This Just Happened

We love telling stories and sharing key insights you can implement – or avoid! – based on our experiences. Can you believe that THIS JUST HAPPENED?!

Episode 118 – I’ll Believe It When I See It

Join us as we discuss encouraging your customers to do business with your competitors, using visuals to connect at every step in the customer journey, and watching how brands behave when they don’t know they are being watched.

Valuing, Videoing, and Voyeuring – Oh My!

[Redesign the Experience] Burger King Wants You to Order a Big Mac

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• “Burger King urges customers to order food from McDonald’s, Subway and KFC instead” – Gloucestershire Live Website
• Burger King UK
McDonalds UK
Discover
Humana

[Book Report] The Visual Sale by Marcus Sheridan and Tyler Lessard

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Marcus Sheridan
• The Visual Sale: How to Use Video to Explode Sales, Drive Marketing, and Grow Your Business in a Virtual World – by Marcus Sheridan and Tyler Lassard
• Tyler Lessard
• They Ask, You Answer – by Marcus Sheridan

[Partnership with Avtex] Neen James, Shep Hyken, and Rohit Bhargava – Three of a Kind!

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Experience Points – presented by Avtex
• Neen James
• Shep Hyken
• Rohit Bhargava
• Jay Baer
• Scott McKain
• Marquessa Pettway
• Amanda Kwok
• Jesse Cole

[This Just Happened] What to Do When Your Customers Are Watching You?!

• Kind Delivery Driver Shovels Snow (captured on Ring)
• FedEx
• UPS
• US Postal Service (USPS)
• Ring – doorbell camera
• Delivery Driver Dance on TikTok
• Amazon

Host Contact Information

Email Dan: Dan@dangingiss.com

Tweet Dan Gingiss: @DGingiss

Email Joey: JoeyC@JoeyColeman.com

DanGingiss.com

JoeyColeman.com

Subscribe to Experience This on Apple Podcasts

Episode Transcript

Download an unedited transcript of Episode 118 here or read it below:

[SHOW INTRO]
Dan Gingiss (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:08):
Where you’ll find inspiring examples of customer experience, great stories of customer service, and tips on how to make your customers love you even more!

Dan Gingiss (00:17):
Always upbeat and definitely entertaining customer attention expert, Joey Coleman.

Joey Coleman (00:23):
and social media expert, Dan Gingiss, serve as your host for a weekly dose of positive customer experience.

Dan Gingiss (00:31):
So hold on to your headphones, it’s time to Experience This!

[EPISODE 118 INTRO]
Joey Coleman (00:38):
Get ready for another episode of the Experience This! Show!

Dan Gingiss (00:44):
Join us as we discuss: encouraging your customers to do business with your competitors, using visuals to connect at every step in the customer journey, and watching how brands behave when they don’t know they’re being watched.

Joey Coleman (01:00):
Valuing, videoing, and voyeuring – oh my!

[SEGMENT INTRO – REDESIGN THE EXPERIENCE]
Joey Coleman (01:08):
With a pandemic, sweeping the globe and shifting the way organizations interact with their customers. Many of the old ways of operating just don’t work anymore. As we all navigate a COVID 19 world, it’s time to Redesign the Experience

[REDESIGN THE EXPERIENCE][Burger King Wants You to Eat a Big Mac]
Joey Coleman (01:27):
Through years of eating at restaurants, taking advantage of the drive-thru when I was on a road trip, or even just indulging myself with takeout on a night that I didn’t feel I had the time – or the desire – to cook dinner, I saw something the other day that not only stopped me in my tracks, but I thought that you would find it particularly interesting Dan, due to your past career with McDonald’s.

Dan Gingiss (01:50):
Well, you definitely have my attention, sir. What did you see this time?

Joey Coleman (01:56):
Well, I came across an article on the Gloucestershire Live website.

Dan Gingiss (02:04):
Woah!

Joey Coleman (02:04):
I wondered if I could catch you with that one!

Dan Gingiss (02:06):
The Gloucestershire Live website? Pray tell what is that?

Joey Coleman (02:11):
Yeah. So basically it came up in my newsfeed and I clicked through to read the story, and I must confess I’m not a regular reader of the Gloucestershire website. And I think I’m saying that properly, so correct me if I’m wrong our friends in the UK, but the story I saw was about a statement released by Burger King in the United Kingdom, on the Eve of their most recent lockdown due to COVID-19. And the statement read as follows that I’m directly quoting their release:

Joey Coleman (02:39):
“Order from McDonald’s. We never thought we’d be asking you to do this. Just like we never thought we’d be encouraging you to order from KFC, Subway, Domino’s Pizza, Pizza Hut, Five Guys, Greg’s, Taco Bell, Papa John’s, Leon, or any of the other independent food outlets, too numerous to mention here. In short, from any of our sister food chains – fast, or not so fast. We never thought we’d be asking you to do this, but restaurants, employing thousands of staff really need your support at this moment. So if you want to help, keep treating yourself to tasty meals through home delivery, takeaway, or drive through. Getting a Whopper is always best, but ordering a Big Mac is also not such a bad thing. Take care. Team Burger King, UK.

Dan Gingiss (03:32):
Wow man. I got, like, a tear in my eye.

Joey Coleman (03:36):
I mean, talk about in the world of press releases. Like how many press releases are written every day that no one reads because they are boring and drivel, and just, you know, feel like they were written by a robot that had zero empathy. But this one, I was like, wow, this is it. That’s pulling the heart. You know, “all the feels” as the kids say, right? Yeah.

Dan Gingiss (03:58):
Well, and this was also posted in social media all over the place, uh, went viral and uh, I actually not only saw the original post, but they ended up adding more of their local competitors in a comment underneath it because I think some people responded and they said, Hey, don’t forget about this one or this one. And they started naming all these hamburger places I’ve never heard of before. But so I’m just assuming that they’re UK places. But I think obviously the sentiment is really cool. I, one of the things that I learned at McDonald’s it’s the first and only time that I worked for a leader brand L E a D E R brand, as opposed to a follower brand, you know, Discover, Humana there. Those are follower brands that are not the largest in their market. And the thing is, is that basically when you’re the leader brand, it actually tends to limit your flexibility in terms of doing creative things like this, because everyone’s chasing you and waiting for you to make a mistake. And so what ended up happening certainly at McDonald’s was it, there was just this very conservative protectionism of the brand that they would have never done something like this. Whereas

Joey Coleman (05:11):
Yeah, I think it’s, it’s hard to be creative if you, when you’re the 900 pound gorilla in the room.

Dan Gingiss (05:17):
Yeah. And I think burger King, what’s cool about this is what do they have to lose to do this? I mean, it’s certainly ambitious. It’s different unique. It got people talking. And my hope for them is that it lifted their brand. I mean, that’s the, as the marketer in me, that’s the only thing I would worry about is like, man, you just listed every one of your competitors. Let’s make sure people remember that this is a Burger King ad, but from all the press this got, I think they did.

Joey Coleman (05:44):
Absolutely. And here’s the thing your customers know who your competitors are. Okay. Burger King, like Burger King, doesn’t really need to worry about, geez, we listed Papa John’s in that press release. I everybody’s got, they already knew Papa John’s existed. Right. And so I think this idea of acknowledging the reality is really important. I know we’ve talked about it in past episodes, but it’s like if you go into a store and you’re traveling and you’re like, Hey, I need to get a, a car adapter for my phone or a car charger for my phone. And they’re like, Oh, we don’t have that in this store. When I say, “well, do you know anywhere nearby that might have one?” it doesn’t hurt your brand to be honest and say, actually, there’s another, you know, cell phone store, two blocks away that might, it helps your brand because you’ve helped me solve a problem. And I think the reality here is the folks at Team Burger King in the UK have realized that they have a huge problem. And the huge problem may have is people are not eating out anymore. They are not going to restaurants. And a lot of people are scared to even do take out or drive through at the restaurants. And so by saying, Hey, whether it’s us or at one of our competitors, we kind of don’t care. Just keep going to restaurants because they want to condition the behavior. What we’re already seeing across a lot of different industries is that the COVID 19 pandemic experience is changing behaviors, at a human level, much faster than we’ve ever experienced before. I mean, you have plenty of people in the medical world that would have told you that telemedicine was 20 years away. Well, not until 2020, because now it’s right now, everybody wants telemedicine. You had plenty of people in the education world saying, well, there’s no way we could do virtual schooling for elementary school students. And yet almost every school in the United States, and in many countries around the world, has at least experimented with some level of virtual schooling over the course of the last few months. And so I think the reality is when your category is suffering, when your entire part in the marketplace is suffering, you know, drastic times call for drastic measures.

Dan Gingiss (08:04):
Well, yeah and also I would say that more generally and not pandemic specific is burger King understands that just because someone is a burger King customer, does it mean that burger King is the only restaurant that they ever go-to ever? I mean, in fact, most of the time, that’s not true. I remember, uh, I think we may have talked about this once before, but I, uh, I had an ill-fated experience of buying a restaurant franchise that never ended up opening. [inaudible]

Joey Coleman (08:37):
I don’t think I’ve ever heard this story, ladies and gentlemen, we’ll put a pin in this for next season. This is brand new to me. Right?

Dan Gingiss (08:45):
In any event, one of the goals that I had, this was in downtown Chicago ,was just getting onto people’s rotations because you have all these people that work in the city and they go out to lunch day and I knew they weren’t going to come to my place every day. I couldn’t expect them to come five days a week, but man, if I could get them once a week, that was huge because, and then the next day they’re going to go to my competitor. And the day after that, they’re going to go to a different competitor. But if I could get them once a week, that would make my business. So burger King understands that. And like you said, they understand that it’s not like we’re sharing some secret that McDonald’s is our competitor. Like people already know that.

Joey Coleman (09:22):
Absolutely. And I think at the end of the day, what we need more of in business is the acknowledgement of the reality. Let’s stop pretending that the customer is just foolish, that they’re just blind to the realities of life. You know, your customer is shopping at your competitors as well. I don’t care what industry you’re in. I don’t care what brand you’re is. They have sampled the goods elsewhere. Okay. Now they’ve decided to come with you, but to your point in the restaurant industry, they’re not coming every day and that’s okay. You probably don’t want them coming to your restaurant every day, right? That’s a different subset of customer that you have to,

Dan Gingiss (10:02):
They made a movie about that, where the guy went to McDonald’s every day didn’t turn out very well for him, not so well. So,

Joey Coleman (10:07):
Well, I think at the end of the day, we need to realize that getting our customers to make purchases in our category is almost as important as getting them to make purchases from us. Or at least it’s a close second. And I think the other thing that we want to recognize is that the times are changing. And if you don’t start to acknowledge that reality, you’re missing the point. So what can we learn from this story and Burger King UK encouraging their customers to, Oh, give money to the competition? Well, we can learn this COVID-19 has caused incredible stress in the lives of people around the world, from our health to our habits, the massive changes we’ve experienced over the last nine to 10 months have impacted all of us in obvious and not so obvious ways. And the reality is that dozens of industries are struggling, not just individual businesses, I’m talking about entire industries. And when an industry is struggling as is the case with the restaurant industry, for example, it’s not about saving a specific location, or a specific store, specific branch, we all need to think broader about what we can do to save an entire industry. By doing something small, like picking up takeout or spreading the love across several different restaurants, instead of just your signature, favorite place to eat, we can all play a role in keeping things moving forward. So consider what you’re going to do to help your industry navigate this pandemic era, consider what you’re going to do to help grow your industry, not just your specific business. And as you think about your meal planning over the holidays, consider picking up some takeout from your favorite restaurant and bring it home to your family. Not only will you feed your loved ones in a safe and healthy way, but you’ll contribute to feeding those restaurant employees. And in fact, the entire restaurant industry with your patronage.

[SEGMENT INTRO – BOOK REPORT]
Joey Coleman (12:10):
We’re excited to give you an overview of an important book you should know about as well as share some of our favorite passages as part of our next Book Report.

[BOOK REPORT][The Visual Sale by Marcus Sheridan and Tyler Lessard]
Joey Coleman (12:22):
Dan, as we wrap up 2020 and think about the future of customer communications, do you think businesses and organizations will need to use more or less video?

Dan Gingiss (12:34):
Well, you know, it pains me to say this, but I do believe that the answer is obviously more and it pains me because, uh, I radically for a guy that loves podcasting, and loves being on stage, I’m still not very comfortable on video. And you know, my mom will tell you, even as a kid, I never liked my picture getting taken. And it’s still not very comfortable for me, but I do think for companies and for brands, it’s a must-have.

Joey Coleman (13:01):
Yeah. And I didn’t think for a minute that Mrs. Gingiss was going to say you had a face for radio. Okay. So don’t worry. I was not thinking that!

Dan Gingiss (13:09):
I’m sure you weren’t thinking that ever!

Joey Coleman (13:11):
I appreciate that. And I think it’s one of those things where it’s kind of like flossing, everybody knows they should be doing it, but that step of getting from not doing it to starting to doing it, to doing it regularly, feels like a big leap for…

Dan Gingiss (13:25):
Doing it well…

Joey Coleman (13:26):
and doing it well, right.

Dan Gingiss (13:28):
Because even regularly doesn’t necessarily get you there.

Joey Coleman (13:30):
Totally, totally. Which is why I’m super excited to share the newest book by our mutual friend, Marcus Sheridan, as part of this episode’s Book Report.

Dan Gingiss (13:42):
Okay. So you and I both love Marcus. Can’t say enough about him. I joke with him that I’ve sold more copies of his book. They ask you answer than of my own books because I’ve recommended it and bought it for so many people. And he is also, and I say this with great respect, even to you, my friend, Joey, cause you know, I’ve heard this before. I’ve said this before he is my single favorite speaker, the closing keynote that he did at Social Media Marketing World. And I think 2017 was still to this day, the best keynote I’ve ever seen. And that’s saying a lot, I’ve been, I’ve been to a lot of keynotes.

Joey Coleman (14:23):
I totally, I totally agree with you. World-class I have, I was not in the room for that keynote. And I’ve heard about that keynote from dozens of people. Yeah. Marcus is a gem. When Marcus talks you should listen, which is ironic because our loyal listeners will remember. We shared Marcus’ work before, when we talked about his first book, They Ask, You Answer.

Dan Gingiss (14:45):
And that of course would be back all the way in season one, episode four, for those keeping score at home.

Joey Coleman (14:52):
Well, you really had to go back into the archives for that one rain man. I love it. Well, yes, it has been a while since we’ve shared, Marcus’ writing with our listeners, but frankly, any time Marcus put something down on paper, I want to read it. And so when he published this new book, I was all over it. In fact, I pre-ordered my copy of the book before it was even published. So I could dive in the day it was released. And I devoured this book. The book is titled, “The Visual Sale: How to Use Video to Explode Sales, Drive Marketing, and Grow Your Business in a Virtual World. Now I realize it’s a bit of a brain twister to think about reading a book about videos, but the reality is most business owners. I talk to know that they need to be doing more with video, but they aren’t exactly sure how to create a culture of video within their organization, which is why I absolutely love Marcus’s message. Now, before I steal too much of his thunder, here’s Marcus giving us an overview of his new book.

Marcus Sheridan (15:54):
I am Marcus Sheridan, one of the authors of the book, along with Tyler Lasara and here’s the thing my friends we know at this point, at least certainly most of us that as organizations and businesses, if we want to be successful in 2021 and beyond, we must show it. Can’t just tell it. We’ve got to show it. So we’ve got all these companies around the world that are looking to create a culture of video and do video and be more effective with video. And the thing about it is there’s a lot of books out there that talk about how you can be a blogger and how you can build your brand with video, but they don’t speak to businesses and organizations. And certainly they don’t come from a perspective of sales first marketing second. And that’s one of the big points to the book. We’re going to start with videos that actually get results. The types of videos, starting with sales, like videos that your sales team will truly get excited about integrating enter their sales process. And then of course the marketing videos, types of videos that are going to get you the most revolt results in terms of traffic leads and ultimately sales. We want to also show you in this work, other companies that have done this incredibly well. So we’re going to share with you multiple B to B and B to C case studies. So you can see yourself and these businesses realize that no, you’re not the exception that yes, video absolutely does apply to you regardless of what you sell B to B, B to C service, big, small, we’ve all got to get on this train that is video. And then finally, we’re going to look at in this work, how you can create a culture of video in house. And that’s such a big key because it’s one thing to outsource your video to another organization. It’s an entire different thing to in-source it, to produce your own content because the future of digital is going to be in house ownership of content. We also have a couple of bonus sections there about how to do more effective virtual events and virtual selling for your sales team, especially in a post COVID world. So if you’re looking to do amazing things with video and visual, make sure you check it out, The Visual Sale.

Dan Gingiss (18:48):
We can’t just tell it, we’ve got to show it. I love it when Marcus said that, because let’s be honest, seeing is believing. It’s always been that way. And video allows you to see the business or individual that you’re dealing with in a way that frankly, email or taxed or direct mail just can’t accomplish. And that’s why we said at the beginning here, that video is and is going to continue to be an important part of communications going forward for every business. And I think one of the things that maybe is not said here is what are we talking about video? We’re not talking about yet another television commercial. I remember very early days in Facebook, a company, you know, saying to me, Hey, we should put our TV commercials on Facebook. No, actually they didn’t want to see it on TV. Yeah. So what Marcus is talking about is genuine communication and he is, you know, the number one sales guy and, and teaching salespeople all over the world. And he’s talking about making a one-to-one connection with somebody through video, not a one-to-mass video type situation.

Joey Coleman (20:07):
Absolutely. And I think video, it just allows for such a richer narrative and a deeper narrative. And as you point out Dan, a more personalized narrative, it’s definitely the way businesses need to be moving and they need to be moving strategically that way. You know, this is one of those books that had me highlighting passage after passage to the point where I was almost like, Oh my gosh, am I going to highlight the entire book? But before we get into some of our favorite parts of the book, I think it’s only fair to let Marcus share the epiphany he had when it came to using videos to connect with customers. And he did it in an industry that let’s be honest, before Marcus, was not that well known for its use of video. Here’s what Marcus had to say:

Marcus Sheridan (20:55):
I used to be a pool guy. Wait a minute. What does a pool guy know about video? You see, for years, my job was cut and dry in ground swimming pool shoppers would call our company river pools and spas. Then in most cases I would make the long drive to their home with the intention to yes, sell them a swimming pool more often than not. When I would knock on the front door of a home for one of these calls, I’d hear a child’s voice in the background, yell at something to the effect of mom, dad, pool guys here. So that was me, just the pool guy, no name, no face just to knock on the door. But then one night after we had embraced the philosophy of what I now call the visual sale, everything changed. You see on that particular occasion, as I knocked on the door, I heard a child in the background say, mom, dad, the guy on the video is here. And eyebrow immediately raised the child, knew my face. It wasn’t just another pool guy. I was more than that, much more, but the story doesn’t stop there a year or so later at the end of my career as a swimming pool sales guy, I had another occasion when I walked up to her front door for a sales appointment and something absolutely magical happened. Mom, dad, Marcus from the video is here. I had a name, I had a face. They knew me. It was because of this experience. My eyes were opened to a definitive reality – the visual sale is real.

Dan Gingiss (22:33):
I love this concept of video creating a connection before you ever get to meet in person with your customer. And man, have we seen a lot of that in 2020, right? Where we’ve had to be virtual. And uh, and you know, I said before that I don’t love video. And it’s kind of funny to say that in 2020, because heck I’ve spent my whole darn year on video. And so have we all. And I think what we can take away from that is that we’re all probably better at this video stuff than we think we are. And we now know what it’s like to try to get to know someone and establish a connection and establish a relationship when you’re not in the same room with them. And we should be able to carry those learnings even into a future where hopefully not everything has to be virtual. So Joey, there were a lot of things that I liked about this book and it’s obviously chock full of tips and strategies and case studies for using video in marketing and sales activities. But that being said, I wanted to share a passage that is more specifically dealing with using video to create remarkable customer experiences after the sale. So from book, and I quote:

Dan Gingiss (23:47):
One of the easiest ways to delight customers is to use authentic video content, to break down the digital divide between the people within your respective organizations, the more familiar they are with the real people across your teams, the more connected they’ll feel to your brand. And the more likely they are to go to bat for you. If a customer has a dedicated account manager, chances are they’ve met them in person or via video conferencing, but what about the scores of others across different teams who also contribute to their success? The passionate exacts, the dedicated developers to heroic service reps and even the amazing accountant who is trying to make their procurement process as seamless as possible. There are numerous ways to get your people on camera, to introduce themselves to new accounts, much like creating micro demos for your products. You can also create micro intros for people across your company that can be used in different ways as needed.

Joey Coleman (24:40):
Oh, I love that passage, Dan, you know that whole idea, micro demos. I’ve, I’ve seen those, Oh, so many different companies in so many different ways. And I think that’s how the majority of companies today that are using video and are using a lot of video, think about it. They think about using video as part of the marketing process or the sales process. What Marcus is encouraging us to do is to go beyond the sale, go beyond when we’re in the actual relationship in those first hundred days, we talk about how can you incorporate video? So I absolutely love it. You know, one of the things I particularly loved about this book, Dan is it has so many case studies that beautifully show… see, see what I did there?!

Dan Gingiss (25:24):
Yeah. Okay. I get it. A book on video that shows.

Joey Coleman (25:28):
Yeah. Yeah, exactly. Okay. Well, one of the companies that is profiled in the book, uh, with a case study is called lucid chart. And as Marcus explains, quote:

Joey Coleman (25:40):
Their exceptionally funny and surprisingly educational YouTube series called lucid chart explains the internet offers dozens of one minute videos explaining different topics, concepts, or pop culture movements in a way that is fast paced, very fun. And oddly addictive while the topic of each video has nothing to do with lucid charts products. The big reveal after 55 seconds is that the tool they used to illustrate and visualize the content in the video was none other than lucid chart. So not only did you just learn how Luke Skywalker is related to Princess Leia, you discovered a great new tool that could help your team at work, create equally awesome diagrams, and charts, and data visualizations for great collaboration. What’s more thanks to all of the sharing and fanfare lucid charts, product overview and tutorial videos have been viewed more than 1 million times.

Dan Gingiss (26:40):
Wowzers! And of course I knew you would find the Star Wars example in the book Joey. Right.

Joey Coleman (26:45):
Very true.

Dan Gingiss (26:45):
It is indeed a great case study for how to showcase a product without making it feel like a sales pitch.

Joey Coleman (26:52):
So true. I so agree with you, Dan, and yes, if you get the chance friends go to YouTube search lucid chart, explain Star Wars, and you can see the great example that Marcus referenced in that quote. And by the way, we’ll also link to it in the show notes at ExperienceThisShow.com. So here’s the scoop. You may be using video now, or you may not, but for sure you will need to be using it more in the future. Get ahead of the competition, avoid making beginner mistakes and learn how to create a culture of video within your organization. By picking up a copy of The Visual Sale: How to Use Video to Explode Sales, Drive Marketing, and Grow Your Business in a Virtual World. Friends, it’s a fast read. It’s an entertaining read. It’s a knowledge giving read, and it’s a book that can and should serve as a roadmap when it comes to your strategic plans for 2021. And since it’s Christmas week and I’m feeling festive, let’s just say this, we’re going to call a little audible here. Uh, the first three people to share this episode of Experience This on social media and tag me, or Dan, or both of us.

Dan Gingiss (28:00):
Uh, but if it’s Twitter, you better tag me.

Joey Coleman (28:02):
It’s so true. So true. If it’s Twitter tag, Dan hashtag Dan’s the Twitter guy. Uh, but the first three people that share this episode on social media and encourage people to check out Marcus’s book, the visual sale will get their very own signed copy of the book, courtesy of The Experience This! Show!

Dan Gingiss (28:21):
Wait a minute, what do they want? Marcus’s book signed by us for?

Joey Coleman (28:25):
No, no, no… signed by Marcus, but who knows? Maybe we’ll sell it too, but yeah, it’ll be a surprise folks. So share away and let’s help everyone. We know get better at video in 2021.

[Partnership with Avtex] Neen James, Shep Hyken, and Rohit Bhargava – Three of a Kind!
Dan Gingiss (28:44):
What do Neen James, Shep Hyken, and Rohit Bhargava have in common?

Joey Coleman (28:49):
Well, they are the only people, you know, with those first names?!

Dan Gingiss (28:56):
I see what you did there… Neen, Shep, Rohit. Yeah, actually that is definitely true.

Joey Coleman (29:01):
unique names,

Dan Gingiss (29:02):
but not what I was thinking.

Joey Coleman (29:03):
Oh, okay.

Dan Gingiss (29:04):
So they are actually the first three celebrity contestants on our new game show – Experience Points brought to you by our partners at Avtex, who transform customer experience through CX design and orchestration of

Joey Coleman (29:20):
And what fantastic contestants they were. You can see how Neen, and Shep, and Rohit did as they brought their customer experience strategies and wisdom to bear playing three games that we designed to test their knowledge in both an entertaining and fun way. And in the process, you can also see them win prize money for their favorite charity.

Dan Gingiss (29:42):
It’s the most fun you can have talking about customer experience folks. So take some time to check out the games played by our first three contestants, Neen, Shep, and Rohit, and stay tuned for more customer experience professionals like Jay Baer, Scott McCain, Marquessa Pettway, Amanda Kwok, Jesse Cole, and more in the weeks to come.

Joey Coleman (30:05):
Now you can watch episodes of experience points on YouTube. Just check out the Avtex Solutions channel or online at www.ExperiencePointsGame.com that’s ExperiencePointsGame.com.

Dan Gingiss (30:21):
You can also listen to the games on your favorite podcast app by searching for Avtex Experience Points, not to be confused with that gamer podcast called “Experience Points,” make sure to include Avtex that’s A-V-T-E-X in your search, but don’t worry. We’ll also link to it in our show notes.

Joey Coleman (30:38):
We so hope you enjoyed the show and Experience Points!

[SEGMENT INTRO – THIS JUST HAPPENED]
Joey Coleman (30:44):
We love telling stories and sharing key insights you can implement, or avoid, based on our experiences. Can you believe that This Just Happened?!

[THIS JUST HAPPENED][What To Do When Your Customers Are Watching You?!]
Dan Gingiss (30:57):
As you know Dan, I’ve just moved back to my childhood home of Fort Dodge, Iowa. And while my family is adjusting to our new setup here, my extended family that already lived here in town is adjusting to some of my habits and behaviors as well. And to be honest, the one they’ve commented on the most is how much the ups and FedEx drivers must love my family.

Dan Gingiss (31:21):
Oh my gosh. I can relate to that man every day, something else arriving at the doorstep. And I tell you, especially on the cold days, like today in Chicago, I always, if I see them, I always try to open up the door and yell out. Thank you as they’re running back to their truck because, uh, man, they do yeoman’s work. And uh, and they’re certainly filling up my doorstep as well.

Joey Coleman (31:42):
They really do. And I think as I don’t know about you, our effort to have delivery of things has dramatically increased in the COVID era. I look at it as it allows us to continue to kind of function and get the things we need in our house, but we’re not exposing other people to us or being exposed by other people when we go out. So lots of deliveries coming these days, which is actually why I wanted to talk to you about something that we’ve talked about a little bit in past episodes. And that is the experience created by your partners – in this case, fine delivery drivers at FedEx, at UPS, and the US Post Office. But specifically I wanted to talk about what the drivers are doing when no one is watching or at least they think no one is watching. This is starting to sound a little creepy, Joey. All right. Sorry about that, Dan, let me explain. Uh, I saw a video the other day of a delivery driver dropping off a package for an elderly person. And then the driver proceeded to shovel the snow off of the porch and the steps to the house. Now, to be clear, the person who lived in the house didn’t see this happening live, but they did see it later when they reviewed the video feed from their Ring cam.

Dan Gingiss (33:00):
Ahh, yes, I saw this video as well. And for those that may not know, Ring is a company that makes a video doorbell system and it allows people to record what is happening when people approach their door to ring the bell and drop off packages, et cetera. And you know, sometimes it does catch people doing things that they don’t know that it’s catching them to. And sometimes those things are things that they don’t want to be caught doing. And in this particular case, it was something that, uh, it turned out. It was very nice that someone caught this person doing.

Joey Coleman (33:34):
Yeah. I mean, there’s certainly been the, the negative videos. We’ve probably all seen the drivers throwing the package over the fence or kicking the box up onto the front steps or whatever it may be. But I know I also saw some during COVID where they had videos of drivers, you know, they had left snacks for the drivers or hand sanitizer. And I even saw one where there was like a little box that encouraged them to do a Tik TOK dance. And like when they stepped on the box, it started playing the music and you saw a bunch of drivers kind of walking around the box and then eventually a driver comes along and does it, and they’ve obviously got it all on video, which is just fascinating. When we think about this idea that drivers are being filmed in front of people’s homes when the people might not even be in the house.

Dan Gingiss (34:20):
Yeah. And it does, uh, I mean, as I mentioned, there’s a little bit of a creepiness factor to it, but it does sort of beg the question of how many opportunities do we have to maybe find out what other people are doing when they don’t think that they’re being watched. So I’m kind of thinking about employees, for example. Right, right now we trust that all of our employees are diligently working from home at their home offices and sitting at their desks all day and stuff. But yeah, we really don’t know.

Joey Coleman (34:48):
And we don’t want to obviously get too Big Brother-ish about it and that’s not why I wanted to bring up the story. But what I think is fascinating is when we recognize that we are “on all the time,” that is the delivery driver is being watched. Even if no, one’s there, it creates some opportunities for creating remarkable experiences, because if you know that person isn’t there, but you know, they have a ring cam and you do a little dance or you say a little message or you even trust wave. It creates some personal connection. Now, what I think is really interesting is if we take it one step further and this does get a little Big Brother-ish, but to be frank, it wouldn’t surprise me if this started to happen, Ring at the company that makes, uh, kind of the leader in the video solutions is owned by Amazon and Amazon has been making a big push as I’m sure you and our listeners are well aware of Dan to create their own delivery service, where they have their own airplanes, their own trucks doing the delivery. So they’re kind of weaning themselves off of FedEx and ups in the U S post office to have their own kind of independent carriers they partner with. I could see a scenario where Amazon, because they have access to the video feed from ring, started to match up the ability to see their drivers, making the deliveries and really do some quality control on the full customer experience that they can’t currently do with UPS and FedEx.

Dan Gingiss (36:24):
Well, yeah, and I, I mean, as we know today, the drivers generally take pictures of the packages and, and you can see them, uh, on your Amazon account or you get a, a text or a, uh, an alert on the app. And I think that’s a good step that, that certainly makes customers feel good. But Amazon does have a last mile problem that, that you know, is well documented that, that, you know, they control pretty much the entire experience right up until the end, because the person delivering to you is often not an Amazon employee. Now we have started to see those ubiquitous Amazon vans around our neighborhood. I don’t know if you see them around yours and I, I’m pretty sure those are Amazon employees, but I think you’re right, that this may be something where, uh, Amazon wants to, like you said, do some quality control for the part that maybe they don’t oversee now or, or can’t control in any way.

Joey Coleman (37:24):
Well, absolutely. And I think psychologists would tell us that primacy and latency theory is at play. We remember the first experience we have with a brand and the last experience we have with a brand. And one of the big challenges that Amazon has, which you allude to, is the lack of control over the last mile. The last experience that we have is with the UPS driver, or the FedEx driver, or the Post Office driver, increasingly more of the folks that are coming out of the Amazon delivery van, which is great. And, you know, we could have a whole separate conversation about the way they’ve structured that business and that business model. But the reality is Amazon has been built from day one as a company that placed high emphasis on customer experience. And I just think it’s fascinating to think about how technology merges all these things together. I know in our last episode, episode 117 – even I can remember that one friends! – we talked about AI and how AI could be used. I could see an AI sitting on top of this that was looking at deliveries and the behaviors, and maybe even starting to incentivize drivers for doing creative things, for doing more personalized things when quote unquote they’re on video to create an even more interesting or maybe even viral story.

Dan Gingiss (38:41):
Oh, for sure. And I mean, the, the, the companies that are creative about it and realize that every part of the experience is important. And what’s fascinating here is that this last mile piece is maybe among the most important parts of the experience for the actual customer, but yet the farthest away from the actual company delivering it. And so I definitely think that there are some interesting options.

Joey Coleman (39:10):
Absolutely. And let’s be candid. This isn’t just an issue for Amazon. This is an issue for every company that delivers in the e-commerce space. And as we find ourselves in the holiday season where I’m sure when it’s all said and done more deliveries will have been made in the month of December of 2020 than at any other time in FedEx or UPS or US Post Office history, the reality is more and more people are moving into delivery models and more and more people are getting cameras, whether that’s a Ring camera, security camera, even just the cam on their phone. And so there’s a lot more opportunity for these worlds to collide. So how does this apply to your business? Here’s the question? Do you have situations where your employees are participating in customer related activities that may not be seen live by the customer – but might be being filmed? Do your employees do things while wearing their uniforms or going about their daily activities that could be captured on video to either help, or hurt, your brand image? If you do, and frankly, even if you don’t, you should be talking to your employees about the way video is being used to capture and share evidence of both negative and positive experiences, and then decide what you can do to make sure your team is well-trained and prepared to deliver these remarkable experiences… even if they think no one else is watching!

[SEASON SIX CONCLUSION]
Joey Coleman (40:41):
We did it. Another season of the Experience This! Show is coming to a wrap with this, our final episode of 2020, and our concluding episode of season six.

Dan Gingiss (40:53):
What a crazy year 2020 has been – from pandemics to protests, from lockdowns to launches, from live streams to contactless delivery, to zoom calls, this year has had it all and then some!

Joey Coleman (41:07):
And season six would not have happened without the support and participation of many remarkable people, including our featured guests who submitted audio recordings to add to the conversation, our wonderful book report authors and the loyal listeners who shared their experiences for us to incorporate into our listener stories throughout the season, which we loved. And we want to have more of next season. So keep thinking about submitting those listener.

Dan Gingiss (41:34):
We also couldn’t have made the season happen without our incredible long-term partners at Avtex and in particular, their fantastic director of revenue, marketing, Marshall Salisbury, Marshall, and his team, including Andy, Beth, Joseph, Greta, and John has supported the Experience This! Show for three seasons via their partnership and 2020 marked a new endeavor for all of us as we produced a fun new game show, Experience Points.

Joey Coleman (42:00):
We also want to thank our longterm friends, that Yoko Co. – that’s Stacy, Max, and Chris – who year after year maintain and update the Experience This! Show.com website, where you can find our show notes and share your stories with us. We also need to give a special shout out to our new for 2020 sound engineer, Daniel Romero’s affectionately known as Dr. Podcast who helped us mix and master our weekly shows remotely. Since we couldn’t do the in studio recording, we’ve done because of COVID 19 folks, when there’s a pandemic going on, it helps to have a doctor on your podcast team.

Dan Gingiss (42:35):
It does indeed. And we certainly want to give a shout out to Joey’s law school roommate, Davin Seaman, who continues to serve as the composer of all of our show music, artfully creating new segment trailers whenever we come up with new segments that we want to share with all of you!

Joey Coleman (42:50):
And it wouldn’t be a proper roundup of thank yous and gratitude if we didn’t conclude by thanking all of our wonderful loyal listeners. The way you continue to show up every week on iTunes, or Spotify, or Stitcher, or wherever you’re listening to us, is the driving force behind our desire to continue producing this show. We are so thankful that you enable us to continue to do something that Dan and I love, and we greatly appreciate your consistent and ongoing support.

Dan Gingiss (43:20):
So thanks for a fantastic season six. And we’ll see you back in early February of 2021 for our seventh season of Experience This!

Joey Coleman (43:30):
I think that’ll make it our lucky season won’t it Dan? Season seven? Our lucky season? Well, rest assured that we’re already thinking about fun things to share with you for your weekly dose of positive customer experience. See you in 2021.

[SHOW OUTRO]
Joey Coleman (43:50):
Wow. Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (43:54):
We know there are tons of podcasts to listen to, magazines and books to read, reality TV to watch. We don’t take for granted that you’ve decided to spend some quality time listening to the two of us.

Joey Coleman (44:03):
We hope you enjoyed our discussions, and if you do, we’d love to hear about it. Come on over to ExperienceThis Show.com and let us know what segments you enjoyed, what new segments you’d like to hear. This show is all about experience, and we want you to be part of the Experience This! Show!

Dan Gingiss (44:21):
Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more.

Joey Coleman (44:25):
Experience

Dan Gingiss (44:25):
This!

Episode 114 – What Are They They Thinking? Getting Inside Your Customer’s Mind

Join us as we discuss new ways to get inside your customer’s imagination, little details that help deliver big outcomes, and the excitement that comes from figuring out if something is real or not..

Imagining, Reading, and Faking – Oh My!

