bonuses they wouldn’t receive as an average shopper will create a customer journey full of delight and good surprises.
Kettle & Fire leans into this by making their Subscribe & Save option front and center on their website. When a user clicks over this option, they immediately can see the benefits of subscribing. The average customer can then weigh the options of making a one-time purchase, or committing to a subscription to receive these exclusive perks.
Kettle & Fire works to keep you
Along with their subscription benefits, Kettle & Fire has a dedicated customer retention team that can recognize customer needs, survey customers, identify gaps and pain points in the customer journey, and make changes to reduce churn. During the podcast, Niccolò mentioned one strategy that Kettle & Fire has been using that helped to drastically decrease churn:
“We implemented some specific churn type of cancellation flow within Recharge where we provide a customer, based on their answer, a specific action or next step that they can take instead of canceling. That’s really when we saw, I think, an interesting drop in churn rate in that case.”—Niccolò Gloazzo, Director of Ecommerce at Kettle & Fire
Along with these churn measures from Recharge, the Kettle & Fire retention team has been focusing on the customer lifecycle and receiving feedback from each part of the customer journey. They’ve found that small changes compound over time to decrease churn. Plus, it takes time to build a habit around their product, which is why they require two minimum shipments for those new to their subscription.
Utilizing customer journey mapping to enhance your subscription offerings
By putting themselves in their customer mindset, the team at Kettle & Fire has successfully created a beautiful customer journey map for their subscribers. Not only do their shoppers receive all the health benefits of the bone broth and soups they’re buying, but they also have access to a seamless subscription experience.
Merchants looking to enhance their customer journey should consider analyzing their existing customer journey map—and identify how the customer interacts with your ecommerce store at each point in the purchasing process. When customers feel taken care of, their buying experience is immediately made better.
Check out the full interview with Niccolò, as well as conversations with other industry experts, on our Hit Subscribe podcast.
 How Kettle & Fire’s retention team reduces churn (Hit Subscribe)
 Why churn reduction should be your biggest focus (Recharge)