INSIGHT: Illuminate Your Brand
Across every industry, customers report increasingly negative interactions with employees, resulting in widespread defection. In fact, in a recent study, 68 percent of Americans claimed to defect from a company due to a poor interaction with an indifferent employee. True customer engagement starts with a deep understanding of both customer and employee experiences. Enabling employees to deliver against your brand promise, and motivating them to do so, is the next step to positively impacting your bottom line. Value is created when an employee interacts with a customer. Successful brand engagement programs aim to inspire, educate, and enable employees to deliver the brand in their day-to-day roles. They shift the brand to the center of the organization, where it becomes the focus of everything the company and its employees think about and do. With this new mindset, the brand becomes not only a medium of communication with the outside world, but also a driver of internal "on-brand" choices and decisions. The result is a transformation in the way business is conducted throughout an organization, and more importantly, the delivery of a differentiated customer experience.
Effective consumer messages:
Differentiate: Convey a brand promise that clearly sets the company's products or services apart from its competitors'. This promise includes an emotional component that customers understand.
Excite and Activate: Convey a compelling message that will overcome consumer inertia, perceived risk, and "switching cost" barriers.
Connect: Establish or reinforce an emotional connection with target customers. This serves as the foundation for an enduring customer relationship.
Companies successfully acquire and retain customers when they communicate compelling and differentiating brand promises-promises that the company can deliver at all customer touchpoints. Companies must align their activities and performance to turn transactions into enduring relationships. Companies that consistently reinforce a brand promise with performance-or a customer's expectations with great experiences-will develop enduring and profitable customer relationships.
Sources: Gallup Consulting; John H. Fleming, MD Customer Engagement and HumanSigma
For more retail perspectives, please contact Jennifer Davis.