[Book Report] Inside Your Customer’s Imagination by Chip Bell

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

Disruption – by Chip Bell (featured in the Inside Your Customer’s Imagination Songbook)

• Chip Bell – world-renowned authority on customer loyalty and service innovation
• Inside Your Customer’s Imagination – 5 Secrets for Creating Breakthrough Products, Services, and Solutions – by Chip Bell
Disruption as performed by Chip Bell (from the Inside Your Customer’s Imagination Song Book by Chip Bell)
• Inside Your Customer’s Imagination Songbook by Chip Bell
• Episode 33, Season 1 Would You Do That to Your Mother? by Jeanne Bliss
• Book Bonuses for Inside Your Customer’s Imagination by Chip Bell

[This Just Happened] Help Customers Read the Fine Print

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Auditor’s Office – Webster County (Iowa)
• Episode 60, Season 3 – The Warby Parker Experience

[Crossover Segment] Experience Points – Playing Fake or Fact with Neen James

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Episode 47, Season 2Attention Pays by Neen James
• Experience Points – presented by Avtex
• Neen James – leadership expert, best-selling author, and world class speaker on attention, productivity, and focus
• Fake or Fact?! – Celebrity Guest Neen James – Experience Points
• What Happened? – Celebrity Guest Neen James – Experience Points
• Think Fast – Celebrity Guest Neen James – Experience Points

Host Contact Information

Email Dan: Dan@dangingiss.com

Tweet Dan Gingiss: @DGingiss

Email Joey: JoeyC@JoeyColeman.com

DanGingiss.com

JoeyColeman.com

Subscribe to Experience This on Apple Podcasts

Episode Transcript

Download an unedited transcript of Episode 114 here or read it below:

[SHOW INTRO]
Dan Gingiss (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:08):
Where you’ll find inspiring examples of customer experience, great stories of customer service, and tips on how to make your customers love you even more!

Dan Gingiss (00:18):
Always upbeat, and definitely entertaining customer retention expert, Joey Coleman

Joey Coleman (00:23):
and social media expert, Dan Gingiss serve as your hosts for a weekly dose of positive customer experience.

Dan Gingiss (00:30):
So hold onto your headphones. It’s time to Experience This!

[EPISODE 114 INTRO]
Joey Coleman (00:39):
Get ready for another episode of the Experience This! Show

Dan Gingiss (00:44):
Join us as we discuss new ways to get inside your customer’s imagination, little details that help deliver big outcomes. And the excitement that comes from figuring out if something is real or not!

Joey Coleman (00:59):
Imagining, Reading, and Faking. Oh My!

[SEGMENT INTRO – BOOK REPORT]
Joey Coleman (01:06):
We’re excited to give you an overview of an important book you should know about as well as share some of our favorite passages as part of our next Book Report.

[BOOK REPORT][Inside Your Customer’s Imagination by Chip Bell]
Joey Coleman (01:18):
Earlier this fall, longtime friend of the Experience This Show and fellow customer experience speaker and author Chip Bell published his newest book – Inside Your Customer’s Imagination.

Dan Gingiss (01:31):
You know, Chip has actually written a staggering 24 books so far in his career, which if I’m not mistaken, Joey, even with your next book. And my next book is still six times or complaint.

Joey Coleman (01:46):
Yeah. 24 books is a really impressive body of work to say the least. And while we could certainly talk about any number of those books, what I’d love to focus on is his newest book for our discussion here today. And given that Chip has delivered so many different insights about customer experience over the years, I thought we should let him describe this newest book in his own words.

Chip Bell (02:11):
Every organization on the planet knows the only way to compete is through new products, services, and solutions. Most organizations turn to their R&D facility or best practices from other organizations or innovation centers. But wise organizations recognize there is genius and insight and ingenuity and the side, the imagination of their customers. They look for ways to get the customer to open that door from the inside, allowing them access collaboration and co-creation where their customer. But the question becomes, how do you, how do you get a customer to want to open that door, to invite you in? I’ve studied the cultures of the most innovative companies in the world and found that characteristic of their cultures are five secrets, secrets that all not only apply to an organizational culture, but also apply to relationships, especially relationships with customers. They include curiosity, grounding, discovery, trust, and passion. My new book Inside Your Customer’s Imagination provides the tools, techniques, perspectives, to go inside your customer’s imagination. How do you use these five secrets to get the customer, to invite you in? you know, a lot of organizations that you thought invented their own pop products and services came from customers. How back cake pops at Starbucks or Splash Sticks or the Frisbee or the, the Egg McMuffin. They didn’t come from corporate. They come from customers, look for ways to go inside your customer’s imagination.

Joey Coleman (04:19):
Now I love how chip encourages us to go beyond the ideas in our organization and to collaborate on new ideas from our customers. You know, lots of groups talk about having a, a skunkworks or customer insights or voice of the customer programs. But I feel like what chip is talking about is kind of taking it to the next level. Don’t you think Dan?

Dan Gingiss (04:40):
Absolutely. And especially your loyal fans are going to have amazing ideas if you just ask them and you know, the restaurant examples are great, but also a little bit more obvious, right? I mean, Starbucks has basically built a brand on people creating basically any drink they want the way nanny combination, there’s billions of different drinks. You can order at a Starbucks, but even thinking about a company that doesn’t sell food. How about something like an Intuit, which has been known for years of having some of the most engaged customers that have all these communities around the internet that talk about how to make TurboTax and all their other products better because they love the programs and actually want to help innovate and what company would turn that down.

Joey Coleman (05:36):
Absolutely. And I think there are so many companies that because of budgets or because of head count or because of just activities that they have going on often feel well, we can’t really invest in the research and development or the R&D as much as we would like to when they’re missing the opportunity to have R&D from their actual customers and get them involved. And so I think what is really unique about Chip’s book or one of the things that is really unique about the book is he gives you a playbook for how to do this, how to tap into the imagination of your customers. Now on top of that, speaking of playbook, he actually gives you a song book. Now that would be a song book, Dan. So.

Dan Gingiss (06:20):
I like this guy already!

Joey Coleman (06:21):
I figured you might. So chip is a musician. And what he actually did is he composed a number of songs that go along with the theme of the book. And so he’s got a bunch of different songs that we can play, you know, that are kind of illustrating some of the principles that he outlines.

Dan Gingiss (06:40):
Fantastic. Well, without further ado, we got to give our listeners a little taste of one of these songs from the song book that Chip Bell created for his book.

Chip Bell (07:43):
[inaudible] (signing “Disruption” from the Songbook)

Joey Coleman (07:45):
Dan, I gotta say, I love the creativity behind this. Now we’ve had some fun here on the Experience This! Show with music. And we had a singing episode that we did for the holidays, and I’m always a fan of an author pushing the envelope to try new ways to provide a content experience for readers. I mean, books have been around for millennia. And so how do you make a book stand out while you look about having you consider having different bonuses and having an audio bonus that is not the audio book, but rather the song book I thought was a really creative way to create a fun content experience. Now, speaking of the content experience, I’d love to share my favorite passage from Chip’s book inside your customers’ imagination. This comes from the chapter titled practice, eccentric listening, and I quote, “Start with empathy. Empathy starts with simply attentively listening while asking yourself, what must my customer be feeling right now? How might I feel if our roles were reversed, empathy begins by caring enough to give undivided attention. Think about what undivided really means. Not broken into parts. Empathy is enhanced through a reflective response. Receptivity to the customer’s feelings enables you to provide a tailor made reflective response that says I’ve been there as well. This gesture, another way of saying I am similar to you promotes the kinship and closeness that is vital to customer trust. Now we have spoken about empathy so many times we continue to speak about empathy on the Experience This! Show. And I imagine most of our listeners would agree that empathy is important. What I love about this passage is that chip highlights the importance of undivided attention and the importance of a reflective response.

Dan Gingiss (09:42):
You know, I happened to be reminded when you were reading the beginning of that passage about how might I feel if our roles are reversed and what most of my customers be feeling way back in season one in episode 33, we talked about our friend Jean Bliss’s book, which was called, would you do that to your mother?

Speaker 2 (10:00):
And, you know, she was sort of asking a similar question of like, can you stop and think about what you’re doing here to your customer and how they might feel? And, you know, we’ve said many times on this show, we’re all customers in our real life. So it’s not like these quote unquote customers are quote unquote aliens from quote unquote outer space quotes, quote, unquote, that’s true, but they’re just like us because they are consumers in their daily lives. So it’s not that hard to get into the head of your customers. So let’s now go to chip bell himself, the author, and have him read his favorite passage from the book.

Chip Bell (10:44):
There’s a beautiful golf course at the beginning of my long driveway, my Lake front home backs up to the shoreline, but fronts, the 13th tee box, uh, Jack Nicholas designed PGA course, it’s the setting for many golf tournaments. While the 13th hole is breathtaking, you play full hundred and 34 yards straight into the Lake. It’s the 14th hole that gets the golfers laments in the bar at the end of an arduous 18 holes, almost the entire 14th hole is played over the water where the Lake shoreline cuts deep into the golf course. Despite the fact that it’s a mirror, 186 yard par three hole, many a golfer has been psychologically distracted by the giant water trap and had their golf balls land in the water. But the best golfers know a secret – focus only on the hole. And don’t get distracted by the fact that your golf ball will be flying over water. It is a strong lesson for co-creating with your customer. It starts by having a clear focus. You can work on collaboratively.

Joey Coleman (12:05):
It makes me feel like I’m on the golf course. And combining my passage with chips, I must say that I empathize with the feeling of losing your focus because of the fear of hitting a golf ball into the water hazard. I’ve been there. I get anxious in those settings. You know, what I think is fascinating is focus is certainly something we all know is incredibly important, but I wonder how often we work to enhance our focusing abilities, what we do to get better at something as important as focusing.

Dan Gingiss (12:35):
Wait, what were you saying there, Joey?

Joey Coleman (12:38):
Yeah, exactly. Exactly. Focus on focusing, thinking of you, focusing Dan, what was your favorite passage from the book?

Dan Gingiss (12:45):
Well, I particularly liked this one and here’s the quote, “The ritual happens thousands of times every day in restaurants around the country. You’re in the middle of your meal and the maitre D or manager approaches your table with the query. How is everything? And you politely respond fine unless something is really, really bad or really, really good. The Inquirer thinks an evaluation has been rendered by the customer. The customer believes a fair-weather friendly greeting has been delivered. The question is only a question in its form, not in its tent. Sure. It has a question Mark at the end, but that is just for show. Make sure if you’re asking a question, you’re genuinely curious and earnest to hear what the customer has to say.” And I loved this because we do ask questions all the time. It might be in a survey, it might be a passing. How are you doing today? And if you don’t care about the answer, then rephrase the question such that you do, because otherwise you’re just sort of wasting the other person’s time. And I love this example because how many times have we been asked, how is everything? And truly, I probably say fine every time, even if it is really, really good or really, really bad, because you know, I’m in the middle of the conversation or whatever. And so it is kind of a wasted question. I thought it was a really good call out.

Joey Coleman (14:08):
I agree. And I love that line. The question is only a question in its form, not its intent. And we felt that when somebody asks, Oh, how are you doing today? And you’re like, you actually don’t care. I know you are asking because you think it’s the plight or the appropriate thing to do imagine instead in a restaurant scenario saying of all the things you’ve tasted on your plate thus far, which one surprised you the most or which one was unexpected or which one would you like me to bring you a little bit more of these type of engaging questions, change the conversation and to be frank, that’s why I liked Chip’s book so much. You know, there are so many books to read when it comes to customer experience. And what I loved is that Chip is offering new angles on familiar messages. Now, certainly we’ve all heard about collaborating with our customers. We’ve heard about showing empathy about practicing focused, listening, really caring about the things our customers tell us. But for some reason, when I was reading Chip’s book, it helped me to see these topics with new eyes. And it gave me new found enthusiasm for doubling down on imaginative ways to enhance customer experiences. Make sure you pick up a copy of Inside Your Customer’s Imagination by Chip Bell and find ways to take your customer interactions to new and exciting places.

[SEGMENT INTRO – THIS JUST HAPPENED]
Joey Coleman (15:32):
We love telling stories and sharing key insights you can implement or avoid based on our experiences. Can you believe that This Just Happened?

[THIS JUST HAPPENED][Help Customers Read the Fine Print]
Joey Coleman (15:47):
Listeners know, I recently moved to my hometown where I grew up a Fort Dodge Iowa. And because I moved during election season, I had to register to vote because I wanted to do my civic duty and vote. So I wanted to register to vote, but long story short in order to do that and to make sure I was well taken care of in time to get my vote counted. I had to go to the auditor’s office. Have you ever been to the County auditor’s office Dan?

Dan Gingiss (16:17):
Good Lord No!

Joey Coleman (16:19):
Yeah, this is the first for me as well. I was like, where is the auditor’s office and what do I need to do? And so I went online and I found out the information that I needed and how I would basically be able to register to vote and to vote at the same place at the same time while I was registering. So I was like, Oh, this is great. I can do my civic duty and we get everything taken care of. And when I walked into the auditor’s office, I observed something that I have never seen before on the reception desk, there was a little jar of pens. Now I’ve been in plenty of places where there’s a little jar of pens, but there was also a jar filled with reading glasses of different prescriptions that were available for public use. So that I presume basically somebody who’s going to read a government form or the fine print, and they’ve forgotten their glasses at home, or they need some to be able to read the forms they’re filling out. They can select a pair of reading glasses from the jar in case they don’t have theirs with them.

Dan Gingiss (17:21):
Now, setting aside the fact that during COVID I ain’t touching no,

Joey Coleman (17:25):
probably not a good idea during COVID we’ll avoid any commentary on the state of Iowa and their COVID response friends. Okay. We’re we’re just, we’re going to let that pass for now.

Dan Gingiss (17:35):
Yes, but overall, I think that’s a really interesting and thoughtful idea. I mean, I’ve seen the, like the reverse where they collect eyeglasses, you know, used eyeglasses so they can donate them or give them to people in need, but I’ve never seen here’s a choice of eyeglasses or reading glasses. If you can’t read the forums, I think that’s fascinating. And I’d love to ask them how often people use it. I mean, it must be reasonably enough because they have it, but I’ve never seen that before either. Great, great job. Noticing a di a unique experience. Yeah.

Joey Coleman (18:11):
Well, thanks, Dan. You know, as we say on the show, uh, Dana, and I say this to each other all the time, if you just pay attention, the show writes itself, folks, we can come up with these stories all day long because there’s so many interesting experiences out in the world. And I agree with you. I found myself wondering how did this happen? Did so many people forget their reading glasses like in their car. And to be clear, this, the auditor’s office is several floors up at the County courthouse. And it’s pretty far away from where the parking is. So I could see a scenario where, you know, somebody came to the auditor’s office and Oh, I forgot my reading glasses in the car and they’re not going to traipse all the way down. And then as the auditor having to read the form to the person, I don’t know, like I’m fascinated by what happened to create a jar of reading glasses sitting on the reception desk.

Dan Gingiss (18:58):
I am fascinated by that too. And I would certainly love to hear the answer. In fact, I think at some point we’re going to have to send you out to do an Experience This Live.

Joey Coleman (19:08):
I think we can do that over the auditor interview. I like it. Yeah. I think what’s interesting about this though, is the spirit of this example. I’m not saying that everybody listening should have a jar of reading glasses at your reception desk. What I am saying is we need to explore ways to help our customers do business with us. Now in past episodes, we talked about, for example, the coloring book that, uh, was available for kids at Warby Parker. So while their parents were shopping, the kids could color in the coloring book and be entertained.

Dan Gingiss (19:45):
Oh yeah, of course. That was Episode 60 in season three.

Joey Coleman (19:49):
Thank you, Rain Man, for that library reference to our past recorded episodes, listeners may or not remember that one, given that it was way back in season three, but I’ve also observed things like toys at the chiropractor’s office to keep the kids entertained while you’re getting an adjustment or books at the dentist office for if you’re waiting for a long time, you can kind of dive into a novel, these things that help people have a better experience. Why they’re doing business with you is one thing. But the reading glasses actually help them do business with you, right. To be able to see the forms you’re being asked to fill out. And so I thought this was an, was an interesting example.

Dan Gingiss (20:28):
Yeah. And I think that one of the things to remember here is know your customer. I’m guessing that people that come into the auditor’s office might be older and may have maybe more apt to need reading glasses. And that might be why I’m just guessing here, but that might be why they felt that it was necessary. You might find that your customers are technologically inclined, or if they’re sitting in a waiting room for a long time are on their phones. And so you might consider putting phone chargers in there because it’s just a nice touch and people appreciate it. And so it’s the little things that matter. We said it so many times on this show. And, uh, I think, uh, certainly if I were in need of reading glasses, I’d be really happy that they were there. And even if I weren’t, I think I’d at least notice them and sort of appreciate the gesture. Even if the gesture didn’t specifically benefit me.

Joey Coleman (21:26):
Absolutely. And that’s the thing, I’m not at a point where I need reading glasses, but I saw that and I immediately thought better of the auditor’s office. This is my first time in the auditor’s office. I’m in a new community. There’s so much negative criticism about government and government services and here I am trying to vote and I witness that the auditor’s office in Webster County in Iowa cared enough to put reading glasses in a jar for their customers or the citizens who were coming to the auditor’s office to use. So what’s the takeaway here, friends. The takeaway is not go get a bunch of reading glasses to put in your waiting room. The takeaway is to look at the places where your customers first come into interaction with you and maximize those first few minutes, make those first few minutes all about helping your customer to do business with you, helping them feel comfortable, helping them feel welcomed, helping them feel appreciated, helping them feel taken care of wherever you can anticipate what needs your customer has and deliver on those early in the relationship. That’s a great way to set a foundation for the remarkable customer experiences to come.

[SEGMENT INTRO – CROSSOVER SEGMENT – EXPERIENCE POINTS]
Joey Coleman (22:49):
As you’ve heard on the show throughout this season, we’ve got a brand new game show that we are doing called experience points and Dan and I thought it would be fun to share a crossover segment. So what you’re going to hear now is our good friend, Neen James, who is absolutely an incredible human being. You may recall. We talked about her book attention pays back in season two, episode 47, and you’re going to get a chance to hear Neen James, as she plays Experience Points and in the process wins some great money for her favorite charity. Well, teaching you a thing or two about creating remarkable customer experiences. So check out this episode of Experience Points with the incomparable Neen James

[CROSSOVER SEGMENT – EXPERIENCE POINTS][Fake or Fact with Neen James]
Rules Hostess (23:39):
In fake all fact examine three similar experiences. Some are real. Some are your task is to determine the fake from the fact each experience currently detected as worth 100 points. Three, correct answers will earn you 200 bonus points for a possible school of 500 points.

Joey Coleman (24:00):
Are you ready to get started?

Neen James (24:02):
Hey, I’m ready. Let’s do this.

Joey Coleman (24:04):
All right. Let’s jump into the game. So subscription boxes are all the rage so much so that the global research and advisory company Gartner projects that by 2023, 75% of all companies that sell direct to consumers will offer some type of subscription-based service. We’re going to show you three potential monthly subscriptions that someone could sign up for and you get to determine whether they are fake or fact here they are. The first one, a monthly subscription to bacon.

Neen James (24:44):
Fact! Absolutely hands down! Bacon goes with everything!

Joey Coleman (24:50):
Neen is so excited about bacon! Let me show you all three first and then you can tell us what you think they’re fake. I love that the fake, it just catapult you forward in the game. All Right. So Subscription number two, pickup trucks, where you get a new pickup truck every month subscription, number three guitars where you can get a new guitar every month. Now these are the three potential monthly subscriptions mean it’s your turn now to decide which ones are fake or fact and tell us why. So the first one is bacon. You rushed. I think we know your answer. You think it is fact. And why do you think it’s fact Neen?

Neen James (25:35):
Because everyone, almost everyone loves bacon. They may not want to admit that they love bacon, but they love it so much that they would happily subscribe to a monthly bacon box.

Joey Coleman (25:46):
I love the enthusiasm for bacon. I agree with you. I think there’s a lot of closet bacon lovers out there that may not want to admit it me. And you said that the monthly subscription to bacon was fact and you were indeed correct. There is a bacon subscription. Oh my goodness.

Dan Gingiss (26:05):
Bacon Freak!

Joey Coleman (26:06):
This one’s crazy. Yeah. It’s from a company called bacon free branding, by the way. Very cool branding. And I need to share this for those of you listening, as opposed to seeing the show via video, they offer a King size bacon is meat candy, bacon of the month club. Bacon is meat. Candy is what they call it. So big fans of bacon. Yes. Nene. You are correct. You are one for one. All right. The second faker fact option pickup trucks is a subscription to pick up trucks, fake, or fact, and why

Neen James (26:44):
Fake

Joey Coleman (26:45):
And what makes you say fake Neen?

Neen James (26:47):
Because I’m unsure about how you would handle the logistics of that. So I’m thinking from a logistics experience, point of view, you would just get kind of used to setting up all the things that you love about your pickup truck. And then you change to another one. So I’m going to say Fake.

Joey Coleman (27:04):
Interesting. And to be clear, you’re saying the experience for the customer of getting everything set up logistically, as opposed to the logistics of the pickup truck company, getting you a new pickup every month, correct? Gotcha. I like it. Well, Neen, you believe it’s fake. And in fact, it is fake! Two for two Neen! What’s fascinating about this one is there actually are car subscription companies. BMW offers one, Porsche, Mercedes. These various companies allow you to subscribe to a different car where you can go and swap out the car for a new one, but no one has done it for pickup trucks yet. So you are correct Neen feeling good. Let’s go to the third one guitars, a subscription to get a new guitar need fake or fact?

Neen James (27:53):
This is a hard one. I think he could go either way with this one. Cause I know people in my life who would happily subscribe to that box that I’m going to go with fake. And the reason I’m gonna go with fake is to be able to provide for the guitar lover who enjoys those premium products. I’m thinking that potentially the reason is because the price point is a very small market that would subscribe to that box.

Joey Coleman (28:22):
Gotcha. So Neen says fake, but sadly it’s fact, Oh, there is a group Guitar Affair. Is there a name that allows you to subscribe and get a new guitar every month you send the old one back and you get a new one, a last so close, but two for three needs. Why do you think subscription boxes are all the rage? Like everybody seems to be getting one or creating one. Why do you think that is?

Neen James (28:49):
I love being a butt and I’m one of those consumers. I get multiple subscription boxes. And one of the things that I love about it is it’s a curated experience with someone has done the work. And then, because there are certain products, for example, with beauty stores, I get samples that I go and buy the full product. So I like that it’s curated, it’s convenient. And I also liked that it’s like a little present to myself every single month. So that’s one of the reasons I like it. And I think that’s the same for most people also too, at the time of recording. But people are spending more time in their homes. That could be another reason why I think they’re increasing

Dan Gingiss (29:27):
With both the guitars and the pickup trucks. It’s more like a Netflix model. At least as Netflix started off with the DVDs where you get one a month, you return it and you get a new one. Obviously you’re not returning that bacon and they couldn’t probably rip it out of your hands. Neat. And once they gave you the bacon, but, uh, I think that’s really interesting because you have this sort of two types of subscription services, the one where you get something that you keep and it is like a present the other where you get something to borrow and you get to try new things that maybe you don’t even want to keep. I mean, I love the idea of driving a new BMW every month without necessarily having to pick my favorite. Right. Uh, so I think this is a definitely a clickable and I’ve talked with a lot of companies, including some clients that immediately jumped to this idea that there’s no way they could have a subscription box. I don’t necessarily think that’s true. Even if you’re in the service business, not the, not a product business. I think the concept of why subscription boxes work can work in almost any business. What do you think?

Neen James (30:33):
One of the things that I advocate for my clients is that if you really want to get the attention of a client, whether it is as a thank you for an opportunity you’ve had together, or if you romancing a new prospect, I often prescribe these subscription boxes because it lands on their desk or in their home every single month. And I personally had success with that in my own practice. And so I was with one of my luxury travel clients recently, and they manage all sorts of kinds of travelers, but I had found them subscription boxes for leisure, adventure, uh, cuisine, family. And so it was really interesting that when you start to drill into this, I would challenge clients to really think creatively about this, because think about dollar shave club, they instantly just kept sending it in, who knew that was going to be a thing. Right? And so I think we have to think about getting the attention of people in a different way. Subscription boxes is a beautiful way to elevate your branding. It’s a fantastic way to get to know your customers even more. So I think they need to stay.

Joey Coleman (31:38):
Absolutely. And you know, Neen, I think it’s interesting, you mentioned that idea of taking someone from the prospecting stage through to the customer stage. What I love about subscription boxes is the continued connection. It’s to your point, getting in front of that customer on a regular basis, a monthly basis. And it’s a way that’s more fun than say sending them an email that’s Oh, just checking in to see how things were going, right? None of us like receiving that email or even worse, that phone call, but having a small little gift or subscription arrive is a great way to make it about them as well. I think the more you can learn about your clients and identify what their personal interests are, if you send them a subscription box every month, they’re thinking of you, uh, anybody who’s, uh, had the chance to hear me speak knows that I’m a big fan of root beer and I’ve had a number of clients get me a subscription to the root beer of the month club and so every month when that six pack of root beer comes in, it doesn’t have their name on it. It doesn’t say, Hey, still thinking of you, but I remember who gave it to me. And so I think there’s a huge opportunity here from gifting out of curiosity, let’s dive a little bit deeper into the benefit of a business, the benefit rather to a business of considering these type of forever transactions, like the power to lock the customer in on a monthly basis. Even if it’s to your point earlier, like a small sample set, can you speak me into kind of what you’ve seen as far as the long-term value of being able to build that relationship over time?

Neen James (33:15):
If we think about attention is about connection, right? And so when you have, as the business invested your attention, and I’m getting to know that Joey likes root beer and when Joey receives that, that builds an instant, not just the connection, but a loyalty, because given an opportunity for Joey to make a purchasing decision in the future, you might have competitors, their products by be cheaper, they might be more convenient, but because of that sense of connection and loyalty, which you’ve built up through the simplicity of this gift, this subscription box, that’s part of the differentiator. And what it also do does I think is that there’s, I believe in like there’s an unconsciousness to this as well. So we have often with treating things as transactions, but if you can be more transformative and you can think about how do I consciously connect to this? How do I intentionally pay attention to this person? Not just for the short game, but for the long game, because it’s not just about influencing their experience. It’s the 200 people they’ll tell about receiving that root beer subscription box. So when you think about it as like dropping a pebble in a pond, it’s the ripple effect across not just the people they know, but the stories they’re going to tell. If they identify the essay yacht club at their chamber event, that’s the kind of press that you can’t pay for. And that’s why the simple thought of attention is about connection. It has this ripple effect as well.

Joey Coleman (34:44):
So true Neen and boy, I think plenty of our Watchers and listeners would love a subscription to the wisdom of Neen James. Dan let’s recap how Neen playing Fake or Fact?!

Dan Gingiss (34:56):
This game, correct answers are worth a hundred points. And you answered two questions correctly, which means you earned 200 points. Now that 200 points will be converted into $200. Thanks to our friends at Avtex for a donation to Operation Smile. Nice work!

Neen James (35:13):
Thank you Avtex!

Joey Coleman (35:14):
Congratulations Neen. This concludes this episode of Experience Points. Check out more games with Neen and our other celebrity contestants at ExperiencePointsGame.com. That’s ExperiencePointsGame.com. We’ll see you soon for more examples of remarkable experiences here at Experience Points presented by Avtex.

Dan Gingiss (35:45):
Hopefully you thought that was as fun as we did. Check out more games at ExperiencePointsGame.com. Again, it’s the Experience Points game show brought to you by our friends at Avtex. And hey, we just want to add this little note. We know that this week is Thanksgiving in the United States. It is a time to be thankful and Joey and I are so thankful for you, our listeners, thanks for sticking with us for so many episodes, six seasons, over a hundred episodes. We really appreciate you and are very thankful for you on this Thanksgiving 2020.

[SHOW OUTRO]
Joey Coleman (36:31):
Wow. Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (36:35):
We know there are tons of podcasts to listen, to magazines and books to read, reality TV to watch. We don’t take for granted that you’ve decided to spend some quality time listening to the two of us.

Joey Coleman (36:45):
We hope you enjoyed our discussions and if you do, we’d love to hear about it. Come on over to ExperienceThisShow.com and let us know what segments you enjoyed, what new segments you’d like to hear. This show is all about experience, and we want you to be part of the Experience This! Show!

Dan Gingiss (37:03):
Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more…

Joey Coleman (37:06):
Experience

Dan Gingiss (37:08):
This!

Episode 113 – Getting Customers Talking – For the Right Reasons

Join us as we discuss reading in darkness, servicing on video, and confusing your customers.

Floating, Humanizing, and Infuriating – Oh My!

[CX Press] Not Seeing is Experiencing

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

Wuguan Books – Taiwan (photo courtesy Lee Kuo-min)

• “At this bookstore in Taiwan, visitors shop in the dark” – by Maggie Hiufu Wong for CNN Travel (cnn.com)
• Dans le Noir – “dinner in the dark” restaurant in Paris, France
• “A Surreal New Bookstore Has Just Opened in China” – by Elizabeth Stamp in Architectural Digest
• Harry Potter – Lumos!
• Episode 42, Season 2 – “Signing” – Starbucks + Gallaudet University
• Episode 75, Season 4 – “The Smell of Experience” – Fresh Scents, Inc.
• Episode 82, Season 4 – “Serving Up Remarkable Experiences and Great Pizza to An Inclusive Audience” – Pizzability

[Listener Stories] How Best to Humanize the Customer Experience?

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Lindsay McDermott – Chief Happiness Officer at HabitNest
• Habit Nest – find your journal today
• BombBomb – personalized video messaging via email
• Winning at Social Customer Care – by Dan Gingiss
• Tim Chang – Mayfield Fund
• Submit Your Listener Story Here

[Partnership with Avtex] Playing Experience Points – Think Fast!

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Avtex
• Experience Points
• Think Fast!

[This Just Happened] Make Errors Easy to Correct

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

Prepaid Visa Cards
• Web-Friendly Date Formats
• Error Messages for Websites

Host Contact Information

Email Dan: Dan@dangingiss.com

Tweet Dan Gingiss: @DGingiss

Email Joey: JoeyC@JoeyColeman.com

DanGingiss.com

JoeyColeman.com

Subscribe to Experience This on Apple Podcasts

Episode Transcript

Download an unedited transcript of Episode 113 here or read it below:

[SHOW INTRO]
Dan Gingiss (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:08):
Where you’ll find inspiring examples of customer experience, great stories of customer service, and tips on how to make your customers love you even more!

Dan Gingiss (00:17):
Always upbeat and definitely entertaining customer attention expert, Joey Coleman

Joey Coleman (00:23):
and social media expert, Dan Gingiss serve as your hosts for a weekly dose of positive customer experience.

Dan Gingiss (00:30):
So hold on to your headphones, it’s time to Experience This!

[EPISODE 113 INTRO]
Dan Gingiss (00:39):
Get ready, for another episode of the Experience This! Show!

Joey Coleman (00:45):
Join us as we discuss reading in darkness, servicing on video, and confusing your customers.

Dan Gingiss (00:56):
Floating, humanizing, and infuriating… Oh my!

[SEGMENT INTRO – CX PRESS]
Joey Coleman (01:04):
There are so many great customer experience articles to read, but who has the time?! We summarize them and offer clear takeaways you can implement starting tomorrow, enjoy this segment of CX Press – where we read the articles, so you don’t need to!

[CX PRESS][Not Seeing is Experiencing]
Dan Gingiss (01:22):
This week’s CX press article comes to us from CNN Travel and is titled “At this bookstore in Taiwan visitors shop in the dark.” And it’s written by Maggie HIFU Wong. It tells the story of uhon books located in [inaudible], which is Taiwan’s second largest city. Now the unique bookshop was created by the award-winning architecture and space designer, Chu Chicong, and it requires shoppers to navigate through the store in almost complete darkness, except for little dim spotlights on each of the book covers the result creates the illusion that the books are floating. Now, as you probably know, Joey, when we lose the ability to use one or more of our senses, the other senses become heightened. And that is exactly what happens to visitors in this bookstore. In fact, the stores translated slogan refers to being able to read your soul while inside of it.

Joey Coleman (02:25):
Well, there are so many things about this story that I absolutely love and friends, listeners, to give you a little insight to how this works every once in a while, Dan or I will text each other, a link to a story and say, Hey, what do you think about this one for experiences? When Dan texted me this link, not only was I like, yes, we need to talk about this on the show. But if we weren’t in the COVID environment while we’re recording this, I would’ve wanted to book a flight to Taiwan to go see this place. It looks fascinating. And there were a couple of pieces about this that really stood out to me in an era where everybody is paying attention to quote unquote, the death of retail and the moving of retail online individual physical stores need to think differently about the experience they create. And that’s clearly what this bookstore is doing. There’s an entire experience here in the heightened senses. I mean, it reminds me of a restaurant that I went to in Paris years ago called Dans le Noir – Dinner in the Dark. And it was basically a restaurant where you ate in complete darkness. The staff is all blind, so the darkness doesn’t bother them. They’re able to navigate between the tables and serve you. But as an individual who can see you are quote unquote, visually impaired for the meal, which heightens your sense of taste by having a delicious meal.

Dan Gingiss (03:43):
See, now that would drive me nuts because I like when I watch occasionally we’ll watch TV during dinner and the kids sometimes want to turn the light off. I can’t have the light off while I’m eating. I need to be able to see my food. It just gives me it kind of skeeves me out. Not to be able to see what I’m eating.

Joey Coleman (04:00):
Oh, see, I loved, loved to love this restaurant because it was that same thing. Like the smells were heightened, the tastes were heightened and you had to figure things out like how much, you know, what food am I pulling off my plate? And where is my plate? And where is the fork in relationship to my mouth? And all of these mustard exactly created a totally fantastic experience. And here I am years later, I mean, it was more than a decade ago that I ate at that restaurant and I can be transported instantly back to that experience. And I imagine folks going to this bookstore in Taiwan would have a similar experience.

Dan Gingiss (04:37):
Well, and I love that you mentioned Amazon, obviously we’re both Amazon fans here are both prime members for a long, long time, but I sorta get a little bit uptight when people blame Amazon for the death of small business. And I turn it around and I say, no, it’s the small businesses that have caused the death of small business in more cases than not because they didn’t respond to what was going on around them. And I always advise, I know you do too, Joey, that one of the ways that you compete with an Amazon is to do things they can’t do. And this is a great example of it. Amazon can’t turn off the lights, at least not yet in your house and create darkness in a bookstore and make it look like books are floating. And so I thought that was a really interesting comparison, but the article also talks about how this bookstore doesn’t even have a very big selection. It only has 400 books. Now, a typical medium-sized bookstore is going to have several thousand books. So 400, not much, but they’re so focused on creating an experience. And in the article, the store manager reports that people are spending much longer in this store than a typical bookstore. And even more than that, because it’s dark, they’re actually willing to consider books that they probably aren’t considering at the big bookstore, things like erotica and other topics that maybe are a little bit taboo when the lights are on.

Joey Coleman (06:10):
Fair enough, fair enough. And family show friends, don’t worry. It’s going to be okay. I totally embrace this concept because I agree with you, Dan. I don’t know that I’d go so far as to say that the, the small retail stores are to blame for not being able to stand up against Amazon because you run into a lot of things around pricing and availability and access. And, and we’ve really over-indexed, especially in the United States, but in a lot of countries in the world on the power of convenience and how convenience trumps everything. One of the places where we haven’t seen that as much is in some of the experiences I’ve had in Asian countries. I know you and I have both talked about the shopping experience in Ginza in Japan. And there’s this bookstore in Taiwan. And I read an article recently in Architectural Digest, which was about another bookstore – this one in Chung du in China that is designed to look like the MC Escher bookcase drawing, or, you know, illustration illusion, if you will. Uh, and we’ll link to that in the show notes at ExperienceThisShow.com as well. So you can see that, but I do think there is going to be this move, not only brought on by economics of creating more of an experience when it comes to the store. But I think in response to COVID, what we’re going to see is when people begin venturing out into the retail environment, again, in large numbers, physical locations are going to have to compete with the convenience of everything being delivered to home. And the best way for them to compete is not going to be on price. It’s not gonna be on convenience. It’s not going to be on size of selection. It’s going to be on the experience they create when you go to their location.

Dan Gingiss (07:54):
Absolutely. I mean, let’s be honest, books are more or less a commodity, the 400 books that are being sold in this store being sold in a store down the street. So it’s not about the inventory that they have. It’s about the experience that they’re creating and how memorable it is. Now. You also know, because I talk about it all the time that I love signs. And I think signage is such an interesting, fascinating way to communicate with your customers and to really show your brand personality. Well, it turns out that before you enter this dark bookstore, there are a series of rules that are posted at the entrance. Now, one of the main rules, which is important to note is you cannot bring in a flashlight, can’t turn on your phone or anything else to ruin the atmosphere for others. But the other rules seem to be a little bit tongue in cheek. Now I’ll be honest. I’m guessing that these are translations, uh, but I’m not entirely sure that the CNN article didn’t, didn’t say, but one of the articles, one of the signs says, don’t shout when someone steps on your toes, step on his or hers knife, which I love another one says, if someone wants the same book as you buy the book or get his or her number. And then the third one, which I particularly appreciated because when I saw the picture of these books, the first thing I thought of was Harry Potter. And I was thinking about the massive dining hall where all the students eat in the candles,

Joey Coleman (09:24):
Floating, floating candles, right? Yeah. And the great hall.

Dan Gingiss (09:27):
I love it. And so sure enough, the third, the third sign says, if you think it’s too dark inside, pick up a tree branch and shout Lumos.

Joey Coleman (09:36):
I love it. I love it. And what’s so great about this. And I’m in the midst of reading the third Harry Potter book, Prisoner of Azkaban to my two boys who are four and seven listeners. You can write in later and judge, if that’s too early to expose them to the Harry Potter books. But what I love about that particular sign, Dan is it’s a sign that anyone who’s read, the Harry Potter books will immediately resonate with. And if you haven’t read the Harry Potter books, you probably won’t. And it goes to show that it’s okay to have communication with your customers that targets into this specific type of customer you’re attracting. If you’re a bookstore, chances are pretty good. They’re familiar with Harry Potter and they’ve read Harry Potter, the person coming to your store. So I love the way there were some literary references in those signs that kind of took the conversation to the next level.

