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Episode 128 – The Recipe for a Successful Customer Experience

Join us as we discuss the state of customer experience in 2021, the answers to all of your baking questions, and what we love – and can’t stand – about hiring contractors.

Findings, Flour, and Fixer-Uppers – Oh My!

Referenced in the Show

The Definitive Guide to CX 2021 – by Conversocial

• Bakers Hotline – King Arthur Baking Company

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

Learn more about our Season 7 Partner – Solvvy – The NextGen Chatbot

Episode Transcript

Download an unedited transcript of Episode 128 here or read it below:

Joey Coleman (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (00:08):
The podcast that celebrates remarkable customer experiences and inspires you to stand out from the competition by wowing your customers.

Joey Coleman (00:17):
Each episode, we bring you a healthy dose of inspiring stories, funny interactions, and practical takeaways. Marketing and customer experience thought leader, Dan Gingiss…

Dan Gingiss (00:30):
shares the mic with customer retention and employee experience expert, Joey Coleman, helping you to get people talking about your business.

Joey Coleman (00:40):
So get ready because it’s time to Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (00:51):
Get ready for another episode of the Experience This! Show!

Joey Coleman (00:55):
Join us as we discuss this state of customer experience in 2021, the answers to all of your baking questions, and what we love, and can’t stand, about hiring contractors.

Dan Gingiss (01:10):
Findings, Flour, and Fixer-Uppers – Oh my!

Joey Coleman (01:21):
Surveys, reports, studies, and reviews. There are some great resources that look at consumer behavior to find emerging trends and established patterns. We dig through the data and bring you the key takeaways in this edition of Inside the Numbers.

Dan Gingiss (01:42):
For this edition of inside the numbers. We’ll be talking about one of my favorite annual reports, The State of CX Trends report by Conversocial.

Joey Coleman (01:51):
I love that you have a favorite annual report! You’re a research-based guy, Dan, I like that!

Dan Gingiss (01:56):
Well, it’s one of my favorites, but this is the eighth edition of this report and I remember highlighting a much earlier edition in my first book, Winning at Social Customer Care, and man have things changed since then! So Conversocial surveyed 2000 consumers in the United States and European Union. Their report, and I’m quoting here, “looks to provide a comprehensive overview of how consumers communicate or at least want to communicate with your brand and allow you to benchmark where your corporate peers are focusing their efforts and budgets.” So let’s dive into some of the key findings of this report. Conversocial found three main trends, and we’re going to walk through them one at a time with some statistics that support them. The first trend was that customers have made the move to messaging, but brands lag behind. So 69% of consumers used a private messaging channel to engage with a brand in the past 12 months. I am sure that is not a huge surprise that it is an 87% increase over 2019. Certainly this was a pandemic driven…

Joey Coleman (03:08):
Pandemic experience, ladies and gentlemen, indeed!

Dan Gingiss (03:12):
41% of consumers used messaging for a customer service issue, 36% to buy a product, and 29% to ask a product related question.

Joey Coleman (03:23):
You know, another interesting data point along the same lines about the trend towards messaging with brands lagging behind is that 71% of the folks surveyed expected brands to offer customer support over messaging channels and 66% expected personalized customer experience over messaging channels. So I think, uh, our day-to-day habits of texting each other and using that type of messaging is spilling into our interactions with brands as well.

Dan Gingiss (03:55):
Absolutely – and now we expect brands to be there for us in that channel. Now it is not often that you can survey 2000 people and have 96% agree on anything.

Joey Coleman (04:06):
Yeah, this is a shock!

Dan Gingiss (04:07):
But in fact, 96% of respondents said that a good customer experience over messaging channels was somewhat or very important to their brand loyalty. 96%. I think I’d like to make sure that all of my client’s businesses have messaging channels don’t you?

Joey Coleman (04:29):
Absolutely. And I think here’s the thing I get as a business owner. And I’m sure you do as well, Dan, that when we think about all the channels we need to be available to our customers on it becomes pretty overwhelming. Especially if you’re in one of the millions of businesses that don’t have a ton of employees. You know, if you have three or four employees, you’re often having a hard enough time taking care of the emails and the phone calls, let alone the text messages, the comments on social, you know, the passenger pigeon flying in with a message for you, whatever it may be. I do think though that the ship has sailed that we need to recognize that it’s not enough to say, yeah, but I’m doing a really good job over on this other platform. We’ve got to make messaging channels like texting a priority in our channel strategies.

Dan Gingiss (05:18):
Absolutely. So I think the key finding in this particular trend is that customers want to communicate with companies over those same familiar channels that they use to talk with their friends and family and folks, if that’s what your customers want, you got to start looking into it if you’re not there yet. And I’ll tell you even some small businesses in my area, we’re going to talk about contractors later in the show, and I’ve been noticing that some of the local contractors that are not more than a couple of employees are using messaging very effectively to tell me that they’re on their way, or that they’re stuck in traffic, to send me quotes, to even send me invoices. And I’m doing a lot more transactions over messaging, which I think is great because it’s the fastest way to get ahold of me and I can get things done really quickly.

