Driving customer growth & engagement

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As Marketing Director of PayPal Australia, Elaine Herlihy is well-versed in what it takes to deliver a best in class service. Afterall, when it comes to consumer trust and confidence, brands don’t rank much higher than PayPal.

“I think there were two things I was drawn to. Firstly, the brand. Even from the banking side of things – you always look out in the market at brands that are doing good things, and PayPal is a brand that really does things spectacularly. It really is a very customer-centric brand,” Herlihy says.

“I (previously) ran marketing and brand at Westpac, so I was aware of PayPal’s reputation. And I do often say to people here, that when I was at Westpac I would have killed for that kind of brand trust.

Herlihy tells Kochie’s Business Builders (KBB) another appeal was that Paypal is a growth business.

“The industry that we are in – financial technology – keeps changing. It is a business that has massive growth aspirations. So PayPal is always looking upward and outward. It’s truly exciting to be in a business that is saying: ‘What can we do next?’ ‘How can we solve a problem and deliver solutions for customers?’ And that is whether they are a business or a consumer.

financial technology keeps changing. It is a business that has massive growth aspirations

Since joining the PayPal team, Herlihy says she continues to be impressed with PayPal’s values of inclusion and diversity. She cites the company’s recent pull out from North Carolina over the state’s introduction of discriminatory legislation as one instance where PayPal has taken a loss to put their brand values on the line.

“And we have now withdrawn payment facilities from far-right groups and neo Nazis… we don’t want to aid groups to raise money to purvey hate.”

As for the nitty gritty of the company’s plans for expansion, Herlihy says plenty of room for growth.

“We obviously are massive in online payments – and Australia is one of the most mature markets – but there is still lots of room globally to improve our services and businesses,” she says.

“In Australia, we have nearly 7 million consumers and half a million businesses. So our approach is twofold. For us, it’s about making sure consumers know that they can use us in much more broader places than where they traditionally consider using PayPal.”

Obviously, for many businesses and consumers, PayPal is the first port of call for online transactions.

“Our strategy is now to make sure that they can use us in other categories. Like everyday spending. Customers have the same protections with PayPal when they have an Uber trip or pay a utility bill using the service as when they make a purchase at an online retailer.

“For businesses, we want to really focus on how they can really take advantage of mobile.
That means making sure they realise they can give a great customer experience to customers.”

Herlihy confirms that the more you do with PayPal the better the service gets, whether you’re a business or a consumer.

“Whenever we talk to consumers we often hear complaints about how many areas of their lives they have different passwords and payment methods for and PayPal can help bring that all together and give them a single view.

“For businesses, it’s about supporting businesses to be ready for mobile and be ready for the changes that embrace.”

Whilst PayPal doesn’t have their own version of Tap n Go (yet) Herlihy says they do have NFC payments in other markets and she reminds us you can enable PayPal in your wallet for Samsung Pay and Android.

Herlihy says from a business perspective, PayPal also integrates effortlessly with a businesses’ existing systems.

“We integrate well with other business software like Xero and Intuit – so we can do that seamlessly for you – integrating your payment services with your accounting and delivery services.

She believes any business committed to delivering outstanding customer service should consider adopting PayPal services.

“I think we make it really easy for you to integrate. It’s simple to create a payment method to consumers that they really trust. PayPal has been rated the most trusted brand in Australia. If you are setting up a business, having PayPal is a way to reassure your consumers that you are legitimate.”

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Cec is a media professional with over fifteen years experience as an editor on titles as diverse as SX, Better Pictures, Total Rock, fasterlouder, mynikonlife and Fantastic Living. She has spent the past four years working as a news journalist covering all the issues that matter in the political, health and LGBTIQ arena. She is the Senior Writer at Pinstripe Media and a recent convert to the world of small business.