Dan Gingiss (10:30):
Absolutely. So here are the takeaways. The first is even in a commodity industry like books, customer experience can be a differentiator. The second is this is how to compete with the behemoths brands like Amazon is do things that an online retailer can’t do. And the challenge, I think, which is also a third takeaway, is how do you look at the sensory experience of your business? Now, this is not the first time we’ve talked about sensory experience and I’m going to pull my little rain man trick here, which I know you love because it’s going to be impressive. Ladies and gentlemen, hold on because we’ve actually talked about it multiple times. We talked about, uh, first we talked about the Starbucks near Gallaudet university that caters to the deaf community (that was episode 42). Then we talked about using smell as part of the experience. And, and we talked to a friend of mine that works for a scent company that was episode 75. And then you described your experience at Pizbility, where it was intentionally removing some of the different sensory aspects of the restaurant and creating a memorable experience. So this bookstore managed to do that with darkness. I’d be fascinated to know how you might be able to do it with your business, but standing out and creating an experience is a way to be remembered.

[SEGMENT INTRO – LISTENER STORIES]
Joey Coleman (11:52):
You listen to us, now we want to listen to you. By visiting our website and sharing your remarkable customer experiences with us, we can share them with a broader audience. Now, sit back and enjoy our Listener Stories.

[LISTENER STORIES][Humanize the Customer Experience]
Dan Gingiss (12:11):
So, as we’ve told you multiple times, we love it when listeners send in stories.

Joey Coleman (12:16):
Yes! We love it, keep them coming friends.

Dan Gingiss (12:19):
Yes. And while we always point you to the contact page on our website, which allows you to leave us a voicemail, some of you decide to send us an email instead, and you know what that is absolutely. Okay.

Joey Coleman (12:33):
You communicate in the way that works for you, friends.

Dan Gingiss (12:35):
Yes. We, we all believe in the channel of your choice, not to channel of our choice and Lindsey McDermott, who is the chief happiness officer of a company called habit nest that, uh, makes these beautiful leather-bound journals for all different occasions. I went to the website and I found some holiday gifts there. It’s beauty there. They’re great.

Joey Coleman (12:56):
And ladies and gentlemen, if Dan Gingiss went to the site, cause Dan’s not a big journal guy, let’s be honest. I’m more of a journal and like the tactile guy, Dan, not as much. So Lindsay kudos to you that I, Dan was so intrigued that he ordered some holiday gifts. Great job Habit Nest.

Dan Gingiss (13:11):
Yes. I didn’t say I ordered one for me. I heard of them as gifts, but he was, he was compelling you to take action. I liked it. I, Lindsay, reaching out to us has created sales for habit nest. So that’s wonderful. So anyway, what Lindsay wrote to us is, uh, first of all, thank you Lindsay, because she said that she has listened to virtually every one of our podcasts. And so she happens to know that we haven’t talked about this topic and, and she’s right. So she said one topic that I’d love to hear you talk about is humanizing customer engagement, for instance, should customer service folks respond with videos or voice notes? Do people want this or is it totally presumptive to say, Hey, you want to see my face? Or you want to hear my voice and Lindsey? I think it’s an awesome question. And in fact, I remember when I

worked for dDiscover, I did a lot of traveling, not traveling, sitting with customer service agents and, and call listening with them. And I talked to them about this. And one of the things that I found almost immediately was none of them wanted to be on camera, none of the customer service reps, just to be clear, none of the customer service reps. Correct. And, and I don’t know if it’s because they felt like they had a face for radio or, or, or they just weren’t comfortable with it. And this was several years ago. So it could be that. So I think my first thought about this topic is, is that you’d have to hire a different type of customer service agent who is comfortable being behind the camera. But I think it’s a great idea because it adds this level of personal connection that I think everybody’s looking for, especially right now, uh, that we’re missing, we’re missing that human connection. And so I think a really cool idea. What do you think Joey?

Joey Coleman (14:54):
I think it is not only a cool idea, but I think it is a must in your business. If you do not currently have ways to overemphasize the human nature of your brand, interacting with your customer, you are missing out on a huge opportunity. And I love the example of voice notes and videos. I mean, let’s look at the reality. We are at a really unique time in human history and that we all have the technology in our pocket or in our purse, a cell phone with a camera on it. That is more powerful that camera than the cameras used by network news just 30 years ago. And right now the majority of people who text you videos are your family and friends, your loved ones, the closest people in your circle. And yet when I go to the typical business’s website, they talk all about how as a customer, you’re going to be part of our family and the Acme Corp family looks out for our people. We care for et cetera. Why not use the technology and the tool that is most often used for family members to communicate with your customers? Not only does it put a face onto the image of the brand, but it allows for those unscripted interactions, those personalized interactions that let you know that you matter as a customer. And I think so many customers would happily continue to do business with an organization if they felt like they mattered. And this is one easy way to let the tool of communication prove that you matter.

Dan Gingiss (16:23):
Absolutely. And that kind of reminds me of just two episodes ago in Episode 111, when we talked about texting, it’s very similar, right? Is that, that’s how we communicate with friends and family. And so why shouldn’t companies communicate with us that way. Now there is software out there for people to use this. Uh, I’m certainly familiar with one called BombBomb that allows you

Joey Coleman (16:44):
Yeah. Our good buddy Ethan at BombBomb!

Dan Gingiss (16:47):
Exactly. And you know, you could record quick videos and send them via email. In fact, I’ve, I’ve received one. I remember one that I received from actually was a salesperson and the salesperson was sitting there in the thumbnail of the video with a sign that he was holding and it said, hi dad.

Joey Coleman (17:03):
And I’m like, well, of course I got to watch this now click on the video. Exactly. You know, it’s funny, Dan, you mentioned that I actually did a case study in my book about a company called Zogics that does the same thing. They send these little thumbnail videos to all of their new customers, with them holding a clipboard with the name of the customer on it and a button that encourages you to start watching. Now let’s break it down for the numbers. People real quickly, the typical email confirmation gets opened about four to 6% of the time their videos get watched. Last I checked, it was like North of 78% of the time. So these little personalized communications really do work.

Dan Gingiss (17:44):
Absolutely. And, and, and talking about customer service, which Lindsay specifically up, one of the people that I interviewed for my book Winning at Social Customer Care was David Basulto, who is the founder of a company called [inaudible]. I prefer basically helps you transform your iPhone or your iPad into state-of-the-art video equipment. And one of the things that David was he’s one of the first people to do this. He was using Snapchat for customer service, and he told me the story about a customer who had called, and they couldn’t figure out what he was doing wrong until they went on the Snapchat and the customer shot a quick video of his setup. And David immediately noticed that he had two cords that were plugged in backwards. They were, you know, he had reversed them. And as soon as he saw the picture, he’s like, Oh, just do this. And that fixed the problem. And he said, from that moment on, I realized that customer service adding a visual element to it was far more effective than somebody trying to explain a technology set up on the phone, which could be very frustrating, especially for those of us that aren’t as technologically inclined.

Joey Coleman (18:56):
Absolutely. Why not use the technology tools that we have to create better experiences and better interactions for our customers. I love that example. You know, I had the chance earlier today to hear a keynote presentation by a guy by the name of Tim Chang. And Tim is with the Mayfield fund. It’s a big, incredibly well-known venture capital firm out in

Silicon Valley. And he was talking about this shift in to, in technology to focus less on hyperconnection and to focus more on rehumanizing. He specifically mentioned that do not talk to me button on Uber. So like when you call an Uber, you could set it up that you don’t want to talk to the driver. And on one hand, while that increases efficiency and effectiveness and maybe makes for a better experience for you as the passenger, it takes a little piece of our humanity and does away with it. Like if you don’t want to talk to the driver, get comfortable with saying, Hey, I really appreciate it, but I’ve got something I need to work on. If you don’t mind, I’d love to just be able to work on that while I ride in your car. That to me, at least allows us to engage human to human. Instead of let me press a button. That means I don’t have to acknowledge your existence. And so I think the question that Lindsay asked about is something where, you know, we want to do this. We want to have these types of connections as humans yet because of technology. We think that, you know, it’s okay not to when the reality is technology gives us the opportunity to connect in ways we weren’t otherwise able to before technology.

Dan Gingiss (20:32):
Totally agree. So what can you do in your company? Here’s what I would suggest find a customer service agent who’s willing to be the Guinea pig and make sure that they’re working on a channel where video is possible. It might be chat. It might be social media. It might be messaging and text and have them shoot a video in response to a question rather than just sending text back and see what happens, see how your customers respond. I’m going to guess that they’re going to love it.

Joey Coleman (21:04):
Absolutely. And by the way, you mentioned this earlier, Dan, I just want to briefly give, cause you asked me, you know, I’m not sure if customer service reps, I was working with some customer service reps the other day who were really anxious about starting to do video calls. And I explained a little bit what I’ve learned about the science of video. One of the main reasons people don’t like to see themselves on video is not because they think they’re unattractive or as you said, they have a face for radio. It’s that when we use a video camera, especially on our computer to shoot one of these little videos, we don’t see a mirror image when you are eye goes and stands and looks in front of a mirror. We see a mirror image of ourself. But when we see something that’s been filmed, we’re not seeing the mirror image. So it feels off to us. And it’s off to us in a way that we can’t describe because we know it’s us and we know what the situation is, but we’re seeing a view of ourselves that we’re not used to seeing. It’s the same reason why people don’t really like photos of themselves often is because they’re seeing a view that is not the view that they see when they look in the mirror. Now, the reality is that is the way the rest of the world has always seen you. You are the only person on the planet that is seeing the vision of you looking in the mirror. Everybody else sees the vision looking at you. So the reality is your employees are going to feel a little anxious about this in the beginning, push through it, shoot videos for them, have them shoot videos for each other, like any tool, the more you use it, the more comfortable you will be.

Dan Gingiss (22:33):
And set up incentives for it as well. Cause everybody loves a good contest or a good incentive. And I think you’ll get people doing it. Lindsey. Thank you so much for writing in. We really appreciate you listening and coming up with a great topic for us for this listener stories. And if anybody is listening right now and is inspired to go try this at your business, please let us know, go to experience this show.com to the contact section and either record us some audio, send us an email or heck send us a video.

[PARTNERSHIP WITH AVTEX][Playing Experience Points – Think Fast]
Dan Gingiss (23:13): Joey, think fast!

Joey Coleman (23:13): Think what?

Dan Gingiss (23:15):
Think fast. It’s the third of three games that we’re playing on our hit new game show, experience points presented by our friends at Avtex.

Joey Coleman (23:26):
Ah, yes. Think fast. This game is so fun precisely because it makes people sit up straight and pay attention. Let’s hear how the game works:

Rules Hostess (23:38):
In Think Fast, you will have one minute to answer five experience questions for each question you must quickly choose between two possible answers. Correct answers. Given before time runs out are worth 100 points, five, correct answers will earn you 500 bonus points for a possible score of 1000 points.

Dan Gingiss (24:01):
I really like this game because we take a study that a white paper, a report to survey, whatever it is that has been put out by real grownup research. That’s exactly. It’s been put out by a legitimate companies and we pull some of the statistics from the study and we turn them into questions. And what’s interesting is they’re only mult, they’re multiple choice, but there’s only two possibilities. So they’ll never be on the window. Yeah, you have a 50 50 chance. And yet the questions are really, really hard.

Joey Coleman (24:38):
Exactly. And in fact, they are so hard that only one person thus far has gone five for five with all the questions you’ll have to tune in at ExperiencePointsGame.com, that’s ExperiencePointsGame.com to see which contestant goes five per five when thinking fast.

Dan Gingiss (24:58):
Absolutely. And the other great thing about this game is that it gives our contestants the biggest potential to earn money for their charity. They can earn up to a thousand experience points, which converts to a thousand dollar donation. And I’ll tell you, one of the things Joey I’ve loved about this game show is the charities that our cusp that our contestants have picked are like, everyone is more amazing than the last one. And it feels so good that we’re doing something that is raising money for such great work.

Joey Coleman (25:31):
Dan, I couldn’t agree more. And in many ways it’s not surprising because our contestants, everyone is more amazing than the last one. We got some incredible customer experience, professional friends, folks that you’ve heard about folks that you’ve never heard about. But once you do get the chance to experience their wit their wisdom, their insight, their perspective, you will be paying attention to what their view on the customer experience landscape is going forward.

Dan Gingiss (25:58):
So come play along with us as we play Think fast on Experience Points brought to you by Avtex.

[SEGMENT INTRO – THIS JUST HAPPENED]
Joey Coleman (26:06):
We love telling stories and sharing key insights you can implement – or avoid – based on our experiences. Can you believe that This Just Happened?

[THIS JUST HAPPENED][Make Errors Easy to Correct]
Dan Gingiss (26:20):
So the other day I opened up my mailbox and I got one of those envelopes that feels like there’s a credit card inside.

Joey Coleman (26:28):
Ooo la la – you were intrigued.

Dan Gingiss (26:30):
I was because I didn’t order a credit card, like.

Joey Coleman (26:33): Free money, Free money!

Dan Gingiss (26:35):
Well, as it turns out, Joey, it was free money. I got a prepaid visa card worth $20.

Joey Coleman (26:45): Interesting. Who is this from?

Dan Gingiss (26:47):
That’s a great question, Joey. I have no, I don’t have a clue.

Joey Coleman (26:53):
A loyal listener from Experience This was kind enough to send Dan a prepaid… wait! I didn’t get a prepaid call. I got, maybe it wasn’t a listener. I don’t know. It was probably somebody from the Twitters.

Dan Gingiss (27:03):
Well, I got to tell ya, so I get this card and what was fascinating to me was I get, there’s a letter that comes with it and it’s kinda, you know, it’s a similar to the letter that you, um, that you get when you get a new credit card, except it’s like, you know, dear customer, here’s your prepaid card. And here’s all the rules around. It love us. And I’m like, okay, but why am I getting this prepaid card? Now I had an idea. It probably had something to do with a rebate form that I filled out at some point in time. And you know, sometimes they send you rebates as a prepaid card. So I’m assuming that’s what it is. There’s a name on the card that I’ve never heard of. So it’s a brand name. I’m not gonna mention it, but it’s a

brand name that I don’t recognize and don’t believe I’ve ever bought a product from it. It’s probably a holding company or something like that. So obviously this was strange, but it kinda got stranger. And this is really what I want to talk about is it had a little sticker on it, much like a credit card that said, you know, go ahead and activate it online. Now you go to activate it at, uh, you know, some website called prepaid cards are us or whatever it is. Um, and so you go in and it says, activate my card. And it asks you to type in the card number and the expiration date pretty and the three digit code. Okay.

Joey Coleman (28:29): We know this game.

Dan Gingiss (28:30):
So I hit submit and I get an error message and it says, invalid expiration date. I’m like, Oh, okay, hold on. Let me check. It was only four numbers. I go back, Oh four slash two, one. I’m like, okay. I typed in Oh four slash two on what do you mean in valid? And it won’t even let me resubmit it because now the submit button has been great out until obviously I make some sort of a change and I’m like, Whoa, what do I do? And so I started playing around and I should say, I spent almost three years at discover, heading up digital customer experience. So the way I run a website,

Joey Coleman (29:07):
You know your way around a website and particularly, you know, your way around a website around activating a card.

Dan Gingiss (29:13):
Well, actually that’s so true.

Joey Coleman (29:15):
So you have hyper relevant experience.

Dan Gingiss (29:17):
I do. I do. And so I cut to the chase. The website wanted me to enter the expiration date as Oh four slash 2021. In other words, month, month slash year, year, year, year. But number one, I’ve never seen an expiration date on a credit or debit or prepaid card that has the four digits. And number two, that’s not what this card says. So card says the, uh, the expiration date is Oh four slash two one. So why in the world would a programmer require a four digit year in order to submit this successfully? And so that got me thinking about a number of different things. First of all, when you have an error message on your website, it is so critical. And I worked on this a lot at discover. It is so critical that you tell people what is the error? You can’t just say error or, you know, invalid expiration with no explanation. All it needed to say was please enter the expiration date as M M slash. Why, why, why, why? And I would have known exactly what to do. It’s like when we forget our password and you know, they only tell you about the 27 rules of the password when you set it, but not when you can’t remember,

Joey Coleman (30:32):
You’d write away. Remember this is one of those times where you needed to use an uppercase and lowercase and a number and not the name of anyone related to you or that you’ve ever met. Oh, great. Great. That’s my cue that it’s “password4” is the answer.

Dan Gingiss (30:48):
Exactly. Exactly. So air messages actually are, it’s one of these forgotten parts of the user experience in digital because error messages happen all the time. And if you don’t program your website correctly, or you don’t give it a lot of thought, oftentimes it’s an error message. It’ll show up just in red letters. And it won’t say anything specific. It’ll just say error. And, um, I had one situation. I recall where there was, uh, the error message did not show up when people had expanded their screens had zoomed in their screens more than a hundred percent, the error message fell off the screen. So we had people that were getting error messages and literally couldn’t see the error message

Joey Coleman (31:28):
Message to them. Yeah. These are things,

Dan Gingiss (31:30):
These things sound small people, but they’re a really big, it can be a very frustrating pain point for a customer.

Joey Coleman (31:39):
And we talk about empathy a lot on this show. And frankly, the reason we talk about empathy is because we need to talk about it a lot, because most organizations aren’t showing empathy for their customers. I think this is a great example of really connecting with the frustration that a customer would feel when something goes wrong. We’ve all been in that position. As you alluded to earlier, Dan, where something is wrong on the form, and we’re not sure what it is. And we’re sitting there trying to figure it out. And if it’s something that we really want, we’re going to invest a lot of

time trying to figure it out. And if it’s something that we don’t care about, we’re going to move on to the next thing. And either way your brand loses, because either I’ve moved on or I’ve had to fight to stay there. And now I’m irritated at you.

Dan Gingiss (32:23):
Absolutely. And remember, I’m in the process of self-serving here, right? So I’m not using up your customer service time or dollars or resources because I’m self-serving. And yet you’re preventing me from doing that. The other thing that crossed my mind on this, and since we are listeners now know that you recently moved back to Iowa, I’m gonna let you tell your silo joke. One more time for a sec.

Joey Coleman (32:45): Should I do it right now?

Dan Gingiss (32:47): Go for it.

Joey Coleman (32:47):
Okay. I’m ready. So ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls silos work fantastically on the farm, but they are a nightmare in your organization. Leave the silos on the farm. We don’t need them in your company.

Dan Gingiss (33:02):
Absolutely. And I would say that in this case, almost guaranteed, there were silos in the organization. One silo was in charge of sending out the card and the mailing that didn’t tell me who it was from and another silo was responsible for the website and those two silos didn’t talk. And thus, one of them has a two digit year on the expiration date. And one of them has a four digit deer year. And again, I know this sounds like it’s really small, but the little details add up and they make a big difference because really we should be trying to frustrate our customers when Joey, uh, that it would be certainly less, if not, never on that for her, we don’t, we never want to frustrate our customers. And so any time we were doing that, even inadvertently, we gotta be aware of it and fix it. So look, people, listeners, and companies around the world. If you’d like to keep sending me prepaid cards, I am fine with it. I will work my butt off to activate them online. If you want to keep sending me free money, but do yourself a favor, make it easier on the customer and check your work with the other silos in your company or better yet. Knock down those silos and design the experience together.

[SHOW OUTRO]
Joey Coleman (34:20):
Wow! Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (34:25):
we know there are tons of podcasts to listen, to magazines and books to read, reality TV to watch. We don’t take for granted that you’ve decided to spend some quality time listening to the two of us.

Joey Coleman (34:34):
We hope you enjoyed our discussions and if you do, we’d love to hear about it. Come on over to ExperienceThis Show.com and let us know what segments you enjoyed, what new segments you’d like to hear. This show is all about experience, and we want you to be part of the Experience This Show!

Dan Gingiss (34:52):
Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more…

Joey Coleman (34:55): Experience.

Dan Gingiss (34:55): This!

Episode 111 – Take the Mystery Out of CX By Connecting with Your Customers


Join us as we discuss the mysteries of mystery shopping, texting for help, and why channel switching is a good way to anger your customers.

Mysteries, Queries, and Quandaries – Oh My!

[Book Report] The Secret Diary of a Mystery Shopper

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• The Secret Diary of a Mystery Shopper by Claire Boscq-Scott
• The Bailiwick of Jersey
• Kevin Peters, former President of Office Depot

[Dissecting the Experience] The Evolving Role of Text Messaging

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Message Me by Joshua March
• Conversocial
Podium
• The Confidante Miami Beach
• Hyatt Hotels
• Slalom Build
• “5 Ways To Stay Ahead of the Competition” – by Podium

[Partnership with Avtex] Playing Experience Points – Fake or Fact?

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Avtex
• Experience Points

[This Just Happened] Don’t Switch Them to a Different Channel

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

Host Contact Information

Email Dan: Dan@dangingiss.com

Tweet Dan Gingiss: @DGingiss

Email Joey: JoeyC@JoeyColeman.com

DanGingiss.com

JoeyColeman.com

Subscribe to Experience This on Apple Podcasts

Episode Transcript

Download an unedited transcript of Episode 111 here or read it below:

[SHOW INTRO]
Dan Gingiss (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:08):
Where you’ll find inspiring examples of customer experience, great stories of customer service, and tips on how to make your customers love you even more!

Dan Gingiss (00:18):
Always upbeat, and definitely entertaining customer retention expert, Joey Coleman…

Joey Coleman (00:23):
and social media expert, Dan Gingiss serve as your hosts for a weekly dose of positive customer experience.

Dan Gingiss (00:30):
So hold on to your headphones. It’s time to Experience This!

[EPISODE 111 INTRO]
Dan Gingiss (00:39):
Get ready for another episode of The Experience This Show!

Joey Coleman (00:44):
Join us as we discuss the mysteries of mystery shopping, texting for help, and why channel switching is a good way to anger your customers.

Dan Gingiss (00:55):
Mysteries, Queries, and Quandaries! Oh my!

[SEGMENT INTRO – BOOK REPORT]
Joey Coleman (01:03):
We’re excited to give you an overview of an important book you should know about, as well as share some of our favorite passages as part of our next Book Report.

[THIS JUST HAPPENED][The Secret Diary of a Mystery Shopper]
Dan Gingiss (01:15):
Have you ever been a mystery shopper, Joey?

Joey Coleman (01:18):
Well, Dan, if I tell you that kind of give away the mystery?

Dan Gingiss (01:22):
Ladies and gentlemen, he’s here all episode!

Joey Coleman (01:25):
All right, no – I’m just teasing. Ahh yes, I actually have had the chance to be a mystery shopper in the sense that lots of times when I do consulting projects with clients, I will tell them that the first thing I want to do is come in and be a mystery shopper and experience their brand and experience their space, which always makes showing up for the workshops that I lead then with teams, really interesting. Because I walk in and invariably, some of them are like, “Oh my gosh, he was in the store yesterday. What’s he going to say?” and that kind of thing. So yes, I have been a mystery shopper, but really only is a precursor to consulting engagements.

Dan Gingiss (02:02):
Okay. I got it. Well, the former Mrs. Gingiss and I actually participated in a very extensive mystery shopping program.

Joey Coleman (02:11):
Why am I not surprised that you have a history with an extensive mystery shopping program – I love it!

Dan Gingiss (02:18):
It was awesome.

Joey Coleman (02:19):
Yeah – I mean, it sounds like a Dan Gingiss type activity.

Dan Gingiss (02:22):
It was so much fun. And I think I’m going to convince you, you’re going to want to do it with Berit.

Joey Coleman (02:26):
Alright. Alright!

Dan Gingiss (02:27):
So Let Us Entertain You is a large restaurant group based in Chicago, it’s got more than a hundred restaurants. They’ve also got some restaurants in a bunch of other States, but most of them are in the Chicago area. They’re known for great food, huge dish sizes, you know, servings and really good service. And so we participated in their program, which is highly selective. And you have to go through this big training and all this stuff. And what they do is they send you out to a restaurant and you pay with your own credit card, but you’re reimbursed for the entire meal. They give you some stipulations, but they’re pretty minor. Like they’ll say “don’t order the lobster” or something like that. Pretty much you get, you can order anything you want. They, they pop for a bottle of wine. It’s an, it’s a lovely evening. And the only problem with it is, is that you have to go home afterwards,

Joey Coleman (03:22):
and write a book report!

Dan Gingiss (03:23):
And write a book report! The first time we did this, I’m not making this up, it took us two and a half hours.

Joey Coleman (03:30):
Oh, I totally believe that. Where you’re like, “Oh, this would be a great way to have an experience.” And then you’re like, “Oh my gosh, this was not worth the free meal.

Dan Gingiss (03:39):
Well, the first time I thought that now, eventually we got it down to about 45 minutes. But what they were asking was fascinating. They wanted to know the exact words that the waiter or waitress said when they first arrived at the table, they wanted to know if at any point the food was auctioned, which was explicitly prohibited that’s that’s “Okay, Who has the hamburger? Who has the steak?”

Joey Coleman (04:05):
I understand. I thought you were meaning like who wants to take her $5? Can I get, can I get a 7? I understand what you mean. Oh yeah. So if, if the wait staff didn’t remember who got what and then decided to broadcast it to your table.

Dan Gingiss (04:19):
Correct. They would ask how many times was your water filled? And you know, I was the water person smiling at you there. I mean, the details were so specific. I remember the first couple times they must’ve, you know, cause you also can’t share that you’re a mystery shopper. Right.

Joey Coleman (04:38):
And I’m wondering like, as you’re describing this, I imagine some of our listeners might be wondering too, like, are you taking notes during the meal? But an engine in a pre-social media era that was really difficult now it’s like, Oh, Dan’s tweeting again. Right. But you’re really taking notes on it, oh, we’re at five times they’ve refilled the water.

Dan Gingiss (04:56):
Well, let’s put it this way. It was long enough ago that anyone watching my ex-wife would have thought that she had a bladder problem because she had to visit the bathroom like six times to go take notes, take notes. Because I mean, I think we had phones, but we didn’t, but it wasn’t.

Joey Coleman (05:14):
It wasn’t the way we use phones today. Sure.

Dan Gingiss (05:17):
But in any event, I love this program. We actually got, we got to graduate after we did about 10 restaurants, we got to graduate to like their senior program, which was their fancier restaurants. Only let their, you know, their best reviewers go to their top restaurants. And it was a blast. I learned so much about paying attention and really focusing on what’s going on around you. And this came to fruition late last year I met a former colleague of mine and we were working on a project together for a client and we met at a restaurant. We sat down at the booth and he was asking me to kind of describe what customer experience was and what I was doing. And I said, well, let me give you an example. Did you notice when we sat down at this booth that the wall next to us was dirty, you know, his, his head switched to the left and was like, no, I’m like, that’s the first thing I noticed before we even sat down because I’m trained to just look for that kind of short and this mystery shopper stuff taught me that. And uh, so I was very thankful for the opportunity. Not only because I got a lot of great food and wine, but because I really learned how to pay attention to those details. So I love mystery shopping, which is why I was particularly interested in a brand new book that came out in August called The Secret Diary of a Mystery Shopper by Claire Boscq-Scott. Now Claire is from the Bailiwick of Jersey and I’m going to admit to everybody to look this up, okay? I’m not so good at geography. The Bailiwick of Jersey is a British dependency off the coast of Normandy, France. It’s part of the Channel Islands. It sounds lovely. But anyway, that’s where Claire is from. And she, in her book, she defines kind of why mystery shopping is really important for businesses and how it relates to customer experience. And a couple of things that she noted is she says, you can’t be in your business 24/7. Obviously you can’t be in two or three or 20 places at once. If you have multiple locations, you can’t improve. If you don’t get feedback, you can’t celebrate your successes. If you don’t get feedback, you can’t manage what you don’t measure. And you don’t know if you’re following your business vision. If all you do is sit in your ivory tower and never get out and see how things are actually being done.

Joey Coleman (07:39):
All very good reasons to kind of get out of my speed. I mean, this is kind of the management by walking around theory, right? You’ve got to be on the frontline, you’ve got to have exposure. And the problem, I would imagine that most business owners and managers face is if they go into their store, all their employees know who they are. So you get, of course you get better treatment because quote unquote, the bosses there, right? Whereas if it’s a mystery shopper, you get something closer to retail.

Dan Gingiss (08:08):
True. Although I would say as an asterisk to that Joey that a lot of executives set it up that way on purpose. So yeah, one of the companies I worked for, I won’t say who it was, but it was set up so that whenever the CEO called customer service, it was like, you know, he was calling the bat phone and, and so a little, you know, siren went off and he got a supervisor who took right, who took care of them immediately. So he never got the experience of an actual customer. I had the opportunity to use the bat phone and I said, no, thank you. I’d like to call the 800 number and see what everybody else sees makes sense. So anyway, uh, as usual with a book report, uh, I connected with Claire. She’s a lovely lady. And I asked her to introduce her new book to our audience. So here’s Claire with an overview of her book, The Secret Diary of a Mystery Shopper.

Claire Boscq-Scott (08:59):
Hello, this is Claire Boscq-Scott mystery, shopping and customer service. Global gallery. Yes. I’m here and super excited to be here with you on this podcast and to introduce you to my you Burke. Yes. Hi, exciting. Is this, let me introduce you to The Secret Diary of a Mystery Shopper. This is my new book launched a couple of weeks ago, which has already ranked number one on Amazon bestseller on customer service and The Secret Diary of a Mystery Shopper. If he doesn’t give it to you in the title, it is all about mystery shopping. Yes. How you can uncover hidden secret within your organization. How you can look at your employee performances and really improve your service, develop some new strategies and increase your customer loyalty. So the secret diary of a mystery shopper, it is, um, 11 years now, I’ve been running my own mystery shopping companies and I’ve been writing all those stories, the good, the bad and the exceptional, yes, because if we talk about exceptional, we will bring more exceptional stories in our book. So this is really a business book. It is, you know, for businesses to take it, read it with your team, read the stories, think about how this could affect your business. If you have that kind of experience and look at all the little tips and, you know, th the, uh, the consultancies, I guess also behind every of the stories. So, and I’m sure you’re going to really unsure reading some of those stories. Um, I’ve had people, you know, giving me stories, you know, when you talk about customer service, everybody’s got a story. So I’m looking forward to sharing them with you in the secret diary of a mystery shopper bye for now,

Joey Coleman (10:58):
I gotta admit Dan, I am intrigued. And I particularly liked the way Claire described the good, the bad and the exceptional. You know, I was waiting for her to say the good, the bad and the ugly, which lots of times I think is what people think of when they think of customer experience. I know you and I, when we started the Experience This Show made the conscious decision to tell the positive customer experience stories. And I think all too often, people are quicker to share the ugly customer experience story. So I like that. She’s all about the exceptional to bring more of those exceptional stories to the book so you can model what to do in your business as opposed to learn what not to do.

Dan Gingiss (11:38):
Absolutely. And folks, when you learn what you’re doing right by collecting positive feedback from customers, do more of it. I mean, when they tell you that they like it, that’s a great indication that you should be doing more of it. Just like when customers complain. That’s a pretty good hint that should stop doing something. And I have always said, whenever I get asked on podcasts, or when I’m interviewing, you know, what’s one tip that you can give to people in customer experience. I always give the same tip and it is become your own customer, become a customer of your company. If you don’t do that, there is no way that you can truly understand what it’s like to be a customer. What does that mean? It means get onto your website and create a login and a password, and then forget your password and try to go through the, forget your password.

Joey Coleman (12:24):
And you’ll realize just how insane your process is getting a new password. I really liked that Dan, I worked years ago with a company that was in the home heating oil and propane business, kind of a home services, energy company. And one of the things that really surprised me when we started is how many of their employees were not actually customers. And it actually, by the time we left there, a significant percentage were because we adopted a program where we said, we’re going to help subsidize getting employees to become customers because we wanted them to have that perspective and have that experience, even if they might not have the direct financial impact of the experience, we at least wanted them to go through the setup and the various customer service interactions so that we could hopefully make the business better.

Dan Gingiss (13:13):
Outstanding. It’s so such a great idea. I mean, think about a customer service agent. Who’s trying to help a customer navigate the website, but the agent’s never actually been on the website because…

Joey Coleman (13:23):
Exactly. So what are they doing? They’re reading through a manual or a click through on a web screen saying, Oh, and you should see in the top right corner, a purple box. Well, if they’ve never logged in, they don’t know what they’re seeing. And it does make all the difference.

Dan Gingiss (13:37):
And it can be very frustrating to the person on the other line. Okay. Joey, I think of all of our book reports, this is the best author, favorite passage that we’ve ever had.

Joey Coleman (13:49):
Ooh, pressure ladies and gentlemen tune in for this one. This is going to be interesting. I like it Dan!

Dan Gingiss (13:55):
Here’s Claire reading her favorite passage

Claire Boscq-Scott (13:59):
Can you steal jewelry. Okay. So that was a first, I just received an email from my client, a large jewelers who had finished a big safety and theft training with their stuff and wanted us to go and try to steal something from one of their shops. Wow. Okay. This was taking mystery, shopping into a whole new dimension. As this could have secondary implication. We had to think about this one before. What would happen if I get caught? What if the alarm goes off? What if the police has been called?! What if we get filmed on CCTV camera, you see where I’m coming from. Hmm, but after a good conversation, with my clients and arranging all the possibility, we agreed to perform the visit.

Dan Gingiss (14:59):
Okay. Tell me you don’t want to know the end of that story.

Joey Coleman (15:02):
Oh my gosh. Not only do I want to know the end of this story, but I’m kind of reminded, and this is going to be a little bit of a nostalgia throwback. We’ll see, which of our listeners are old enough to remember this movie years ago? I think this probably would have been maybe late eighties, mid eighties. There was a movie with Robert Redford called Sneakers that was all about like this business that specialized in hacking into other businesses. And I remember watching this thinking, Oh my gosh, this is what I want to do. I now think that I want to go work for Claire on these jewelry cases! Forget the restaurant ones, Claire, if you need help breaking into a bank, or a secure facility or stealing jewelry, call me, I will be your mystery guy.

Dan Gingiss (15:48):
I love it. And, uh, I was actually thinking Ocean’s 11 when I read that one, but yeah. All right. So I have a favorite passage as well. And, uh, you know, I combined two of my favorite things. Joey, I combined restaurants and bathrooms.

Joey Coleman (16:03):
Shocker – our loyal listeners are falling over right now. No friends. It’s more of the same from Dan Gingiss.

Dan Gingiss (16:10):
So here we go with, uh, another story that she tells in her book. Once we had a restaurant group who wanted to get their branches measured, and I was asked to bring my family with me, we arrived at the restaurant and as she loved being a little mystery shopper, I sent my daughter to the toilets to check them out. She was gone a good 10 minutes and as I was about to come and see where she was, she reappeared running back from the toilet and said, mom, mom, mom, you won’t believe what happened. I was on the toilet and the light went off. So I couldn’t see anything. I was a bit scared and eventually managed to open the door. And the light came back on. You can imagine the situation, the toilet lights were activated by a sensor. The door was tall enough to trigger it, but she wasn’t. The lights went off until she managed to open the door. Again. The point is what this group of restaurants did. After this visit, they readjusted all of their toilet sensors. So small people could also be picked up by the sensors. They also took it a step further. Having had this feedback from a six-year-old girl, they revisited their entire young customer experience and suddenly increased their family revenue by 40%.

Joey Coleman (17:22):
Ooh, I like it, Dan. I like it. You know, talk about taking a situation and not only fixing the problem, but using it to springboard into some additional enhancements for our customers as well. You know, we’ve talked about this on the show before, how often businesses miss the associated customers of their customers, right? The significant others, the spouses, the children of their primary customers who happen to be in their location or in their business, or tangentially touched by the business and how there’s an opportunity to enhance things there. I love it. Well, my favorite passage was about, uh, Kevin Peters, the President of Office Depot. And here’s the story from The Secret Diary of a Mystery Shopper.

Joey Coleman (18:09):
I parked and saw an associate leaning up against the brick facade, smoking a cigarette. Meanwhile, customers were walking out without any bags. This employee did nothing. He just watched them leave empty handed. At that point, I had a tough decision to make, should I blow my cover and alert the store manager? Or should I stay silent? I sat in the car a few minutes thinking it over. Finally, I decided I just can’t let this go. I went into the store and looked at the stantion that stands at the front of every location, displaying the name of the manager and his, or her picture. Guess who the store manager was? Yes, the guy smoking outside the store. So I went up to him and introduced myself and we had a good, long talk. He was ashamed of his behavior and he was sweating during the conversation. You promise to do a better job of taking care of customers. And I promised to keep in touch. Even today, we exchange emails every month to discuss his performance.

Dan Gingiss (19:08):
Joey, I’m telling you I want to work for a company someday that has a president like Kevin Peters and that was actually part of a, a larger story where he talked about visiting dozens and dozens and dozens of stores. And I have to tell you, my father, who was a business owner, uh, of, of a formal wear business, did the same thing. He traveled all around the country and visited his stores. And that’s when he learned the most about what was actually going on. You can’t tell this stuff from a report or a spreadsheet, or even frankly, from talking with your employees, you have to go out there and do it yourself. And so great job, Kevin Peters for being your own mystery shopper. I love it. So guys check out The Secret Diary of a Mystery Shopper by Claire Boscq-Scott. It is available on Amazon. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did. And, uh, don’t forget to be a mystery shopper in your own company.