Joey Coleman (06:03):
Yeah. I totally agree with you, Dan. I’d be remiss if I didn’t say though, I wonder if that will change over time in the sense that it used to be like, Oh, it’s so great that they’re sending emails and now we’re like, Ugh. And then now it starts to seem like, Oh, it’s so great that they’re doing this over text. Does there, I’m already starting to feel sometimes that my little notifications on my phone of how many unread text messages I’ve had starts to almost feel as scary as the number of unread emails, but maybe that’s just me. We’re a bit, we’re moving in that direction though, but it’s not enough to just be frustrated with it. We got to go do something about it.

Dan Gingiss (06:41):
And now I know why it takes so long for Joey to get back to me on text!

Joey Coleman (06:44):
I have you on a blocked list, my friend – sorry.

Dan Gingiss (06:46):
Okay. Gotcha.

Joey Coleman (06:47):
You’ve been blocked.

Dan Gingiss (06:48):
Why don’t you, uh, move us to the second trend?

Joey Coleman (06:51):
Well, the second trend, I think in some ways addresses the challenge that I just raised and that is that bots continue to play an increasingly important role in CX delivery. 71% of consumers in the commerce social report said that they would happily use a bot if it improved their customer experience or answered their support question quicker. So for those fast turn things, we have no problem speaking.

Dan Gingiss (07:18):
Right. But then here’s where things got interesting. The survey asked, do you feel comfortable with customer experience interactions and customer support questions being driven by or answered by automation? And interestingly here only 48% of people said yes and 52% said no. So what we can glean from that is the people that are ready and are using messaging and want to use messaging, they’re super excited about it, especially if it improves their experience or, or makes things happen more quickly, but we haven’t yet sold all consumers on this. And I think that was to Joey’s point a little bit about, you know, it took a while to get people sold on email and even digital, and now we’re trying to get them sold on messaging. So the key finding here is that artificial intelligence has been driving success with a lot of companies who are using chatbots, but there is still some consumer mistrust. And you know, we’ve got to get over that by explaining things to people, by letting them experiment with it, by offering other channels as well for people maybe that don’t have smartphones or are just not comfortable using the phone, et cetera.

Joey Coleman (08:31):
Well, I think we probably also need to make sure we’re using some Next Gen chatbots like those by our great friends at Solvvy, because a lot of the chat bot technology is evolving so quickly that brands are using old chat bots and not really taking the full advantage of the automation that’s available to them.

Dan Gingiss (08:50):
Exactly. So the third and final trend from the Conversocial report was brands can still generate brand loyalty, but they must differentiate. And I thought this was really interesting. There were two questions that were asked, uh, that I’ll report on here. The first was how loyal do you feel towards your favorite brands? And 55% of customers said they felt loyal. Another 33% actually said very loyal.

Joey Coleman (09:19):
So that’s 88% for those of you that were told there would be no math on the Experience This Show! 88% feel loyal or very loyal towards their favorite brands. That’s very significant.

Dan Gingiss (09:29):
Yes. And of course this is your favorite brand. And so you’d, you’d hope there’d be loyalty, but still 10% felt indifferent. And 1% said, no loyalty. Now then the, the survey asks, what main characteristics make you feel loyal to your favorite company? And here the answers really got spread out and I think this was worth talking about. 29% said the product or service offering was what made them feel loyal. 25% said, great customer service experiences. 23% said competitive pricing, 15% said brand reputation. And then only 7% said personalization of the experience. And a mere 3% said if the company was socially aware. So I thought this was kind of interesting because I dunno I would have thought that the great customer service experiment experience might’ve been higher. I think reputation often plays a really big role because people feel associated with brands. What did you think about that one?

Joey Coleman (10:35):
Well, I think that, you know, the challenge with any survey and the fact of the matter is the folks at Conversocial do a really good job. As you mentioned, this is multiple years running. Their survey methodology, as far as we can tell, is really solid. I think the reason why personalization and socially aware were so low is twofold. Number one brands, aren’t doing enough of it, right? So when you think about the brands that you’re really loyal to how much personalization is actually happening, so you can’t score it high for personalization because maybe you’re loyal, but there isn’t a high level of personalization. And the same with being socially aware. I mean, I know increasingly this is something that I’m paying attention to. I know a lot of my consulting clients were paying attention to, you know, where do you stand on some of the big social issues of the day and of our time. But I think a lot of brands are kind of in this, not exactly sure space of well, if we come out too strongly in favor of a position of a certain social issue, we might alienate some folks. And the reality is, yes, you will. But, the ones who are most loyal to you, might double down even more.

Dan Gingiss (11:46):
And that my friends is the state or at least the short version of the State of CX Trends Report by Conversocial. We’ll put a link in the show notes. If you’d like to go download the full report for yourself.

Joey Coleman (11:59):
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 (12:12):
Joey – I know you’d like to cook with your wife. Do you also like to bake at all maybe with the kids?

Joey Coleman (12:22):
Well, you know what Dan, I certainly enjoy these activities, but I’d be remiss because my wife listens to the show. I like to cook with my wife. I’m not super sure that she likes it when I joined into the cooking. She loves when I do the dishes that I know for sure. And with the kids, I will say one of the upsides of the pandemic has been a lot more time with the kids and we have baked some chocolate chip cookies and some other stuff like that. So yeah, there has been a little more baking than usual.

Dan Gingiss (12:51):
Excellent. So let me ask you something else. When you have a question about something that you’re cooking or baking, whom do you ask?

Joey Coleman (12:59):
Well, first on that list is usually my wife. Second on that list would be my mom. Third on the list would probably be calling you. And the fact that I’ve never called you for advice probably is an indicator of how rarely I actually cook or bake.

