Designing the Customer Experience to Encourage Brand Loyalty

Mar­keters today know the val­ue of cre­at­ing rel­e­vant and excit­ing expe­ri­ences through­out the cus­tomer jour­ney. It’s how brands win the hearts and minds of their cus­tomers, but it’s also more than that. When you win the win the heart and mind of a cus­tomer, that cus­tomer is more like­ly to rec­om­mend your prod­uct or ser­vice to some­one else. In con­trast, when cus­tomers are dis­ap­point­ed with a brand, they’re unlike­ly to keep their dis­ap­point­ment to them­selves. Cus­tomer loy­al­ty can be a valu­able mar­ket­ing tool, mak­ing the cus­tomer expe­ri­ence even more vital to a brand’s mar­ket­ing strat­e­gy. This was the focus of sev­er­al recent con­tri­bu­tions to CMO.com.

Pete Markey, brand com­mu­ni­ca­tions and mar­ket­ing direc­tor at Avi­va, shared some of the strate­gies Avi­va is using to win the hearts and minds of cus­tomers in the dig­i­tal space. For Avi­va, the focus on build­ing the best fric­tion­less expe­ri­ence for cus­tomers is a top pri­or­i­ty and one they’re achiev­ing with MyA­vi­va, the dig­i­tal space where all of the company’s prod­ucts come togeth­er. Accord­ing to Markey, the key to win­ning cus­tomer loy­al­ty is to put the cus­tomer first by design­ing the prod­ucts, ser­vices, and expe­ri­ences they want and need.

Jon Bains, found­ing part­ner of What & Why, dis­cussed the impor­tance of truth in mar­ket­ing. He shared that although peo­ple often view mar­keters as hav­ing a rela­tion­ship with the truth sim­i­lar to that of real estate agents and recruit­ment con­sul­tants, mar­keters have been forced to enter a “gold­en age of truth.” Cus­tomers val­ue brands that are hon­est and direct, and because infor­ma­tion spreads so quick­ly in today’s dig­i­tal age, dis­ap­point­ment in a brand is rarely lim­it­ed to a one-to-one con­ver­sa­tion between the cus­tomer and the brand. Truth is a neces­si­ty for brands that want to win cus­tomer loy­al­ty and rec­om­men­da­tions.

Jason Miller, glob­al con­tent mar­ket­ing leader for LinkedIn, revealed that many brands are cre­at­ing con­tent that ends up being “just clut­ter” in the vast amount of con­tent avail­able to con­sumers. Accord­ing to Miller, there’s just too much con­tent, and much of it is just “noise that is pushed out in iso­la­tion of any coher­ent strat­e­gy or insights.” Miller is quick to advo­cate for con­tent mar­ket­ing, but there’s a miss­ing com­po­nent from many brands’ con­tent strat­e­gy, which is ask­ing “so what?” from the customer’s point of view. The goal with con­tent mar­ket­ing should be cre­at­ing con­tent that “edu­cates, inspires, and pro­vokes poten­tial buy­ers right from the start.”

Michael Brunt, CMO of The Econ­o­mist, recent­ly sat down for an exclu­sive inter­view with CMO.com to dis­cuss the publication’s recent change in focus from adver­tis­ing to sub­scrip­tion income. He described how the pub­li­ca­tion has cap­i­talised on the grow­ing demand for high-qual­i­ty jour­nal­ism. Then it became about “find­ing those audi­ences and opti­mis­ing the cus­tomer jour­ney to encour­age them to sub­scribe.” For The Econ­o­mist, cus­tomer expe­ri­ence is about the read­ing expe­ri­ence, and the brand is built around giv­ing cus­tomers great read­ing expe­ri­ences that encour­age them to sub­scribe for more.

Alas­tair Cole, chief inno­va­tion offi­cer for Part­ners Andrews Aldridge, dis­cussed the roles of cre­ative tech­nol­o­gy and prod­uct devel­op­ment in devel­op­ing expe­ri­ences that excite cus­tomers. Cre­ative tech­nol­o­gy can be used to sup­port and enhance short-term mar­ket­ing cam­paigns. Cole cit­ed a recent cam­paign by Char­i­ty Women’s Aid that utilised the tech­nol­o­gy with­in dig­i­tal bill­boards to engage peo­ple look­ing at the screen and raise aware­ness of domes­tic vio­lence. Cole also point­ed out that tech­nol­o­gy is vital in prod­uct devel­op­ment, often aid­ing in cre­at­ing tools “that improve people’s lives on a longer-term basis.”

We invite you to read and engage with our exclu­sive con­tent on CMO.com and learn from some of today’s best mar­ket­ing minds. Please let us know what you think.

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