[SEGMENT INTRO – THIS JUST HAPPENED]
Joey Coleman (20:06):
We love telling stories and sharing key insights you can implement, or avoid, based on our experiences. Can you believe that This Just Happened?

[THIS JUST HAPPENED][The Evolving Role of Text Messaging]
Dan Gingiss (20:19):
Joey when you communicate with friends or family members, what’s the most common way that you connect with them?

Joey Coleman (20:28):
I would say at this point in the game, text messaging is the most common. And the way I know that this has really increased, especially in the last few months, is I am currently looking at the little indicator on my screen and I have 19 unread text messages. So my text messaging is almost starting to feel like my inbox for email, but that is definitely the tool I use the most.

Dan Gingiss (20:54):
Well, that would make me break out into hives. I couldn’t possibly let that happen, but I’m glad you said that because that’s how you and I connect to almost always when we’re in between shows where we’re texting all the time, ideas back and forth and questions, et cetera. And so I think that’s true of most people that that texting has become the mode of communication between two people. So there’s a line that I remember from a really great business book called message me. And it was written by a friend of mine, Joshua March, who was also the founder of a social media and messaging service platform called Conversocial. He wrote quote, I tell my family and friends to message me why can’t a brand. Just message me unquote. It seems so simple. Right? So during COVID-19, when customers have been stuck at home, texting has become a much more important communication method for companies, podium, a customer messaging platform for businesses reported that more than 60% of consumers received or exchanged text messages with a local business during the early days of the pandemic. Now I’m sure that number has gone way up since then. Joey, have you experienced texting with businesses during COVID?

Joey Coleman (22:11):
I have. And what’s interesting. I talked about one of these early on, I think, uh, not to pull a Dan, but I think it was back at episode one Oh three, when I talked about the eye doctor experience that we had. But even just in the last episode, we talked about the experience I had with movers and what I didn’t share. I don’t think during that segment is that because of COVID we were texting back and forth and I was actually texting videos of the house. You know, normally when you do a move, somebody from the moving company comes and they walk through the house and you show them all the stuff. Well, because of COVID, I was like, I really don’t want to have random people walking around inside the house if we can do this using technology. And so I would text, all right, I’m here. And we would, you know, I would shoot a little video and text it from that room and then I’d go to the next room and shoot another video. And so I basically just sent them a string of videos so they could do a virtual walkthrough of the house. So yeah, I’ve definitely been using texting more with businesses during this time, and I’ve really appreciated the businesses who’ve been willing to do that. Some are like, Oh, well, we don’t really have the tools set up for that. And I’m like, what do you mean you don’t have a cell phone? I come on. I don’t know what tools you need.

Dan Gingiss (23:26):
Exactly. And I mean, I do it all the time as well. I’ve gotten a lot of notifications for doctors or dentist appointments for me and the kids when my grub hub is about to be dropped off. I get a taxed when it’s time to pick up my groceries or my prescriptions, I get attacks. We talked in a previous episode about imperfect produce. I get every week they tell me when the drivers down the street and when he’s arriving at my house, I think it’s great. And it is, it’s such a great way to keep in contact and to understand what’s going on. So this got me thinking about why more companies aren’t using this simple and effective communication method for servicing their customers. And I remembered a story from right before COVID that I had wanted to tell on the show, and then I kind of passed on it because people stopped traveling, et cetera.

Joey Coleman (24:15):
It might’ve felt a little tone deaf to talk about, but no, I hear ya. I hear ya.

Dan Gingiss (24:20):
You know what? I think it’s relevant again. And so here it is. So I was on vacation in Miami. This was about December-ish. And I stayed at a hotel called the Confidant, which is owned by Hyatt. And when we checked in the receptionist pointed out that if we needed anything at all during our stay, we should text him. Now he said that sometimes there was a whole time on the guest services phone number. And of course the front desk was often helping other guests. But the text line he said was open 24 hours, seven days a week. And it had a response time of only a couple minutes because every hotel employee had access to it. Now, interestingly, during our stay, we forgot about the text line.

Joey Coleman (25:06):
Oh, of course you did, because most hotels don’t have a text line.

Dan Gingiss (25:09):
Exactly. And so we ended up standing in line at the front desk to ask about getting some additional water bottles for our room. And we waited patiently because sure enough, there was a line, there were a couple of people in front of us. And then when we finally got to the front of the line and told the receptionist what we want, and he said, you didn’t have to wait in line. You could have just texted and we would have dropped it off at our, in your room.

Joey Coleman (25:34):
Ah, Got it. So there they are trying to condition you and you know, it’s not like they didn’t tell you when you first checked in, but I do like how you got this reminder that you could save some time by texting. So it’s like, it’s a benefit to you, even though let’s be candid, there’s some business benefits to them to moving these to the texting channel.

Dan Gingiss (25:57):
Of course, of course. And they don’t want to, you know, they don’t want people seeing long lines at the front desk and all that sort of stuff. So I did some research on this because I was really interested in this texting program. Uh, you and I obviously, uh, when we are traveling and speaking, stay at a lot of hotels and this is the first time that I had experienced, uh, being asked to use a text line. So I found out that a company called SlalomBuild was actually the leader of the design and user experience for Hyatt’s mobile app. And what they said on their website was they have a case study about Hyatt. And they said that Hyatt recognizes that travelers. Don’t like to ask for things and they’ll often go without things, if it’s not easy to ask for it. Oh,

Joey Coleman (26:41):
Dan, this is so true. Are plenty of times where I’ve been in a situation in the hotel where I’ve thought, Oh, I wish I had blah, blah, blah, or whatever it may be. And I’ve thought, Oh, do I really want to go downstairs to the front desk? Or do I really want to call the front desk? Or, you know what, nevermind I’ll deal with that. So that’s an interesting that they kind of recognize that traveler behavior.

Dan Gingiss (27:03):
Yes. And folks, when you recognize a pain point in your customer experience, one of the best things you can do is fix it with their app. You know, obviously you could check in and check out, but at any point in the app, you can text the concierge to order room service, to ask for items, to be delivered to your room. If you need more coffee or another pillow or a toothbrush, you forgot your race or whatever. And not only can you request these items, but the app then gives you the delivery status and the timing of the items. Right. And so you don’t have to sit there while the kids are running around or whatever’s going on, or you’re trying to get them to bed and not know when they’re coming. And sometimes it seems like an eternity, right? Oh yeah.

Joey Coleman (27:47):
First of all, number one, I love the idea of digital hospitality. Number two. Yes. The status delivery and timing is huge because I will tell you, there have been many, many a time that we’ve been on the road and my wife and I have realized, Oh, we need, you know, an extra pillow or an extra sheet for the Haida to bed, or we’re going to put the kids on the couch or whatever it may be, and you’ve called down and he asked for it and they’re like, Oh, we’ll send somebody right up. And right up turns into five minutes and then 10 minutes. And then you’re like, Oh, are they coming? Or I don’t want to call them bug them 15 minutes. Oh, finally, I’ll call, Oh, just getting, we forgot about it. Sorry. And meanwhile, the kids are, or at least my kids are jumping off the walls. And it’s like having the ability to check on that delivery status and timing would be very useful,

Dan Gingiss (28:34):
Useful. Absolutely. And so Slalom and Hyatt collaborated on this and they set three different goals for the app. Now, number one was to increase engagement and improve the guest experience from booking through post departure. And we’ve talked a lot about it.

Joey Coleman (28:52):
I like it! you had me at post departure.

Dan Gingiss (28:55):
Exactly. Now number two is to gain a better insight into guests needs and preferences. And then to use that information to continue to enhance future experiences. Then the third goal was to build a flexible, scalable digital platform that enables industry leading features. And so one of the benefits that Hyatt saw from this is not only they did, they have more satisfied guests, but they also had increased bookings. They saw huge increases in mobile booking volume almost immediately after launching this app.

Joey Coleman (29:26):
Ahh, now see, Dan, I’ve got to admit in many ways, this doesn’t surprise me, but I am thrilled to hear that that’s what they saw because it gets back to a point that I made earlier in that often when we’re a hotel, we don’t think of using our personal mobile phone to interact with the hotel. And when you teach me that my phone is a way to communicate with the hotel I E via these text messages. Now I’m going to be comfortable thinking about using my phone for other ways to communicate with the hotel like mobile booking.

Dan Gingiss (29:57):
Exactly. So the takeaway here is that when you focus on improving the experience, especially in the channels of your customer’s choice, those customers will spend more, be more loyal. And they’ll tell their friends and family about you. In this case, Hyatt removed a customer pain point, which is having to ask for things. And they made it incredibly easy via text, which is a channel that they knew their guests were already comfortable with.

Joey Coleman (30:24):
You know, this makes perfect sense, Dan. And it really supports something that I saw from a report from the folks at Podium. The report was called Five Ways to Stay Ahead of the Competition and one of the main benefits of messaging for businesses is that they can be channel agnostic by employing a single messaging platform. So in other words, customer service agents don’t have to learn different messaging platforms like Facebook messenger and WhatsApp and Twitter direct message, which let’s be candid. They should talk to you, not to me, or really care what the customer is using because all of the messages can consolidate into a single agent inbox, which allows you to deliver a much more consistent experience across all your interactions. And let’s be candid. It’s like there’s a new app every week. There’s something new coming out all the time. So if you really want to be thinking and planning for the future, you’ve gotta be ready to handle this.

Dan Gingiss (31:17):
Absolutely. And it’s a great answer to the question I always get, which is which channel should I be in? My answer is always wherever your customers are. Right? Right. So, uh, one more thing that Podium said, which I think is a great thing to leave our listeners with. They said now is the time to start messaging your customers or risk losing them to businesses that do.

[PARTNERSHIP WITH AVTEX][Playing Experience Points – Fake or Fact]
Dan Gingiss (31:47):
So as we’ve been telling you, Joey and I are hosting a brand new game show called Experience Points. We are having so much fun with our celebrity contestants. It’s three different games in every episode. And one of them is called Fake or Fact. Let’s learn how Fake or Fact works

Rules Hostess (32:06):
In Fake or Fact examine three similar experiences. Some are real, some are not. Your task is to determine the fake from the fact. Each experience correctly detected is worth 100 points. Three correct answers will earn you 200 bonus points for a possible school of 500 points.

Joey Coleman (32:28):
Well, I got to tell you, Dan, one of the reasons I loved the concept behind this game is we’ve got some amazing contestants who’ve been there, done that got the t-shirt they know customer experience inside out. And this was kind of a fun way for you and I to play around with them a little bit, right? Tease them a little with some things that might be real or might not be real because let’s be candid when you’ve been in the customer experience game for a while, you come to realize that the horrors of customer experience, or the surprise and delight moments of customer experience, there’s a ton of them and you never really know what’s going to come next.

Dan Gingiss (33:01):
And I’ll tell you in this era of quote unquote fake news, it was a lot of fun to try to create the fake experiences and see if we could get people to think they were real and actually Joey, you and I did a pretty good job of that because we think so. Yeah, it was great. Yeah.

Joey Coleman (33:18):
And I mean, I don’t know if that speaks more to our character or our creativity, but we’ll let the audience decide, but it was super fun to be able to do this. It ends up being a fast paced game. It ends up being a game where you get to see what’s possible. And what I really loved about the games, not only Fake or Fact, but all the games we play unexperienced points is that they’re designed to help us create some teachable moments, to have some conversations with our customer experience, expert contestants, to suss out how companies should be thinking about their own customer experience. So it’s not just an entertaining way to spend a little bit of time, but there are some great takeaways you can apply in your business.

Dan Gingiss (33:59):
Absolutely. And I will say, I mean, Joey and I love recording this podcast Experience This, but I think this is the most fun we’ve ever had recording this game show because it is just so much it’s so entertaining the entire time. If you like this show, you will love Experience Points. So do us a favor, check it out at ExperiencePointsGame.com. That’s ExperiencedPointsGame.com. It’s brought to you by our friends, and sponsors of the Experience This Show as well, Avtex. Check them out at avtex.com. Thank you Avtex for keeping us employed and really allowing us to have a ton of fun!

[SEGMENT INTRO – THIS JUST HAPPENED]
Joey Coleman (34:41):
We love telling stories and sharing key insights you can implement or avoid based on our experiences. Can you believe that This Just Happened?

[THIS JUST HAPPENED][Don’t Switch Them to a Different Channel]
Dan Gingiss (34:54):
So like many small business owners applied for a forgivable business loan through the government paycheck protection program.

Joey Coleman (35:03):
Uh, the dreaded PPP – I’m not sure I’m going to like what’s coming Dan… Remember this is a positive experience program, I just, I know I have a number of friends who worked in kind of the administration of this program on the banking side and talk about some horror stories of just like wanting to do the best to help people out and just not getting good information and directions, especially at the beginning of how to process the applications, how to it, et cetera, et cetera.

Dan Gingiss (35:38):
Well, yes, you’re. And now you’re going to tell most of my story for me, but yes, this is about a bank. It’s not about the government. Joey, I don’t know what your hourly consulting rate is, but I can tell you that given the paltry sum that I actually ended up perceiving after all my castle, I think I pretty much broke even on the whole thing. So as I mentioned it, the Paycheck Protection Program or PPP, as you said, is a forgivable loan and it’s designed to help small businesses stay afloat and keep more people employed during the pandemic. Now it was kind of hastily announced at the beginning of the pandemic, if I could. And it actually took banks by surprise, and many of them were not prepared for what was an onslaught of loan applications. So I chose an online bank that had a great reputation and it was actually one of the first banks to set up an online application for the PPP loans. The process was actually really fast and easy. And so after being conditionally approved, I had to submit some evidential paperwork.

Joey Coleman (36:39):
Ooo that sounds fancy!

Dan Gingiss (36:42):
I use that because I know that we have a recovering attorney on the program.

Joey Coleman (36:45):
Yep – the first step is admitting you have a problem…

Dan Gingiss (36:47):
Evidential. Yeah. So I had to submit like my LLC formation documents and uh, I had to give him some bank information, whatever. And I also had to tell him, by the way, this is the important part, where did I want them to send the money? Right. And so I go through that familiar process, I know all our listeners have done it. You’ve done it before where you set up a new bank account and they, they put like 31, send me a penny. And then yeah. And you have to confirm both. You have to confirm it. Right. So everything went through flawlessly and it all seemed set.

Joey Coleman (37:17):
I’m sensing a punchline, but…

Dan Gingiss (37:20):
Nope, that’s the end of the story. See you next time on Experience This! Now the next time I logged in to check my status, the bank account that I had just set up was missing. Oh, of course. And there was a message asking me to add one. So this was curious since I had obviously already done it. And so I tried to add it again, but I got an error message. So I emailed the bank and I was assured that my account was registered.

Dan Gingiss (37:48):
Everything was fine. And even though the website didn’t show my bank account information, don’t worry. It was there.

Joey Coleman (37:55):
The age old theory of don’t trust what you’re seeing, trust what I’m saying. Oh great! Surprise, surprise!

Dan Gingiss (38:01):
I was a little skeptical, but okay. So a couple of weeks later I was told that I was approved for a PPP loan, but I never saw any deposit come through. So I checked the website again and I get this message. The small business association requires that paycheck protection program loans be dispersed within 20 days of approval. Since we did not receive signed loan documentation from you during this time, we had to spend your loan for the dime being, Oh my goodness. You gotta be kidding me. So yeah. So sitting here waiting for the deposit and then they basically tell me you didn’t get the deposit because you didn’t give us a bank account is essentially what happened. So I emailed them again. And this time I got no answer for over a week. So I decided to call and people, we don’t want to call it’s a last resort. Yeah, exactly younger. Okay. But I called and I got this recorded message. Of course.

Joey Coleman (38:55):
Surprise! Your call is very important to us. We are very overwhelmed right now..

Dan Gingiss (39:03):
Volume, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. But what, the thing that annoyed me was is it the message kept telling me that everything I needed to know what’s on the website.

Joey Coleman (39:12):
Of course! Go to the website, go to the website! You’d already been to the website. Of course, of course.

Dan Gingiss (39:19):
So this just made me madder and madder as I’m listening to this thing. And it kept telling me to go to the very website that was not providing any information on why my loan loan had suddenly gone from approved to pending.

Joey Coleman (39:33):
You know, Dan, I think sometimes businesses just, they don’t remember that they’re dealing with customers that aren’t from 50 years ago. Right? I think the average customer today knows well, before you call, check the website, now that doesn’t always happen, but I know you always go to the website. First, most customers are trying to self serve and the best businesses should let them self serve. Let them go to the website and see, and guess what if they call you, it probably means that they couldn’t find the answer easily on your website or it’s not on your website.

Dan Gingiss (40:08):
I mean, if you’re going to tell people to go to the website, make sure the dang website works is all we’re asking for here. So finally, this is the best part. So I’m sitting there on hold like an idiot for five or 10 minutes, whatever it was. And all of a sudden the recorded message says your time in queue has expired. Please call back another time and hung up on me.

Joey Coleman (40:28):
So let me get this right… The hold service decided that it was tired of having you wait, so it kicked you out and have you call back another time.

Dan Gingiss (40:38):
It wasn’t after an hour, it was after five or 10 minutes and I was waiting on hold. So now I can’t get my question answered on the website. I can’t get my question answered on the phone and I’m literally handcuffed. I don’t have any idea what to do.

Joey Coleman (40:51):
You know – and I’m thinking somewhere, someone is being incentivized for hold times. Like someone on the bank is being incentivized for whole time. So they’re like, I’ve got an idea. Let’s kick people out after five minutes because then our longest whole time will be five minutes. Right? Write a brilliant sign, align the incentives here and make sure people do it not to mention. It’s like how absolutely infuriating. It’s like, you know, the person picking up and saying, Oh, let me transfer you. And you’re like, no, no, no. Don’t transfer me, click. And then you’re like, great. Now I’m completely lost and we’ll never speak to a human again.

Dan Gingiss (41:31):
Exactly. So listen, folks, when customers call you, don’t tell them to go to the website. What customers tweet you, don’t tell them to call you rest assured that your customers know the service channels that are available and they’re going to choose the channel they want, which isn’t always going to be the channel that you want. It’s the responsibility of the business to meet its customers where they are. My experience was so frustrating precisely because I tried to self-serve on the website. And then when I needed help, I was told to go to the website. Ugh!

[SHOW OUTRO]
Joey Coleman (42:10):
Wow! Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (42:15):
We know there are tons of podcasts to listen, to magazines and books to read, reality TV to watch. We don’t take for granted that you’ve decided to spend some quality time listening to the two of us.

Joey Coleman (42:24):
We hope you enjoyed our discussions. And if you do, we’d love to hear about it. Come on over to ExperienceThisShow.com and let us know what segments you enjoyed, what new segments you’d like to hear. This show is all about experience. And we want you to be part of the Experience This Show!

Dan Gingiss (42:43):
Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more…

Joey Coleman (42:46):
Experience.

Dan Gingiss (42:46):
This!

Episode 110 – Creating Moving Experiences for People Who Are Moving

Join us as we discuss how to conclude a business relationship in a remarkable way, making it easy for your customers to comply with your contracts, and archaic interactions that hamper your success.

Canceling, Filing, and Updating – Oh My!

[Dissecting the Experience] The Xcellent Xfinity Xperience

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Fort Dodge, Iowa
• Comcast – Xfinity
• Charlie Herrin
• Episode 43, Season Two – Saying Goodbye to Customers & Black Belt Movers
• Multi-Factor Authentication
• UPS Store
• Chewy

[Make the Required Remarkable] Thoughtful Design Makes Contract Compliance Easy

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

Refueling Reminder – Near Gas Gauge
Refueling Reminder – Near Gas Tank

• U-Haul
Joe Maddon – Manager, Chicago Cubs

[Partnership with Avtex] Introducing the Experience Points Game Show!

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Avtex
• Experience Points

[This Just Happened] Don’t Get Caught in Old Ways to Update a New Address

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Magazine Subscriptions
• USPS Address Update

Host Contact Information

Email Dan: Dan@dangingiss.com

Tweet Dan Gingiss: @DGingiss

Email Joey: JoeyC@JoeyColeman.com

DanGingiss.com

JoeyColeman.com

Subscribe to Experience This on Apple Podcasts

Episode Transcript

Download an unedited transcript of Episode 110 here or read it below:

[SHOW INTRO]
Dan Gingiss (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:08):
Where you’ll find inspiring examples of customer experience, great stories of customer service, and tips on how to make your customers love you even more!

Dan Gingiss (00:17):
Always upbeat, and definitely entertaining, customer retention expert Joey Coleman,

Joey Coleman (00:23):
and social media expert Dan Gingiss, serve as your hosts for a weekly dose of positive customer experience.

Dan Gingiss (00:31):
So hold onto your headphones, It’s time to Experience This!

[EPISODE 110 INTRO]
Joey Coleman (00:39):
Get ready for another episode of the Experience This Show!

Dan Gingiss (00:44):
Join us as we discuss how to conclude a business relationship in a remarkable way, making it easy for your customers to comply with your contracts, and archaic interactions that hamper your success.

Joey Coleman (00:59):
Canceling, Filing, and Updating… Oh, My!

[SEGMENT INTRO – DISSECTING THE EXPERIENCE]
Joey Coleman (01:06):
Sometimes a remarkable experience deserves deeper investigation. We dive into the nitty gritty of customer interactions and dissect how, and why, they happen. Join us while we’re Dissecting the Experience.

[DISSECTING THE EXPERIENCE][The Xcellent Xfinity Xperience]
Joey Coleman (01:23):
Dan, in the immortal words of Brittany Spears, “Oops, I did it again.”

Dan Gingiss (01:30):
I am not even sure where to go with this one, Joey.

Joey Coleman (01:33):
Well, let me help you out, brother. I would like to officially announce to our loyal listeners that I am no longer coming to you from the comfort of my home in Boulder, Colorado. I have officially moved to Fort Dodge, Iowa – the small town in northwestern Iowa, where I grew up, which means I am much, much closer to where you live. Dan Gingiss!

Dan Gingiss (01:54):
That’s right. We’re going to be in the same time zone finally for the first time ever, which which makes for easier podcast recording. For sure! I was just wondering, as you were saying that, how many other people in the world have moved from Colorado to Iowa you think?

Joey Coleman (02:11):
You know, it would be fair to say that the majority of people usually are moving from Iowa to Colorado, but in this crazy pandemic time, as people look for ways to reconnect with family and loved ones, I think a lot of people that are finding themselves, or at least I’ve talked to a lot of friends and colleagues who are moving to be closer to family and are kind of reevaluating their schedules and their times and their commitments. And so we thought about it and we thought this would be a great way for our kids to get some more time with grandma and grandpa and with the aunts and uncles and all the cousins that live around here. So we are back in the Heartland. Iowa. ‘Murica! Love it. So good. And I know we’ve talked about the experience of moving in a previous episode.

Dan Gingiss (02:54):
Yeah. That would be Episode 43 back in Season Two, that would be October, 2018.

Joey Coleman (02:58):
Fabulous Dan. Absolutely fabulous. He is the master of our episode history, ladies and gentlemen! But as I was saying at the time we’re recording this, I am surrounded by cardboard boxes, bubble wrap, and moving blankets as we slowly – – make that very slowly but surely unpack in our new location. Now, during the course of our move, Dan, I had a number of interesting interactions as I am wanting to do as I go through life. And I thought that in each segment of this episode, we could speak about a different aspect of the moving process with the goal being, not that you improve your moving business – because most of our listeners are not in the moving business.

Dan Gingiss (03:37):
Except you Steve – thank you for listening!

Joey Coleman (03:41):
We’re so glad to have you hear. But instead to hopefully give people some ideas of things that I experienced in moving that happened in your business, that could be improved. Now, the first one I wanted to talk about is how you offboard a customer. Now I spent a lot of time talking about the importance of onboarding in my book and in my keynotes and in virtual speeches, but how you off-board a customer is also crucial. It’s the last thing, the final thing that they’re going to remember about their experience with you, which is why I want to share a little bit about my experience with Comcast.

Dan Gingiss (04:20):
And next week, ladies and gentlemen, after he’s done onboarding and offboarding, he’s going to talk about waterboarding. No, never!

Joey Coleman (04:29):
Well, let’s be candid and Dan full disclosure, Dan and I have spent some time with the fine folks at Comcast Comcast reputation for their experience. Let’s say five years ago, certainly 10 years ago. Is that very different world than the experience of dealing with Comcast today?

Dan Gingiss (04:47):
I actually, I actually heard, I don’t know if this is true, but I actually heard that that was one of the reasons for the name change to Xfinity – it was literally to walk away from the brand name because of the reputation it had developed. But as you and I both know that reputation has changed quite a bit over the last few years, it’s changed

Joey Coleman (05:04):
Dramatically. And part of the reason for that is the incredible work that the team at Comcast has done under the leadership of Charlie Heren and really looking at what has been a multi more than a billion dollars invested into customer experience enhancements. And I had the pleasure of even though cable companies are historically known for their lack of customer experience. I had the opportunity to have a remarkable experience, allow me to explain. So we’re getting ready to move and I need to cancel my home cable and internet service, which is provided by the folks at Xfinity Comcast. So I go online to see if I can do this and I’m chatting and pretty quickly they say for a cancellation, we want to talk to you, enter your phone number and we’ll give you a call. So I do, they call me immediately, which is awesome because I’m like, Ooh, LivePerson, non chat, we’re going to get this sorted out. And their goal, obviously when they first called me was to identify my account. And while they’re trying to pull that up based on my name and my address, the representative that I’m speaking to is making small talk about Colorado, right? I’m in Colorado. I have to give him my address. It identifies as being in Colorado. He’s asking if the wildfires are close to our house and showing a lot of empathy and connection interests, kind of easy rapport banter while they’re looking at my account, which I really appreciate. And it’s kind of easing into the conversation in a nice way. They then asked for the account number. Now I have to admit when they did this, Dan there, I actually said is I often do in these scenarios, if you were to offer me a million dollars to tell you my account number, you would get to keep your million dollars because most companies assign this account numbers that we don’t remember. How are we supposed to remember? It’s an arbitrary number to your customer. Sure. It might have some meaning to you, but it has zero meaning to me. And usually the only way that you have an account number easily at your fingertips is if you are holding an invoice or you have an invoice called up on your screen, which I didn’t. But this is where it got interesting. He actually said is the phone number on the account, a cell phone? And I said, yes, it is. He said, can you confirm the number? And I gave him my cell phone number. He said, I would like to send you a text message to confirm your identity. If you have your cell phone, I was blown away because I was like, Oh, this is super easy. You’re going to know it’s me because you’re going to send the text and I’m going to text back and we’re going to be good to go. And don’t, you know, it that’s what happened.

Dan Gingiss (07:44):
I like it. I like it. I mean, that’s a pretty simple and they’ve now identified you. So what happened next?

Joey Coleman (07:50):
Well, and what I also liked about this, and I don’t know about you, have you ever experienced that? I’ve never experienced proving my identity via text message on a cell phone. Like this was a new technology solution for me. So we’re two minutes into this call and I’m feeling pretty darn good about my relationship with the folks that I’m canceling my relationship with. Wait, hold on. I’m pretty good about it.

Dan Gingiss (08:11):
I got to interrupt here. So you’ve never done two factor authentication?

Joey Coleman (08:15):
I’ve done two factor authentication, but I’ve never done two factor authentication with a person on the phone saying, I’m going to send you this text message I get, I guess maybe I have, but I just, I never, I never thought of it this way. I’ve done it more for like logging in to get a password where they say, Oh, we’re going to send you this thing. And you have to read the number back to us. It’s always been an automated experience I’ve never had

Dan Gingiss (08:40):
Because it’s kind of the cross-channel thing. You’re on live run. And they’re confirming you by text. Exactly, exactly.

Joey Coleman (08:46):
Not such a Luddite that I am not familiar with the concept of two factor authentication, but you are correct. This is the first time I’ve ever had a human lead into that. So that kind of caught me off guard. The representative then confirms the subscriptions that I have is like, you have cable and you have internet and you have a router and you have a cable box and kind of confirmed all my equipment and then asked which almost every customer service person who has been trained to process a cancellation requests ask, why are you canceling? And I explained that I was moving from Colorado to Iowa. I think he might’ve made a remark similar to the one you did. Oh, you’re the first person I’ve ever talked to him in the history of the world. That’s moved from Colorado to Iowa. And he actually went so far as to say, and I see we don’t actually have any service in the place in Iowa.

Joey Coleman (09:35):
You’re moving to, cause I said the name of the town I was moving to and I thought, wow, this guy is doing like on the fly research. And I knew that Comcast was not a provider in the local community I’ve live in now. Uh, but the fact that he did that I thought was really interesting. Any, he basically apologized for it and I don’t want to say gave an excuse, but he was kinda like, you know, it’s just not a marketplace that we’ve really expanded into yet. And I’m sorry, we’re not going to be able to serve you anymore. So suddenly I’m canceling my service and I almost am starting to feel a little guilty about the fact that I’m canceling my service because I’m really enjoying the relationship that we’re having in the conversation we’re having. He then offered some options for the final payment.

Joey Coleman (10:19):
And this is where once again, the representative saw things from my perspective, I had previously been set up on autopay and he said, look, we can keep you on auto pay and that’s fine. But we find that sometimes when customers do that, they forget to cancel the autopay and there might be a payment that gets made that shouldn’t get made. And even though we’re going to cancel it, here’s what I’d like to recommend you do. Let’s take you off of auto-pay and send you your final bill as a prorated paper bill to your new, uh, address. And then you can log on and pay it online or just go through our portal and do that. But that way we don’t have any type of unnecessary charges on your account.

Dan Gingiss (11:03):
I like that he is thinking ahead and I think really helping you through the process, kind of making sure that nothing slips through the cracks. Now, granted, they want to make sure you pay them too, because you’re moving out of state. They don’t know where you’re going anymore. They may not be able to chase you down. But I think it’s a great example of understanding that moving is stressful. And that, that, you know, one thing you may forget to do is pay your last bill. And so he’s making it easier for you.

Joey Coleman (11:28):
Yeah, I loved it and it, and it felt like it was really looking out for me. And speaking of looking out for me now, we get to the part of canceling your cable and internet subscription that drives most people crazy. You have to get the gear back to them, right? You have to either mail it back. And now you’re trying to make a trip to the post office or you’re waiting for them to sell it, send you, you know, a box with the postage on it, or you’ve got to take it to some location. He says to me, here’s the thing. There are a number of X affinity stores in your town that you could take this to, or by the way, you could take it to any ups store and just drop it off and they’ll box it and package it up and mail it back to us.

Joey Coleman (12:11):
Oh, and by the way, you can do this anytime in the next 30 days. So if it’s easier for you with your move to box this stuff up, take it to Iowa and then take it to the ups store. That’s totally cool with us. Not a problem. Now we’ve talked about in previous episodes, this idea of, you know, kind of the benefit of being able to take things into the ups store and have a mailed back. And the fact, I forget what the, you might remember Dan, the phrase, you know, the it’s not frustration free packaging, that’s the other one, but the like, you don’t need to provide the packaging service, but I didn’t know that Comcast Xfinity had this relationship with ups and it felt really customer centric.

Dan Gingiss (12:51):
Yeah. And I like this because it actually reminds me of another company that we’ve talked about a couple of times on the show, which is chewy. And if you’ll remember the first time we talked about them, it was specifically of my friend, Mike and, uh, and his cat had just died. And, and the treatment that he got with the flowers and all the condolence card and all that for a customer that was literally out the door. And it sounds like Comcast kind of treated you the same way in the sense that they know they’re losing you as a customer. They know there’s nothing they can do about it, but they’re still helping you out, taking the time to make it as easy as possible. And they’re basically trying to leave you with a really positive impression.

Joey Coleman (13:37):
Absolutely. Which brings me to the final thing that the representative said, he made sure I understood everything. I didn’t have any more questions. And he concluded the conversation by saying, if we ever end up offering service in Iowa, we would love the opportunity to earn your business again. And the way that he ended the conversation on this final thought of, Hey, I know we’re not a good fit, but there’s kind of an almost subtle implication that if we were a good fit and we were there, we’d be a good choice for you. But by the way, we recognize that we’re not going to be presumptuous, that you would just continue with us. We hope we get the chance to earn your business again. I got to tell you, I hung up that call and I thought, I want to do business with them again. I hope they expand to Iowa so I can become a customer again, because the off-boarding experience was such a delight.

Dan Gingiss (14:34):
And that’s amazing. And so many companies can learn from that because one customer lost does not necessarily mean that they’re lost forever and they may come back. They may tell others about the experience and help you gain new customers. And so

Joey Coleman (14:52):
That customer that you think you’re losing, if you sort of broaden your perspective a little bit and realize that that too is a person that could help your business grow down the road, it’s worth investing at little extra time to be civil, to be nice, and to leave them with a good taste in their mouth. Absolutely. And to not take it personally, that you’ve lost the customer. I mean, here’s the deal. We lose customers all day, every day in our businesses due to no fault of our business, Comcast didn’t lose me because they did something wrong. They didn’t lose me because my internet was dropping. They didn’t lose me because the cable didn’t work while it was watching a Notre Dame game, they lost me because I moved to another place that they don’t serve. So it wasn’t that something was wrong. It was that something wasn’t available. And I think all too often, when a customer leaves businesses, whether that’s the organization as a whole culturally or individual reps kind of take it as a personal affront or they’re so focused on retaining the business that they go into sales mode of, well, what if we gave you a better package or a better deal? And the folks at Comcast realized very early on in the process, they can’t serve me in the place I’m going. And as a result were okay, sending me off in a pot,

[SEGMENT INTRO – MAKE THE REQUIRED REMARKABLE]
Joey Coleman (16:17):
Just because you have required elements of your business doesn’t mean they need to be, or it’s time to get creative, have some fun and make people sit up and take, notice, get your customers talking when you make the required remarkable.

[MAKE THE REQUIRED REMARKABLE][Thoughtful Design Makes Contract Compliance Easy]
Joey Coleman (16:36):
So I have to ask, did you hire movers or did you do the big Colorado to Iowa move yourself? Well, Dan, uh, you know, the answer to be candid is a little bit of both. I have reached a certain point in my life where I feel very fortunate that we can hire movers because I’m not super excited about lifting boxes and moving. And man, I love my two boys. I’ve got a four year old and a seven year old as you know, but it’s like adding kids added more stuff than I thought it was going bad and I’m not just blaming it on them. I got plenty of stuff myself. I mean, we at our, at our account with our mover, we were at North of 8,000 books. I mean, we’re literally moving a library at that point, but moral of the story, we had movers, but through a weird confluence of events, we also ended up with a U haul and I’ll save that story for another day.

Joey Coleman (17:25):
Cause it is a sorted tale indeed. But the moral of this story is I had an interesting experience with you hall. See, anytime you rent a U haul, you need to return it with the same fuel level as before. So unlike renting a car where you have to return it full with the U haul because it’s a big truck and it has a big guest tank, you have to return it back to the same fuel level. Now this is a contractual requirement, but the challenge is most people have never driven a large U haul truck and they don’t know how much gas to put in the tank to get it back to the required level. Yeah.

Dan Gingiss (18:04):
I mean, that is hard to estimate. I’ve had that happen every once in a while, even with a rental car where they give it to you and they’re like, well, it’s between three quarters and one half. And I’m like, okay, well, I’ll try to get it between those two on the way home

Joey Coleman (18:16):
Have you. And you hope that the person checking it in remembers what the person who checking it out, who usually with, at a different location, totally different person. When they say like, it’s kind of between this and this, just get it generally. And I’m like, do they ever go back and charge people? Like I presume they do, if you are way off, but I don’t know about you. There’ve been more than one time when I’ve been returning a car and I’ve been like, Oh my gosh, I got to forget. And like spin back around in the airport and go back to the nearest gas station to fill it with gas. But you call has a different approach to this, right? They’re requiring you not to return it full, but to the same level. And they have a solution to the problem when they print out your contract, it shows a gas gauge so that you can see not only how much gas was in it when you rented it, but all the little gradation markings on the gauge show you how many gallons of gas you’ll need to put into the tank in order to return it to the proper level.

Joey Coleman (19:17):
This was so cool. I had never seen anything even remotely close to this, right? So to me to make sure we explain it, and there are visuals over at our website in the show notes, right? For experience this show.com where you can actually see pictures of the contract and the gauge, but what they do is, so let’s say I rented it at three quarters of a tank, they’ll say to you, well, if you’re down to one quarter of a tank, put in 20 gallons and that gets you back to where you may be and it’s, what’s absolutely fantastic. But as if that wasn’t enough, there are stickers on the gas tank and on the gas gauge, reminding you look at your contract for specific information on how many gallons are needed when you refill. So at every turn you hold is working to make sure you know exactly how much gas you need to put back in the tank, which helps them to make sure their trucks come back properly filled. But it also helped me the customer as I was guided to put the right amount of gas in. So I didn’t have an underfilling situation where I would violate their contract and be charged more or an overfilling situation where I would spend more on gas than I needed to spend. You know,

Dan Gingiss (20:30):
I have quoted the great Sage, former Chicago Cubs manager, Joe Madden, multiple times on this podcast and his favorite or my favorite of his sayings is do simple, better, because I think not only does it apply to baseball, but it applies to business. And this is such a great of doing

Joey Coleman (20:48):
Simple, better. This is such a simple solution to a problem. That, again, isn’t just on new halls and trucks, which I agree is going to be tougher for a car driver to estimate, because if you’re not used to driving a truck, you have no idea how many gallons to put in, but that is a real problem. Even with rental cars, because you know, when the last guy doesn’t return it full, oftentimes they don’t go fill it up for you. They just deliver it to the next person with three quarters of a tank or whatever it is. And I love the elegance and simplicity of the solution. And you’re talking about stickers and printed gradations. I mean, this cost almost nothing to do, and yet it completely changes the experience and makes it easier for the customer. Absolutely. And I, and I’ll take it one step further.