Dan Gingiss (13:13):
Gotcha. Or how low down on the list I am.

Joey Coleman (13:16):
You’re in the top three buddy! You’re in the top three, guaranteed.

Dan Gingiss (13:20):
Well, I mean, you’re definitely in the top three of my favorite podcast co-hosts.

Joey Coleman (13:25):
Unbelievable.

Dan Gingiss (13:27):
Anyway, uh, yes, Dan did use to have another podcast. So anyway, I have always called my mom for help cooking or baking. She is a wonderful cook, a terrific Baker used to have her own catering company that was baked goods only. And, uh, you know, I love going over there when she is baking something. But that of course begs the question. If I call her for when I have, when I need help. Who does she call when she’s stuck? Now to answer that, let me first tell you a quick story that actually also has to do with chocolate chip cookies. So my mom for years has made the traditional Toll House chocolate chip cookie recipe. Although mom, I’m going to do it. I’m going to spoil this and share it.

Joey Coleman (14:15):
Oh no. Mrs. Gingiss! I am so sorry. I am not part of this. This is unsanctioned behavior by your son. I am not condoning this behavior.

Dan Gingiss (14:23):
Well, if you want to have the Gingiss version of toll house chocolate chip cookies, you just make a tiny, tiny, tiny change to the recipe. You just double the chocolate chips. You can thank me later. Anyway, a number of years ago, my mom made a Toll House chocolate chip cookies with double the chocolate chips. And I happened to comment to her that I thought it was the best batch she had ever made. Now to give you a tiny bit of background, I often give her feedback on cooking, baking, and she asks me for feedback cause she trusts my judgment and thinks I have, you know, decent taste around these things. But I said to her man, these cookies are really, really good. I think they’re the best you’ve ever made. And she said, well that’s because I used a new flour in them. I said, okay, tell me more. And so she introduced me to the King Arthur flour company, whose slogan is by the way, baking with joy since 1790.

Joey Coleman (15:18):
Wait, you didn’t say 1970, you said 1790, right?

Dan Gingiss (15:23):
I said 1790.

Joey Coleman (15:25):
Wow. They’re almost as old as the United States!

Dan Gingiss (15:28):
Exactly. Now King Arthur flour company is an employee owned company. And they mentioned on their website that every one of us are bakers at heart. And for generations we’ve been there with you as you bake. Our mission is to be the ultimate resource and inspiration in the kitchen to inspire connections and community through baking and to use our business as a force for good. Now I decided for this segment to go check out their website and besides from all the recipes, and articles, and other really good content that they have King Arthur offers a bakers hotline.

Joey Coleman (16:03):
Of course they do. I love it!

Dan Gingiss (16:05):
And when you navigate to it on the website, you are greeted with the following quote, your bread fell flat, your cookies crumbled, who do you turn to the King? Arthur Baker’s hotline. Our professional bakers are ready to guide you through any baking challenge. Call – there’s a phone number, email, or chat online. We can help.

Joey Coleman (16:27):
You know, I love this. I love the idea of being able to reach out and get some support because maybe you can’t ask your spouse or maybe you can’t ask your mom, or your dad, or whoever it is that you normally would reach out to for help. This is a great idea. You know, I’m reminded of the Thanksgiving hotline that Butterball Turkey has, right? There’s this great scene in one of the old episodes of West Wing, where they call in and it’s giving advice to the person on the other end of the line, uh, for the hotline. But I had not ever heard of the King Arthur Baker’s hotline.

Dan Gingiss (17:02):
Well, so I talked to my mom about this recently and she said she has been calling them for years. And she…

Joey Coleman (17:08):
The secret technique of Mrs Gingiss. I like!

Dan Gingiss (17:12):
Exactly it. She says that they will answer anything and I’m quoting her. She told me today, everyone I’ve ever spoken to is patient with me and kind now here’s, what’s fascinating is this came up because my mom explained to me that she called them earlier this week about a recipe. Are you ready for this? That didn’t even have flour in it because it was a flowerless chocolate cake. I loved that. And I applaud it. I was like, mom, that’s awesome. You called a flour company to ask them if she had a, she had a good question. She had a question about the recipe called for table salt, and she only had kosher salt. And she knew that that was not a one-to-one ratio. And she asked them, you know, she said, here’s what I’m making and what should the ratio be? And they cheerfully answered her question. They didn’t say, well, where are you calling us?

Joey Coleman (18:05):
We’re only willing to give advice for flour baked goods!

Dan Gingiss (18:08):
Exactly. And so I think this is absolutely phenomenal. And of course not only is this now the only flour that my mom buys, she actually gets it for me too. And for my sister and, you know, we pack our cupboards with it because it produces a better product. But now I know it is also a very forward-thinking, even though it was created in 1790, and customer friendly company – which I think is amazing and not that hard to accomplish, right?! I mean, all they’re doing is becoming an educational resource with their articles and recipes and their hotline so that if you’re interested in baking, they want to be the go-to place. I don’t know. Kind of reminds me a little bit of our friend Marcus. Sheridan’s they ask you answer. They want to be the place you go to, if you have questions about baking. And I think that’s brilliant.

