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Creating Strong Customer Experiences

It’s school holidays and I’ve taken a break with the children at Thredbo.

At a ski resort, there is much to be learned about the customer experience. Imagine having a transient workforce that shows up for a few months each year, and you need to train them, inspire them and motivate them to deliver on your brand promise. Now that’s a challenge. It takes to process and systems to make sure that your front line people are able to deliver a great customer experience.

I was standing in a queue at the lift ticket office, this is the point of purchase. You do the sums in your head to work out which option is best for you. There are many options. The man in front was of me was earnestly imploring the person selling tickets to listen to his feedback. She was not interested. ‘I have purchased a season (platinum) pass for the last fifteen years, and I would like another one please’. The ticket clerk responded ‘Please fill in this form sir’ He said…’I have filled in your form 15 times before, surely you have a database that I am on and you can just click renew’. ‘If you would like a season to pass then you will need to fill in this form’. By now the veteran season pass holder was quite frustrated. ‘I don’t want a discount or even any special deal, please just remember me so that I don’t have to fill in your form every year.’

Surely there is a business opportunity here. It is much better business sense to get people to subscribe with a renewal than wait for them to come back next time. How easy would it be to send a letter to season pass holders from the previous year inviting them to renew? Look at Quickflix, I get more DVDs than I ever would if I were to go to the local video store.

The one thing that no amount of money can buy is time. So I ask myself how can I take the time element out of doing business with RedBalloon – whilst still adding value to the customer.

Customers now expect to be recognised no matter what size the business is, as the basic level service. Sophisticated customer tracking systems that proactively support customers in their purchase suggestions have become table stakes in the business.

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Comments

  1. Interesting point here Naomi.

    More and more consumers are concerned about the non-monetary aspect of value (e.g. time & effort). This fellow didn’t care about any discounts rather the cost in the time involved in filling out unnecessary paperwork. He’s obviously a loyal consumer, yet the supplier doesn’t seem equally as loyal. It’s a two-way road.

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