In the Experience Economy, the authors use a flow process. Over the years of working with them, assisting clients with customer and employee journey maps, I realized that the first stage of most journeys begin with “Attracting”.
Attracting is good, yet the idea of attracting merely means you want them to notice you and nothing more. This term creates no call to action. Because of that and that I tend to never let an idea go, I rethought the whole initial process and change the beginning from Attracting to Enticing.
Look at an experience or business you have. Are you merely trying to attract attention or is it that you want people to enter your business? Me, I want to entice people inside. I want them to engage not merely notice. Enticing truly means you are actively generating interest that is sparking curiosity in the mind of your prospect in hopes to make them your customer.
If you would like to learn more or remap your customer journey, let’s chat.
Have you ever experienced a car that was out of alignment. The strangest of noises occur. Excessive wear on the tires, possibly leading to unusual balding patterns. Eventually this misalignment can cause costly repairs and replacement if allowed to go unchecked.
Misalignment is true of our personal life as well as for business. Unlike the alignment of a car, realigning ourselves can be much more complicated. Like your car, unless you are trained at detecting the conditions and causes, you can cause greater harm than good. When we attempt to repair our own problems and try to realign that which is out of alignment, we tend to allow for subtle imperfections or incomplete repairs to save time or money. Hint, there are no savings to doing correctly.
Take a look at one of my favorite diagrams for personal and business. Now, imagine that every interaction you want to create for another, be it friend or client, you want to be memorable.
Ask yourself some basic questions as they relate to staging this experience.
- What is the Experience you are staging for others? (The Experience)
- What are your beliefs and are they focused on the purpose of this experience? (Culture)
- What is the promise you communicate to others that will become part of the experience you want to stage? (Brand)
- Where will this experience happen and is it a reflection of your promise and beliefs? (Place)
- What language or phrases will you use that can be associated only with the experience? (Language)
- What elements of decor or environment pieces will support and theme the experience? (Decor)
- Where will the interaction of the experience be found? (Engagement Zones)
- Finally, are all these elements of an experience in alignment?
If you are a business or organization, this alignment model becomes quite complicated and at times almost impossible to make work, but stop there. As I have said in the past and posted about, I don’t believe in the “Impossible” only the improbable. All things are possible once you understand how. If you don’t,then find someone who can help.
Just like taking your car to a service station to get realigned, it is best to seek others outside your organization or yourself to help guide you through the process of realignment.
Until next time. Focus on the creation of memories and not the mechanics of the Experience for the experience happens when the memories are created.
This may soon be the headline we read in the not too far future.
When mapping out cause and effect of any new development or change, it maybe helpful to visually map out how that new development or change will affect other conditions.
In the example of the title headline, imagine as more and more autonomous self-driving cars or accessible to the public some responses may not be as positive as expected. With self-driving cars, occupants are no longer responsible for their condition behind the wheel. Not being responsible for driving allows people the opportunity to indulge in excess.
Yes bartender, I’ll have another, I’m not driving.
In this example, more autonomous cars could bring about a dramatic increase in public drinking and alcoholism. After all, we’re human.
Autonomous cars and drinking maybe a dramatic example that may never unfold, but then again, it does have the possibility. Look at how companies approach developmental change within an organization. What maybe a small change from the top will ripple down may have unseen consequences if not mapped out. What about dramatic change such as rebranding, environmental design, digital adaptation or even evolving staff culture?
For companies attempting to evolve and stay profitable, not seeing how change will unfold could be as dangerous as not changing at all. This is why visual thinking and graphic facilitation are such a powerful tools in Organizational Change or new product development.
See the possible outcomes and pitfalls before you implement change.
When it comes to experiences, it’s not about the thing as it is more about what you do with the thing. An experience is in the action or “Ing” of a thing. A ball is a thing, yet ball balancing is doing. Any time you do something, you are in essence, experiencing. For a business, staging the action of a thing can be of greater value than merely the selling of the thing.
This trend, which the American Lifestyle Report identified and the Washington Post reported, indicates that consumers are shifting from the acquisition of things to seeking more experiences. People are doing more than buying more. Consumers are moving from the tangible goods to intangible experiences. With this shift comes greater value to the staging of experiences.
So, before you create your customer experience, stop and consider what you want your customer to do. What are you “Thinging” for your customers to experience and how are you driving value from this experience?
The New Economic Value Equation is this “Ing > Thing”
My grandmother was a simple woman and always had a unique way of viewing and explaining the world to me. Her simple upbringing always seemed to add clarity to her storytelling lessons which always helped me to better understand life, people and how things work.
The reason I bring this up is because while chatting with someone in Healthcare about the challenges of changing how people think about what healthcare should or could be, I was reminded of one of her stories about being something you’re not or trying to be different from your nature.
“Take the berry tree. ” She would whisper as if a great secret was being shared. “Its nature is to be a berry tree. No matter how you trim, cut or tie down its limbs to look like a berry bush, its nature is to be a tree. Its trunk will grow out as it was intended to do in order to support the long limbs where the berries should hang. But it will never be a berry bush. No matter how hard you try.”
Then she smiled and added, “The more you reshape it the less fruit you gather. So, if you want a berry bush, than it’s wiser to plant a different kind of seed.”
As I watch how the Healthcare industry is trying to change and reshape itself, I reflect on that story of the berry tree. If Healthcare needs to be different, then maybe it’s wiser to create something new, than it is to reshape that which it was intended to be. Maybe it’s time to grow from different seeds.
Change can be very hard to do from the inside. My advice is always to seek help from someone from the outside to get a fresh and different perspective to grow a new idea. Because thinking outside the box is just that, it’s the thinking from outside the box.