Updated: Mar 27
Every brand shares a common goal: increasing sales. Sure, there are many other goals, but at the end of the day, a business can only exist if it’s consistently hitting sales numbers.
Customer loyalty and engagement are two of the most important keys to reaching that goal. In our two-plus decades of marketing and customer experience, we’ve identified the secret ingredients from the best organizations in the world and have translated this into 5 easy steps to get started.
What makes a brand experience amazing?
Before you can create a brand experience that truly stands out, you have to understand what a brand experience is at a basic level.
Brand experience is the overall impression and emotional response that a customer has with a brand. It includes all the interactions a customer has with a brand, from physical experiences such as shopping in a store or using a product, to digital experiences such as visiting a website or social media page.
Consumers have thousands of such interactions every day online and in person. In today's highly competitive market, it is essential for businesses to create a memorable and positive brand experience in order to stand out from the competition and build customer loyalty.
Creating a successful brand experience requires a deep understanding of your target audience and their needs and preferences. It also involves continuously gathering and analyzing customer feedback to ensure that the brand experience is meeting and exceeding customer expectations.
The importance of brand experience for businesses cannot be overstated.
The best brand experiences produce any number of positive outcomes including:
Increased sales with existing customers — resulting in more opportunities to reinforce brand perceptions
Increased word of mouth — resulting in new customers
Keeping customers loyal — saving the company time and money associated with acquiring new customers
When a company builds customer loyalty, it’s a good indication that they’re on the right track to cultivating an amazing brand experience.
The 3 key components of brand experience
Customers are far more likely to become loyal to a brand if they have a positive brand experience. This can be achieved through excellent customer service, high-quality products and services, and a cohesive brand image across all touchpoints. These brand and customer experience touchpoints can be broken down into three overarching categories:
Physical experiences — including store design and product packaging
Digital experiences — including website design, social media presence and e-commerce
Customer service experiences — including interactions with sales associates and call center representatives
Physical and digital experiences can include customers and potential customers, while customer service is mainly focused on current customers.
All three types of experiences are equally integral in future sales and the way a company is perceived.
Businesses that prioritize brand experience also tend to have a stronger emotional connection with their customers. This emotional connection can drive customer loyalty and lead to increased brand advocacy, as customers are more likely to recommend the brand to their friends and family.
Getting started with your brand experience
Now that you have a better idea of what a great customer experience can do for your brand, you can begin to focus on implementing or improving it. With so much riding on the many ways customers interact with your brand we recommend a step-by-step approach to getting started:
Step 1- Define your experience
Define what a great customer experience looks like for your business. This will depend on the nature of your business and the needs of your customers. Consider what customer interactions and touchpoints are most important, and what outcomes you want to achieve.
Step 2 – Understand your customers
Identify your target audience and understand their needs and preferences. Understanding your customers is non-negotiable. Take the time to get to know them, their needs, preferences and behaviors. Use customer feedback, surveys and other research methods to gather this information.
Step 3 – Design it!
Once you understand your customers and what a great experience looks like, look for opportunities to improve the customer experience at every touchpoint. This could include streamlining processes, providing more personalized service, or introducing new technologies to make interactions more convenient.
Step 4 – Put the right people systems in place
Hire the best people and train your team to deliver a great customer experience. Make sure that your team has the skills, knowledge, and resources they need to consistently deliver a great customer experience through training on customer service techniques, product knowledge and other areas that are important to your business.
Step 5 – Build a customer-centric culture
To deliver a consistently great customer experience, it's important to create a culture within your organization that prioritizes the needs and satisfaction of your customers. This may involve setting customer service goals and metrics and rewarding team members who go above and beyond in delivering a great experience.
What can a focus on the brand and human experience do for your business?
Just think about some of the most successful brands out there. What are their customer experiences like? Brands like Starbucks, Chipotle and PBR immediately come to mind because they’ve mastered what it means to have experiences that keep loyal customers coming back again and again.
Starbucks' cozy atmosphere and convenient loyalty program make it a popular third place, and Chipotle's emphasis on quality ingredients and sustainability appeal to customers who prioritize these values.
Learn more about how these brands do it—and how you can too—by reading the quick case studies in our brand experience e-book.
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