Joey Coleman (19:01):
I think it’s absolutely brilliant. And you know what also comes to mind here, Dan, and I’m, I’m guessing, I don’t know, but I’m guessing that the folks at King Arthur employ the folks that work on the Baker’s hotline, but I can almost envision a world where strong brand advocates like your mom could be answering calls for other bakers. And when you go back to kind of their mission of being a resource and inspiring connection and community, I see some businesses could get creative about just connecting your existing customers to other existing customers in an easy way that they can help and support each other. It doesn’t have to be necessarily a line item expense where you’re going to roll out a call center. You could just empower your current customers to help your newer customers and help each other along the way.

Dan Gingiss (19:51):
I love that. And I’m reminded of, I think a company that does that amazingly well is into it with their TurboTax product, is there is a huge community of people that answer. I mean, imagine how many questions people have about filing their taxes, tens of thousands of questions every year. And no, there’s no call center in the universe that can handle all of these questions, but they have a really involved community that does it. So I love that idea and example. I will say, just to close up that they are employees because on the King Arthur website are the pictures and bios of all of the people that act as the sort of bakers consultants that you may end up talking to or emailing to, and you could see their pictures, you could see their backgrounds, their favorite recipes and all that sort of stuff, which of course, again, bring some personalization to it and, and makes you realize that you’re talking to another human who shares your love of baking. And I think the whole thing is terrific. So go check out King Arthur flour. The next time you want to bake something, pick it up at your local grocery store and you’ll make the best chocolate chip cookies you’ve ever tasted.

Joey Coleman (21:01):
Almost everyone has interacted with chatbots, but all too often, it’s been a bad experience. In MythBusters, presented by Solvvy, we explore a common myth about CX chatbots and see how the right technology can create a positive experience, every time.

Dan Gingiss (21:24):
Today’s myth about chatbots? Chatbots don’t work across multiple channels. We learned earlier in the show that bots continue to play an increasingly important role in CX delivery. But one of the common concerns we’ve heard about chatbots is that while they work on your company’s website or maybe your mobile app, they aren’t necessarily easy to deploy across all of the places that customers contact your company that is chat bots. Aren’t omni-channel. They only work in the specific context or area for which they are constructed, and that’s not a particularly flexible or scalable solution.

Joey Coleman (21:59):
Ah, but the reality is that next gen chat bot technology allows you to train the bot once and deploy it practically anywhere. Modern chat bot platforms can be used across many different channels, which is critical. Now that there’s so many ways to connect with a company or brand, as we talked about earlier, with the Conversocial findings – whether that’s web, or mobile, or phone, or chat, or Facebook messenger, or WhatsApp, and probably a bunch of others that I can’t even think of right now, Dan!

Dan Gingiss (22:28):
I’m pretty proud of you for pulling out a couple of those social media examples that are Joey.

Joey Coleman (22:33):
Well, I try to learn every day. If you build and train a chat bot for answering questions on your website, you can now extend that technology to the other channels that customers are using in a faster and more cost-effective way, no more reinventing the wheel. And best of all, you’re able to provide a consistent experience to your audience. So your brand is always well-represented.

Dan Gingiss (22:55):
And that’s another myth busted, thanks to our friends and podcast supporters at Solvvy – the next gen chatbot.

Joey Coleman (23:06):
Sometimes the customer experience is amazing! And sometimes we just want to cry… Get ready for the roller coaster ride in this edition of, I Love It! I Can’t Stand It!

Dan Gingiss (23:24):
Every once in a while. It is fun to dust off an oldie, but goodie segment that we haven’t used in a long time, for one reason or another, not intentionally, but this one, it goes all the way back to season five, episode 95. It’s been a while. It’s been a long time since we have, I love it. I can’t stand it.

Joey Coleman (23:49):
Oh, I like it. I like it.

Dan Gingiss (23:51):
So I was thinking that we, because you and I have had some similar experiences lately, I happened to be in the middle of, uh, getting new floors in my house and true fact, I tried to work through to not just one but two jackhammers going on floors today. And, uh, yeah, And I’m doing some flooring and some painting, and I know you just recently built an office in the home that you moved to. So I’m guessing that like me, you have had to deal with some contractors.

Joey Coleman (24:21):
Oh yes. And let’s say, and I say this respectfully to the various folks I worked with, I said to my wife, my goal is to be standing in my new studio for Halloween. Well, let’s just say Halloween came and went. No trick or treat mostly trick! Thanksgiving came and went. Christmas, Hanukkah, New Year’s, Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s day. Oh my gosh. It’s like the holiday adventure of trying to see when I’m finally going to be in my new studio.

Dan Gingiss (24:52):
Oh man. Well, I hope you are there soon. I know it’s getting close, but I thought it might be fun for us to talk about the things that we love and can’t stand about using contractors. So I’ll go first. Let’s talk about the things that we love and we’ll just kind of volley back and forth a little bit, and then we’ll get to the things we can’t stand. So I was particularly impressed with, uh, insulation company that I had to bring out because I was having a problem with two rooms in my house being a little colder than the rest of the house. And I didn’t quite know what was going on. And this guy showed up with a digital infrared thermometer that was really cool. It kind of was shaped almost like a gun. And he pointed it up at the ceiling and on the display, it showed the hot and cold spots of the room. And we could see exactly where the cold air was coming from.

Joey Coleman (25:45):
So cool!

