#1 Great customer experiences strongly reflect the customer’s identity
Our beliefs and values play a decisive role in our behavior as customers. Those experiences that reinforce our self-image and resonate with our personal values leave us feeling good about our decisions, while those brands that clearly stand for something engender much stronger loyalty. This is essential to getting the experience right at a brand level.
#2 Great customer experiences satisfy our higher objectives
In a movie, what makes each character interesting are the objectives hidden beneath what they say or do. Customers are no different: wants and needs are derivative, it is satisfying the higher objective behind them that is the foundation on which great experiences are built. This is fundamental to getting the experience right at a product or service level.
#3 Great customer experiences leave nothing to chance
To create consistent, smooth customer journeys, every interaction needs to be considered, planned and designed. There is no detail that is too small to consider. This is the starting point for getting the experience right at an interaction level.
#4 Great customer experiences set and then meet expectations
Existing expectations, learnt behaviors and associations are the criteria that customers use to judge an experience from the beginning. Great customer experiences explicitly consider these factors, and exceed expectations where desirable.
#5 Great customer experiences are effortless
Interactions that put the onus on the customer, soaking up their time and energy, are quickly put off or replaced with those that are less demanding. Few things generate more goodwill and repeat business than being effortless to deal with.
#6 Great customer experiences are stress free
We all instinctively avoid stressful situations. Customer experiences that eliminate confusion, uncertainty and anxiety reap the rewards, generating a competitive advantage, loyalty and a peerless brand image.
#7 Great customer experiences indulge the senses
From delicious food to relaxing music or a beautiful painting, we all actively seek sensory pleasure. Customer experiences that delight the senses win our hearts and have us coming back for more.
#8 Great customer experiences are socially engaging
The importance of cultivating personal relationships with customers cannot be over-stated: we more readily buy from a friend than a stranger. However, our position within a social group is also a powerful and private motivator. Those experiences that elevate our status are often the most highly valued.
#9 Great customer experiences put the customer in control
Control is fundamentally important to us: we want to do things in our own time and in our own way, and we take exception to those encounters that force us to jump through hoops. By contrast, we appreciate experiences that are flexible, accommodating and leave us feeling in control.
#10 Great customer experiences consider the emotions
We are all slaves to our emotions, yet most see their customers from a purely rational perspective. Evaluating the emotional aspect of an experience brings often unconsidered issues to the surface and opens up new ways to delight the customer.