Monday, April 11, 2011

Improve the Experience

From the Not-So-Secret Writings of ScLoHo last week:

All of us have had some pretty exceptional, positive experiences in our lives when dealing with a business.

You may not remember them as much as you do the negative experiences, but the positive ones go just as deep into your subconscious and you subconsciously change your behavior.

Here's an example from my life that I'm sure you can relate to.

I eat.

2 or 3 times daily.

Breakfast and Lunch during the week are all up to me. I can grab a bowl of cereal and something from the fridge to brown bag it, or I can eat out.

Let's focus on Breakfast. At least 3 days a week, I eat something on my way to the office.

Without getting out of my car and without going out of my way, I can get food from 3 McDonalds, 3 Arby's, or 3 Subways. There are also 2 Starbucks and 1 Burger King that I pass.

I don't really go through a long pro/con debate of each of the 12 places, most of it is subconscious.

Except the Starbucks and Burger King options are off my list due to price or quality of breakfast food.

It is a matter of mere seconds that I have to decide between the first McDonalds/Arbys/Subway. Out of 20 visits, 15 are going to be Arbys, 4 McDonalds and 1 Subway, according to my receipts.

At first I thought it was due to Arby's has my favorite drink, Diet Mt. Dew, but I almost always grab an ice cold can from home and have it with me when I'm deciding which drive-thru to visit.

In preparing this story, I have had to ask myself why Arby's gets more of my breakfast money than the others combined. And the answer is the people.

It's just a brief transaction, but in those few seconds, the Arby's crew makes me feel better than the breakfast crew at McDonalds or Subway.

Most people don't know the subconscious answers to these questions, they just decide where to spend their money.

So my challenge to you is what can you do to improve the experience for your customers so that when all the obvious choices are equal, they will go below the surface to the subconscious and do business with you?

(In the interest of full disclosure, both McDonalds and Subway are advertising clients of mine, and they get more of my lunch money than Arbys.)

7am Tuesday the Not-So-Secret Writings will continue here. Topic = How Much Money?

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