Dan Gingiss (25:46):
It was not only was it really cool, but I immediately trusted that he was going to be able to solve my problem. I have no idea how good he is at installation. But what I liked is that he had the right tools to show me what the problem was and that to me gained trust that he knew what he was doing and that he could fix it.

Joey Coleman (26:04):
I love it. You know, speaking of trust, Dan, I love working with any organization and specifically in this context, contractors who you trust to take your idea to the next level. What do I mean by that? You know, I am not a contractor by trade. I am not a carpenter. I’m not a plumber. I am not an electrician. I don’t have any of those skills. And I will happily hire people that do have those skills. But I have a vision of what I want and what I love is when I say, so here’s what I’m trying to accomplish and then there’s an additive conversation where the contractor doesn’t just say, yeah, Joey, we can do that. They say, yeah, we do that. But we could also take it to the next level by doing this. And they give additional ideas. That to me again, to your point gives me the confidence with that I’m with the right person. And it also helps me feel from the very beginning that there’s a shared vision for what the final outcome is we’re looking for.

Dan Gingiss (27:02):
Yeah. I love it. It’s like, they’re there. They’re partnering with you in, in creating your, whatever, the thing it is that you are building. So I had another interesting experience with, uh, one of the floor people. So we had a bunch of people come and quote us on wood floors. And what most of the flooring companies do is they make you pick a color from their catalog and then they buy the wood and they put it on. But at this guy, he said, look, we’re going to put on raw lumber, we’re going to sand it down. And then we’re going to come with stains. We’re going to sit with you in your home. And we’re going to basically practice stain until we find exactly the right color that you want. We can do literally any color under the rainbow. And if we do a stain and you just, you know, you’d like it slightly darker then we’ll try again and we’ll do a little darker and we’re, I’m excited to do this process. It’s coming up in a couple of days. But the whole idea is, is that we don’t have to choose from a catalog and then kind of imagine what it’s going to be like in our house. We can actually see it in our, oh, with our windows and the lighting and all that sort of stuff and make our decision in real time to say, Oh, a little bit lighter, a little bit darker. And I kind of think that’s going to be fun. And this is me. I don’t have any of those skills that you said do, and here I am saying, I think flooring installation could be fun. So yeah…

Joey Coleman (28:23):
I did catch that when you said, I think this is going to be fun. When was that sentence last spoken by somebody who was getting new floors?

Dan Gingiss (28:33):
And I have to say, that was the differentiator for us and why we brought this guy in, because it’s the same thing as he was like, well, hold on a second. Do we want to choose from catalog or do we want to get, do we want to know that we’re going to get exactly the color we want? And he got the business because of it.

Joey Coleman (28:48):
I love it. You know, speaking of easy ways to get the business that seem easy, but interestingly enough, don’t show up a lot in the world of contractors. How about arriving on time?! Saying I’m going to be there at 9:00 AM and actually showing up at 9:00 AM. Instead of saying, I’m going to be there at 9:00 AM and showing up at 2:00 PM. There’s a big difference there. And I get that increasingly in this pandemic era, many of us are working from home. And so it’s easier to just keep working, but nothing says, Hey, guess what else I might lie about then not being able to keep a schedule.

Dan Gingiss (29:23):
Totally, totally agree. The other thing that I would say is that it’s so important to set expectations. And I really like when the contractors set the expectations, they have consistent communication. I’ve had these floor guys here now for two days, I got an email in the morning. I an email in the evening. The email in the evening had pictures of the work that they had done during the day and summarized any conversations that I had with the foreman during the day. And so it was, it was very clear around here’s what’s going to happen. Here’s what we’re going to do. And then here’s what we did. And to me again, that just gives me confidence and I feel good that I’ve got the right guys doing the job.

Joey Coleman (30:03):
I love it. Dan, we’ve talked a lot about things we love. Maybe we should shift to talking about some of the things that go happy-go-lucky.

Dan Gingiss (30:13):
okay. We’re going to try to be nice now, now folks.

Joey Coleman (30:16):
Yeah. Let’s get into it. All right. I am not a big fan of folks who don’t write things down.

Dan Gingiss (30:22):
Yeah, I know that here’s a, here’s one from the archives. This was all the way back in season one, episode nine folks, single digits – Joey told us a story about a waitress that did not write the order down in Mandarin and infuriate him.

Joey Coleman (30:37):
I’m still irked by that, to be honest, because listen, if we’re having a conversation, just write it down. I’m not going to think less of you. In fact, I will actually think more of you if I see you taking notes based on our conversation. I don’t know what the, you know, what the desire is to not take notes, but especially in a scenario where I’m going to be paying you to make something in my home, please go ahead and take some notes. I’m really okay with it.

Dan Gingiss (31:03):
Joey, I was fascinated again with the, with the floor folks and we’re having some paint done. You know, some folks came in and they measured every room and they wrote down dimensions and they really took time. And some folks came in and they chewed on the eraser of their pencil and just sort of looked around the room and, and like, did it write a thing down or maybe a, you know, a checkmark or something. And then at the end gave me a quote and it’s a quick quote, are you going to believe the guy that spent the time measuring it out and kind of, you know, did everything to a T or the guy that just put his thumb up in the air and was trying to see which way the wind blew.