Joey Coleman (21:34):
Dan, we’ve got this scenario where the last experience you have when you rent a car, you rent a, you haul is you go put the gas in it and drop it back off. So it’s in that off-boarding period that we talked about in the last segment with Comcast. So if the last experience I have is I put a bunch of gas in and then as I’m driving to the U hall, I see that I overfilled. I’m irritated. If I see I underfilled, I’m freaking out that I’m going to get charged later. And invariably you’re charged like $19 a gallon, right? They I’m waiting for the car rental company or the truck rental company that comes along and says, Hey, return it with whatever. And we’re going to charge you the prevailing street rate to get it back to normal. Not this fall, we’re going to charge you a whole tank, which is what most rental car companies do. Or the penalty of we’re going to charge you five times the going street rate for a gallon of gas. No, we’re just going to do the right thing and, and fill it back up so you don’t have to worry. But until that happens, you hall has a great solution.

[PARTNERSHIP WITH AVTEX][Introducing The Experience Points Game Show]
Joey Coleman (22:47):
We’ve talked about it every weekend. Now it is here. In fact, you probably already saw it, but if you didn’t, you want to get over to experience points, game.com. That’s ExperiencePointsGame.com to see our newest show. There are laughs. There are tears. There’s prizes to be won. Ladies and gentlemen, don’t miss the remarkable experiences and the celebrity contestants we have at experience points, game, check out the trailer. Now

Multiple Voices (23:11):
I’m going to say, I call it a moment of magic. My mom is an English teacher. I’ve written six books. I’m like, no, can’t do it. We’ll celebrate it over and over again on the way we need them to feel. If I take care of my team, they’ll take care of the customer. What the B to B companies report is the number one challenge to customer experience. That was so hard. That’s the difference? The analogy worked, the speech did not. And they said, that’s a lot of tacos. Show me the money. Let’s lose some. This is so cool. And I’m learning so much. It’s I think that’s powerful to say our customers are expecting more than ever before. I am still ready. There is no way is no way. I’m going to guess. 44%. Yeah, you did a hundred dollars per Dan Gingiss.

[SEGMENT INTRO – THIS JUST HAPPENED]
Joey Coleman (24:07):
We love telling stories, and sharing key insights you can implement or avoid based on our experiences. Can you believe that This Just Happened?

[THIS JUST HAPPENED][Don’t Get Caught in Old Ways to Update a New Address]
Joey Coleman (24:20):
Alright, Dan, we’re bringing it home. No pun intended. That’s it? You know, what can you say? We’re reaching the end of the episode. I want to talk about something that should be so easy to do. And with one of the experiences I had, so I had, it was and yet so easy to mess up. And that was the other experience. So this is a little compare and contrast about something that happened with me, updating my magazine subscriptions. Now I have a number of small addictions. I’m addicted to books. I’m addicted to travel. I’m addicted to art. And yes, it’s a little weird, but I’ve got a touch of a magazine addiction. Now I’ve tampered that down over the years where I used to subscribe. I’m not making this up to 30 magazines, which meant I had to read a magazine cover to cover every day, just to stay on top of the magazines. I’m now down to about 10, maybe 12. So it’s still a lot of magazines. And because I was moving, I needed to update the mailing address on my magazines. Now, anybody who’s listening, who’s ever done this. Usually what happens is you call up the subscription phone number in the magazine and you tell them your subscriber number and they update your mailing address. But I figured since it’s 2020, there must be a better way to do this. So the first experience I had, I went online. I was able to go to the main website for the magazine. I was able to click on a button in the navigation, down in the footer nav that said change, mailing address. I was like, Oh my gosh, thank you. Thank you, website designers who made the navigation easy to understand. I clicked on it. I entered my name and my address and my zip code. It confirmed based on that. It didn’t need me to confirm the subscription number, which I so appreciated. Cause I didn’t have the magazine in front of me, even though I subscribed to the magazine and I was able to put in my new address and it said, and here’s the punchline folks. Your subscription will be updated with the next issue that mails next month I thought this is fantastic. And then I had a different experience. It was like, wait.

Joey Coleman (26:29):
Yeah. So I thought, well, this was so easy. Why don’t I go to one of my other magazines websites and see if I can do the same thing. So I click on it, the website and I’m navigating around and there’s nothing that says, update your mailing. And I’m looking on, I’m looking and I’m digging and I’m into contact us and there’s no phone number. There’s just an email. And it’s like, we promise to be back to you within 72 hours. And I’m like, what are you kidding me? And I’m going around. And I can’t find anything. I can’t find anything. And finally I find a phone number and I’m like, great. So I called the phone number and here’s what happened. I explained that I had a subscription. They asked me for my subscriber number. I could not tell them. And what ensued was a 20 minute process for them to be able to try to identify my subscription without my subscriber number. Even though my name is Joey Coleman, which is not an entirely uncommon name, but in it not an entirely unique name, fair enough. And when they finally found it and here’s where it got really exciting friends, they couldn’t update my address. What I had to do is cancel that subscription and resubscribe using the new ad.

Dan Gingiss (27:42):
Uh – I mean, for reals?

Joey Coleman (27:45):
Right? This is a true story. Now here’s the crazy thing about this. I fully acknowledge that that is a first world problem. I fully acknowledge that, you know, no small fluffy animals were harmed in the creation of this customer disaster story, right? It’s not a huge thing, but it proves the point that we talk about on this show all the time, which is the little things matter. And when they actually explained to me that I needed to cancel the subscription and then call a different number to resubscribe and give my credit card over the phone,

Dan Gingiss (28:23):
Let me guess. Can I get, you can guess what do you think happened? I’m going to go ahead and guess that you canceled the subscription and didn’t call the other number!

Joey Coleman (28:32):
And you are correct. My friend and I won’t call that number again because I am not excited to support a business that has such an archaic, ridiculous way of handling things. I mean, if you are in the magazine business, you have to know that people move. And I even am accepting of the fact that some of the magazines that I changed, the address on, I had one tell me that my magazine will start to be delivered to my new address in three months. So for the next two months, the magazine is going to go to the old address and then be forwarded through the post office to the new address on, by the way, guess who pays for that? Oh, that would be the magazine because they can’t change the printing of their labels. Then I actually asked the person, why is it that it’s going to take three months? And they said, well, we batch print our labels quarterly. And I’m like, how much money are you saving by batch printing that you’re losing with all of the people who change address.

Dan Gingiss (29:30):
So first of all, I want to back up a couple sentences. If you’re in the magazine business, I’m really sorry. Well dig. I mean, yeah, fair enough. You’re probably losing every day. And so, uh, you know, I like to talk about the leaky bucket. Uh, it’s time to plug that bucket with the people that actually do want to stay. You should make it a tiny bit more easy for them to do that. But also I talked about in the previous segment about doing simple, better, and changing an address is simple. It is something that we now all expect to be able to do digitally. We shouldn’t have to talk to anybody. We should just be able to put it in the website and say, here’s my old address. Here’s my new address. And now we’re done. And if you want to make it difficult on people, you want to make it hard to change the address you want to make it so they’re going to lose two months of, you’re never going to see those two months of, uh, of magazines because the postal service doesn’t forward magazines, the only forward for a first class mail. So those magazines are going to be out in the abyss. You’re still going to pay for them. If you want to annoy your customers, then keep doing it the way that you’ve been doing it since 1950, when magazines weren’t in their heyday. But if you’re in really any industry, but especially one that is getting swallowed up whole right now, you got to do a better job focusing on keeping each and every one of your customers.

Joey Coleman (30:54):
Well Dan, I’ll take it one step further. If you ever have a scenario in your business that requires you to quote unquote, delete or erase or cancel an existing relationship with a customer and hope that they will re-trigger a new relationship with you immediately following that cancellation, stop it, stop doing that. And this sounds obvious, and it sounds like stuff. And I’m sure there’s some listeners going, Oh my gosh, this is bizarre. This is ridiculous. I can’t even believe this is happening in 2020. I can’t even believe that this is the reality of any business. I guarantee that a significant percentage of our listeners work in businesses or industries, where there are ridiculous little things that are happening just like this, that for some reason, we’ve made it hard to do. It’s hard to get a printed invoice or it’s hard to get an address change, or it’s hard to get on the phone with someone, or it’s hard to get, you know, proof of a purchase after the fact, you know, get a reprinted receipt or something like that. There are tons of things in your business that for whatever reason, you’ve made it difficult for your customers to do. And this is why such a, I’m such a big fan of the customer journey. Audit might be the only time you ever hear Dan, or I say, we’re a fan of an audit, but the reality is we get so insulated in our business and our operations that we lose track of the crazy hurdles we’re asking our customers.

Dan Gingiss (32:30):
Yeah, I totally agree. And the more hurdles we put in front of customers, the more likely that they’re going to trip over one of them. And when they that’s the time where they’re going to start reevaluating their relationship with you just as you did with the magazine that is going to make you call two different numbers, you reevaluated your relationship pretty quickly. I would imagine and decided that your relationship wasn’t worth it anymore. And you know, again, this is 2020. These are things that are expected to be in digital format that are easy without having to talk to somebody. And it’s not just millennials that want, that is every single generation that is willing to go online and do these things quickly now. And if you’re not there, you got to get there soon.

[SHOW OUTRO]
Joey Coleman (33:19):
Wow. Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (33:23):
We know there are tons of podcasts to listen to, magazines and books to read, reality TV to watch. We don’t take for granted that you’ve decided to spend some quality time listening to the two of us.

Joey Coleman (33:33):
We hope you enjoyed our discussions and if you do, we’d love to hear about it! Come on over to ExperienceThis Show.com and let us know what segments you enjoyed, what new segments you’d like to hear. This show is all about experience, and we want you to be part of the Experience This Show!

Dan Gingiss (33:51):
Thanks again for your time. And we’ll see you next week for more…

Joey Coleman (33:54):
Experience.

Dan Gingiss (33:54):
This!

Episode 107 – The “Behind the Scenes” Elements and People that Make for a Remarkable Experience

Join us as we discuss the story behind the story of America’s biggest winery, CX heroes who remain behind-the-scenes, and a lifetime warranty that over-delivered.

Wines, Horns, and Suitcases – Oh My!

[Make the Required Remarkable] Your Brand Spirit Should Be Evident in Everything You Do

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

Barefoot Wines – Making Things Beautiful Rockets Your Business Forward
The Barefoot Spirit: How Hardship, Hustle, and Heart Built America’s #1 Wine Brand – by Bonnie Harvey and Michael Houlihan
• The Shadow
• Ed Asner
** Note: audio clip from “The Barefoot Spirit” used with permission.

[CX Press] The People Behind the Scenes “Make” The Customer Experience

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

The goal-horn operator. The ‘Split the Pot’ seller. The Zamboni driver. Meet 8 behind-the-scenes people who make things go during Blackhawks games at the United Center – by Jimmy Greenfield of The Chicago Tribune

[Partnership with Avtex] Experience Points: What Happened?

Avtex
• Experience Points

[This Just Happened] Kenneth Cole’s Luggage Secret? Avoid Customer “Baggage” with a Strong Warranty

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Kenneth Cole Luggage
Episode 89 – Travel Away with New Luggage
• Away Bags
• Episode 4 – Dissecting the Lands End Experience
• Episode 77 – How to Turn a Negative Experience into a Lifelong Customer

Host Contact Information

Email Dan: Dan@dangingiss.com

Tweet Dan Gingiss: @DGingiss

Email Joey: JoeyC@JoeyColeman.com

DanGingiss.com

JoeyColeman.com

Subscribe to Experience This on Apple Podcasts

Episode Transcript

Download an automated (non-corrected) transcript of Episode 107 or read it below:

[SHOW INTRO]

Dan Gingiss (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:08):
Where you’ll find inspiring examples of customer experience, great stories of customer service, and tips on how to make your customers love you, even more!

Dan Gingiss (00:18):
Always upbeat, and definitely entertaining customer retention, expert Joey Coleman.

Joey Coleman (00:23):
and social media expert. Dan Gingiss… serve as your hosts for a weekly dose of positive customer experience.

Dan Gingiss (00:31):
So hold onto your headphones… It’s time to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:39):
Get ready, for another episode of the Experience This! Show!

Episode 106 – Make the Most of the Situation to Create A Remarkable Experience

Join us as we discuss admitting mistakes before your customers notice them, building fans by sharing secret recipes, and revisiting the power of customer evangelism.

Reprints, Recipes, and Re-Releases – Oh My!

[This Just Happened] Juniper Books Plans a Reprint Before Anyone Realized It Was Necessary

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

Episode 101 – Making Things Beautiful Rockets Your Business Forward
Juniper Books
Books Everyone Should Own
• Don Quixote
Episode 30 – Grammar Police

[Dissecting the Experience] The Chik-fil-a Secret Menu

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

Chik-fil-a
Tik Tok – Chik-fil-a Menu Hacks

[Partnership with Avtex] Experience Points: Fake or Fact?

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

Avtex
• Experience Points

[Book Report] The Cult of the Customer by Shep Hyken

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

Shep Hyken
• The Cult of the Customer – by Shep Hyken

Host Contact Information

Email Dan: Dan@dangingiss.com

Tweet Dan Gingiss: @DGingiss

Email Joey: JoeyC@JoeyColeman.com

DanGingiss.com

JoeyColeman.com

Subscribe to Experience This on Apple Podcasts

Episode Transcript

Download an automated (non-corrected) transcript of Episode 106 here or read it below:

[SHOW INTRO]

Dan Gingiss (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:08):
Where you’ll find inspiring examples of customer experience, great stories of customer service, and tips on how to make your customers love you, even more!

Dan Gingiss (00:18):
Always upbeat, and definitely entertaining customer retention, expert Joey Coleman.

Joey Coleman (00:23):
and social media expert. Dan Gingiss… serve as your hosts for a weekly dose of positive customer experience.

Dan Gingiss (00:31):
So hold onto your headphones… It’s time to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:39):
Get ready, for another episode of the Experience This! Show!

Dan Gingiss (00:45):
Join us as we discuss: admitting mistakes before your customers notice them, building fans by sharing secret recipes, and revisiting the power of customer evangelism…

Joey Coleman (00:57):
Reprints, recipes, and rereleases… Oh my!

Joey Coleman (01:03):
We love telling stories and sharing key insights you can implement,, or avoid based on our experiences. Can you believe that This Just Happened?

Joey Coleman (01:18):
Hey Dan, let’s play “name that episode.”

Dan Gingiss (01:21):
Oh, you know I love that game!

Joey Coleman (01:24):
Yes I do. All right. Last season, I spoke about an experience I had with my friend Thatcher Wine’s company, Juniper Books.

Dan Gingiss (01:33):
I could never forget a name like Thatcher Wine.

Joey Coleman (01:37):
It’s a great name.

Dan Gingiss (01:37):
I remember it… it was Episode 101.

Joey Coleman (01:42):
You know, ladies and gentlemen, it’s amazing… My cohost is like the “Rain Man” of experience this episode numbers. Anyway, I know we spoke about the folks at Juniper Books, just a few episodes ago, but something happened between recording that episode and the one we’re recording now that I wanted to share. Now, as our listeners may remember, Juniper Books has a subscription program called, “Books Everyone Should Own” which they refer to as BESO (books everyone should own) – as in an acronym. It’s a series of classic books with refreshed, unique covers that are delivered monthly. Now, I got a subscription for my wife Berit and so each month she gets a new book in the mail.

Dan Gingiss (02:29):
I don’t know if you know this joy, but “beso” or “beso” means “kiss” in Spanish.

Joey Coleman (02:35):
Oh, there you go… I did not know that. Maybe they mean to pronounce it “beso.” I don’t know.

Dan Gingiss (02:43):
Anyway, I know that your wife Berit really enjoys books, so I’m imagining she is enjoying the ongoing surprise of getting a new book every month…

Joey Coleman (02:52):
You know, she does enjoy books and she loves surprises. And what’s interesting to me is that every time she gets a book, I get to see what it is. But to be honest, I don’t spend a ton of time looking at it because it’s her gift, which is why I was a bit caught off guard. When I received the following email from Juniper books one day. And to be clear, the reason I received this email is because I’m the one who gave the gift. So it’s my name on the account intentionally, because when I originally gifted her the gift, I didn’t want her to get an email about it. I wanted to surprise her. So the subject line of this email said, “Mistakes were Made” and the email reads as follows:

Joey Coleman (03:34):
Hello! Thank you for being a BESO subscriber. We hope you are enjoying your thoughtfully curated and designed collection of classics during these difficult times. We misprinted the recently shipped Don Quixote jacket and wanted to let you know that we will be sending you a replacement jacket in early August. The jacket you currently have has a placeholder text on the front inside flap that we neglected to remove before printing. We apologize for this air for 19 years, we have always stood behind our creations. We always want to make sure our books and jackets are of the finest quality that they look great on your shelves, feel good in your hands and that they stand the test of time. When the new jacket arrives, it will be pre folded. So you will be able to swap out the new jacket for the old one easily. Don’t forget that. One of the perks of being a member of one of our subscription programs is that you receive free shipping on any domestic orders@juniperbooks.com. Just be sure to sign into your account while shopping and your shipping discount will automatically apply. Our book sets are always great for gifting this summer and for the holidays, please feel free to reach out to me directly if you have any questions. Thanks again,

Dan Gingiss (04:52):
You know, joy, fun fact, but Don Quixote is Spanish!

Joey Coleman (05:00):
Ladies and gentlemen, Dan Gingiss – social media expert, and Spanish translator in this segment.

Dan Gingiss (05:09):
Si señor! Anyway, uh, I know, I know you’re probably looking for my comment here and I could deliver it in Spanish, but I’m going to keep this show in English. What I love about this is that it’s proactive and they didn’t have to wait for somebody to figure out that something was wrong or that there was an error. A lot of companies, their first instinct is if we don’t say anything, no one will notice.

Speaker 2 (05:33):
Totally, totally. And what was cool about this is to be completely candid. Neither I, nor my wife had noticed, like this mistake could have gone unaddressed for frankly quite a long time, if not forever, had we not been alerted to this scenario? So it’s a great example of when something goes wrong, be proactive, but here’s where I felt they really closed the loop on this. So not long after receiving the first email, I received another email with the subject line mistakes were fixed and the email reads as follows. Hello, thank you again for being a BSO subscriber with Juniper books, I thought I’d follow up on my email of July 8th, alerting you. There was an issue with the donkey Otay jacket originally sent in June. The corrected jacket for your edition of Don Quixote should be arriving any day. Now, once it does simply remove the jacket currently on the book and easily replace it with your brand new one, we do apologize for the air. As noted in my email, we will always stand by our product and we want your collection to be perfect. Please let us know if you have any questions. Thank you.

Dan Gingiss (06:49):
You know, I’m reminded here as I’m sure you were Joey of Episode 30 in Season 1.

Joey Coleman (06:56):
If you offered me a million dollars to tell you what we talked about in Episode 30, you would get to keep your million dollars… friends.

Dan Gingiss (07:05):
What we talked about was a tweet from the British clothing company, ASIS, which

Joey Coleman (07:12):
Do you remember this idea? Remember this? I didn’t remember that tweet Bart.

Dan Gingiss (07:16):
Yeah, of course. You’re blocking that out.

Joey Coleman (07:18):
I remembered the British clothing company.

Dan Gingiss (07:19):
But yeah, so they had a spelling error on one of their bags, the packages, their clothing, and you know, I always say most companies would have never noticed this spelling error. The one out of a hundred that did, would have thrown out the bags, but not a sauce. They ended up tweeting a picture of the error and they called it a limited edition and their tweet got more than 50,000 likes and however many thousand retweets just because they proactively admitted a mistake. They poked a little fun at themselves and had a little, you know, there was a little self-deprecating and I think it endeared people to the brand. And look, I wouldn’t say this example was quite as playful, but I think it stands to the same reason that they noticed the mistake. They’re very proud of their product. It wasn’t okay with them that it was wrong, regardless of whether it was okay with the customers. And so, like you said, at the Coleman family, it probably would have been okay. Nobody even noticed, but it wasn’t okay with them. And I think that says a lot about this company and it says to me that it’s the kind of company I want to do business with.

Speaker 2 (08:29):
Exactly Dan. And that’s the reason why I wanted to tell this story. Not because I’m a big fan of Juniper books, although I am not because, you know, they made this agregious error. They didn’t, it was a tiny little thing. But what does it say for someone you’re doing business with when they tell you that they’ve not lived up to their own standards? So often in the world of customer experience, the reason customer experiences go bad is because the companies fail to live up to the experience that their customers are expecting. It’s a completely different ball game and a completely different, uh, commitment to excellence. When as a brand, you say, you know what? We already sent out the product, you have it, no one’s going to be injured by this. This isn’t a product defect that we need to do a recall on this is a cosmetic thing at best.

Speaker 2 (09:22):
And probably something that less than 5% of customers would ever even notice. And yet for the folks at Juniper books that was not acceptable, they wanted to deliver the same standard that they had for the last 19 years. And you know, what’s great about this. They use the apology email to restate their brand commitment, to excellence in the apology email. As you may recall, they kind of referenced that free shipping perk of membership. So it’s not really an upsell. It’s more of a reminder that like, Hey, you have this perk of being a member that you might’ve forgotten about it. So Hey, if you want to take advantage of the perk, go ahead and do it. The tone was personal. It was honest. It was sincere. And they delivered the fix. You know, the newly printed jacket as planned on schedule as promised. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (10:15):
If you’re listening to the show, which obviously, if you can hear my voice right now, you clearly are. I would ask you to think about how would your company react to a mistake?

Speaker 2 (10:27):
Oh, be careful here, Dan, a lot of people are feeling self conscious right now. No kidding. They probably should people. Yeah, because they’re like, ah, my company would do nothing like this.

Speaker 1 (10:37):
Right? And then you should ask yourself why, but also, I mean, let’s run through the options here really fast, Joey. So we could do nothing and then what’s going to happen. Well, as you said, 5% of our customers are gonna call up. So we’re going to spend some call center, time, handling their calls. We’re going to have to do something for them, either refund their money, or maybe we print up a few extra jackets and we send it to them and then they’ll be happy and satisfied.

Speaker 2 (11:01):
And then maybe three months later, someone finally gets to reading Don Quixote. Cause it’s not a small book friends. And they then realize what the other people realized earlier. So then they call in and we hope to have printed enough, extra covers that we have some to send to them because God forbid, one of the other customers shares what had happened to them. They want to treat it, be treated the same. This is a problem that never ends.

Speaker 1 (11:25):
Right. And we have to stock these covers forever and all that stuff. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (11:28):
Instead we spent a little bit more

Speaker 1 (11:31):
Money now, maybe a lot more money now. And we sent the cover to everyone. But in the meantime, what we did is we made fans out of our customers and we got them telling their friends about us, talking about us, appreciating us more. I guarantee you, if you look at business metrics like, uh, how many of their customers

Speaker 2 (11:54):
Stay on this subscription program? Those will be extended. The, the tenure will be extended. More people will recommend them to their friends. A couple of people who host podcasts, they’ll talk about, Oh wait, that’s it. And that’s the crazy thing. Like, as I said in the previous segment, when we talked about the folks at junior pro books, you know, Thatcher wine is a friend of mine, like I’m a big fan of their brand. I’m a big fan of their coming. He has no idea. We’re talking about this on the show right now because I intentionally have not reached out to him. And instead, I’m just going to share the episode with him when it comes out, because here’s the secret friends and anybody who works in customer experience knows this. But I bet you’re frustrated because your boss and your boss’s boss don’t necessarily get this.

Speaker 2 (12:37):
It is incredibly difficult to directly draw ROI to this kind of activity. Because the return on this investment of doing the right thing probably doesn’t happen next month. It probably doesn’t happen next quarter. It may happen weeks from now or months from now or years from now. And you know, even talking about this story makes me think, gosh, it’s been a while since I’ve sent someone a gift from Juniper books, I should go do that. Right? So there are huge opportunities here. So what can we learn from this great example as set by Thatcher wine and his team at Jenner pro books? Well, friends, mistakes are going to happen. Even if you’ve been in business for almost two decades doing the same thing, the occasional error will slip through the cracks. How you respond, not only shows how much you prioritize and care about your customers, but it’s an indicator of whether you’ll still be in business 20 years from now, which I think is going to be the case for Juniper books. If you’re listening to our show and love books, like we do make sure to go over and show the fine folks at Juniper books, some love you can find the books. Everyone should own subscription series and lots of other beautifully designed books@juniperbooks.com.

Speaker 3 (13:57):
Sometimes a remarkable experience deserves deeper investigation. We dive into the nitty gritty of customer interactions and dissect how and why they happen. Join us while we’re dissecting the experience.

Speaker 2 (14:14):
Loyal listeners know Dan, you were previously the senior director of global social media for McDonald’s. And I came across something recently and thought to myself, self. I bet Dan will be able to share a unique perspective on this situation. You know, friends, it’s okay to talk to yourself. It’s not okay to answer yourself. So true. So true. Alright. I’m getting nervous here because you know, our listeners probably also know that working at McDonald’s is not my favorite experience in my whole life. So what do you got for me? But the fries are great. Okay. I think you’re actually going to like this one, Dan. So here’s the scoop recently, a young woman who worked for Chick-fil-A made a tic talk video about a secret menu hack now. Oh, Whoa, Whoa, Whoa, Whoa, Whoa. Did the words tick tock video, just come out of your mouth, Joey.

Speaker 2 (15:10):
Yes, they did. My friend. Yes they did. Oh, wait, does this mean that you’re on tick tock? Oh, absolutely not. Absolutely. I got a long streak of not being on social media that I have to uphold. I am not on talk, but I heard about this story because of how it connects to customer and employee experience. And I went to track down more details and in doing so I learned this Anna was a 19 year old Chick-fil-A employee had just finished her shift one day and afterwards she got into the car and got on tick TechTalk and shared a secret hack that would allow customers to order the seasonal mango passion tea, lemonade year round. And she also shared with the way that you could get a large for 4 cents cheaper than the regular size drink. So here’s a little clip of what she said.

Speaker 4 (16:05):
Okay. So I work at Chick-Filet. So I’m here to give you all the tips and tricks on secret menu items, um, how to get things cheaper and just all that. Okay. And this is only a part one. Let me start off with the seasonal drinks. Um, okay. Someone’s washing your Cortez. Wow. Okay. Anyways, um, so I wanna start with the seasonal drinks. So right now we have a mango passion tea, uh, basically the large, it’s not really a large. So what you’re going to order is going to order an Arnold Palmer, which is a tea and lemonade mixture. You’re going to ask her for pumps and Mingo by doing that, you literally get double the mango passion tea for literally the same price you can kind of see here. But Arnold Palmer is two 69 and a large mega passion T is two 65. It’s the same price in part two. I’ll tell you guys about secret frost.

Speaker 2 (16:55):
All right. So this is interesting. Uh, you know, she points out the, the kind of price difference and kind of remixing some of the drinks. And it’s always nice to see a employee get excited about where they work and want to share that with others. And, you know, there’s this hack culture that people seem to be glomming on to where if we can just, you know, if we can find a way to hack something, it’s fine. So I’m guessing though that I dunno things maybe got out of hand a little bit, otherwise I’m not quite sure why you’re sharing this just yet. Well, as usual, Dan you’re absolutely right. So this little tick tock video went viral and while I’m not sure how many people saw it right away, estimates are that it has been seen by millions of people it’s received over 300,000 hearts, which I guess is like the tech talk of likes and has almost a thousand comments at the time we’re recording this.

Speaker 1 (17:54):
Well, you cannot buy that type of engagement on social media. So Chick-fil-A, must’ve been thrilled.

Speaker 2 (18:01):
No, you would think that’s the case, but sadly that wasn’t the case and his boss wasn’t as thrilled as you or I might’ve been. In fact, she posted a second video to tech talk less than a week after the first video with some music playing and the captions, while you’re hearing this music in the background, relate her experience of making the video, becoming tic talk famous and being super excited about it. When the video goes viral and then receiving a call from her boss to turn in her uniform because she was fired.

Speaker 1 (18:34):
Oh no. Oh no, they did it.

Speaker 2 (18:37):
Yes, they did.

Speaker 1 (18:39):
That. Second video went viral too. Oh my,

Speaker 2 (18:42):
Your friend did it indeed to this date. It’s estimated to have been seen by millions and millions of people with over 250,000 hearts and over 1500 comments. So it actually has more comments than the first video. The second video has attracted more attention than the first one did. Okay.

Speaker 1 (19:02):
Okay. So you’re right. I have a couple of things just to say about this.

Speaker 2 (19:05):
I have an opinion about this and let’s be candid as a general rule. Chick-fil-A usually gets the customer experience, right? Like people rave about how friendly the Chick-fil-A employees are and how they come out in line at the drive through to take care of you. And everybody seems to always have a smile on their face and be thank you left. And right. Like most people usually don’t have a bad experience with the staff at Chick-fil-A. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (19:31):
I think the story here is actually not about Chick-fil-A. I agree. Let’s take a step back and let’s talk about secret menu items because this is actually a thing across the fast food and fast casual industry. And I did get to hear a lot about this at McDonald’s because I was working in social media. So I got to see all sorts of stuff, by the way, Joey, the things people do in a McDonald’s

Speaker 2 (19:57):
Well, the thing is anyone, any of it, any faster

Speaker 1 (19:59):
Food or fast casual restaurant, like I agree with you, that’s a story for another day. But one of the things that I figured out really quickly

Speaker 2 (20:08):
Was that the people that were sharing

Speaker 1 (20:11):
You hacks is really what we called them were some of our biggest fans. And some of these menu hacks were super creative. Some of them were really out there. I will never forget. There was one there’s two that I remember there was one guy that ordered a sandwich where he had one bun with every single piece of protein that McDonald’s offered. So there was like a fried chicken breast and a hamburger and a Mick rib and a sausage Patty from the big mafia lovers pizza. It was a heart attack. I would say that doesn’t sound good at all. Yeah. And then there was another guy, uh, this is a guy

Speaker 2 (20:55):
It’s always a guy. And I don’t say that to be a sexist. I say that because as a general rule,

Speaker 1 (20:59):
You guys are the weird ones. Yeah. Well, so when the, when McDonald’s installed the kiosks, there was an initially a, I don’t want to say an error, but basically something wrong, a little glitch. And it allowed you to essentially add up to, I think, 30 of any item on a sandwich. So a guy walked in and he said, okay, I want a hamburger. And I’d like 30 patties of beef. And I’d like 30 slices of cheese. And I’d like 30 pieces of lettuce and 30 tomatoes and 30 squirts of mustard and all this sort of, and all of this stuff. And the thing ended up pretty dang expensive sandwich. But it also, they ended up bringing it out to him on like three trays because the sandwich would be huge. Right. But that video went viral and you know, there were drink recipes and Starbucks has a huge secret menu. My favorite, by the way, is the peppermint Patty frappuccino. I don’t know why they don’t put that on the menu. Cause it is awesome.

Speaker 2 (22:02):
Well, and I know I’m not a Starbucks guy, but like in and out, burger is famous for its secret menu. You know, you can order a burger animal style. If you order it protein style, you don’t get the bond. It’s the gluten free version. It comes wrapped in lettuce. You know, a lot of these restaurants have these things and it’s not a huge deal. Like I understand in this particular scenario, Anna was suggesting something that would quote unquote, caused them to lose money. Now, granted it’s 4 cents and I don’t know about you, but I’d be willing as a business owner to shave 4 cents off the profit. If it meant someone came in and, or placed an order that they wouldn’t otherwise.

Speaker 1 (22:43):
I mean, look, if they, first of all, I it’s a little more than the 4 cents because I think what she was saying was you get more ingredients for your course out, but even so, uh, so what’s the worst that happens. A billion people come in and order it. I don’t think that’s a big, big problem. So the whole idea behind the secret menus or these hacks is that people figure stuff out right. When I was at discover and I worked in the rewards area, one of the things I found out is that if there’s a way to game the system, people will find it. And so we do the best we can to not allow people to really take advantage. But in this case with this employee and with the case of these special menu items or secret menu items, these are usually people that love your brand. They’re not trying to screw you over. They are trying to love you more. And so the surprising part about this story was that the company wasn’t thrilled that this video went viral and brought a lot of attention to a product offering that they have. Heck I didn’t even know they serve Arnold

Speaker 2 (23:46):
Palmers at Chick-fil-A and now I know you’re excited to go on. No, I totally agree with you, Dan. And I think the interesting thing about this is I can understand as a business owner, having an employee that does something that you’re less than thrilled about. Like I can try to put myself into the shoes of the franchise owner or the manager. Who’s like, Oh my gosh, this is bringing more heat than we would have liked. This is causing issues with corporate, et cetera, et cetera, whatever was going on. But to me, that’s not a let’s fire, the employee conversation. That’s a, how can we take this enthusiastic, energetic employee who is on a platform that most adults are trying to figure out, let alone actually create viral videos on and harness her ability and her personality to promote the brand in a way that we aren’t okay with.

Speaker 2 (24:41):
You know, I mean most brands have to just accept the fact that they can’t control the brand message on social media, the same way they can in their say, print advertising or what their marketing agency, you can’t control, what customers are going to do. And you really can’t even control what employees are going to do. But if the employee is going to do something, don’t fire them, redirect that focus and that energy into something, because what, the number of followers that she had, you could almost see where she did a weekly show on some type of a behind the scenes story at Chick-fil-A that would have built a huge following. And that’s

Speaker 1 (25:17):
Actually what I recommended to McDonald’s when we started seeing these secret menu items was let’s lean into this. Let’s be in on the joke because people are going to love the brand personality for that. Right. And again, I can’t see a downside, even I sorta get why, you know, you’re saying that it’s possible that the Boston may not have liked this, but I’m not seeing the business downside. To be honest with you.

Speaker 2 (25:45):
I think it’s a, it’s an old school way of thinking. I mean, and let’s be candid. We’re where these things, that big of secrets. I mean, for years McDonald’s talked about their special sauce, right? The secret special sauce. And wasn’t it. I mean, you know this better than I do, but wasn’t it McDonald’s Canada like did something with Twitter where they shared the recipe to the secret sauce.

Speaker 1 (26:06):
Yeah. I mean, they shared a lot of secrets because they had a program where they basically said to their customers, ask us any question, nothing’s off limits. We’ll answer it. And my favorite, one of those videos they showed, somebody said, why do your sandwiches always look better on TV than they do in real life? Which we probably all asked that question. And they went behind the scenes of a TV, commercial shoot. And they introduced you to the food. What was his name? What was his title? It was like the food artist. It was a food artist. Thank you, Joey. I remember got it

Speaker 2 (26:40):
From our buddy mutual friend, Marcus Sheridan. Who’s famous for the, they ask you answer book and methodology, which McDonald’s was following.

Speaker 1 (26:48):
Yes. And this guy had, I remember a tweezers and was placing Sesame seeds on the bun, just so that’s a job. Uh, so, but, but yeah, I mean, and you know what, that was a successful campaign. Big and people looked at McDonald’s Canada, cause McDonald’s us stubbornly wouldn’t do it. But McDonald’s Canada. They looked at them with more trust. They looked at them as a company that they wanted to do business with more or eat at more because, because they were open and honest and, and, and so again, if people are going to come in and order off the menu, or if you’re a retailer and they’re going to buy certain products and use them for ways that they weren’t to 10 intended that’s okay. You know, it, they’re still shopping with you. They’re spending money with you. And really, as I said, at the beginning, these tend to be some of your better customers. So I think the result of firing poor Ana here is that they may have also lost not just an employee, but they may have lost customers. Oh,

Speaker 2 (27:56):
Absolutely. Absolutely. And now they’ve got kind of a detractor of a former employee who interestingly enough, has filmed a third video where she basically goes through the entire menu, telling you all the ways to beat the men.

Speaker 1 (28:12):
I thought you were going to tell me that the third video was she’s now working at Popeye’s.

Speaker 2 (28:16):
Yeah, that would be great. I mean, let me tell you, if you’re out there employ this young woman, she like go hire her. So here’s the moral of the story friends. When you have a super engaged employee, especially one that is early in their career, recognize that mistakes may be made. And it’s up to you as the employer, not to compound these mistakes and instead to guide your employee to harness their talent into ways that allowed this employee to express themselves and their excitement for your brand, but ideally in ways that are a little bit more in alignment with your business operations, not to mention, if you have the opportunity to connect with your most rabid followers and fans, don’t miss it.

Speaker 1 (29:04):
Is it fake or is it fact the proverbial question, which we’re going to answer or rather our celebrity contestants are going to answer in the first of three games on our new game show, experience points

Speaker 2 (29:21):
In fake or fact contestants examine three similar experiences and try to figure out if each experience is real

Speaker 1 (29:29):
Fake. Every answer they get right is worth a hundred points.

