With glimpses of hope that our economy will reopen in the coming months, it's time to start thinking about our businesses in a post-pandemic landscape. How will the world change? How will your industry be different? How will you adapt to the new circumstances?
The sheer volume of unknowns can feel overwhelming, making it difficult to even know where to begin planning your next move. With so much in flux, an ideal starting point is your customer. Ideally, the customer is at the center of any business, and the COVID-19 shut down is a perfect time to reimagine the ways we serve and delight our clients.
Here's a fun approach: gather your team for a remote brainstorming session around the Ultimate Customer Experience. In other words, if you didn't have to worry about previous rules, costs, logistics, or any other pesky constraints, what would the ideal customer experience look like? What would you need to deliver that would delight customers so much that they'd never even consider one of your competitors in the future? An experience so remarkable, it became the subject of dinner party conversations.
Start by isolating various customer "touch points." These may include the experience a potential customer has when she calls your company. Or the experience of walking into your location for the first time. Maybe it's the experience of opening your product after receiving it in the mail, or the time your new client gets his first invoice. One at a time, put each touchpoint under the microscope to examine how it can be upgraded. Here are four questions to get the conversation started:
- At the completion of a specific touchpoint, what do you want your customer to Think, Know, Do, and Feel?
- Since humans have five senses, is there anything you could add to elevate the sensory experience?
- Looking outside your industry to the most captivating consumer brands, what ideas could you "borrow" that would be groundbreaking in your own field?
- When leaving a restaurant, the dinner mint is that surprise-and-delight that you didn't expect. Are there any unexpected morsels of value you could surprise your customer with to make their experience otherworldly?
Sheltering in place stinks, but it does allow us more time than usual to think about the future. Seizing the opportunity to reimagine how you delight customers is an exercise that can pay dividends for years to come. Lock your sights on the Ultimate Customer Experience as the best vaccine to defeat competitive threats and prevent client attrition.
No immunologist required.