In today’s business world, having the best product or service is no longer enough. Insightful business leaders have begun fortifying the entire customer experience from interest to purchase to follow-up. A buyer with a great overall purchasing experience is more likely to be a repeat customer. Not only that, they are often more inclined to recommend a business to their friends and colleagues.
Building that customer experience can be just as much of an art as it is a science. Thankfully, there are resources available from experts who analyze both raw data and real-world techniques to create a plan of action. Here are three must-read books to have on hand when you’re building remarkable customer experience processes in your business.
1. Brittany Hodak — Creating Superfans
Brittany Hodak knows that customers pay for products, services, and experiences because of the way they make them feel. In Creating Superfans: How To Turn Your Customers Into Lifelong Advocates, Hodak explains her proven framework for building customers’ emotional connection to your brand.
After all, an emotional connection is what turns a regular customer into a superfan. And the best thing about fans is that engagement doesn’t end once they make a purchase. A fan will regularly check in with a brand and make recommendations to their friends.
Okay, but what good are fans if you’re in real estate rather than sports or entertainment industries? As the book clearly lays out, the ideas and psychology behind superfandom can be applied to any area of business. Healthcare providers, insurance brokers, and franchises can build legions of loyal, engaged customers who don’t just come back again and again but tell their friends to do the same.
Creating Superfans’ readability, engagement, and style shows that Hodak practices what she preaches. With the use of full color, song titles as chapter titles, and helpful recaps, she created a book your team will enjoy reading. The pages are broken up into easily digestible sections with visual aids that help create vital connections between theory and practice. Additionally, the subject matter isn’t just rehashing old data and theories. It addresses how the customer experience is changing due to AI and other modern technologies.
So, if your advertising efforts have been falling short in establishing a strong customer base, this is a must-read. Advertising might get people through the door, but exceptional customer experience is what catapults your brand from just a commodity provider to a category of one.
2. Charles Ryan Minton — Thanks For Coming In Today
Many companies are trying to cut out personal customer service in favor of inexpensive automation and AI. While that might appear to be a cost-saving no-brainer, dehumanizing customer service entirely can have negative long-term consequences. If you want employees in direct contact with your customers, those individuals should be adequately supported.
Charles Ryan Minton’s book, Thanks for Coming in Today: Creating a Culture Where Employees Thrive & Customer Service is Alive, provides a roadmap to creating an employee service culture. Doing so trickles down into more positive employee-customer interactions. And when customers are more willing to pay extra for quality customer service, those positive experiences can significantly impact the bottom line.
It is especially helpful for anyone in the service or hospitality industry, focusing on taking care of your employees and mindful training. By empowering your customer service team, they can identify problems and provide the best customer experience possible.
3. Chip Heath and Dan Heath — The Power Of Moments
Human memory is a strange thing. Our memories might change over time, or some disappear completely. The ones that tend to stick with us are the ones that create the greatest impact. Chip Heath and Dan Heath know that we tend to remember the best and worst aspects of any experience as well as the ones that inspire change.
By reading their book, The Power of Moments: Why Certain Experiences Have Extraordinary Impact, business owners can dive into how to create brief, positive, yet memorable experiences for their customers. These co-authors include a mix of data collected from various social experiments and customer markers to look out for.
For example, let’s say you own a restaurant and want to create a moment of delight with your diners. This could be an unusual and humorous napkin-folding technique. Alternatively, it could be a visual effect on the food itself, such as incorporating dry ice safely but strikingly.
You could judge the effectiveness of the moment by looking at Yelp reviews or digging through customer volume data. But the answer to whether your moment was impactful or not can be much simpler and less time-consuming. It might just be a matter of observing if diners whip out their phones and take a picture. By noting those signs of interest and excitement, you can see what’s working and what isn’t.
Navigating the Customer-Centric Revolution
In today’s “experience economy,” customer loyalty and advocacy are no longer optional. These three books provide unique perspectives from industry thought leaders to help you amplify your customer experience efforts. Whether in finance, real estate, hospitality, or any other sector, the advice in these books is universally applicable as you shift to a more customer-centric culture and distinguish your brand as a leader in customer experience.