Over the last decade, many companies have become interested in “customer experience.” Experiential marketing isn’t really new, but the idea that it’s one of the only ways to market is somewhat new.
Why has customer experience become so integral to our brands? If you look close enough, you’ll see it’s actually one of the only ways a brand can even make itself stand out in the crowd. It’s one of the only ways we can be different and be a brand.
What Is Customer Experience?
The customer experience is any interaction or touchpoint someone has with your brand. This includes the moment they first land on your website, when they first hear your name, and so on.
It also includes the moments they interact with you: when they’re buying from you, when they’re asking you questions.
There are two reasons customer experience has become so big in the last ten years or so:
1. The expanded number of touchpoints a customer has with a brand
2. The increasingly homogenous product offerings out there
Let’s look at the crowded market and homogenous product offerings. To have something unique is pretty rare these days. Unless you hold a patent, chances are there are similar products on the market. Yes, there might be differences between products, but they’re often superficial.
Let’s take a look at bikes, for instance. Many bicycles are made on “open moulds” these days. A new brand can start up, select a mold that’s used by competitors, and come out with a bike that’s almost exactly the same.
Proprietary molds do exist. Many bike manufacturers will play “pick and choose” with open mold pieces as well. They might add the tail of one bike to the front end of another to come up with something that’s “different.” Unless you have one of those proprietary molds though, you and everybody else are using pretty much the same parts.
So, is there any real difference between these bicycles? Not really, at the end of the day. Yes, components play a role, as does material, and so on. A carbon fiber frame is always going to be lighter than an aluminum one.