Your brand is most likely under pressure to maintain and even improve its customer experience during times of rapidly changing attitudes and behaviors. To navigate a volatile environment, it’s critical not to fall prey to short-term behavioral measures that are less likely to be predictive of long-term patterns of behavior.
Our experience is that long-term measures on overall attitudes and behaviors are more beneficial during times of marketplace disruption. Core attitudes, psychographics and behaviors tend to be more stable in predicting customer behavior in the long run than short-term uncertainty. While some metrics may change — for example, consumers may become more price sensitive or more risk averse during economic turbulence — those tend to move back to their natural state when the external event has subsided.
Our experience is that long-term measures on overall attitudes and behaviors are more beneficial during times of marketplace disruption.”
At the core of a successful customer experience strategy is staying connected to your customers through a combination of experiential elements:
1. Measure customer effort to maintain loyalty.
Brands must make every touchpoint as easy on the customer as possible. If digital is the primary touchpoint, consider investing in technology upgrades.
2. Understand current customer journeys.
A holistic view across all touchpoints for will help your brand capture the full customer experience.
Hear Director of Client Services Paul Donagher discuss how customers take on multiple personas as they move through the purchase journey:
3. Develop an emotional connection with customers.
Provide customers a sense of comfort and order to let them know they are in capable hands. Customer experience that goes the extra mile creates brand ambassadors that speak their preferences both in-person and across social media.
4. Create a sense of community.
People buy brands, not products. That’s because people connect to what a brand stands for, and seek others who also share that affinity. A great example of this is Apple.
5. Share meaningful content regularly.
Promoting a product and price is part of a communications mix, but sharing content that provides value in the form of information or entertainment can improve the customer experience.
6. Respect and reward loyal, regular, and current customers.
Customers want to be recognized for their loyalty. If you don’t have a loyalty program, now is the time to start one. For brands with existing loyalty programs, consider simple ways to enhance it.
7. Be real with your customers.
Studies show people buy from authentic brands, compared to ones that don’t express their true selves. Revisit your brand’s purpose and DNA to make sure you are communicating your values and mission in a human and authentic way.
Bottom line, during stressfull times, brands that stay close to their customers and maintain or enhance the customer experience will build greater loyalty and sales.
Want to discuss more ideas on improving customer experience and loyalty?