Drive traffic and profits with customer intelligence

ØresundsBroen uses SAS® Customer Intelligence to customize offers, enhance revenue generation

A toll road that’s customer-friendly? If the idea sounds foreign, chances are it is. Unless, of course, you travel the ØresundsBroen between Denmark and Sweden. The five-mile expanse of bridge and tunnel not only connects the two countries, it connects its customer” with destination ideas based on their unique likes and dislikes – the bridge’s way of driving the revenue-generating traffic it needs to support itself. Using SAS Customer Intelligence, the bridge’s marketing and customer-service teams share meaningful, relevant offers unique to each of the 180,000 travelers who own toll passes.

Within a few months of adopting its customer-focused business strategy, ØresundsBroen had already sold 35,000 new bridge passes, despite the financial crisis and heavy rain all summer. At the same time, ØresundsBroen reaped an efficiency gain of 20,000 hours saved, thanks to automated management reporting and more efficient work processes.

"Our goal is to gain more new customers and for the customers that already have a bridge pass to use the bridge more often," explains Karsten Längerich, Head of ØresundsBroen's Leisure Segment. "The 16 kilometers of asphalt spanning Øresund Sound is an expensive pleasure. That's why our rewards programs, with their attractive offerings on the other side of the sound, play an important role in our sales."

Above and beyond supplying the organization with customer insight, this solution is creating a transparency in the flow of communication with our customers that we have not had before.
Karsten Längerich, ØresundsBroen

Karsten Längerich
Head of Leisure Segment

Shift to customer focus

ØresundsBroen connects Sweden and Denmark via twin-track rail and a four-lane divided stretch of route E20, which runs across northern Europe from Ireland to Russia.

Formerly an operations-based organization, ØresundsBroen has shifted to customer-focused business strategies. Each time the 180,000 "contract customers" travel the bridge, it scans their toll passes. Combining driving patterns with demographic and preference data from the rewards program, ØresundsBroen has a rich collection of data to gain insights on how to increase traffic.

"The number of passengers at our tollbooths increases measurably when we get it right, offering a low-cost golf vacation in southern Sweden to Danish golf aficionados or offering Swedish families a discount on a trip to Tivoli," Längerich says.

Relevance instead of hard sell

The strategy applies to communication channels like weekly email newsletters, marketing campaigns, service emails and the customer-service center. For example, the content of its weekly email newsletter is unique to the "DNA profile" of each of the 180,000 recipients.

SAS analyzes click rates and response statistics and automatically updates each DNA profile with fresh information.

"Open rates for our emails are at around 30 percent, which is high considering that we send them out every week," Längerich says. "We maintain a relentless focus, prioritizing relevance and inspiration over the hard sell in our communications, and we don't bombard the customer with spam. We know exactly what we're sending to our customers and when, across all of our departments."

"The relevant communication has to do very much with one hand knowing what the other hand is doing. Being customer-oriented is consequently an exercise in cooperation and knowledge-sharing as well, and SAS has powerful tools for that. Above and beyond supplying the organization with customer insight, this solution is creating a transparency in the flow of communication with our customers that we have not had before."

Data reaches across business

SAS provides the analytical platform, which collects data and converts it to knowledge about the customers. The solution integrates with all of the customer contact points and reaches into many other areas within the organization.

In addition to email and campaign management, ØresundsBroen uses SAS for event-based communication, such as alerting customers before their credit cards expire. In the customer-service center, formerly a purely administrative department, agents can extend relevant offers to callers based on their DNA profiles, thus increasing sales from a new angle.

For the DNA profiles, ØresundsBroen rates customers on 15 areas of interest, like golf, classical music, spas, and gourmet food. The ratings are the basis for communication.

"The risk of failure is too great using classic customer segmentation," Längerich says. "We believe that the key to more sales is close customer relationships based on relevant, attractive communication. That's the reason we use DNA profiles."

SAS makes 'huge difference'

In addition to providing analytical CRM and campaign management, SAS analyzes customer satisfaction, business-cycle studies and surveys. And ØresundsBroen uses SAS for financial reporting and budgeting as well as for performance assessments.

"The plan is for all customer communication to occur within SAS," says Längerich. "We are currently creating a lifecycle for each customer, which will guide our communication with them throughout the year and throughout the course of the entire customer relationship. All the data are transferred into SAS, which will ultimately contain a panoramic view of each customer."

"The business case for the SAS solution is that it will generate one additional half crossing per customer, and we believe that this is totally doable," Längerich adds. "SAS is making a huge difference on the strength of the email newsletters alone. We used to send out identical emails to all our customers, and even with that sort of mass communication, we saw an increase in the traffic through our tollbooths. We don't yet have measurements documenting the impact of the individualized emails, since we've only been sending them out for four months, but we can see a clear increase in open frequencies and click rates, and thus greater interest in our offers."


Personalize marketing campaigns to drive more traffic across the bridge.



  • 35,000 new passes sold in a few months.
  • 20,000 hours saved.
  • 180,000 email newsletters with individualized content per week.
  • Increase in newsletter open rates
  • An expectation that each customer will cross the bridge one additional half time.

Les résultats présentés dans cet article sont spécifiques à des situations, problématiques métiers et données particulières, et aux environnements informatiques décrits. L'expérience de chaque client SAS est unique et dépend de variables commerciales et techniques propres, de ce fait les déclarations ci-dessus doivent être considérées dans un contexte. Les gains, résultats et performances peuvent varier selon les configurations et conditions de chaque client. SAS ne garantit ni ne déclare que chaque client obtiendra des résultats similaires. Les seules garanties relatives aux produits et services de SAS sont celles qui sont expressément stipulées dans les garanties contractuelles figurant dans l’accord écrit conclu avec SAS pour ces produits et services. Aucune information contenue dans le présent document ne peut être interprétée comme constituant une garantie supplémentaire. Les clients ont partagé leurs succès avec SAS dans le cadre d’un accord contractuel ou à la suite de la mise en œuvre réussie du progiciel SAS. Les noms de marques et de produits sont des marques déposées de leurs sociétés respectives.

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