Customer experience, the strategy that sets you apart
That customers have changed is a mantra often repeated by marketing execs, sales directors, customer service managers and decision-makers in all areas of a company.
In recent years, we have seen a change in customer habits when it comes to communicating with companies. Today, digital channels are, for many, the first choice when interacting with brands.
Customers are always the reason for change, and if companies are aiming to develop deeper relationships to maximise profits, it is necessary to understand them, know how they think, what they feel, how they engage, what excites them, what concerns them and above all, how they buy or consume services.
The creation of memorable experiences for customers is an opportunity to set ourselves apart from the competition, especially when it comes to commoditised products or services. Because often the longest period in the life of a product or service is the maturity phase, in which demand stabilises and the lack of differentiation with respect to the competition leads to lower margins, as the customer sees no difference between similar products and the price factor is the only determining variable in the choice of one brand or another.
It is in these scenarios when differentiation through the experiential factor is an alternative to compete and capture customers through senses and emotions and link them to the brand. No doubt many of us have been captive to some of the experiences created by Nespresso and its exclusive stores, offering a sense of status, convenience and experience in the world of coffee; or Tesla, with a pioneering and innovative driving experience, creating community among the drivers of its vehicles; or Apple, with its unique digital experience—you’re either Apple or Android.
The most intense experiences are those that are able to activate more senses, but companies that set themselves apart are those that elevate the experience to the highest level, fostering customer engagement, connecting users and creating community.
To start designing experiences, we need to analyse priority customers, their needs, values, desires and expectations regarding the brand and understand their purchase decision process, identifying the positive and negative moments in their relationship with the brand, mapping the customer journey and detecting possible improvements at every point of contact.
We can probably all recall a fun or unique experience with a brand, or an in-store event. This is what is called a memorable experience, one that leaves a lasting impression in the minds of customers, creating a positive and intense emotion that links them to the brand.
We live in the age of digitalisation, and the application of technology can also make a difference in the design of experiences (e.g., in managing customer information, optimising and speeding up contact with customers, personalising messaging and offers), as well as when it comes to offering these experiences to customers through tools like augmented or virtual reality, convenient digital signing, interactive digital screens, holograms, virtual fitting rooms (now in some establishments), virtual assistants, chatbots and biometrics for fast user identification without the need to remember passwords.
The creation of memorable experiences allows you to reach the highest level of customer appreciation and turn them into brand “lovers”, setting you apart from the competition.
Diari d’Andorra 25.01.24