The inner mechanics of a customer experience are complex. The experience of a touchpoint is greatly dependent of previous experiences with other touchpoints – here’s how.
I’m fascinated by the mix of brand strategy and behavioral science, because they create so many great possibilities when put together. For example, behavioral economist Dan Ariely has shown that an experience is greatly dependent of what happens before the actual experience takes place – if a person thinks he’s eating expensive food, the experience will be better.
What’s more staggering, blind tests have shown that this placebo effect even works on highly physical experiences like brain surgery! Tests have shown that people who thought they had brain surgery showed the same amount of recovery as the ones that actually had the surgery. So, expectations and beliefs are very powerful.
What does this mean for the Brand Touchpoint Matrix? Well, consider a very common scenario: an agency create a funny, creative ad campaign. People like it and decide to step up to another touchpoint. Here, at the store, the salesman looks tired and bored and the potential customer gets a bad experience of the company. And – here’s the main thing – it actually got worse because of the successful campaign. One touchpoint set an expectation that the other could not match.
How do you deal with touchpoint expectations? Well, first of all you have to have a clear view of your whole touchpoint map. Let an experience design agency analyze where you raise expectations and where you fail. If you do this well, you can not only remove the obstacles, but also start creating new positive customer experiences. Maybe you should even consider lowering expectations of one touchpoint to enhance another?
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