Customer Experience and BrandingCustomer experience may be the most valuable marketing tool available to you.
Today, brick and mortar stores may no longer fear online shopping trends, although they are still feeling the pressure. Pressure to keep up with overheads that online stores just don’t have; the economic pressures of low consumer confidence and; increased manufacturing and production costs. The kinds of pressures that keep CEO’s and business owners up at night. Awake wondering how they are going to keep their business strong and successful without becoming complacent. The answer may be found in the brand experiences that we are creating for our customers. Customers are everything, without them, we have no business. Considering this, wouldn’t you do everything you can to ensure your customers come back and rave about you when they leave? This leads us onto a topic that is well known, although for the most part is only partially understood and implemented. Customer Experience. You’ve heard it said a million times. You want it for your business and I assume you probably believe in it, but what is it and how do you actually achieve it? Today, creating the perfect customer experience for your market doesn’t come about with just a quick fix, and it most certainly cannot be produced with an ‘off the shelf’ solution. Instead, through the integration of internal and external marketing communications, which are predicated upon a clear understanding of the market, an experience can be tailored to specifically meet the needs and desires of a businesses customers.
Have you ever had a brilliant experience from a brand yourself? A purchase experience or brand interaction that left you feeling satisfied, the kind where you were incapable of wiping the smile off your face. Or one where you left with absolute confidence in a brand, thinking “wow that’s cool, they know exactly what they’re doing, I’ll definitely come back.” That’s what successful business is all about. Creating spaces, moments, interactions, experiences, products and value for consumers which give them a true experience of joy.
With online shopping now the norm, success is being found in carefully orchestrating the harmonious integration of the online and physical store experience. Bricks and mortar retailers are realizing they can also compete online whilst online only stores are accepting they can collaborate with retailers and sell a small product line in the retail outlet without the complete expense. Humans will never be truly satisfied without the use of each of their senses. So an approach integrating cost effective retailing and delivering on what the customer needs and wants, has become a desirable solution.
This means that businesses now need to focus on the entirety of the customer experience, from end to end. From online to in store and from in store to online. We are coming into a world where customer acquisition is no longer the core measure of success. Obviously as a business scales up, acquiring new customers is key to success, particularly for consumer-facing brands. But as a company matures, and the market they play in becomes more competitive, retention becomes equally as important – if not more so. Retaining and understanding current customers is the key to discovering new revenue opportunities and increasing the overall lifetime value of each customer.
Therefore, firstly understanding and secondly measuring Customer Experience is critical to the success and sustainability of the business. Understanding includes recognizing the importance of functions and social values as well as analysing how a brand makes a customer feel. Measuring involves determining how your brands customer experience affects your customer. If the brand experience creates a disgruntled customer, their loyalty and circle of influence decreases with your brand. Alternatively, the brand experience creates a happy and delighted customer whose circle of influence is easily penetrated by positive words about your brand and their experience.
If people feel happy and you earn their trust, you are more likely to see a greater loyalty from them, and in turn, an increase in your most profitable, loyal customer base.
Providing your customers with a sense of empowerment and comfort will initiate a shift in customers’ confidence in a brand. If you give the confidence back to the customer you leave them feeling satisfied, rewarded and in control, which will keep them coming back.
This is where the customer experience strategy and design becomes vital for the businesses continued growth and success. While a marketing focused digital strategy will focus mostly on the awareness raising aspect of the customer journey a customer experience strategy looks at the whole process. It is designed around developing long term relationships that set your business up for the future. We will be continuing to discuss customer experience strategy and how it can benefit your business or organisation in the coming weeks.
SparkBDM, has a bespoke design process which reveals the most valuable customer experience for brands. See our services or Talk to us today about how we can help you bring joy to your customers through your brand.