Preparing for War: You vs. Recession REVISTED

Over the next two weeks I’ll be sharing some of the articles I’ve previously shared at Acceler8Success Cafe. I will include the ones that have proven to be the most popular articles based upon impressions, views, and interaction.

In light of continued economic uncertainty, I believe sharing the Preparing for War: You vs. Recession series would be timely. As such, I also believe this series could benefit many still finalizing plans for 2023.

Recession Prep Question: How important is the WOW factor?

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Surviving through difficult economic times, it’s essential to keep the sales pipelines full, to keep customers coming back for more, to keep employees happy, to keep strong relationships with vendors & suppliers, and to keep moving forward. But how likely are these scenarios (goals) considering the current state of uncertainty compounded by rising costs, fragile supply chains, and a somewhat undependable or unreliable workforce?

Creating and delivering positively memorable experiences is more than just customer-focused efforts. Certainly, the customer experience is key to business survival and growth but so are the experiences shared by staff, partners, vendors and all who “participate” in the daily activities of your business.

Magical experiences and the WOW factor!

Walt Disney focused on creating a magical experience for all who visited Disneyland and Disney World. When conducting customer experience training sessions, I ask the question, what is excellent customer service? Most of the answers are somewhat on track, except the focus is more on meeting customer expectation, not exceeding them. Essentially, it also means that if everything went right, the customer would be getting exactly what they paid for. Nothing more – leaving no room for error if the customer is expected to return.

I then ask the question, when have you been on the receiving end of a positively memorable experience? This exercise typically lasts an hour or so as the class realizes that the experiences they’re sharing are just examples of good or average customer service, but not positively memorable experiences. That is until someone mentions their family’s experience at a Disney destination.

Magical is often a word used to describe the experience but it’s most likely a word driven by Disney’s outstanding marketing campaigns. WOW is a word that often follows and is typically repeated multiple times in the description of the experience – a positively memorable experience. It’s at this time that the class comes alive with everyone chiming in, sharing their own Disney experiences. It truly is a WOW moment listening to them sharing their WOW experiences.

What is the definition of a positively memorable experience?

A recent Google search for the phrase, “positively memorable experience” revealed results that were exclusive to customer experiences, and garnered one-half of all results with the phrase. So, what causes customers to be so emphatic about their experience that they deem them “positively memorable?” Further, what implores them to share their thoughts so openly within a public forum?

To answer these questions, we must first examine the definitions of the words that make up this phrase as shown on Google:

Positively: In a positive way, in particular; with certainty, so as to leave no room for doubt; used to emphasize that something is the case, even though it may seem surprising or unlikely.

Memorable: Worth remembering or easily remembered, especially because of being special or unusual.

Experience: Practical contact with and observation of facts or events.

Is it more expensive to attract a customer or to keep a customer?

If every customer experienced a positively memorable experience with a business, what are the potential scenarios that could come of that experience? Repeat visits and visiting more frequently? Sharing the experience with others and referring some directly to the business? Choosing the business over another business when a particular need or desire arises? As you see, positively memorable experiences compound positive actions and drives loyalty.

The icing on the cake, or the cherry on the top is that a loyal customer does not have to be attracted again and again. Meaning, marketing dollars have already been spent as opposed to repeatedly spending marketing dollars as is necessary to attract new customers. The investment in developing and keeping loyal customers is in the delivery of products and services at an extremely high level of satisfaction – positively memorable experiences.

So, when looking to increase business, management should focus on its current customer base with the goal of delivering positively memorable experiences to them at all times. Easier said than done, right? Yes, that is correct, which is why positively memorable experiences must also extend to all who are responsible for serving customers. Not only in how they deliver on the goal, but about what’s in it for them.

Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!

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