Speaker 2 (29:33):
If they get all three answers, correct? They earn another 200 bonus points for a total possible score of five points, which converts into a $500 donation to the charity of their choosing. Thanks to our great friends at F techs.

Speaker 1 (29:51):
All right, Joey, let’s show him how this works. All right. Good idea, Dan,

Speaker 2 (29:56):
With one of our contestants, we talked about subscription programs. You know, those monthly boxes that you can subscribe to get a package to your house every month with a little moment of surprise and delight inside. And we asked, is there a subscription program for bacon?

Speaker 1 (30:15):
Yay. Exactly sure. Hope that one was fact,

Speaker 2 (30:20):
Let me ask, is it fake

Speaker 1 (30:22):
Or is it fact? Well, you’re going to have to tune into experience points to find out experience points is the new game show hosted by your friends, Dan Gingiss and Joey Coleman at brought to you by our friends, AV techs tune in to the video series and the podcast coming soon.

Speaker 2 (30:45):
We’re excited to give you an overview of an important book you should know about as well as share some of our favorite passages as part of our next book report

Speaker 1 (30:57):
For this week’s book report. We wanted to talk about a true friend of the show, an F O J friend of Joey and FOD friend of Dan, the one and only godfather of customer service, chef hiking, my brother from another mother, as we like to call each other. And chef just recently, rereleased a book that is called the cult of the customer. Now you may remember that we reviewed his last book, be amazing or go home and also the convenience revolution in previous episodes. And so when the culture of the customer came out, we asked chef to talk to us a little bit about it, especially this whole idea of releasing a book. So here’s chef giving us an overview of the cult of the customer. I love everybody has chef hiking here, customer service and experience expert. Very excited that my friends, Dan and Joey are allowing me to share some information about my latest book.

Speaker 1 (31:56):
The cult of the customer create an amazing customer experience that turns satisfied customers into customer evangelist. So the title, that’s an interesting title, the cult of the customer, by the way, this is an updated and revised edition from a book that I wrote almost 12 years ago, same title, but updated stats and facts, unless they were evergreen. We replaced all of it with stats and information that were less than a year or so old. So everything’s updated, got rid of some stories, changed up a few stories. And why is the title, the cult of the customer? Because that’s what the publisher said. They wanted the title to be. So what is the cult of the customer? This is actually a cult you want to belong to. So I believe that all customers go through five phases as they go from the beginning of their journey to their final phase, which is one where they’re amazed and love the company.

Speaker 1 (32:49):
So, uh, rather than use the word phase, we’re actually using the word cult. And I’ll explain why in just a few minutes when I read an excerpt from the book. So let’s talk about the five calls by the way. This is for everybody in any organization that deals with customers and that’s everyone. Because if you don’t have an outside customer, you have an internal customer and you need to take care of them as well. And also the book is not meant to be read. It’s meant to be used there’s exercises in the back of the book that you can use on and on the five cults, number one, it’s uncertainty customers. Aren’t sure what they’re getting into. Number two, they get into alignment with the company, as they start to do business with them. Number three, they experience what it is you want them to experience. Hopefully it’s good. And when they experience it over and over again, it becomes predictable. Then it’s ownership. So you go from uncertainty to alignment, to experience to the cult of ownership. And finally, if it’s a positive and predictable experience where customers say, I always enjoy doing business with them, that word always in front of anything. Good to describe you. That means they’re in the cult of amazement. That’s where you want to be with your customer.

Speaker 2 (33:57):
I gotta be honest, and I’m not sure that prior to our conversation, I have ever thought of a cult as a good thing. I mean, it’s, it’s pretty interesting. You know, cults have kind of a bad rap, but what I love about Shep’s description here is this idea of your external and internal customers and paying attention to the changes that a customer’s feeling as they navigate through the customer journey with you and what they need at each phase. I particularly like that idea of predictability turning into ownership, because I think all too often, companies tried to jump right to the ownership phase instead of delivering that consistent, predictable experience that actually builds ownership. And I think what’s interesting here is while this book may be a little bit older and he’s obviously refreshed it and added new stories and new stats, I don’t know that this principle of the power of creating a cult of customers has ever been more true than it is today.

Speaker 1 (35:01):
Yeah. And Chuck likes to talk a lot about consistency. And I do think that that is a facet of customer experience that is often overlooked. Customers expect things to work every time. Or if you have a certain part of your experience, they expect it to be the same. I mean, it’s why people go to certain fast food restaurants, cause the French fries are the same all the time and that’s what they expect. And so consistency can be a really good thing, obviously, unless it is consistently a bad experience, but he likes to talk about how creating that consistency starts to gain this fandom or, or cult as he likes to call it. So one of the things that I love that we do on the show, Joey, I think it’s one of the, one of my favorite things that we decided to do when we launched the show is that when we highlight books, we don’t just do an interview with the author like everybody else does, but we have them do the overview that you just heard.

Speaker 1 (36:03):
And then we ask them to read us their favorite passage. And so here is Shep Hyken author of the call to the customer, reading his favorite passage from his book. What is the cult of the customer? Well, if you’re in business, it’s the cult you want to belong to first things first. There’s nothing scary about the word cult. If you stop and think about it, you’ll realize you can find the word cult inside words that you already know and use without any problem like culture and cultivate cult comes from the Latin word Cultus, which originally meant care or tending. What we’re proposing in this book is creating a corporate culture that is so focused on taking care of and tending to employees and customers that the culture itself creates evangelists. Please bear in mind. As you make your way through this book, a cult is nothing more or less than a system of shared belief, interest or experience. In other words, a group of people with shared agreement about what they will be cultivating together. For example, you may be passionate about bike riding and like to hang out with other cyclists on weekends, strictly speaking, that’s a cult. You may enjoy action hero, comic books and attend comic book conventions twice a year. That too is a cult. When it comes to business, I’m in a cult and I hope you are too. It’s the cult of the customer,

Speaker 2 (37:27):
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls. You come to experience this to learn about amazing, remarkable experiences and to learn about Latin words. I love it as somebody who took four years of Latin in high school, I loved that ship breaks down

Speaker 1 (37:41):
The Latin, where

Speaker 2 (37:44):
It comes from, you know, while my passage doesn’t have any Latin in it, it does come from a chapter. That’s all about what the journey looks like from the inside. And so here’s my favorite passage. A moment of magic and above average experience typically is the result of someone’s consistent and patient focus on the complex task of consistently delivering moments of magic to internal customers. So they can in turn consistently deliver moments of magic to external customers. Believe it, this kind of experience must be modeled internally before it can be delivered on a consistent basis across the organization. Oh my goodness. I love this passage. It’s so echoes something that I share with audiences all the time, which is we cannot expect our employees

Speaker 1 (38:36):
To deliver a remarkable customer experience. If they don’t know what one is, if they have no context for a remarkable experience themselves and the best way to give your employees a remarkable customer experience context is to deliberate, remarkable experiences to your employees. So you start it with the employees, you show them by the way you treat them and the way you communicate with them and the way you interact with them, what remarkable is. And then when you ask them to deliver a remarkable experience to your customers, they understand what’s being asked, they’re familiar with this. They know what it looks like. They know what it feels like. And as a result, they’re able to do it. I totally agree. And you know, the opposite of that is when you walk into a fast food restaurant and the person behind the counter looks at you, like you’re interrupting their otherwise pleasant day by wanting to place an order.

Speaker 1 (39:28):
And so when your employees are miserable, they’re going to provide a miserable experience to your customer. So it makes all the sense in the world. Now I conveniently chose a favorite passage from a chapter called what the journey looks like from the outside. Ooh, an alternative perspective. I like it. So here we go, you make the right promise and you follow through specifically, you brand the experience and bring your customers into alignment. With that experience, then you deliver on the promise over and over again, through this repeated and predictable satisfaction, your customer’s confidence increases. Eventually you develop a network of evangelists who create a community of believers for your organization. I said before that Shep likes the word consistency. And that was consistent across both of our favorite passages. Is that doing things over and over the right way is going to lead to a better experience.

Speaker 1 (40:26):
And I talk about something very specific to this when I speak as well, which I think is why we both picked these passages. Why they spoke to us is that when you create remarkable experiences, that ends up your best sales and marketing strategy. And here’s why, because you get people to talk about your brand instead of you having to talk about your brand, let’s face it, Joey. We all know you’re awesome, but it’s your sounds a lot better when I say you’re awesome. Then when you say you’re awesome, right? I think you’re awesome. Awesome. Shep. Hyken awesome. This book is awesome. Friends, go out and pick up a copy of chef’s book. The cult of the customer on Amazon at your local indie bookstore, wherever fine books are sold and learn how to turn your customers into a cult.

Speaker 5 (41:22):
Wow.

Speaker 1 (41:23):
Thanks for joining us for another episode of experience this we know there are tons of podcasts to listen to magazines and books, to read reality TV, to watch. We don’t take for granted that you’ve decided to spend some quality

Speaker 3 (41:34):
Time listening to the two of us. We hope you enjoyed our discussions. And if you do, we’d love to hear about it. Come on over to experience this show.com and let us know what segments you enjoyed, what new segments you’d like to hear. This show is all about experience, and we want you to be part of the experience this show. Thanks again for your time. And we’ll see you next week for more experience.

Speaker 5 (41:59):
Yes.

Episode 104 – Get People Talking with a Free Prize Inside

Join us as we discuss talking to customers in uncertain times, a remarkable credit card experience, and the power of Cracker Jack-esque surprises.

Canadian Professors, Apple Cards, and Inflatable Pools – Oh My!

[CX Press] Concrete Communication in Uncertain Times

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Michael Fishman
• Consumer Health Summit (CHS)
• M.I.T. Sloan Management Review
• Grant Packard (associate professor of marketing at York University in Toronto)
• Schulich School of Business at York University
• Sarah G. Moore (associate professor of marketing at the University of Alberta School of Business in Edmonton)
• University of Alberta School of Business
• Brent McFerran (associate professor of marketing at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia)
• Simon Fraser University – Beedie School of Business
• Speaking to Customers in Uncertain Times – by Packard, Moore, and McFerran in M.I.T. Sloan Management Review
• Professor Jonah Berger (associate professor of marketing at The Wharton School in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)
• The Wharton School of Business – University of Pennsylvania

[Dissecting the Experience] The Apple Credit Card – Changing the Landscape Again

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Apple
• iPhone
• AirPods
• Mac
• Apple Credit Card
• Discover Card
• Discover Wins JD Power Award
• JD Power Award
• William Tell
• iPad
• American Express (Amex) Black Card
• Apple white matte finish
• Apple logo
• Credit card chip design
• Goldman Sachs
• Mastercard
• Wallet app
• Apple Pay
• Apple Watch
• MacBook Pro laptop
• credit card cycle date
• First USA
• Chase Bank

[Partnership with Avtex] We Love Gameshows – Do You?

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Jeopardy!
• Wheel of Fortune
• Joker’s Wild
• Tic Tac Dough
• Press Your Luck

[This Just Happened] Inflatable Pools with a Free Prize Inside

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Marcus Sheridan – Pool Guy
• River Pools and Spas
• Inflatable Pools on Amazon
• Amazon
• Cracker Jack

Host Contact Information

Email Dan: Dan@dangingiss.com

Tweet Dan Gingiss: @DGingiss

Email Joey: JoeyC@JoeyColeman.com

DanGingiss.com

JoeyColeman.com

Subscribe to Experience This on Apple Podcasts

Episode Transcript

Download a transcript of Episode 104 here or read it below:

[SHOW INTRO]

Dan Gingiss [00:00:05] Welcome to Experience This! 

Joey Coleman [00:00:08] Where you’ll find inspiring examples of customer experience, great stories of customer service, and tips on how to make your customers love you even more! 

Dan Gingiss [00:00:18] Always upbeat and definitely entertaining, customer retention expert Joey Coleman… 

Joey Coleman [00:00:23] …and social media expert Dan Gingiss serve as your hosts for a weekly dose of positive customer experience. 

Dan Gingiss [00:00:31] So hold on to your headphones, it’s time to Experience This!

[EPISODE 104 INTRO]

Joey Coleman [00:00:39] Get ready for another episode of the experience, this show. 

Dan Gingiss [00:00:45] Join us as we discuss talking to customers in uncertain times, a remarkable credit card experience, and the power of Cracker Jack-esque surprises. 

Joey Coleman [00:00:59] Canadian professors, Apple cards, and inflatable pools! Oh, my! 

[SEGMENT INTRO – CX PRESS]

Joey Coleman [00:01:07] There are so many great customer experience articles to read. But who has the time? We summarize them and offer clear takeaways you can implement starting tomorrow. Enjoy this segment of CX Press – where we read the articles so you don’t need to! 

[CX PRESS] Concrete Communication in Uncertain Times

Dan Gingiss [00:01:25] We’re living in a world that is fundamentally different from the world we were living in just a few months ago. As businesses work to navigate the experiences they’re delivering to customers, one of the big questions that everyone is wrestling with is how do we offer certainty in our communications when we’re speaking to people in uncertain times? 

Joey Coleman [00:01:47] Which is why we were intrigued by the following article that is our CX Press segment today. I want to give special thanks to my buddy Michael Fishman, who’s the founder of the Consumer Health Summit, who turned me on to a piece in the M.I.T. Sloan Management Review. The article is written by Grant Packard, associate professor of marketing at York University in Toronto; Sarah G. Moore, associate professor of marketing at the University of Alberta School of Business in Edmonton; and Brent McFerran, the associate professor of marketing at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia. 

Dan Gingiss [00:02:22] Wow. So that’s like “associate professor of marketing cubed” and a coast to coast group of Canadian professors. 

Joey Coleman [00:02:30] So true, Dan. So true! And let’s be honest, when it comes to creating great customer experiences, I’ve had the pleasure of spending enough time in Canada to know that our friendly neighbors to the north are absolute pros. And the fact that these three professors collaborated on a great article titled “Speaking to Customers in Uncertain Times” comes as no surprise to me, and I’m super excited to dive into it. The article begins with some clear yet frightening observations… and I quote:. 

Joey Coleman [00:02:59] “Businesses are increasingly operating in a low trust world. The levels at which people mistrust government, traditional media, and social media, are high – and rising… Add to the trust deficit a global pandemic, in which consumers have been asked to limit their visits to stores and restaurants and to shop online when possible. Those who do venture out face an uncertain and literally distanced service experience. They’re questioned about their health. Asked to line up and wear mask, shown where to walk, and reminded to avoid other customers and employees… This trust deficit persist outside the retail space. Individuals contacting customer service –  whether it airlines, banks or retailers – during the pandemic are waiting longer than ever and dealing with uncertainty and frustration about refunds and product availability… So customers are arriving at interactions in highly charged, emotional states. Many frontline workers with similar safety anxieties and changing directives from their supervisors are also stressed. Further due to staffing cuts, shuttered branches, and closed call centers, many customer service employees are working from home with less support from team members and supervisors… In short, the potential for fraught customer service experiences, in-person or otherwise, is higher than ever. 

Dan Gingiss [00:04:18] Ouch! I mean, that one is tough to swallow, but it is absolutely true. And I guess that’s what keeps us customer experience folks in business. I mean, trust is vital when it comes to customer experience and due to the fact that the current environment has eliminated, or drastically reduced, most of the face-to-face, nonverbal ways that people build trust – things like smiles, and head nods, and handshakes – we really are operating in an unprecedented environment. So given the reality of the world right now, what are we supposed to do about it? 

Joey Coleman [00:04:55] Well Dan, I’m glad you asked – but I’m even more excited about the fact that the article speaks to three very specific things that companies can do, that are all supported by a growing body of research on how the use of language can help. Now, whether we’re considering in-person interactions, or voice based phone conversations, or text based emails and chats, the three things that are recommended are as follows:. 

Joey Coleman [00:05:21] • Speaking to customers with specific dedicated attention,. 

Joey Coleman [00:05:23] • Establishing individual connection through the use of the word “I”,. 

Joey Coleman [00:05:28] And conveying care through warm words and the generous use of “thank yous.”. 

Joey Coleman [00:05:33] Now let’s jump into the first recommendation. (1) Provide customers with dedicated attention and concrete language. 

[00:05:41] New research that was conducted by Professor Packard (one of the authors of the article) in conjunction with Professor Jonah Berger of the Wharton School, shows that careful strategies around language not only can increase customer satisfaction, but they also influence how much money the customer spends in the days following a customer service interaction. The secret is to have your frontline employees use words that describe the customer’s interest in concrete, specific terms. This signals the customer that the representative is genuinely listening. 

Dan Gingiss [00:06:17] For example, when a customer contacts a call center to check about a pending delivery, the research shows a customer is more satisfied when they hear, “your package will be at your doorstep next Wednesday” rather than “your order will be there next week.” A package is more concrete than an order; a doorstep is more concrete than “there”; and Wednesday is more concrete than next week. 

Joey Coleman [00:06:41] In a similar fashion, “How can I help you?” can sound canned and rote instead. An employee should mentioned the distinct thing the customer is interested in. For example, at a coffee shop, an employee might say, “Can I get a coffee started for you?” At a hardware store, if a customer is looking at lawnmowers, the employee might say, “Can I help you find a mower?” The more specific, the better. Now, this also applies when responding to complaints. Rather than just saying, “Sure, I can look into that,” it’s more powerful to repeat the concrete thing the customer wants – such as, “Sure, I can look into why we sent you the wrong shoes.” In short, when employees go from generalized scripts to specific comments, it lets the customer know that they’re being heard at an individual level. The more concrete the language, the greater the feeling of attention and focus. 

Dan Gingiss [00:07:35] The next recommendation focuses on personal responsibility. (2) Bridge the trust deficit through individual connections. It’s easier for customers to believe in a single, caring individual than in a vast corporation. Research shows that when employees use the pronoun “I” (referring to the agent), rather than “we” (referring to the agent and the company), it signals that the specific agent the customer is speaking to can be depended on. This simple shift in language using “I” helps customers feel that the employee is actually acting on their behalf. 

Joey Coleman [00:08:11] Now, for example, and let’s be honest Dan, this is one you and I are all too familiar with… When an agent says, “I’m sorry to have to cancel your flight,” it conveys a more genuine, personal sense of remorse than, “we’re sorry to cancel the flight.” The word “we” not only decreases perceived empathy, but it makes it seem like the employee is avoiding responsibility and blaming the company. And this doesn’t just apply to changes in the customer’s plans… Rather than saying, “we probably have that in stock,” you should say, “I can probably find that in stock.” The phrase “we probably have that in stock” guesses about something the employee seems to have no control over – while, “I can probably find that in stock” conveys that specific employee’s desire to make a personal effort to address the issue. The final recommendation from the article is a big one for me personally. (3) Don’t just be competent – be caring. 

Dan Gingiss [00:09:08] You know, Joey, “I can probably find that that’s one of your favorite topics, incorporating empathy into the customer experience.”

Joey Coleman [00:09:15] Yes, indeed Dan! Yes, indeed! Organizations need to find ways to show warmth and competence when interacting with customers. As the article notes, “[i]t’s nearly impossible to be both warm and competent at the same time. Research has shown that people who try to be warm often seem less competent and those who try to be competent often seem less warm.” Now, that being said, new research on conversational dynamics shows that it’s critical for employees to speak both warmly (in other words, emotionally) and competently (that is rationally). The secret is when they do it. Employees need to convey different tones during different parts of the interaction. So the research shows that customers appreciate employees most when the conversations are bookended with warm, considerate words – while the more cognitive, solution oriented words make up the middle of the conversation. In other words, start with connection, then speak specifically about the concrete issue at hand, then closed with more warmth and empathy about the situation occurring in the first place. 

Dan Gingiss [00:10:23] You know, this seems fairly straightforward, but I also want to deviate for a moment to say that this stuff really does matter. I can just imagine some people may be rolling their eyes about, well, using this word here, and this word there. But this research is coming to a conclusion that is not necessarily new. It’s just sort of explained in a different way with, I think, a better structure around it. 

[00:10:51] But the words that we use and the way that we communicate to our customers is one of the biggest parts of customer experience that I think is also one of the most overlooked. And if you don’t have a call center, that’s okay. You can think about how you communicate in marketing materials, or on your Web site, or your mobile app, or if you have a brick and mortar store, what your employees say. There’s so many places where we communicate… And the best part about fixing your communication is it doesn’t cost you anything. So I also appreciated how the article reinforced the power of a simple “thank you” during a customer interaction. While past research indicated it was important to apologize in customer service contexts, new work reveals that signaling appreciation (such as saying “thank you”) is prized by customers and often is more effective than saying sorry. Although apologizing does acknowledge the company’s failure, it doesn’t alleviate consumers’ negative thoughts toward the business. In contrast, saying thank you, for example, “thank you for your patience about this” shifts attention away from the company’s failure and toward customers – making them feel more important to the company at a personal or individual level. 

Joey Coleman [00:12:02] In short, given a world where face time is increasingly both minimized and physically distanced, and where conversations are increasingly happening over the phone, or via some keystrokes, the most successful organizations are giving careful consideration to the specific words they use when speaking to their customers. Don’t forget to: (1) provide customers with dedicated attention and concrete language, (2) bridge the trust deficit through individual connections, and friends, (3) be caring and competent in your conversations. 

[SEGMENT INTRO – DISSECTING THE EXPERIENCE]

Joey Coleman [00:12:38] Sometimes a remarkable experience deserves deeper investigation. We dive into the nitty gritty of customer interactions and dissect how, and why, they happen. Join us, while we’re Dissecting the Experience. 

[DISSECTING THE EXPERIENCE] The Apple Credit Card – Changing the Landscape Again

Joey Coleman [00:12:55] As you know, Dan, I’m a big fan of Apple. 

Dan Gingiss [00:12:59] Yeah, do I ever! You were giving me grief about being a P.C. guy right before we hit record on this episode! 

Joey Coleman [00:13:05] Yes, indeed I did, but I feel like it’s only fair, given that you give me so much grief about not being active on Twitter. 

Dan Gingiss [00:13:12] True. True. But I actually have many Apple products in my possession. I love my iPhone and AirPods, for example. It’s the Mac that I’m not so sure of. So I’m not sure that you’re making, and if I daresay, apples to apples comparison. 

Joey Coleman [00:13:27] Yeah… he went there, ladies and gentlemen. All right. Well, there’s actually a reason I’m bringing up Apple in our conversation, and that’s because I had an experience recently that I think you might have some unique insight into. I recently signed up for the new Apple credit card. 

Dan Gingiss [00:13:45] Well, you know that I like talking about credit cards Joey. 

Joey Coleman [00:13:48] I do! 

Dan Gingiss [00:13:48] As I’m sure our listeners know, I spent almost 10 years in the credit card industry at Discover Card, which is one of the smaller of both the issuers and networks in the United States, but that kind of made it a little bit more scrappy. And I was there, and part of the team, that won the J.D. Power Award for the first time, snagging it away from AMEX. And so, I love talking credit cards. Let’s do it! Tell me about the Apple card. 

Joey Coleman [00:14:16] All right. Well, I figure that this will come as no surprise to you or our loyal listeners, but while there are many credit card companies in the marketplace, just like there are many laptops and desktops, and tablet computer manufacturers, the experience Apple created is unique. 

Dan Gingiss [00:14:35] All right. I’ll take a bite at the “apple.” Do tell! 

Joey Coleman [00:14:39] Oh, geez… a reference to “biting the apple” and “William Tell” in the same sentence. Folks, he is on fire today! All right. Well, we need to get into this story. From the very outset, getting an Apple card felt different. I went online, I answered a few questions and I received my approval instantly. 

Dan Gingiss [00:14:58] Okay. Well, so far that sounds fairly common. 

Joey Coleman [00:15:00] Yeah, I get it. But what was different about the Apple card is that I was able to use it immediately to purchase the iPad that I was buying from Apple at the time. 

Dan Gingiss [00:15:10] OK. Now, that’s interesting! And I remember talking about this at Discover, trying to figure out, you know, you can’t get the card in the person’s hand fast enough, so how can we get something else, some other way, for them to use it? So it looks like in this case, the application basically was triggered from within your shopping cart? 

Joey Coleman [00:15:29] Correct. Now, granted, the shopping cart was at Apple, and the application was for an Apple credit card, so I get that it was easier for them than in many scenarios where the credit card is third party. But the fact that they integrated those two things, and they made it incredibly easy to sign up, and that I got to use the card immediately on the purchase I was making right then, it was my favorite two words Dan! 

Dan Gingiss [00:15:52] Well, I believe we call that “instant gratification.” 

Joey Coleman [00:15:55] Yes, indeed, instant gratification. But friends, it gets better. A few days later, I received my card in the mail. And this thing was beautiful!

Dan Gingiss [00:16:05] Now, I would expect that from an Apple product, but not necessarily from a credit card. I mean, maybe unless we’re talking like the Amex Black Card or something. 

Joey Coleman [00:16:15] Well, I hear you and the Amex by card is really nice, but this was a completely different experience. Now, in the interest of full disclosure, I’m a brand new customer and I got approved for kind of a basic credit limit. Not a big credit limit, just kind of their intro, you know, credit limit. But I received a premium experience. So let me describe it for you: the packaging was a thick cardboard card with an engraved Apple logo in relief. And when you opened up this white card on the inside, it showed a gorgeous color gradient that went from dark green in one corner to deep red in the other corner, to vibrant purple in the other corner, and it spread across the whole page just beautifully… it was like opening up a rainbow. And inside this color field was an inset where the card was placed. And the message, “activate your card, wake iPhone and hold here” was printed just below it. 

Dan Gingiss [00:17:12] Wait, wait, wait… “wake iPhone and hold it here?” Tell you more about that. 

Joey Coleman [00:17:15] I’m going to explain that, but before I explain that, let me tell you about the card, OK? And then I’ll explain what happened underneath it. So the card is metal. But more specifically, it’s titanium. It has that famous Apple white matte finish to it that’s created by layering multiple layers in some amazing process that was designed by the engineers at Apple before it gets engraved with the Apple logo in silver in the top left corner. And the only other thing on the front of the card is my name: etched in dark gray. And the chip, which, unlike the other chip cards that I have, shows a simple set of six ovals on the chip as opposed to a mismatched series of lines. No, seriously, friends, as you’re listening and you if you have a chip card, pull out the credit card you have, and look at the design aesthetic of the chip – and then realize that Apple, as usual, took every visual element into account when designing their Apple card. And they actually designed the look of the chip on the outside of the credit card. 

Dan Gingiss [00:18:20] I’m sorry. I’m actually doing what you just suggested Joey… and you’re right. They all look the same with these weird gray lines. 

Joey Coleman [00:18:30] Yeah. It’s like shards of metal, that you know, kind of got glued together in some type of a shape. The Apple card, it’s these six beautiful little ovals in the metal. 

Dan Gingiss [00:18:41] That’s pretty cool. So they put all of the disclaimers, and contact info, expiration date, CCW number, and bank logos and all that stuff on the back right? 

Joey Coleman [00:18:51] Actually, no. The only thing on the back of the card are two logos. Again, they’re etched in silver. One for Goldman Sachs (the issuing bank) and the other for MasterCard. 

Dan Gingiss [00:19:04] I got to say, that sounds kind of slick. 

Joey Coleman [00:19:06] Oh, brother, it is. And in fact, I feel special just holding this card – let alone using it! And speaking of using it, this is where Apple marries beautiful product design, with an unprecedented unboxing experience, and incredible software capabilities. So as I mentioned before, you get this beautiful card, you open it up, there’s this rainbow of delight. And to activate the card, it prompts me to wake my iPhone and hold it near the card. Now, when I did that, the Wallet app on my phone confirmed its proximity to the card, prompted me with a couple of easy questions, and my card was active. No calling an 800 number; no visiting a Web site to make my card live; no peeling the sticker off that says “remove the sticker once you’ve activated your card.” It all happened with ease, and grace, and now I could use my Apple Card on any device I had with Apple Pay: my iPhone, my Apple Watch, the iPad, the MacBook Pro laptop. It synched to all of these things instantly. Now, I should also mention the other items you asked about when it comes to where are they on the card… there actually isn’t any other information on the card. There’s no card number. There’s no expiration date. There’s no service phone numbers. There’s no CVV code. There’s no signature. There’s no copyright info. There’s nothing. It’s a barren titanium plain. It just feels elegant! Now, the reason for this lack of data on the card isn’t just for aesthetics – although let’s tell yah, the aesthetic is beautiful. It also helps with security – because if the card is stolen, or even viewed by someone in line behind you, no one can get your number. All of the associated details for the card are stored in the Wallet app on your phone. You can view your balance; your available credit; there’s a simple colored graph of weekly activity when a payment is due; your latest transactions. Each of these can be delved deeper into using the app and you don’t need to log into a separate Web site just to get more details. 

Dan Gingiss [00:21:09] So dumb guy question here: does this mean that you can’t use it for what we in the industry call, “card not present transactions” i.e., you can’t use it on the phone because you don’t have a number to read, or do you have to memorize the number? 

Joey Coleman [00:21:22] Oh now, here’s where it’s special. You can actually generate independent card numbers for your individual transactions. So you can generate one that you always use or if you’re giving your card over the phone and you don’t necessarily trust the person on the phone that you’re giving the card to, you can easily within the app generate a “one off use” number, give them that number, it gets used for that one charge and then that number will never get used again. 

Dan Gingiss [00:21:51] Yes. OK. So that I just want to let you know because, hey, you told you told the audience that I have some experience here. 

Joey Coleman [00:21:57] I do! 

Dan Gingiss [00:21:57] That is actually owned by Mastercard. That is not an Apple thing. That ability is for a Mastercard. 

Joey Coleman [00:22:05] OK, fair enough, fair enough. But that’s why we have, I presume, the Mastercard logo on the back of the card too. Right?! So they get some credit there. But yeah, it’s the fact that in a world where we’re increasingly worried about, you know, our credit card number being compromised, that we can create individual card numbers kind of on the fly, felt really cool to me. And you know, what they do on the back end around putting the customer first is also really unique as well. You know, a lot of credit card companies, and I say this respectfully because I have other cards as well, they try to hide the reality. Right?! Every credit card once their users to spend money, but it also wants you to keep a balance. And unlike other credit card companies, instead of hiding that information in a website or a monthly statement, Apple puts everything as clear as possible, right into the app. So you can see your weekly activity; you can click on a transaction and it shows you more information – this is all happening within the app. If you shop at one retailer multiple times, if you tap on any one location in the app, it will show you all the other transactions with that specific retailer as well as your running monthly total. When it comes time to pay, it allows you to see the interest you’ll be charged based on how much you pay off each month so you have a little kind of toggle switch where you can say, “well, I pay a little more, how much will my interest go down in the future?” They really make the paying of the card an experience and an interaction as well. 

Dan Gingiss [00:23:36] Man, I have so many things that I could say about this. I’m getting excited. And I think what’s going to happen is when we’re done recording, I’m going to apply for this card… 

Joey Coleman [00:23:43] Nice! Ooo – ladies and gentlemen, I may have swayed him over to getting an Apple card. I like it! I like it!

Dan Gingiss [00:23:49] There are a couple of things here that are really cool. First of all, they’re also giving you your cash back rewards in real time – which most cards do. Right?! It usually waits until you cycle at the end of the month. And I used to have this conversation all the time about this concept of a “cycle date,” – like who in the world, what customer thinks in terms of a cycle date right?! 

Joey Coleman [00:24:11] That would be No One. Even the people who work at the credit card company barely think of the cycle date. It’s like literally no customer thinks of this. 

Dan Gingiss [00:24:17] It’s an absolute made up concoction that every card uses and it doesn’t need to. And so the realtime thing makes a ton of sense. And also the paying more when you garner interest… When I was in business school back in 2001, I did a summer internship at First USA, which is now Chase Bank. And I was actually assigned, as a marketer, to the collections team – which was really a unique experience because you’re marketing to the people who aren’t paying you. This was kind of mind boggling to me. And what we ended up figuring out was that, by showing them graphically how long it was going to take to pay back their bill, and then how long it was going to take if they paid fifty extra dollars, one hundred extra dollars, etc., that it created, it got rid of this sick psychological barrier, in the sense that it gave them hope – like we talked about in the previous segment. I remember one guy, I’ll never forget him, he said, “as long as I can circle the date on my calendar when I’m going to be out of debt, then I’m OK. Even if it’s 15 years down the line, I just need to know when it is.” And true story, those graphs actually ultimately became the law of the land in the United States and now all credit card companies have to do that. And I think Apple, as usual, is taking it a step further because they’re actually encouraging people not to generate interest. And that is completely changing the game. 

Joey Coleman [00:25:51] Exactly. What credit card company wants you to pay your bill faster? Pretty much no credit card companies. So, I do think that Apple is completely redefining the game – as usual. But here’s the thing, friends. If you’re listening, you may be saying, “well, that’s nice and dandy for Apple, Joey. But how does this apply to my company and our product, and our service offerings? We don’t make computers. We’re not going to start issuing our own credit cards!” Friends – I get it. My goal in sharing this story is to inspire you. Inspire you to reimagine all the ways your customers interact with your products and services. To seek aesthetic beauty in the things you create. To place customer ease as your prime directive. To marry your offline customer interactions with your online customer interactions. There’s a reason why Apple is one of the fastest growing, most successful, most loved brands on the planet – and that’s because they make their customer experience a holistic driver in every product and service they create. So how can you infuse customer experience into every product and service you offer – so that your customers talk about how their required interactions with you, things like paying their bill, and receiving their bill, and interacting with your support team, and doing all the things that are necessary for their interactions with you – become worthy of remark. 

[PARTNERSHIP WITH AVTEX] We Love Game Shows – Do You?

Dan Gingiss [00:27:24] Joey, do you like game shows? 

Joey Coleman [00:27:26] You know, I actually do like game shows. Who doesn’t like a good game show? You know, you get a chance to laugh. You get a little entertained. Maybe you learn a thing or two. Game shows are great. 

Dan Gingiss [00:27:35] I love game shows. I’ve watched them since I was a kid when I was at home sick from school. I’d spend the whole day watching game shows. What were some of your favorites, or are some of your favorites?

Joey Coleman [00:27:48] Yeah. I got to say, I think I probably watched more back in the day, but one that has continued through my life is Jeopardy! Right?! It’s just, it’s fun… The whole family can play together. Everybody can yell at the TV at the same time. It rewards knowledge of useless trivia points. You learn a thing or two. I’m a big fan of Jeopardy! What about you? 

Dan Gingiss [00:28:10] And you know, it’s so funny because I think the world is divided into either Jeopardy fans or Wheel of Fortune fans, and I’m a Wheel of Fortune fan. 

Joey Coleman [00:28:17] Surprise surprise! Is anyone listening right now surprised that we’re on the opposite end of the game show spectrum? 

Dan Gingiss [00:28:23] Well, the reason is, is that I have always sucked at trivia. And so, I like watching Jeopardy, I just can’t play along. Whereas with Wheel of Fortune, I’m very good with words, I love the puzzles, and, you know, I’m screaming at the TV when there’s like only two letters showing and I’m like, how come you guys can’t see this?”. 

Joey Coleman [00:28:40] Nice. Nice! 

Dan Gingiss [00:28:41] When I was a kid, I watched Joker’s Wild and Tic Tac Toe. 

Joey Coleman [00:28:45] Well, what about Press Your Luck?! No whammies, no whammies, no whammies… that was always a really fun one, too. 

Dan Gingiss [00:28:49] Yeah. Absolutely loved it. The Price is Right, of course. And I mean on and on… So many great, great game shows. 

Joey Coleman [00:28:57] Why don’t more people do game shows? 

Dan Gingiss [00:28:59] I don’t know. I’m not sure. But I’ll tell you one thing, and I haven’t really told anyone this before, I kind of always wanted to be a game show host. 

Joey Coleman [00:29:08] You know, I feel like I knew that about you. I too, kind of like the game show host, if nothing else, to be able to do, ladies and gentlemen, the game show host voice. 

Dan Gingiss [00:29:17] What do you mean? You mean like this one? 

Joey Coleman [00:29:20] Yeah, exactly. As two guys that like horsing around, that’s really fun. You know what would be interesting? Are there many game shows around business? 

Dan Gingiss [00:29:29] I don’t know. I, I can’t say that I’ve ever heard a game show or seen one. 

Joey Coleman [00:29:34] There really aren’t a lot. But, you know, I wonder what the experience would be like? 

Dan Gingiss [00:29:39] That’s a good point, Joey. Hmm… 

Joey Coleman [00:29:44] And what would be the point of having a game show about experience? You could experience, the point, of the show. 

Dan Gingiss [00:29:54] Wow – you’re really on point. 

Joey Coleman [00:29:58] Aww – it’ll be a fun experience. Folks – stay tuned for more. You’re gonna have an experience, and we’ll get to the point. 

[SEGMENT INTRO – THIS JUST HAPPENED]

Joey Coleman [00:30:06] We love telling stories and sharing key insights, you can implement – or avoid – based on our experiences. Can you believe that This Just Happened? 

[THIS JUST HAPPENED] Summer Surprise – Inflatable Pools with Bonus Gifts

Dan Gingiss [00:30:20] So Dan, I got to ask you, how did you spend your “socially distanced” summer? 

Dan Gingiss [00:30:26] Well, let’s see, I had two kids at home that were supposed to be at overnight camp, so I had to entertain them… 

Joey Coleman [00:30:32] So you were a camp counselor… Congratulations! 

