Customer Experience – Creating Outstanding Memories
The question often asked is what actually is Customer Experience (CX), where does it start and where does it end? We are drawing customer journey maps indicating the touchpoints with customer and anticipating customers aims, thoughts and feelings throughout the journey. Not forgetting what's happening before and after the experience itself.
However, some experts see CX essentially as a memory of the experience that customers have. No matter how smoothly does the experience go in reality, if the customer for some reason remembers it differently, that's what it is! And many of us know from psychology classes how emotions affect our memories - the stronger the emotion related to the memory, the deeper the memory itself. Yes, here come emotions again.
Journey maps, journey maps
With the help of journey mapping methodology, we had a look at the journey that participant undertake during our events. This helped us indicate what are the critical points from the point of view of the emotions that participant may feel. What are the most emotional actions in a seminar, in matchmaking or in any other kind of event?
The peak-end rule suggests that one will remember only the last and the most significant thing that did happen or was felt during the experience. According to this theory, we have to make sure that those peak and end feelings of the experience are positive and the kind that we are trying to evoke in our customers, or in our case, participants.
Don't let the memories fade away
What is interesting about memories, is that they are easily forgotten and they can be changed or redirected with various factors. There are many studies suggesting that you can manipulate a person to remember thing that did not happen in reality. This, of course, is not the idea you should base your whole CX on, but you surely can make the memories last longer and be stronger by simply reminding customers of the great experience you provided them. Customer experience experts say that by underlining the positive things happened or feelings felt during the experience will ideally lead to customer forgetting (or just not paying too much attention to) the negative things of the experience and concentrating on the good aspects instead.
So, returning to my initial question, CX is surely not only the experience itself. It is not the pre- and post-experience stage either. But based on all of my resent readings, I would say it is this all together, wrapped up as a customers' memory and colored with their emotions.