Stop Innovating and Start Executing!
Written by Sam Abdou, Zamna advisor
I used to travel extensively, mainly for business purposes, flying more than 120 flights each year. And this I did for many, many years, all in a pre-Covid world. Not only did I fly - I also lived in a hotel four days a week and rented a car every month. I had, and still have many Gold and Platinum loyalty memberships.
Although these airlines, hotel chains, car rental companies and travel agencies are customers of mine... I am also their customer, and I would like to think I am important; that these Gold cards mean something. Did they? Was I important? Looking back at those times of frequent travel, I was not that important as it transpired. I was just a classification, an above-average spender, a frequent guest who was given points - which I could never really use during popular holiday dates - and on occasion, I was privy to a thank you upon arrival. Is that really all I am worth, and is it enough to keep me coming back?
When travelling extensively, it becomes apparent how irrelevant and insignificant some of the processes are. For example: surrendering my passport several times to check-in with the airline, hotel and car rental. Paying again, and again, and again. All to have the honour to be allowed into the airport lounge, or to choose my seat at the time of booking, or perhaps to be given a voucher for a drink when checking into the hotel. With my true identity never really known or understood. Why? Because I am all of: Sam, Samer, Sam Abdou and Sam Johnny Abdou.
In the aftermath of Covid-19, not only do those processes become irrelevant, it actually becomes evident how unimportant you really are - how friction is something that was made on purpose to make you spend more. Consider, for example, being forced to go to a car rental desk only to queue, be asked again for your passport and driving license, fill in (again) even more paperwork and the icing on the cake: receive an “offer” for an upgrade or an extra insurance policy, “just to be on the safe side”, of course. In retrospect, it's a cheap shot based on a manipulation model to drive revenue and does not actually care about me.
Nobody in the industry wanted to really fix any of these conundrums. It was all about innovation and brainstorming - without, bizarrely, execution. Yes, there were industry initiatives and also fantastic IT companies that are very strong in automation and biometrics… Alas, no single entity was taking care of a truly assured and persistent identity, of understanding who I really am and what it is I really want. The type of identity that is always accurate, nigh on impossible to breach, without anybody holding onto the data and with the ability to fuel a seamless, personal customer experience.
With all of this taking place in the background, I began my discovery of Zamna: the powerhouse of assured and persistent identity that is executing on unique identity for travel and managing more than 60 millions unbreachable signals, which are in essence, virtual tracers of your unique identity.
I realised there was a way that could make use of all the proving of identity I had done in the past, that could help shape a unique, individual understanding of me and achieve the golden chalice of a seamless experience. Suddenly I could see that I only needed to prove I am me, once! All those queues can disappear and I can achieve so much more and receive so much more too.
From the searching process to the booking stage, from jumping on that plane to heading straight to the rental car and to your hotel room: Zamna powers all enablers from a B2B perspective, never cannibalising my preferred hotel, car rental, airline or any other provider. From anchored identity that can be used anywhere and anytime, to elevated customer experiences that allow travel providers and sellers to sell deeper and better: I am no longer simply a customer, I am a converted buyer and forever loyal.
Stop innovating and… Start executing!