Joey Coleman (31:41):
Well, yeah. And then I T to build on that briefly also, it lets me know that, you know, your job, meaning the contractor. I had a conversation with a contractor where they said, so what size door are you looking to have replace? I felt like answering human size. Like, I don’t know, no Hobbit doors please. On, on all of my buildings, I was just like, are you kidding me? I have no idea. And maybe that means I’m not as good of a homeowner is I could be. Or maybe at this point in my life, I should have figured this stuff out. But don’t ask your customers to answer questions that presume a level of intelligence, or a level of knowledge, or level of understanding of your industry or practice that you have. It’s just, it’s not fair. It doesn’t make sense. And you’re not going to be happy with the results.

Dan Gingiss (32:35):
Yeah, definitely agree with that. Uh, and I think relatedly, one of the things that I experienced, I thought it was so strange. So right now many home contractors are very, very busy because there are still people that are, I mean, lots of people are home, so they’ e doing work and it’s getting warmer. And so people are starting to do their spring projects and all that sort of thing. And so, I mean, I literally talked to one contractor that said, I would really love to help you. I’m booked for the next two years. That was a real conversation.

Joey Coleman (33:03):
Wow.

Dan Gingiss (33:04):
But some other contractors, like I had to hound them to send me the quote. They came out on Monday and you know, two Mondays later, they still haven’t sent me a quote. And it sounds like…

Joey Coleman (33:13):
I just want to give you money. I really just want to give you money. Can you tell me how much money I have to give you?

Dan Gingiss (33:18):
Exactly. There was another one where I called and they said, Oh, the owner will get back to you tomorrow. He didn’t. So I waited a couple of days. I called again, they said, Oh, the owner will get back to you tomorrow. He did it. So I waited again. I called a third time. They said the owner will get back to you tomorrow. Guess what I did.

Joey Coleman (33:35):
I don’t think you waited any longer.

Dan Gingiss (33:36):
I didn’t wait any longer. I didn’t think he lost the business. Right. And it’s like, this is not necessary. Right? I much more appreciated the guy that said, “Hey, we’re booked for two years. I wish I could help you.” I still feel okay about him. Hey, I’m happy for him. He’s got lots of business versus the guy that’s too busy to even give me a quote or call me back. That is not going to result in me giving you any further business or me recommending you.

Joey Coleman (34:00):
Yeah. It’s so much of this stuff seems so basic and so obvious. Uh, what about the idea of taking payment? I find it fascinating that most contractors are like, great. I’ll take a check or cash. Like, hi, it’s 2021. I’d love to pay you via Venmo, PayPal, or credit card, any number of other payment methods that don’t require me to use old school modalities of giving you money. And yet you would think I was asking to pay in Bitcoin, which I was not by the way, but it’s like at this point in the game, if you work in a business and you don’t have a free credit card swiper from a service like Square or PayPal, w-what is happening, I just don’t understand why you’re not ready for that. And I get that you have to pay a certain percentage for that privilege and for that benefit. But customer convenience, customer ease has a value to it as well.

Dan Gingiss (34:57):
It is. It’s a cost of doing business. And, uh, you know, for a guy that used to work at a credit card company, we would always ask merchants, you know, that didn’t want to accept credit cards or that didn’t want to accept the discover card. You know, why would you stand in the way of a customer trying to pay you? I mean, really like to me and I do this in my business, you could pay me any way you want. Other than, I don’t know, like soybeans, I probably don’t accept, but you know, however you want to pay me. I am happy to make accommodations for you to pay me that way, because the money is going from your pocket to mine and I think that, uh, that more companies should do that. Uh, the last thing that I think we can leave people with is when I can’t stand it, when contractors do not clean up after themselves, I mean, goodness gracious. Now they’re making a big mess. This is your home, not their home. And part of the job is cleaning up afterwards, right? It’s not our responsibility to clean up. And so please, just as when we take a walk in nature, you know, leave nothing but footprints and leave the place even sparklier than when you found it. So how does all of this apply to more businesses? Right? Because I’m guessing there’s not a ton of contractors listening here.

Joey Coleman (36:12):
I think we should remind people the reason we do love it can’t stand. It is not to complain about the specific instance, whether it’s rental cars or contractors or whatever we’re talking about – although it is a nice little venting exercise for Dan and I it’s to point out how many industries struggle with the same basic customer experience elements, right? It’s not just the contractors and the rental car companies and the other folks we’ve talked about on love. It can’t stand. It it’s every business that has human beings as customers.

Dan Gingiss (36:46):
Absolutely. And I’m guessing that though, there may, we only may have a small percentage of contractors that listen to the show. We have a large percentage of companies that have to quote out their business and compete against other companies or bid out their business. I think we have a large number of companies that accept payments in some form. I would hope.

Joey Coleman (37:05):
I think we have a large number of companies who your customers know less about what you do, then, you know what they’re doing for a reason they’re looking for your expertise.

Dan Gingiss (37:15):
Yeah. We talked about blind transactions a couple episodes ago with going to the dentist and other things. So yeah, oftentimes you have more knowledge than your customer. So these, you may not be putting in new floors, but you are doing a lot of the same actions that a contractor might do. And that’s why we try to present these things that we both love. And can’t stand because likely, although, you know, Joey and I are maybe a little pickier than most, likely they are representative of what customers love and can’t stand as well.

Joey Coleman (37:53):
Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This! You are the best listener ever!

Dan Gingiss (37:59):
And since you listened to the whole show…

Joey Coleman (38:02):
Yay you!