Dan Gingiss [00:30:35] Yeah. Let’s see. I adopted a senior dog, who has been awesome. So I’ve been out walking a whole lot more and maybe most importantly, from a professional perspective, I wrote my second book. 

Joey Coleman [00:30:50] Ooo lah lah! 

Dan Gingiss [00:30:51] So I got that done. 

Joey Coleman [00:30:52] We’re gonna have to get more into that in a future segment of Experience This! The reason I ask, is because like a lot of other people, I think around the world, our family ended up spending a lot more time at home this summer – confined to our backyard – than we had actually planned. And as the summer went on, I started to think about ways to make our time in the backyard more enjoyable. So we got some new lawn furniture, which was great, so we could just sit outside and, you know, relax, and read, and hang out, while the kids played. And then we started talking about getting a pool. 

Dan Gingiss [00:31:26] Did you call our good friend Marcus Sheridan – the “pool guy?” 

Joey Coleman [00:31:30] Actually, I did not call the Pool Guy this time, but when it comes time to actually install a pool in the yard permanently, Marcus’s team at River Pools and Spas is definitely who I’ll be reaching out to. But in all honesty, since we rent our house and given that full disclosure, I didn’t really start thinking about this pool idea until about halfway through the month of June, I was looking for a faster solution that would be the best solution for this summer. 

Dan Gingiss [00:31:58] So you went online? 

Joey Coleman [00:31:59] Correct. And a simple search of inflatable pools on Amazon brought me to the magical place where five star reviews and in stock availability overlapped in a listing for an inflatable pool that I promptly ordered. And when it arrived, my two boys were thrilled at the idea of having a place to cool off in the backyard since the pools here in town were closed. 

Dan Gingiss [00:32:24] OK, so that sounds really nice, but you made me say the word “Cracker Jack-esque” surprise in the intro, which was really hard to say, and I just said it again. So what does this have to do with inflatable pools? 

Joey Coleman [00:32:34] Well, then I’m glad you asked. And hopefully the people that heard that Cracker Jack a reference, we’re wondering. Here’s the thing. I’ve had the pleasure of working with hundreds of companies that sell their products on Amazon. And one of the common complaints I hear from these Amazon sellers is that while they love the access to the Amazon marketplace, they don’t like the limits on customer interaction and customer data that Amazon places on them when they use the Amazon platform. And so most sellers are lamenting the lack of connection to their buyers, and they’re frustrated that they don’t have an easy way to contact these people that purchase their products, and it just kind of creates a mess for everyone involved. 

Dan Gingiss [00:33:16] Yeah, I’ve definitely had that frustration as a consumer because you have to go through Amazon to get to whoever it is that sold you the product. 

Joey Coleman [00:33:25] Exactly. Which is why more and more companies that sell on Amazon have tried to incentivize purchasers to establish a direct relationship with them – as opposed to going through Amazon. And over the years, I’ve seen this through insert postcards that ask recipients to sign up for a newsletter, or directions that encourage purchasers to register for some random warranty, or even just fliers that say “visit our website and place your next order,” even though you place your order on Amazon because it was easy and simple to do. 

Dan Gingiss [00:33:58] Yeah. Not placing it on your website next time. Sorry. But those are not a particularly remarkable or surprise and delight worthy experiences. 

Joey Coleman [00:34:08] Correct. Which is why the inflatable pool company got my attention. So included in the packaging was a postcard that I’d love to share with you and our listeners. And the postcard read as follows: “Hello. Sincerely, thank you for your business and support. I hope the inflatable pool you purchased is everything you expected. Your satisfaction is my primary goal. If you have any questions or suggestions, please do not hesitate to contact me at any time.” (and then they shared an email address). The card went on to say, “Also, to claim your air pump or rectangular pool cover, please reach out to me with your order number and country. Thanks again for your shopping. Wish you all the best. Ann”

Dan Gingiss [00:34:50] Ooo! I’m not sure which one I want: the air pump or the pool cover! 

Joey Coleman [00:34:55] Exactly. And that’s what I thought. Now Dan, I’ve received dozens of inserts from Amazon sellers over the year, and this is one of the first ones I was ever excited about replying to. Now, the pump is really useful if you don’t already have one. And the pool cover is going to be useful to anyone who orders the pool as it’s custom-sized to fit. So compared to silly warranty registrations, or uninspiring coupons for discounts on future purchases, this was actually something I wanted! And I felt that same anticipation and excitement that I had as a kid when I opened a box of Cracker Jack to find the free prize inside. But this time, I got to choose the free prize. 

Dan Gingiss [00:35:38] I love it. That’s actually a really, fun marketing technique to give people a choice. So which one did you choose? The pump or the pool cover? The pool cover or the pump? 

Joey Coleman [00:35:49] You might have guessed. I actually went with the pool cover – and I went with the pool cover for two reasons. Number one, I already had an air mattress pump that work just fine to inflate the pool. So I knew I was good there. And I also felt that the pool cover would come in useful over the long haul and be harder to replace because it was custom-sized to the pool. Now, what I love about this example is that almost every product you purchase has some associated products that the company tries to upsell you on. Extra parts, add ons, maintenance tools, etc. Tying a useful add on – in this case, the pool cover – to my original purchase was a fantastic way to motivate me to go out of my way to share my email with the inflatable pool company. Now, this experience left me wondering how many companies sell through third party distributors, or platforms like Amazon, and are frustrated that they don’t have access to their end users. How many companies have tried a host of uninspired ways to access these end users to no avail? How many companies basically say, throw up their hands and say, “well, there’s nothing we can do” and send the same boring, useless inserts as their competitors? Well, what if they did something different? Why not build into your product price the additional cost of a supplemental item and then offer that item for free to customers that are willing to establish a direct connection to you? Now, this probably won’t bother your distributors or the marketplace where you sell, especially if the only way to get the supplemental item – like the pool cover – is via the primary purchase of the primary item. So like, for example, when I go on Amazon and I look for the pool cover that matches the inflatable pool I bought – you can’t find it. You can’t find it on their website. The only way to get it is through this special offer. Now, the only way the inflatable pool company could have made this better would be to make an online form where I could input my information instead of asking me to send them an email. But to be honest, other than that, I thought this was a really smart way to create a remarkable experience and an ongoing customer interaction “after the sale,” which is something that every organization should be focused on doing. 

[SHOW OUTRO]

Joey Coleman [00:38:03] Wow. Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This! 

Dan Gingiss [00:38:07] We know there are tons of podcasts to listen to, magazines and books to read, reality TV to watch. We don’t take for granted that you’ve decided to spend some quality time listening to the two of us. 

Joey Coleman [00:38:16] We hope you enjoyed our discussions and if you do, we’d love to hear about it! Come on over to ExperienceThisShow.com and let us know what segments you enjoy, what new segments you’d like to hear. This show is all about experience and we want you to be part of the Experience This! Show. 

Dan Gingiss [00:38:35] Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more. 

Joey Coleman [00:38:38] Experience… 

Dan Gingiss [00:38:39] This! 

Episode 103 – Adding a Little Sparkle Makes Your Experience Remarkable

Join us as we discuss major shifts in customer expectations, a not-so-average birthday celebration, and turning customers into raving fans.

Pivoting, Celebrating, and Dedicating – Oh My!

[Dissecting the Experience] COVID-19 and the Impact on Customer and Employee Experience

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Sitel Group
• How Coronovirus is Shaping Consumer Trends – by Sitel Group
• McKinsey
• Adapting Customer Experience in the Time of Coronavirus – by McKinsey
• Chief Marketing Officer of Sitel Group – Martin Wilkinson-Brown
• HIPPA – The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996
• Statista
• Avtex
• Delivering Safe and Effective Customer Experiences Following COVID-19 – by Dan Gingiss on the Avtex blog
• We Could All Use Some Psychological First Aid – by Mary McNaughton-Cassill, Ph.D in Psychology Today Magazine

[This Just Happened] A “Sparkling” Birthday Surprise

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar
• Open Table
• Rain Man
• Episode 66, Season Three
• Gaylord Texan Resort
• Episode 50, Season Two
• Chewy

[Partnership with Avtex] Coming Soon – to an Arcade Near You?

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Avtex
• Gauntlet
• Galaga
• Leaderboard

[Book Report] Fanocracy – by David Meerman Scott and Reiko Scott

Things We Mentioned in This Segment:

• Fanocracy: Turning Fans into Customers and Customers into Fans – by David Meerman Scott and Reiko Scott
• David Meerman Scott
• Reiko Scott
• Inbound Conference
• Delta Airlines
• Social Media Marketing World
• Newsjacking – by David Meerman Scott
• The New Rules of Marketing and PR – by David Meerman Scott
• Marketing Lessons from the Grateful Dead – by David Meerman Scott
• Tony Robbins
• One Simple Question for the Presidential Candidates: What are You a Fan of? (Democratic candidates video)
• Kamala Harris
• Chicago Cubs
• Space Exploration
• University of Notre Dame
• The Fighting Irish
• Notre Dame Glee Club
• LEGO
• The Grateful Dead
• Harry Potter
• NASA
• NASA Social Media Channels
• Bryan Kramer

Host Contact Information

Email Dan: Dan@dangingiss.com

Tweet Dan Gingiss: @DGingiss

Email Joey: JoeyC@JoeyColeman.com

DanGingiss.com

JoeyColeman.com

Subscribe to Experience This on Apple Podcasts

Episode Transcript

Download a transcript of Episode 103 here or read it below:

[SHOW INTRO]
Dan Gingiss (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:08):
Where you’ll find inspiring examples of customer experience, great stories of customer service, and tips on how to make your customers love you even more!

Dan Gingiss (00:17):
Always upbeat and definitely entertaining, customer retention expert Joey Coleman…

Joey Coleman (00:23):
… and social media expert Dan Gingiss, serve as your hosts for a weekly dose of positive customer experience.

Dan Gingiss (00:30):
So hold onto your headphones, it’s time to Experience This!

[EPISODE 103 INTRO]
Dan Gingiss (00:38):
Get ready for another episode of the Experience This! Show

Joey Coleman (00:45):
Join us as we discuss major shifts in customer expectations, a not-so-average birthday celebration, and turning customers into raving fans.

Dan Gingiss (00:57):
Pivoting, celebrating, and dedicating! Oh my!

[SEGMENT INTRO – DISSECTING THE EXPERIENCE]
Joey Coleman (01:05):
Sometimes a remarkable experience deserves deeper investigation. We dive into the nitty gritty of customer interactions and dissect how, and why, they happen. Join us while we’re Dissecting the Experience.

[DISSECTING THE EXPERIENCE] COVID-19 and the Impact on Customer and Employee Experience
Dan Gingiss (01:22):
Welcome back to Season Six of the Experience This! Show. We are so happy to be back with you and so excited that you are here for another season chock full of great customer experiences. Now, obviously the world has changed just a bit in the past few months…

Joey Coleman (01:42):
Understatement!

Dan Gingiss (01:46):
With a certain pandemic ravaging the economy, people’s livelihoods, and of course their health. And new words and phrases have entered the lexicon like lockdowns, and quarantines, infection rates, stimulus bills, and there’s even a coin shortage in the United States. And many companies have either shuttered their doors, or unfortunately probably won’t live to see 2021. And entire industries have had to restructure and adapt in order to remain solvent, let alone competitive.

Joey Coleman (02:19):
You know, Dan we’ve also watched as the world has really grappled with important social issues like diversity and inclusion, which have affected how we look at hiring practices and changing customer demographics and even our political candidates. To put it mildly, there’s a lot that’s been going on since last time we all hung out together.

Dan Gingiss (02:39):
Exactly. And that is why Joey and I are so excited to be back here with you on the Experience This! Show, because if the past few months have taught us anything other than that, we each have the power to decide if we want to be part of the problem or part of the solution,

Joey Coleman (02:55):
Hint! Be part of the solution friends be part of the solution.

Dan Gingiss (02:58):
It is, that customer experience has actually never been more important. Our customers are depending on us, more now than ever, and they’re making future buying decisions based on their experiences with us right now. Some companies immediately got that and they pivoted to be more helpful and caring for their customers. Others kept plowing forward as if nothing had happened… occasionally checking a box by sending a copycat email, you know, the one: talking about their enhanced cleaning procedures and sending us to the CDC website.

Joey Coleman (03:31):
Oh geez. Yeah. You know, the reality friends is that those companies that have decided to take care of their customers during COVID-19 will have customers after COVID-19. Right? And the other thing that is going to stay the same,, along with the fact that great experiences work, they have worked, and they will continue to work, is that Dan and I are committed to continue bringing you examples of remarkable customer experiences that hopefully can, and should, inspire you to take action at your own company! We want to help you get more customers. We want to help you keep the ones you have. We want to help you by providing a regular little appetizer of customer experience delight – something to motivate you, something to get you thinking differently, something to get you to make the changes that will help your business not only survive going forward, but thrive going forward.

Dan Gingiss (04:24):
So in Season Six, we’re going to talk about things like: innovation in the audio book industry;

Joey Coleman (04:30):
Launching a new Peruvian restaurant by sending packages in the mail;

Dan Gingiss (04:35):
The behind the scenes people creating experiences at sporting events;

Joey Coleman (04:41):
How to keep connected to the customers that used to come to your place of business, but are now staying at home;

Dan Gingiss (04:46):
Creating custom Zoom backgrounds for your best customers to use;

Joey Coleman (04:51):
Crafting analog solutions in a digital world;

Dan Gingiss (04:54):
The reasons why people stay loyal to brands;

Joey Coleman (05:00):
And so, so much more. But before we get into all of that over the course of the next season, let’s start dissecting this COVID era experience.

Dan Gingiss (05:11):
You mean the 800 pound elephant in the room Joey?

Joey Coleman (05:14):
You know, we’ve got to address it right early on, right folks. And for anybody listening, who’s saying, “Oh my gosh, great, this entire Season Six is going to be about COVID-19!” No, no, no. It’s not. The entire show is going to be what it’s always been about: customer experience. But if we didn’t take time, in this very first segment of Season Six, to actually address the elephant in the room, we’d feel like we were letting you down.

Dan Gingiss (05:37):
So I found two resources that I really wanted to share with our audience that I think will help to frame this discussion. The first is a study from our old friends at Sitel Group called “COVID-19 the CX Impact.” And the second is a terrific article by the consulting company, McKinsey, you probably have heard of them.

Joey Coleman (05:57):
I have, once or twice.

Dan Gingiss (05:59):
called “Adapting Customer Experience in the Time of Coronavirus.” And across these two reports, I found that a few key trends really emerged. And that’s what I want to talk about in this segment. The first, which I think we all know conceptually, but are really seeing this happening at the speed of light, is the move to digital.

Joey Coleman (06:20):
And I think what you said about the speed of light is so true, right? Every company in January of 2020 had a digital strategy. Two months later, that digital strategy was probably their only strategy!

Dan Gingiss (06:33):
Exactly. Or they, or it was ripped up and they had to rewrite it.

Joey Coleman (06:36):
Yeah, exactly. It’s a new digital strategy!

Dan Gingiss (06:39):
So the CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) of Sitel, Martin Wilkinson-Brown,

Joey Coleman (06:44):
Great guy, great guy and friend of ours.

Dan Gingiss (06:46):
He is, and he said this in the report and I’m quoting, “The key coronavirus consumer trend is that increasingly a brand is judged by the strength of its digital channels when it comes to customer experience. Now, the Sitel study found that as COVID-19 forced stores to close temporarily and for people to practice social distancing or even stay home, consumers looked to digital channels to serve their needs. 76% of respondents said that they’d made online purchases for things that they normally would have purchased in person. But what’s really important and interesting is that 57% said that they will continue this behavior once the pandemic ends. Now, McKinsey also found that, and I’m quoting again, “Digital adoption has grown strongly even among the most digitally resistant customers.” And so its article came to a similar conclusion quote, “[i]t’s likely that many customers who have converted to digital services will stick to them after the immediate health crisis is over. Companies who make this shift to digital and deliver superior experiences, have an opportunity to increase adoption and maintain these customer relationships after the crisis.”

Joey Coleman (08:03):
Dan, not only do I agree with everything that you said, whether it’s from the folks at Sitel or the folks at McKinsey, but we’ve experienced this in our own lives. We used to order some of our groceries online for delivery. Now we order all of our groceries online for delivery. I had never had the chance to really experience telemedicine before this, but ended up in a scenario where my wife Berit had something in her eye and we were trying to figure out whether we go to the eye doctor to get it looked at, but ugh – do we really want to be out like in a medical environment when there’s a pandemic going on?! And so we called the eye doctor and they were like, “just text us a picture of what’s going on. “And we texted the picture and they texted back and they’re like, “yeah, here’s what it is, nothing to worry about. It’ll be fine in about a week or two. And if it’s not, call us back.” Now, what’s fascinating about that, and sorry honey for the HIPAA violation I just committed there, but the moral of this story being, not only are the companies that have a digital strategy that have gained customers during this time going to potentially keep those customers, but the customer’s expectation for a digital solution is going to go up. I mean, I’m in a place where I don’t want to go to the doctor, if we can solve this via FaceTime or texting photos. I don’t want to go out and waste my time traveling from my home to whatever office it is, if we can do that electronically.

Dan Gingiss (09:34):
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, Joey has just admitted to the world that his wife actually has an eye.

Joey Coleman (09:41):
Well, you know, I try to be conscious of, uh, divulging other people’s, I have medical professionals in the family, we talk about HIPAA a lot, I want to be a good consumer.

Dan Gingiss (09:50):
I understand. And you know, it is also created, this move to digital has also created different ways for us to evaluate companies. So for example Joey, I went immediately to curbside pickup for groceries and I stopped because after four or five weeks, I was tired of the groceries being wrong. I was tired of the order being wrong or of their being out of certain items. It became so frustrating to me that I ended up deciding to just go put on a KN-95 mask and go do it myself. I mean, folks, this has now been going on for multiple months, and so the move to digital has happened, it’s going to stay, and your company has got to excel at it – otherwise you’re going to lose customers to the competition. Let’s move on to the second trend in the article, which was the move to home delivery. McKinsey says that home delivery has gone from a convenience to a necessity. And as Joey pointed out, this isn’t just pizza delivery anymore. This is grocery stores, pharmacies, meal delivery services, even car dealerships that are picking up and dropping off cars at people’s homes for repair and maintenance appointments. I had a bicycle picked up and dropped off for a repair and maintenance appointment. According to Statista, the grocery delivery app Instacart saw month over month growth of 218% as the pandemic began.

Joey Coleman (11:17):
Yeah, well, it’s a good time to be in the home delivery business. If there’s an upside to the pandemic, it’s if your business, like Instacart, was primarily built around home delivery, you experienced growth at a very accelerated rate. As you alluded to though, Dan, part of the challenge with experiencing growth at an accelerated rate is that things break faster too. And so I know Instacart had to go out and hire a bunch of new shoppers, there were a bunch of people who sadly lost their jobs and were looking for jobs and as Instacart, Amazon, and some of the other companies who were seeing an increase in business were kind of there to fill the void of people that were looking for jobs, the problem was, there wasn’t a lot of time for training. And there wasn’t a lot of time to necessarily make sure that that Instacart shopper, who was going to be going to the store and shopping for your stuff, although you were doing, you know, curbside pickup Dan so that was theoretically store employees, but the reality is there’s, there’s a learning curve on this stuff too. I think what’s interesting though, is in this move to home delivery, we’ve had the chance as a society, at least here in the United States, and I think it’s been prevalent globally, but probably accelerated here in the U.S. because of how long this crisis has continued to affect the U.S. compared to some other countries who have gotten/done a better job – but we won’t get into that! – the moral of the story being we need to make these shifts and customers want the convenience. They want to be able to order this stuff from home. And I think more and more consumers are realizing that the shopping process versus the convenience of having delivery just isn’t always worth it. You know, sometimes it’s nice and sometimes as you alluded to, you know, if you want to get the order exactly right, you want to go do it yourself. But sometimes it’s okay if it’s not perfect, if it’s done. And I think that’s kind of what has happened across a lot of these home delivery services.

Dan Gingiss (13:15):
Absolutely. So the third trend is a focus on safety. And this applies to both customers and employees. And I actually got to write a blog post for our good friends and show sponsors, Avtex.

Joey Coleman (13:29):
Woo hoo! Avtex!

Dan Gingiss (13:29):
So if you go to avtex.com and look at their blog, you’ll see this post. And I’m sure you’ve heard of the famous psychologist, Abraham Maslow, who created the famous hierarchy of needs in the 1960s.

Joey Coleman (13:45):
It’s such a nice little pyramid.

Dan Gingiss (13:47):
It’s a great pyramid. And it’s got five tiers of human needs ranked from the physiological at the bottom, which are the most basic needs, to self actualization at the top, which are the needs that are the most difficult to obtain. Well safety needs, which include both safety and security, are considered basic needs. And they’re ranked just above literally, food, and water, and warmth, and rest.

Joey Coleman (14:11):
Yeah, they’re right. This is the bottom of the pyramid folks. If you don’t have your safety needs taken care of, it’s kind of the case that nothing else matters.

Dan Gingiss (14:19):
Exactly. Which is why I am willing to predict here today, that “safety” is going to be the key word and key trend in customer experience in the next 6 to 12 months for sure. So Psychology Today Magazine noted that there are five elements to what is commonly referred to as “psychological first aid.” And this is something that’s often administered to victims of natural disasters and is equally applicable to the current pandemic. Now, those five elements are: (1) Help people feel safe, (2) create a sense of calm, (3) help regain a sense of control and self efficacy, (4) feed the need for social connection, and (5) believe in the power of hope. And I have to tell you, Joey, I kind of related to all five of these things right now.

Joey Coleman (15:09):
Oh, amen brother. Yeah. I mean, this is something that everyone needs and I don’t think you can experience full feelings of safety if you don’t have all of these things. Right?! And so I think there’s an opportunity for everyone listening to look at your business and say, are we helping our customers feel safe? Are we creating a sense of calm? Are we helping them to regain a sense of control or self efficacy? You know, what are we doing to help them to feel like they can get a little bit of their power back? How are we feeding their need for social connection? How are we giving them a feeling of hope? You know, this stuff isn’t just psychology mumbo jumbo that’s meant for a Psych 101 course. These are actionable steps that have been proven time and time again, as it relates to human needs, that if your business isn’t specifically addressing these, you’re missing a big opportunity. And I think what happened early on in this crisis is a lot of businesses read this as, “tell them you’re going to wear a mask and clean things up.” It’s like, okay, thanks that worked in week one and maybe week two. But as you pointed out, months later, you know, different people have different definitions of safety. Different people are experiencing different levels of calm. Different people want different levels of control and connection. But I think most people, still want hope. And that’s where I think every business has the opportunity to make sure they’re checking all five of these boxes.

Dan Gingiss (16:38):
Absolutely. And as with anything in customer experience, you have to start with your employees because if your employees don’t feel safe, they’re not going to be able to provide that safety to your customers. So everything has changed for businesses since March, and we know it can be overwhelming. The good news, I think for those of us focused on customer experience is that there has never been a more important time for CX.

Joey Coleman (17:03):
Never! In the history of customer experience, if you work in customer experience, this is the magical time – right now.

Dan Gingiss (17:11):
So since we can’t solve every issue all at once, we believe that starting with the three main trends identified in this segment, which is the move to digital, the move to home delivery, and a focus on safety, that will help us stay ahead of the curve and ensure that we continue to serve our customers during a very difficult time and beyond.

[SEGMENT INTRO – THIS JUST HAPPENED]
Joey Coleman (17:33):
We love telling stories and sharing key insights you can implement, or avoid, based on our experiences. Can you believe that This Just Happened?!

[THIS JUST HAPPENED] A “Sparkling” Birthday Surprise
Dan Gingiss (17:46):
Before everything locked down, my family took our 14 year old son out for his birthday at his choice of a restaurant, and the guy’s got good taste, he chose Fleming’s Steak House.

Joey Coleman (17:59):
He does have good taste! I’m guessing my invitation might’ve gotten lost in the mail for that birthday celebration?

Dan Gingiss (18:05):
I think maybe you were on stage that night – that must have been it, yeah, I think you couldn’t do it.

Joey Coleman (18:11):
Ladies and gentlemen, did you see how quickly my good partner, and friend, Dan recovered on that? Yeah. Yeah. Blame it, blame it on being on stage with the audience. Okay. That’s fair. That’s fair.

Dan Gingiss (18:22):
So let me set this up for you. So like I do often, I booked, the restaurant reservation on Open Table, which as you know, is a third party reservation app. And there’s a spot in the, in the reservation, where it says, “are you celebrating anything?” And we said, yeah, we’re celebrating our son’s 14th birthday,

Joey Coleman (18:38):
Which let’s be honest, anytime you fill that out, you always wonder, are they going to do anything with that?

Dan Gingiss (18:43):
Exactly.

Joey Coleman (18:43):
I’ve filled it out plenty of times where they might as well have said, you know, what’s your horoscope for today, because it would’ve been about as impactful on the experience I had. Most restaurants don’t seem to pay attention to that field the way they could or should.

Dan Gingiss (18:58):
Exactly. Well we walked in and told them our name, and the guy took one look at us and pretty much figured out who the 14 year old was.

Joey Coleman (19:06):
It’s the hair, it was the hair wasn’t it?! That was the only way he knew.

Dan Gingiss (19:11):
And the impeccably dressed maitre d reached behind the counter and handed my son a hand signed birthday card. And the outside of it says “Happy Birthday.” And the inside says, “Thank you for celebrating with us. Best wishes from your friends at Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse and Wine Bar.” And then somebody wrote in, “and many more.” And I was stunned because…

Joey Coleman (19:34):
You thought to yourself, “not only is this a great birthday, but we’re going to talk about this on the show! Ladies and gentlemen, the show writes itself. Dan and I go about our lives and the show writes itself!

Dan Gingiss (19:45):
Exactly. And that’s why we keep going and going like the Energizer bunny. So, I mean, I’ve celebrated a decent number of birthdays at restaurants and, uh, and I have never seen this happen. So he’s, uh, he’s walking us to the table and he kind of winks at my son and says something like, I can’t remember the exact words, but something like, you know, “we’re going to have something special for you after you, after your dinner.” And it was at that moment, Joey, where I realized we weren’t getting a slice of cake and a candle. Right. Because that’s what you get at a restaurant.

Joey Coleman (20:16):
Because you don’t set that expectation unless you’re going to do something special.

Dan Gingiss (20:20):
Yeah. There’s nothing wrong with a slice of cake and a candle. It’s really nice, but it is certainly not unexpected.

Joey Coleman (20:26):
Nor remarkable.

Dan Gingiss (20:27):
Right. So we had a lovely dinner and after the dinner was over the waiter returned with a plate that had, it’s a little hard to describe, but on one half of the plate, the chef had used cocoa powder and obviously a mold of some sort, or stencil, to write “Happy Birthday” in cocoa powder, which was super cool. And on the right side, instead of your typical slice of cake, was a box that had four handmade chocolates, each one in its own little section of the box, and coming out of the top was not a candle, but a sparkler.

Joey Coleman (21:09):
Oh, nice! Let’s get the fire extinguishers folks. This is going to be a big one!

Dan Gingiss (21:13):
I’m telling you if that’s the only, if it was a slice of cake and a sparkler, I think we would have all been impressed but the waiter explained to us that these are handmade by their pastry chef and you know, and they were amazing. Right?! And it was also a little bit lighter than a big piece of cake and all that.

Joey Coleman (21:33):
You each had a bite, basically, as opposed to seventy bites, which let’s be candid, if you’ve had the pleasure of eating at a nice steakhouse like Fleming’s, by the time you get to the dessert, usually there’s not enough room left. Right?! You’ve had your steak, you’ve had your sides. It’s been a filling meal.

Dan Gingiss (21:50):
So what I loved about this was, the presentation was amazing. It is one of these things, you and I talk about being shareable, right? I mean, what do you think my 14 year old son did, even for a guy like you, that’s not particularly social media savvy, what do you think he did when this thing came out?

Joey Coleman (22:06):
So given that he’s 14, I’m guessing that he snapped it or tick tock’d it or did something where he filmed a little video and put it onto social while he was sitting there.

Dan Gingiss (22:17):
Nice work, Joey! You got the nomenclature down!

Joey Coleman (22:20):
Ladies and gentlemen, he can talk the lingo! Even though I’m not on the platforms – don’t come looking for me, I’m not there. I just lurk. It’s awkward. It’s inconvenient. But I try my best.

Dan Gingiss (22:30):
But yes, he took a picture of it so that he could snap his friends. I took a picture of it because I knew…

Joey Coleman (22:35):
You tweeted!

Dan Gingiss (22:36):
I tweeted and I knew it was gonna make the show. But, uh, I think the lesson here, you know, you and I have talked about birthdays before and you told a great story a couple seasons ago about…

Joey Coleman (22:48):
Do it Rain Man! Do it Rain Man! What episode was it? I know you know

Dan Gingiss (22:51):
Oh – it was Episode 66 in Season Three.

Joey Coleman (22:52):
Yeah, see, ladies and gentlemen, you think we might do this research in advance before we start recording, but we don’t. Dan is just a savant, not the idiot part – the savant part, when it comes to knowing our episodes. It’s amazing! Yeah. Episode 66 – back when I was at the Gaylord Texan Resort on my birthday. Right? That’s the one you’re referring to.

Dan Gingiss (23:09):
And the whole thing that was remarkable to you, was that somebody remembered your birthday.

Joey Coleman (23:13):
Somebody who not only remembered my birthday, but they asked for my driver’s license and my credit card to confirm, and the receptionist at the Gaylord Texan Resort actually looked at my driver’s license, which has my birthday on it, and realized that she was reading the date of my birthday on the actual day of my birthday, and took the extra step to say happy birthday. And then, if you haven’t listened to that episode, go back and listen, it’s an oldie, but a goodie, they delivered a card that was signed by all the front desk staff and some of the other people in the senior management team to my room later that night along with some little birthday treats. So yeah, we all have birthdays, and yet how many businesses completely miss the opportunity to acknowledge a customer’s birthday when they know what the birthday is?

Dan Gingiss (24:03):
Exactly. Exactly. There must be dozens of companies that know our birthday. Every time we’ve applied for any sort of credit or a credit card, or a mortgage, or whatever it is, they know our birthday.

Joey Coleman (24:15):
All the utility companies, every single utility company knows your birthday. They do nothing with it.

Dan Gingiss (24:20):
So use your customer data to improve the experience. I mean, another example that I remember, one of my favorites was, Episode 50 Season Two, where we talked about Chewie and the best customer service email ever written, that included a reference to the customer’s cat’s name – Roma. Right? And how, how much that touched her because they remember her cat’s name and how personalized that was.

Joey Coleman (24:48):
Yeah. Everybody wants to make this harder than it is. Like let’s, let’s break it down a little bit, folks. Yes, you need to pay attention to gather the data, but then all you need to do is feed it back to the customer. What do I mean by that? You have to empower your employees to listen to the conversations they’re having, to observe their customers in the native habitat, to investigate what’s going on with the people who do business with you, to identify some of these key personal markers – a birthday, a pet’s name, a favorite hobby, the sports team they root for, their kids’ names, where their kids go to school, you know, their favorite place to go on vacation. The thing that you’re tracking doesn’t matter. It matters that you track it and that you use it. And I think that “using it” is where most businesses fall apart. I mean, we mentioned birthdays, most businesses that have a record of our birthdays Dan, don’t actually acknowledge our birthdays. And I don’t know about you, it wouldn’t take that much to stand out when it comes to acknowledging my birthday, right? They could send a birthday card. They could send a little, they could make a little happy birthday video from their entire team where they just sing happy birthday, not to me personally, but then send that video to me so that you get to see all the people who are working on your account or working on your business. It doesn’t have to be the same experience that other brands give. You can do something unique. You can do something special. And it’s not that hard to stand out.

Dan Gingiss (26:18):
Absolutely. And that’s what gets us back full circle to the birthday cake and the candle. The birthday cake and the candle is a lovely gesture, but it’s completely expected. The handmade box of chocolates with the sparkler and the handwritten card? That’s unexpected. So it’s not about spending more money, it’s just about being a little bit different and not doing it the same way everybody does it because you think that’s what people want, but actually going the other way, and trying to do something unique so that you are memorable and remarkable.

[PARTNERSHIP WITH AVTEX] Coming Soon – to an Arcade Near You?
Joey Coleman (27:00):
Hey Dan, should we tell them?

Dan Gingiss (27:01):
I don’t know… should we…

Joey Coleman (27:02):
Well, it’s kind of a secret, but it’s kind of a secret, but I kind of want to give them a hint.

Dan Gingiss (27:06):
But they told us to kind of keep quiet about it didn’t they?

Joey Coleman (27:10):
I know we’re not supposed to be talking about it just yet, but I want to talk about it just yet. Even though it’s not here yet. It’s coming soon.

Dan Gingiss (27:15):
All right – perhaps a little tease.

Joey Coleman (27:17):
Okay, it’s big. I’m excited about it. Are you excited about it?

Dan Gingiss (27:21):
I’m actually super pumped. Joey.

Joey Coleman (27:23):
I’m super excited about it. I haven’t been this excited about something probably since, uh, hanging out in the arcade playing Gauntlet.

Dan Gingiss (27:31):
Oh, you mean Galaga right?

Joey Coleman (27:33):
Oh, Galaga too! Gauntlet is a separate game. Galaga? Fabulous. Nice reference. But Gauntlet? Pretty awesome too. Because when you played video games, what did you get?

Dan Gingiss (27:43):
A whole lot of fun? I don’t know what the answer to that question.

Joey Coleman (27:46):
Oh my gosh, so great. You did get a whole lot of fun, but you also got points.

Dan Gingiss (27:49):
Ohh! Points…

Joey Coleman (27:52):
Leaderboard. Leaderboard! Who’s up?! Who’s got the points?! Who’s got the high score?! There’s going to be a chance for a high score…

Dan Gingiss (27:58):
Joey – what were your initials when you got on the…

Joey Coleman (28:01):
CJC baby? Yeah.

Dan Gingiss (28:02):
Oh, CJC. Yeah. I know this is going to surprise you, mine was CUB.

Joey Coleman (28:07):
Oh, shocker. I love it. I love it. Okay. So here’s the thing. We can’t talk a lot about it, but here’s what we can say. Our amazing friends and partners at Avtex, not only our sponsors of Season Six of the Experience This! Show, which we so love them for being our loyal partners on Experience This. But we’ve got a new thing coming. It’s not here yet. It’s coming soon. Not going to tell you when! But it’s going to be here before we know it.

Dan Gingiss (28:34):
I’m going to give them one hint, Joey.

Joey Coleman (28:36):
Okay. One hint.

Dan Gingiss (28:36):
I can’t help myself.

Joey Coleman (28:38):
Okay.

Dan Gingiss (28:38):
Here’s the hint: not only will you get to hear our voices, but you’re actually going to get to see our handsome faces.

Joey Coleman (28:48):
Ooo lah lah! Well, at least Dan’s handsome face. My face will be on the screen – not as handsome as Dan, but what can you say? It will be an experience and there might be some points. All right, stay tuned. There’s more coming.

[SEGMENT INTRO – BOOK REPORT]
Joey Coleman (29:00):
We’re excited to give you an overview of an important book you should know about, as well as share some of our favorite passages, as part of our next Book Report.

[BOOK REPORT] Fanocracy by David Meerman Scott and Reiko Scott
Dan Gingiss (29:12):
For our first book report of Season Six, I wanted to highlight a new book called” Fanocracy.” And it is written by David Meerman Scott and his daughter Reiko Scott. Now David Meerman Scott is an entrepreneur and keynote speaker and I had a chance to see him at the Inbound Conference and then didn’t, I couldn’t, because I had some, I think I had a flight delay? And so I missed his presentation. I was really bummed.

Joey Coleman (29:40):
You must not have been flying on Delta! David’s a great guy though I gotta tell you. I’ve had the pleasure of being at the same events David has been at. He’s an amazing human being and this is a great book.

Dan Gingiss (29:49):
Yeah. He’s a great speaker as well. Because I did get to see him at Social Media Marketing World and he absolutely blew me away. So he’s a great speaker. He’s written 10 other books. I think he’s most famous for a book called “Newsjacking” and also “The New Rules of Marketing and PR” and he actually wrote an entire book of marketing lessons from the Grateful Dead. And you’ll hear in a second, when he reads the overview of his book, that he has been to many, many, many Grateful Dead concerts. So he wrote his latest book with his 26 year old daughter Reiko on Fanocracy or how to create raving fans. And I have to tell you the first thing that impressed me about this book, the forward was by none other than Tony Robbins, so you kind of figure like, alright, this is going to be serious here.