Dan Gingiss (38:03):
we’re curious… was there a specific part of this episode that you enjoyed the most? If so, it would mean the world to us if you could share it with a coworker, a friend, or someone that just loves listening to podcasts.

Joey Coleman (38:14):
And while you’re in the sharing mood, if you felt inclined to jump over to iTunes, or wherever you find your podcasts, and write us a review, we would so appreciate it. And when you do, don’t forget to let us know as we might have a little surprise for you.

Dan Gingiss (38:29):
Thanks again for your time. And we’ll see you next week for more

Joey Coleman (38:32):
Experience!

Dan Gingiss (38:32):
This!

Episode 127 – Secret Messages Create Special Connections

Join us as we discuss a secret message for an interstellar audience, making products that consumers actually want, and warning customers about bad things before they even realize it.

Code Breaking, Custom Creating, and Fraud Alerting – Oh My!

Referenced in the Show

• “NASA Sent a Secret Message to Mars. Meet the People Who Decoded It.” – by Kenneth Chang in the New York Times

• Pinduoduo’s Consumer-To-Manufacturer (C2M) Offerings

• American Express

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

Learn more about our Season 7 Partner – Solvvy – The NextGen Chatbot

Episode Transcript

Download an unedited transcript of Episode 127 here or read it below:

Joey Coleman (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (00:07):
The podcast that celebrates remarkable customer experiences and inspires you to stand out from the competition by wowing your customers.

Joey Coleman (00:17):
Each episode, we bring you a healthy dose of inspiring stories, funny interactions, and practical takeaways. Marketing and customer experience thought leader, Dan Gingiss…

Dan Gingiss (00:30):
shares the mic with customer retention and employee experience expert, Joey Coleman, helping you to get people talking about your business.

Joey Coleman (00:40):
So get ready because it’s time to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:49):
Get ready, for another episode of the Experience This! Show!

Dan Gingiss (00:54):
Join us as we discuss: a secret message for an interstellar audience, making products that consumers actually want, and warning customers about bad things before they even realize it.

Joey Coleman (01:09):
Code Breaking, Custom Creating, and Fraud Alerting – Oh my!

Joey Coleman (01:18):
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!

Joey Coleman (01:36):
Happy belated Easter, everyone.

Dan Gingiss (01:38):
And may none of you run into me in the store getting half off chocolate eggs.

Joey Coleman (01:46):
I love it. I did not know you had a chocolate egg addiction. That’s something new learned here in season seven of the Experience This Show!

Dan Gingiss (01:53):
Well, you know, I try to make sure that I don’t tell you everything about me, Joey – so you’re always learning.

Joey Coleman (01:59):
I like it. I like it. Well, given that it is the Easter season, I thought we could talk in today’s segment about Easter eggs.

Dan Gingiss (02:08):
Well, I think we might be hard pressed or hard-boiled pressed to do a whole segment on Easter eggs.

Joey Coleman (02:15):
Oh my goodness. Oh my goodness. Well, I agree, Dan, if we were talking about hard boiling eggs and dieing them different colors, yes. But what I’m talking about is the concept of Easter eggs that comes from video games and in that context, an Easter egg is a phrase that’s used to describe a message or an image or a feature that’s hidden in a video game of film or other usually electronic medium. Now, interestingly enough, this term was first used way back in 1979 by Steven Wright, who was then the director of software development in the Atari Consumer Division, to describe a hidden message in an Atari video game. But this concept of an Easter egg recently made international headlines again, based on something happened on Mars.

Dan Gingiss (03:01):
Wait, so now we’re talking about Easter eggs and Martians?!

Joey Coleman (03:04):
Exactly! Today’s CX Press story comes to us from an article by Kenneth Chang in the New York Times, titled “NASA Sent a Secret Message to Mars. Meet the People Who Decoded It.” Now a few weeks ago, NASA’s Perseverance Rover fell through the Martian atmosphere and while it was descending, a video camera on the spacecraft captured the deployment of the rover’s parachute. The parachute was decorated with splotches of a reddish orange and white. And during the subsequent news conference, Alan Chen, the engineer in charge of the landing system noted that his team hoped to inspire others. And I quote, “[S]ometimes we leave messages in our work for others defined for that purpose. So we invite you all to give it a shot and show your work.” Now this sparked Codebreakers around the world to take a closer look at the seemingly random pattern of perseverance is parachute trading insights on Twitter and informs on Reddit. A number of people eventually figured out the message.

Dan Gingiss (04:07):
What, what did it say?

Joey Coleman (04:08):
Well before I share what it said, Dan, I think it’s important to share how all of this came to be. Dr. Ian Clark works for NASA and was in charge of developing the Perseverance parachute.

Dan Gingiss (04:21):
Say that 10 times fast!

Joey Coleman (04:23):
Right? I’m pretty proud that I’ve said it twice in this segment without stumbling. Well, anyways, it turns out NASA is previous Rover called Curiosity used a similar parachute system when it landed on Mars back in 2012, but a failure of a prototype parachute for future missions left the engineers wanting to improve on the design. And while watching video of testing of one of the new parachutes for perseverance, Dr. Clark noticed that the checkerboard pattern of the canopy made it difficult to track how individual portions of the parachute, unfurled and inflated and he realized that a more visually distinct pattern would help them assess things more accurately while providing an opportunity to quote, “have a little fun with it.” So he asked the deputy project manager for the mission for permission to be creative and have some fun. And thankfully his manager said, “okay, just make sure it’s appropriate and couldn’t be misinterpreted.”