Joey Coleman (30:36):
You gotta love that! You got to love… Tony’s a great guy and has a great message, and I loved that David’s book started out with that. You know, one of the things that I saw that was connected with the book and I actually saw a video of it, which really helped to bring it home, is David went around and he asked the 20 Democratic candidates for president the same question. And the question was this: “Besides your work and your family, what are you a fan of? Now, the reason he asked this, and the reason he says “besides your work and family” is because most people, when asked, “what are you a fan of?” their default answer is going to have something to do with their work or something to do with their family. But what David was trying to get to is, what are the other things that make you tick? What are the things that make you human? What are the things that make you special? And I say he asked the 20 Democratic candidates. He also says in the video, he went to a rally for Donald Trump. And he was going to ask, President Trump the same question, but the President didn’t take any questions, so he wasn’t able to ask the question. But he did share video from the Democratic candidates that he asked and a couple of interesting things came out from this. Number one, the variety of answers. Uh, the difference between how some candidates tried to dodge the question, or maybe pivot it back to one of their talking points. But the one that stood out to me was Kamala Harris. And when he asked her this question, first of all, she lit up like a Christmas tree. She was so excited about her answer and started talking about her love of jazz – and particularly listening to her father’s albums of Miles Davis and John Coltrane. And he actually shows video footage afterwards of her continuing the conversation with him after the event and it’s clear that he’s hit a nerve. And what I loved about this is, when we find the thing that someone is truly a fan about, they LOVE to talk about it.

Dan Gingiss (32:29):
Absolutely. And I love the word passion as well, which she clearly showed in this video and which the other respondents talked, used passion, as they were about the thing that they were interested in. And I’m going to give you about 30 seconds to think about this Joey, because I’m going to ask you as well, but for me, the thing about “what am I a fan of” has always been this, I mean if you ask anybody that knew me in high school, the first thing they’ll tell you is he’s a Chicago Cubs fan. And it was just part of my being and something that also I would light up about every time I’d get to talk about it. And I think it’s so important to have that thing that isn’t about work, and isn’t about family, although you can enjoy sometimes your hobbies with work friends and family friends, but it really is about what other part of your life just gets you going. And so for me, it is the Chicago Cubs. How about for you, Joey?

Joey Coleman (33:24):
You know, what’s interesting Dan, as I think about this question, and I want to be clear, I’m not trying to dodge it, the answer has kind of changed over time. You know, when I was growing up, I remember being very, very into space and space exploration. And then when I was in college, I went to the University of Notre Dame, I was very into the Fighting Irish and to the Notre Dame Glee Club who I sang with and I know we’ve shared on the show before, and we’ve even had a singing episode on the show, you know, you and I both have that common love of singing. But I think if you were to ask me today, what is the thing I do outside of work and outside of family that I absolutely love it’s actually takes me back to something I was a fan of when I was a kid that has kind of been reintroduced to me as an adult via my kids, and that is building with LEGO. I love building with LEGO and I love doing it with my boys, and I’d be lying if I didn’t say sometimes daddy works on the set when they’re asleep!

Dan Gingiss (34:20):
You put a few piece together? I love it!

Joey Coleman (34:21):
Just a couple, you know, not so much that they can tell that I advanced the game significantly, but occasionally I enjoy building my own… I don’t know what it is… It’s, it’s the creative nature, it’s seeing a finished product in fairly short order, but yeah, it’s a fun way for me to have some play in my life, which I think when play and passion meet, it gets really exciting.

Dan Gingiss (34:42):
That’s awesome. So as usual, we have asked the author to share with us an overview of the book in his own words. So here is David Meerman Scott talking about his new book with his daughter, Fanocracy.

David Meerman Scott (34:58):
Over the last few years, I noticed that the pendulum has swung too far in the direction of superficial online communications at a time when people are hungry for a true human connection. So I started talking about that with my daughter Reiko – she’s now 27 – we started about five years ago having this discussion. And I said, Oh my God, I’m such a Grateful Dead geek! I’ve been to 75 Grateful Dead concerts, 804 live music concerts in my life. And Reiko said, “I know Daddy, I’m a massive Harry Potter fan.” So we got to thinking about how so much online is superficial and it bugs the hell out of people. When you get on an email list and you get a constant set of emails, or someone connects with you on LinkedIn and tries to sell you something, and yet at the same time, we’re fans of the things we love. So Reiko and I spent five years researching this idea of “fandom.” Our thesis is that fandom is something that any organization or any person can create. The same ideas that build fans of the Grateful Dead and build fans of Harry Potter, can be achieved by any organization. We found examples of all kinds of government agencies, nonprofits, B2B companies, software companies, consumer product brands, doctors, lawyers, dentists that have built fans. In fact, we found a government agency that has over 50 million fans. You can be walking down the street in any city in the world and not be surprised if somebody is walking towards you wearing a t-shirt with a NASA logo. NASA has 50 million fans. There’s no question after doing the research, which became our book “Fanocracy: Turning Fans into Customers and Customers into Fans” that my daughter Reiko and I learned that anybody can build fans and in our book we have a prescription for how anyone can do it.

Joey Coleman (37:03):
I love it. You know, when I hear the reference to his daughter’s love of Harry Potter, I have to admit my boys are just starting to get into Harry Potter. My boys are seven and four and we’re reading the Harry Potter books out loud at night to them. And the idea of someday writing a book with something that my boys love, co-authoring a book with them, is really appealing. The other thing I want to point out is that mention of NASA. I actually had the pleasure of working with NASA on a project years ago and it’s actually, when I list out my bio of companies I’ve worked with, it’s one of the ones that the most people react to. And I think he speaks to that, in the sense that they have 50 million fans. If you are associated with NASA, people are excited about that. And so I think what I love about the book and, you know, David highlights this in his overview and it really can be found in the pages of the book, is, when you can connect with people on something that they’re a fan of, or their fandom, it creates a different level of connection.

Dan Gingiss (38:06):
Absolutely. And, and we talked about it in the last segment too, about finding that one thing that personalizes the experience for your customers. And often times, that is something that they’re a fan of. And it’s no surprise that a lot of business gets done on golf courses, for example, right? Because people are fans of golf and they love playing, and it becomes not just a sport, but really a lifestyle, a religion almost. And everybody has one. And once you know it, you have this automatic conversation topic that you can have with them, even if you’re not particularly well versed in say jazz, you at least can start a conversation with somebody and you know that you’re going to kind of reel them in because you’re going to, you’re going to see them light up as Kamala Harris did when she was talking about it. So we also like to do something really cool here on the show, which is that we ask our authors to share with us their favorite passage from their book. And then Joey and I are going to share our favorite passages. So here again is David Meerman Scott reading his favorite passage from the book.

David Meerman Scott (39:19):
As we discussed our experiences over many nights across the dinner table, we began to consider the ideas that you will now find in our book. It was a sharp reminder to both of us, that hobbies and passions don’t disappear as soon as one is steps into adult or professional life. We both agree that the myth of unyielding professionalism can obscure our genuine connections. That’s why we chose to write this book. Exchanging texts about television shows or comic books has gotten daughter, Reiko, through study hours that extended far into nights that would have otherwise felt endless. And father David, has forged deep lifelong friendships with those who are as passionate about live music as he is. To love things outside work is to make meaningful connections with likeminded people. To achieve the success that comes with developing passionate fans of your business, fandom culture is necessary. Yet there’s another important reason to understand these ideas as we said earlier. Exposing ourselves to people who share our interests, leads us to live a happier life. And when you can introduce your fandom passions and bring in others who are completely different from you and they become fans, you create an ideal environment – a place where great things happen.

Dan Gingiss (40:44):
So I also selected my favorite passage, which I’d like to read now, and here it is: “The fundamental ingredient for true fandom, meaningful and active human connection, demonstrates a shift in the way a company relates to its customers. A true fanocracy mobilizes people to think, feel, and act together with a helpful, positive force during difficult times.” Now I love this for so many reasons. Obviously the human connection part we’ve said it many, many times on the show, to quote our mutual friend, Bryan Kramer,” It’s no longer B2C, or B2B, it’s H2H – human to human. And especially during a time where we’re all stuck at home, we’re craving human interaction. And I love the piece about it being a helpful, positive force during difficult times. As I noted earlier in the show, we’re all either part of the problem or were part of the solution. And hopefully out of this difficult time comes some good.

Joey Coleman (41:48):
You know, I think connection is always powerful and all too often, we talk about connection with our customers, but my favorite passage actually dives to the other side of the equation, that is, our employees. And in a chapter called “Develop Employees Who are Fans,” David writes, “Passionate employees are excited about you and their work and they are eager to tell others. People who feel trusted and are allowed to make their own decisions, become passionate about their company. Passion can become a habit.” I think whenever we are considering customer experience, we need to include employee experience in the same conversation. And as we think about developing fans of our brand, it’s important that our employees are fans as well. And I think the way to get into creating a fan-like relationship with your employees is to look at ways you can be fans of the things that they are fans of,, and vice versa. And as that connection builds your employee experience builds your customer experience builds, you will have more fans – both internally and externally.

Dan Gingiss (43:00):
So pick up “Fanocracy,” the new book by David Meerman Scott and Reiko Scott on Amazon or your favorite bookstore, and while we’ll be featuring a number of other awesome books this season, we always want to hear about the books that you’re reading as well. So please feel free to drop us a line. Our email addresses are so easy: joeyc [at] joeycoleman.com, dan [at] dangingiss.com. Let us know what you’re reading, because maybe it’s a book that we haven’t gotten to yet, and we’d love to feature it on a future episode.

[SHOW OUTRO]
Joey Coleman (43:36):
Wow. Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (43:41):
We know there are tons of podcasts to listen to, magazines and books to read, reality TV to watch. We don’t take for granted that you’ve decided to spend some quality time listening to the two of us.

Joey Coleman (43:50):
We hope you enjoyed our discussions and if you do, we’d love to hear about it! Come on over to ExperienceThisShow.com and let us know what segments you enjoyed, what new segments you’d like to hear. This show is all about experience, and we want you to be part of the Experience This! Show.

Dan Gingiss (44:09):
Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more.

Joey Coleman (44:12):
Experience!

Dan Gingiss (44:12):
This!

Episode 100 : The Best Experiences from the Experience This! Show

Join us as we look back on some of our favorite customer experience stories and celebrate our 100th episode with our Best of the Best show.

100 Episodes – Oh My!

[This Just Happened] The Best of “This Just Happened”

Wonderful customer experiences happen every day and this segment was designed to showcase personal and brand experiences we hear about from friends and family or that we experience ourselves! Over the last 100 episodes we’ve shared 65 “This Just Happened” stories so picking the best ones was challenging to say the least. Let’s count down the Top 5 experiences of “This Just Happened”:

5. EmpowerCX (Episode 65) – Our only episode recorded in front of a LIVE studio audience! We were thrilled to partner with our good friends at the Sitel Group to be the closing keynote of their EmpowerCX event in 2019. We had such a fun time working together that we went on to co-host a podcast for them that features their team members, research, and clients called Empower CX Now. If you enjoy The Experience This! Show, you should check out our other show too! 😉

4. Kids Talking to Alexa (Episode 1) Ahh the memories… Our first episode featured the way our children interacted with voice assistants like Alexa (including putting ice cream on the shopping list and asking Alexa to play “childish” songs) and how voice is beginning to changing the customer experience in dozens of industries.

3. Take on Me (Episode 18) Can the new version be better than the original? Joey was skeptical at first, but listening to the Norwegian synth-pop band A-ha offer up an acoustic version of their 80s pop classic “Take on Me,” reinforced the fact that experiences can always be improved upon.

2. Stephen Curry Basketball Shoes (Episode 57). When a young girl brought it to basketball superstar Stephen Curry’s attention that his shoes weren’t sized for girls, he not only wrote her a handwritten reply, but asked her to help design a new line of shoes for women. With proper care and attention, a brand misstep can become the stuff of legends…

1 . Chewy.com (Episode 17 & Episode 50) – The only brand to appear twice in our list, Chewy shows that attention to customer experience and little extra touches creates raving fans. When one of our listeners received a bouquet of flowers after their pet died, Chewy created a customer who definitely will be back.

The bar for customer experience is very low, and you don’t need to high jump over it. You just need to do a little bit better to stand out; make something ordinary into extraordinary. And then we’ll talk about it on this show!

Dan Gingiss, co-host of The Experience This! Show podcast

[Dissecting the Experience] The Best of “Dissecting the Experience”

Over the first 100 episodes of our show, over half (54 to be exact!) featured a “Dissecting The Experience” segment. In this segment, we take a deeper dive into a featured experience to determine what really makes an interaction special/unique/noteworthy. makes them remarkable, and often it’s more than one thing. Let’s count down the Top 5 experiences of “Dissecting The Experience”:

5. Pizzability (Episode 82) The experiences you design for your customers should serve all of your customers – regardless of their unique abilities. Pizzability offers great food in a restaurant specifically designed to be accessible to it’s employees and customers – regardless of whatever needs they have.

4. Imperfect Produce (Episode 57) Just because it doesn’t look “pretty” doesn’t mean there isn’t a market for your offerings. Imperfect Produce delivers fresh product with a “less than perfect look” to customers that will happily place taste over image and are happy to contribute to the cause of reducing food waste.

3. Savannah Bananas (Episode 71). Have you ever been to a party where a baseball game broke out in the middle?! That’s what it’s like to attend a Savannah Bananas game. Located in Savannah, Georgia, the team is built on a “Fans First” culture that prioritizes incredible experiences above everything else. Next time you want to go to a sporting event, it’s worth the trip to Savannah to watch the Bananas… well… Go Bananas!

2. Website Navigation (Episode 48) Sometimes the littlest things are the biggest things and that certainly rings true when it comes to your website navigation. You’ll be shocked (we certainly were) to find out that what you think is easy to navigate often leaves your customers completely lost and confused.

1 . Steve Spangler Science (Episode 24) Our first ever “double-length” episode, we brought the experience home to our children when we introduced them to Steve Spangler’s incredible science kits. Bringing science experiments into the house not only creates remarkable experiences for young learners, but it turns them into raving fans of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) when they get back to the classroom.

To create a truly remarkable customer experience, you must go deep with your customers. When you design every single aspect of an interaction as part of one cohesive experience, the impact is noticeable, significant, and long-lasting.

[Avtex Webinar] The 4 Phases to Managing CX Through Crisis

As we are all now aware, global pandemics, natural disasters, and other unforeseen events can wreak havoc on business plans. There isn’t a business that hasn’t dealt with this in the last two months as the result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Which is why our friends at Avtex (gracious sponsors of Season 5 of the Experience This! Show) are planning to share their Responding to Crisis with CX model in a FREE webinar on May 5, 2020 at 1:00pm EDT/ 12:00pm CDT.

To register for this webinar and receive a free copy of their white paper: “A Four-Phased Approach to Delivering Effective Customer Experience During a Crisis” go to: experienceconversations.com

[Required Remarkable] The Best of “Make the Required Remarkable”

Every business has dozens of required elements – but few put in the extra effort to make those required elements remarkable. By paying attention to the expected interactions and making them remarkable, patrons will realize that your commitment to customer experience runs deep. Let’s count down the Top 5 experiences of “Make the Required Remarkable”:

5. Birthday Wishes (Episode 66) What makes for a disappointing birthday? When someone that claims to care about you, and knows your birthday, doesn’t do anything to acknowledge your special day. Too many companies ask for your birthday information and then do nothing with it. Our one wish as we blow out our birthday candles? That brands start to acknowledge memorable milestones for their customers.

4. Women Wins $10K for Reading Fine Print (Episode 73) Sometimes, reading the fine print pays off. That was certainly the case for one woman who took advantage of some playful fine print in a disclaimer and won $10,000 in the process!

3. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter (Episode 41) How do you bring a magical movie to life in the real world? Create an immersive experience like the one at Universal Studios and transport your customers into another realm that will captivate, inspire, and excite them – not to mention getting them to tell everyone they know about their experience.

2. “I’m on Hold” Music (Episode 6) What if the hold music people listened to while waiting to speak with you was designed to be part of the experience? That’s what we’re talking about when we say evaluate every customer touchpoint that you’re required to have and look for ways to make it remarkable!

1 . Your Customers are Cheating on You (Episode 1) For our very first segment of our very first episode, we turned to the Godfather of Customer Service – our good friend Shep Hyken and his belief (that we agree with!) that your competition is every other company with which your customers do business.

Thank You for Listening!

We’d certainly be remiss if we didn’t take this time to thank all of our loyal listeners who have stuck by us for 100 episodes.! Without you, there literally wouldn’t be a podcast. So thank you, from the bottom of our hearts, for allowing us to take up some of your valuable time each week and for letting us do something we love doing. Here’s to the next 100 episodes!

Host Contact Information

Email Dan: Dan@dangingiss.com

Tweet Dan Gingiss: @DGingiss

Email Joey: JoeyC@JoeyColeman.com

DanGingiss.com

JoeyColeman.com

Subscribe to Experience This on Apple Podcasts

Episode Transcript

Download a transcript of the entire Episode 100 here or read it below:

Joey Coleman: Welcome to Experience This, where you’ll find inspiring examples of customer experience, great stories of customer service and tips on how to make your customers love you even more. Always upbeat and definitely entertaining customer attention expert, Joey Coleman and social media expert Dan Gingiss serve as your hosts for a weekly dose of positive customer experience. So hold onto your headphones. It’s time to experience this.

Dan Gingiss: Get ready for a special 100th episode of the Experience This show.

Joey Coleman: Woohoo. Join us as we look back on some of our favorite customer experience stories in three of our most popular segments, counting down to the best of the best.

Dan Gingiss: Episodes and episodes and episodes.

Joey Coleman: And episodes and episodes and episodes.

Dan Gingiss: And more episodes. Oh my.

The Best of ‘This Just Happened’

Joey Coleman: We love telling stories and sharing key insights you can implement or avoid based on our experiences. Can you believe that this just happened?

Dan Gingiss: Welcome everyone to episode 100 of the Experience This show. I’m not going to lie, Joey. I think this is a pretty momentous occasion.

Joey Coleman: I’m not going to lie, Dan, I didn’t know if we’d make it. No, I’m just kidding. I knew we’d make it. But I too think this is kind of a fun marker, not only for us, but more importantly for our listeners. I mean at the end of the day, most podcasts don’t make it to 100 episodes. And who would have thunk way back when when our mutual friend Jay Baer was hosting a little gathering and you and I were standing next to each other talking and he came up and said, “Hey, I think you guys should do a podcast together,” that we’d be here in season five, 100 episodes later?

Dan Gingiss: Yeah. But if we had known better back then and not recorded 40 episodes in season one.

Joey Coleman: Season one is really long. We would be much deeper in five seasons if we would have broken this up.

Dan Gingiss: We’d be at least in season seven. But anyway, that aside, we thought we’d do something a little bit different and a little bit special for our 100th episode. See, when we first started this podcast, we wanted to make it a unique listening experience, which is why one of our first decisions was to not make it an interview show like so many other business podcasts.

Joey Coleman: And that’s nothing against interview show, folks. Some of our favorite other podcasts are interview shows. It’s just we wanted to try something completely new, which ironically enough, hasn’t stopped a plethora of PR agents reaching out to pitch us on interviewing the CEOs of companies, even though we don’t do interviews. But I digress.

Dan Gingiss: Exactly. Well, the whole idea was is we felt like if we were going to teach people how to create remarkable experiences, we needed to make sure that we were creating a remarkable listening experience for our show. And to do that, we wanted to do something different. So we settled on three main segments per episode. And to make it even more interesting, we created nine different segment types. And we eventually added two more after that so that you never know quite what you’re going to get from each episode. Now when people ask me about the podcast and they haven’t listened to us, I liken it to the Price Is Right, except sadly without Bob Barker.

Joey Coleman: Dan Gingiss, come on down.

Dan Gingiss: Thank you Johnny. I’ll bid $1. In any event, after more than 300 individual segments, we thought we’d celebrate this week by looking back at some of our favorites for three of our most frequent segment categories. And the first one is This Just Happened. Believe it or not, we’ve had 65 This Just Happened stories over the years. So picking the top ones was quite challenging. These segments were created for us to share personal experiences and also brand experiences that we hear about from friends, family, and in social media. After all, remarkable experiences are the ones that are most often shared in the first place. So let’s count down the top five.

Joey Coleman: Number five is Empower CX. Episode 65, the only time we’ve done an episode completely live, but maybe not the last time. There might be some interesting things in the work, people. At the end of the day, a live experience was absolutely incredible for us, and the audience seemed to enjoy it as well. In fact, we enjoyed working with our friends at Sitel so much that we created a second podcast with them where Dan and I are the host called Empower CX Now.

Dan Gingiss: Number four is kids talking to Alexa, which came in our very first episode, episode one. And that was so much fun in particular because I mentioned during that segment that one of the things my kids, much younger at the time, liked to do was to ask Alexa to play the poop song, which is a real song. As it turns out, I believe because of a Google alert, the writer of the poop song found out that we referenced his song and he emailed me, thanking me for the reference and telling me that he actually holds the Guinness Book Of World Records for the most songs written. He’s written 65,000 songs, including a whole bunch, I’m not making this up, about poop, puke and pee.

Joey Coleman: Wow. Here in the hundredth episode, we decide to digress into the unprofessional side. But nonetheless…

Dan Gingiss: Well I can tell you my kids that day thought that dad was a true hero because the guy who wrote the poop song was emailing him.

Joey Coleman: I absolutely love it. So number three was episode 18, the story of Take On Me. Now, you may be familiar with that classic ’80s tune Take On Me by Aha. Well, what had happened is they had recorded at a private concert an acoustic version that was not only as poignant and as catchy as the original one, but was in many ways haunting and marked a nostalgic time for all of us that had grown up listening to the song and the original version to hear it as a quiet, more acoustic version years later. Oh, my kids still request that song be played because it’s such a great version of the song.

Dan Gingiss: Yeah, it was awesome. And it was hard to believe that you could take what was almost a perfect ’80s song and even try to improve upon it, dare to improve upon it. But they did a great job. Number two, and this is one that I repeat quite often in my keynote speeches because I just love it, is the Stephen Curry basketball shoes story. This is where NBA all star, Stephen Curry, received a handwritten note from a girl named Riley who was very upset because she couldn’t find his shoes in girl sizes. Now she had done her homework. She knew that Stephen had daughters and was a big proponent of women’s sports and pointed this out in the letter, and asked for him to please make the shoes available in girl sizes. Stephen Curry, NBA all star, busy millionaire, on the court and off the court, entrepreneur, he took the time to write a handwritten note back to Riley.

Dan Gingiss: Not only telling her that he was correcting the oversight with the manufacturer, offering her the newest pair of his Curry shoes right off of the assembly line. But finally saying that in advance of International Women’s Day, he wanted Riley to help him design a brand new girl’s shoe, which she got to do. And there’s this awesome picture that was put out by Under Armor showing Riley holding her shoe, which she autographed for Stephen Curry. It was a wonderful story and the message there was if Stephen Curry can respond to his fans with a handwritten letter, can’t you do the same for your customers?

Joey Coleman: Oh, I love it. I love it. I love it. The power of the handwritten note, which brings us to number one, the top episode of This Just Happened over the last hundred episodes, five seasons is none other than chewy.com, the only company to appear twice on our This Just Happened list. Well we first talked about their amazing personal customer service in episode 17 after three different acquaintances of ours brought the company to our attention within the same week, folks. Okay. This happened within the same week. And I remember your friend Mike after losing his cat, Homey, completely stunned to receive a bouquet of flowers and a sympathy card from this amazing company. We talked about how important it is to treat customers well even on the way out. After all, Mike by definition was no longer a customer at the time. But of course when Mike got another cat, you can guess where he went back to purchasing food and supplies. Yes. That would be chewy.com. And then in episode 50, you shared what you thought was the greatest customer service email ever.

Dan Gingiss: Oh yeah. That one was to our listener, Mari Anhel, and I’ll never forget her cat Roma, and she had left a negative review on Chewy’s site about a particular brand of cat litter, not a Chewy brand, and she left a negative review because she wanted to warn other long haired cat owners that this particular litter did not work well for her cat. Chewy saw the review, proactively sent out an email saying, “We’re so sorry that you had a bad experience with this litter. We’ve gone ahead and refunded your money.” Please note that Mari Anhel never asked for a refund.

Dan Gingiss: The customer service agent then took the time to share four other litters and links to purchasing those that she thought might work better for her long haired cat, mentioned the cat by name and offered to put a picture of the cat up in their offices. I absolutely love this letter, and one of the things that I thought was amazing about it was despite how personalized it was, I truly believe that most of it was templated so that it is repeatable and scalable in their business, which again means you can do the same thing.

Joey Coleman: So is there one takeaway that you think people should have from listening to all of these This Just Happened segments Dan?

Dan Gingiss: I do, and we’ve said it many times on the show in different ways. The bar for customer experience is very, very low, and you don’t need to high jump over it. You just need to do a little bit better to stand out, make something ordinary into extraordinary, step over that low bar. You don’t have to worry about jumping. And then when you create that extraordinary experience, we’ll talk about it on our show.

The Best of ‘Dissecting The Experience’

Joey Coleman: Sometimes a remarkable experience deserves deeper investigation. We dive into the nitty gritty of customer interactions and dissect how and why they happen. Join us while we’re dissecting the experience.

Dan Gingiss: Now continuing on in our 100th episode, we’re going to now look at Dissecting The Experience. We’ve had 54 Dissecting The Experience segments since we began the show. And we looked back at all of them to select our favorites. Now with Dissecting The Experience, we wanted to take a deeper dive into some experiences to really get at what makes them remarkable, and often it’s more than one thing. So without further ado, let’s count down the top five.

Joey Coleman: Number five is a fantastic restaurant with a great mission in Denver, Colorado called Pizzability. I had the opportunity to go to Pizzability and see how their entire restaurant experience is designed to be accessible, accessible to the different types of customers that they have, whether that’s utensils that were easier to hold, menus that you didn’t have to read, the ability to mark things by sight and by pointing as opposed to needing to speak. The entire experience was designed to be remarkable, frankly for an audience and a customer demographic who usually is struggling with the way things have been designed. It was a beautiful example of how you can make the experiences you create accessible to all of your customers, not just some of them.

Dan Gingiss: Number four is Imperfect Produce, which we covered in episode 57. This is one of my favorite companies based in San Francisco, and they help farmers by rescuing fruit and vegetables that would otherwise go to the landfill simply because they aren’t as pretty as the produce that supermarkets and grocery stores demand. Sometimes they’re too big, sometimes they’re too small, sometimes they have a little bit of a dent, but they all taste perfectly good and there’s no need to waste them. So Imperfect boxes them up and ships them out as a subscription service that is so flexible. You get to pick exactly what you want in your box every week. I enjoy being a customer.

Dan Gingiss: And one of the things that keeps me there is they help to track the impact that I, Dan Gingiss, have had on the environment by participating in this service. The amount of produce, now over 500 pounds for me, that would have gone to the landfill, the amount of water and CO2 that’s saved from farmers not having to replant every year. And they all do it with a lot of wit and humor in their marketing, ranging from their billboard ads, which have a picture of dancing dates and saying, “We’ll help you get more dates,” to the messages on their box that include helpful information about storing fruits and vegetables but also things that make you smile, to some of the special goodies and surprises that they’ll insert in the box when you least expect it. It’s a terrific experience and very deserving of number four on our list.

Joey Coleman: Number three is the fantastic sports team, the Savannah Bananas. Back in episode 71, I shared an experience that my family and I had visiting the Savannah Bananas baseball team. Run by our good friends, Jesse and Emily Cole, the Savannah Bananas is not really a baseball team. Yeah, they play baseball, but it’s basically a party where a baseball game breaks out. They do amazing things like having a child hit the first pitch so that they run the bases and make sure they’re all working, which my oldest son got to do. Then they have another kid in the audience say, “Play ball,” to start the game, which my other son got to do. I got to throw in the first pitch, which of course was a banana, not a baseball. There were fireworks, there were promotions, there were stunts, there were games. And in the background, there was a baseball game that was played. Folks, if you get the chance to spend any time in the Southern East coast of the United States, find your way to a Savannah Bananas baseball game for a remarkable audience experience.

Dan Gingiss: Number two on the list is website navigation, a segment that we did in episode 48. And the reason why this went so high on the list for me was that it was something that I really, really learned from, even though I spent over three years managing website design and development for a Fortune 300 company. You see, what this piece of research found was that B2B companies, especially in the SAS space, which is software as a service space, almost all of them have the exact same navigation on their website. And this design agency was trying to get one of their clients to have different navigation, and the client was resisting because they wanted to be like all of their competitors. So this agency went out and did a big survey, and what they found was absolutely stunning. Customers had no idea where to find things on the website because the navigation that was being used had similar words like services and products and programs and other things where people couldn’t tell the difference between them.

Dan Gingiss: And so when asked, where do you think you would find this on the website? They had no idea. And that was a stunner for me and something that I really learned from and took to some consulting clients and to other companies that I know to use as advice. And that to me is really why we’re here, Joey, is to learn things and not just teach them to others, but to learn them ourselves. And that’s why I loved that segment.

Joey Coleman: Such a great segment, which brings us to the number one segment of Dissecting The Experience across 100 episodes of the Experience This show. Ladies and gentlemen, let me take you back to season one episode 24 when we had a double segment talking about Steve Spangler Science. Steve Spangler Science is a company that offers science kits that you can order to do experiments in your home. We did a box opening with each of our kids. We audio recorded this so that you could hear the oohs and the ahs as the kids got to experiment with science and learn in the process while also having fun.

Joey Coleman: We then paired this with An I Love It, Can’t Stand It segment about the things that are great and not so great about school. And we got the same kids who had played with the Steve Spangler Science kit to actually tell us about their experience of school and education. When it comes to being lifelong learners, I think we have a tendency as we become adults to focus more on books and podcasts and going to conferences instead of more kinesthetic learning experiences like doing experiments, blowing things up, making snow in your house, the crazy things you can do with Steve Spangler Science kits. So there you have it, ladies and gentlemen, the top five examples of Dissecting The Experience. Dan, what do you think is the main takeaway from the segments? How can we dissect the takeaway?

Dan Gingiss: Dissect the dissection, if you will. Well, in order to create a truly remarkable customer experience, you have to go beyond just the surface, which is exactly why we called the segment Dissecting The Experience in the first place. All of these great examples showcase companies that are thinking about every single aspect of the experience as one cohesive thing, not as individual disconnected experiences created by siloed organizational charts. I think when you look at all of these examples plus a lot of the others that we’ve shared in this show, that’s really the key thing that we want people to remember is that when your organization is siloed, you might be able to improve one piece of the experience. But these are companies that have taken a look at everything from their marketing and advertising to their packaging, to their actual product or service to their customer service, to their social media. I could go on and on and on. And it all fits together into a cohesive experience. And if you want us to include your company in a future Dissecting The Experience, that’s what you’re going to have to do.

The Best of ‘Required Remarkable’

Joey Coleman: Just because you have required elements of your business doesn’t mean they need to be boring. It’s time to get creative, have some fun, and make people sit up and take notice. Get your customers talking when you make the required remarkable.

Dan Gingiss: So wrapping up our special 100th episode, we’re now going to talk about our Required Remarkable segment. But before we get into it, we do have to point out that we’ve had 75 CX Press segments, the most of any segment, but we chose not to create a top five list of those because they don’t really feel as rankable, if that makes sense. But we are going to look at Required Remarkable even though we’ve only done 15 of these segments because, and I think I can speak for you here, Joey, we both believe that these are the kinds of examples that companies absolutely must be paying attention to.

Joey Coleman: Absolutely Dan. And they may not always be the sexiest examples, although let’s be candid, the five we’re about to remind you about actually are, but that doesn’t make them any less important. See, the required things in your business are the things that you and your customers are taking for granted. And if you can make those things remarkable, that’s the way to catch them off guard. That’s the way to get people talking about your business, your brand, your services and your products. So let’s get into our top five examples of required remarkable experiences starting with number five.

Joey Coleman: From episode 66, birthday wishes. Folks, this is such an obvious thing for any company to do. So many companies ask you or record the information of what is your birthday, and then don’t do anything to acknowledge you on your birthday. As we get older, people don’t acknowledge our birthdays as much anymore. When you’re a kid and you have a birthday, you throw a party, invite over all of your friends. There’s pin the tail on the donkey. There’s pinatas, there’s cake, there’s cookies, there’s presents. There’s all kinds of hi-jinks and excitement. When you have your 46th birthday or your 53rd birthday, or even your 28th birthday or 34th birthday, these aren’t as memorable. There’s an opportunity for the businesses who know your birthday to stand out by acknowledging your special day.

Dan Gingiss: Number four on the list, woman wins $10,000 for reading the fine print.

Joey Coleman: As a lawyer, I loved this one. This was so good.

Dan Gingiss: This was episode 73 last season, and it was a story of a woman who actually sat down and read the fine print at her insurance company, and figured out by reading all of the disclosures that she had to do a certain thing, complete a certain task, to win $10,000. And the idea here was clear. The company knew that very few people read the fine print, and they wanted to see if even one person could do it. And this woman happened to be the lucky winner. But I loved it because it not only exposed a problem in the experience of fine print, which is that it’s almost intentional that people not read it, which is problematic because if you talk to the lawyers, they want people to read it.

Dan Gingiss: In fact, they assume people read it. And that’s what they’re allowed to do according to the law. As long as we put the fine print in front of customers, we can assume that we’ve done our part. But what we like to teach on this show is that there’s always an opportunity for creativity. There’s always an opportunity to bring marketing or design people in to make the required parts of your business more interesting and more fun. This insurance company did it by hiding a little Easter egg in the fine print, in the form of a $10,000 sweepstakes, and I am so proud of this woman for winning it,

Joey Coleman: Which brings us to number three. Number three takes us back to the very beginning of season two, episode 41, when we had the opportunity to go to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios. It was as if we were in the movie. Everywhere we walked, the streets felt like the streets of Diagon Alley. Hogwarts was up on the hill. You had this experience that you were almost in the movie, even though you were in the amusement park. Characters walking around. There were singing frogs. There were magicians in robes. There were kids waving wands all over and creating opportunities for the buildings to come to life based on the interactivity of the spells that the children were casting. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter looked at all the details that are required in any operation and decided how can we make these details, these required elements more remarkable? From the food to the signage, to the design and architecture, to the various phrases that their staff used when they interacted with us, there were a stack of required elements that became truly remarkable.

Dan Gingiss: One of my favorite photographs of my kids is my son with a butterbeer mustache from the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and it’s just perfect. Number two on the list, one of our favorites is the I’m On Hold Music in episode six, season one. This is a fantastic example, maybe the quintessential example, of taking the required part of your business and making it remarkable. A conference call system decided that rather than put people on hold and have them listening to, I don’t know, a beep or elevator music or complete silence or your call is very important to us, they had somebody commission a song about waiting on hold. And I urge you to Google I’m on hold music, you’ll get to a YouTube video that is absolutely amazing. And the reason it was so remarkable is it literally changed the concept of waiting on hold. Usually when you’re on hold, you can’t wait for the person to join the call. In this case, when I heard this song, I didn’t want them to join the call because I wanted to hear the rest of the song.

Joey Coleman: It’s funny, Dan, that you picked this one. Just last week I was on a conference call with a new client that was booking me to a keynote speech at their annual meeting. And while I was waiting for them to log in, I heard the chorus I’m on hold, and I immediately was teleported back to our experience. So yeah. What a great example. Which brings us to the number one Required Remarkable segment of the first 100 episodes of Experience This. And that would be, yes, episode number one, the segment, your customers are cheating on you. Folks, this is the very first segment of the very first episode of Experience This. And I think that’s interesting for two reasons.

Joey Coleman: Number one, it represents the core foundation of what this show stands for. And here 100 episodes later, five seasons later, it is as pertinent today as it was then. Based on an article written by our mutual friend Shep Hyken, a legend in the customer service and customer experience space. The takeaway was that your competition has changed to become every other company your customer does business with. See, it used to be that your competitors were who your customers were comparing you to. Now your customers are comparing you to the best experience they’ve ever had. Cirque de Soleil, Tesla, Walt Disney, Netflix, Amazon, Emirates Air, all the amazing brands in the world that are creating remarkable experiences and taking these required elements and making them remarkable, that’s who you’re being compared to. So what are you doing to stand out?

Dan Gingiss: And I think it’s really important to note here that this applies just as much to B2B or business to business companies as it does to B2C or business to consumer companies. Because your customers in a B2B space are consumers. You are not selling to a building just because you sell to a business. You’re selling to a buyer who’s a human being, who has had consumer experiences at the brands that Joey just listed. And believe it or not, you’re being compared to them as well. So you may not think it, you may think if you’re in the B2B space that you’re being compared to other B2B purchases, but you’re actually being compared to every other experience with every other brand that your buyer has had.

Joey Coleman: Folks, the reason why I love this segment type so much, the Required Remarkable segment, is because this is the low hanging fruit in every single organization. If you are listening to this podcast, there are required elements of your business, hold music, email signature lines, contracts, proposals, the way you conduct your in person meetings, the way you deliver your deliverables. Your business is rife with opportunities to take required elements and make them remarkable.

Dan Gingiss: We’d certainly be remiss if we did take this time to thank you, all of our loyal listeners who have stuck by us for 100 episodes. Without you, there literally would not be a podcast. So thank you from the bottom of our hearts for allowing us to take some of your valuable time each week and for letting us do something that we love doing. So here’s to the next 100 episodes.

Joey Coleman: Wow. Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This.

Dan Gingiss: We know there are tons of podcasts to listen to, magazines and books to read, reality TV to watch. We don’t take for granted that you’ve decided to spend some quality time listening to the two of us.

Joey Coleman: We hope you enjoyed our discussions, and if you do, we’d love to hear about it. Come on over to experiencethisshow.com and let us know what segments you enjoyed, what new segments you’d like to hear. This show is all about experience, and we want you to be part of the Experience This show.

Dan Gingiss: Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more…

Joey Coleman: Experience…

Dan Gingiss: This.