Dan Gingiss (05:23):
Okay, obviously guys, Joey’s going to hold out on this. What did it say question for a little bit longer, but I do think that what I’m supposed to jump in and say here is man, wouldn’t it be great if we all worked at companies where we were allowed to be creative and have some fun, because that brings out the passion in people that brings out a better work atmosphere. We love talking about how employee experience can affect the customer experience. And so I already liked this story because they’re like working on some really like serious, expensive stuff here. And yet they’re allowed to have fun and be creative.

Joey Coleman (05:58):
Dan, I couldn’t agree more. It’s that balance between doing important work, but having a good time while you’re doing it well, as it turns out, I want to reveal here what it actually said. The code on the parachute was binary. Now this is something that’s very familiar to. Computer engineers, it’s zeros and ones. There were 320 pieces of fabric with each orange section of the parachute referenced a number one and each white section referencing the number zero. And when the code was translated, it left an inspiring message on the inner rings of the parachute: Dare Mighty Things.

Dan Gingiss (06:34):
Dare Mighty things. I have to tell you if I were going to guess that I wouldn’t have guessed it, but it is pretty awesome.

Joey Coleman (06:44):
It’s pretty cool. When you think about it. And interestingly enough, there’s a little more background to this message. Dare Mighty Things” is a credo that’s often used at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California and it comes from a speech that Teddy Roosevelt gave years ago. And I quote, “[F]ar better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”

Dan Gingiss (07:18):
Well, may we never have to take rank with poor spirits again is what I say.

Joey Coleman (07:24):
Not to mention, this is a presidential speech. Are you moved?! We just, we don’t have presidential rhetoric like that, but I digress.

Dan Gingiss (07:30):
No, that’s true. That’s definitely true. So I’m wondering how long did this actually take for people to decipher the parachute code?

Joey Coleman (07:40):
Well, it actually only took about two hours, which to me seemed pretty fast. You know, I know about another hidden code. That’s on a sculpture inside CIA headquarters at Langley, Virginia, that code breakers have been working on since 1990, when the sculpture was revealed and they’ve only decoded three of the four parts over the last 30 years. But what’s interesting is the parachute code wasn’t the only hidden element in the Perseverance Rover.

Dan Gingiss (08:11):
Ah ha! No it wasn’t. And I particularly enjoyed the series of drawings that represented the five rovers. NASA has sent to Mars from the small soldier in 1997 to perseverance. Now it looks like one of those family car stickers you may have seen with the stick figures of parents and kids and maybe a pet on it. The Mars Rover version has stick figures of the various rovers in a kind of family car sticker design. There are also three small chips with the names of 10.9 million people stencilled on them. Part of NASA efforts for the public to participate in its robotic missions. Interestingly enough, the project manager we mentioned earlier, Matt Wallace, who gave the okay to do something fun with the parachute? He recently shared that there are more Surprises to come saying, quote, there’s some things on the front of the vehicle that we’ll have a chance to see once we deploy the robot arm. So who knows how many more surprises we’re in for?!

Joey Coleman (09:09):
I love every piece of this story. Dan. I love the playfulness. I love the creativity. I love the hidden messages. And the reason I wanted to talk about this on the show today is because so many businesses miss the opportunity to embed Easter eggs in the interactions that they have with their customers, whether you’re a product based business or a service-based business, this idea of putting little hidden messages that your customers can come across is something that I think a lot more businesses need to be paying attention to.

Dan Gingiss (09:42):
Yeah, I agree. And this doesn’t have to be very hard. We’ve talked before on the show about messages that appear on shipping boxes and sometimes they’re like underneath the flap. So you only see them when you go to take it apart to recycle it. And that doesn’t cost anything because you’re printing something on the box anyway. And so as long as you’re printing on the same side, it’s not going to cost you any more to add some, some type on there. I think there’s also places I remember a ways back and I’m sorry that my rain man abilities must be failing me. But, uh, we talked about the insurance company that, uh, that had the $10,000 reward buried in the, in the

Joey Coleman (10:23):
Terms and Conditions?

Dan Gingiss (10:26):
I mean, obviously that got them a lot of press and it was such a cool story. So I think there are plenty of places that we can do this. Wait a minute, wait a minute. It’s coming to me.

Joey Coleman (10:39):
It’s coming to you isn’t it? I’m going to guess on this one Dan, was it Season One?

Dan Gingiss (10:43):
No, that’s where I started to look too. But it’s not.

Joey Coleman (10:47):
I think it was season one, maybe not, but it was in a, it was in a “Say Anything” wasn’t it?

Dan Gingiss (10:52):
It was a, I think you should just stop guessing it was a…

Joey Coleman (10:58):
Normally I don’t play the game.

Dan Gingiss (11:00):
We don’t have a segment called “Say Anything” – that’s that’s a 1980s movie. Um, we have a segment called “Say What,” but it wasn’t that either, uh, it was in episode 73, season four, Required Remarkable, woman wins $10,000 for reading the fine print anyway, uh, enough of that shenanigans. Uh, but yeah, this is, look, there’s no law that says that your company has to be boring. It’s not written anywhere. It’s not in your credo or your value or mission statement. The lawyers don’t say that you have to be boring, and yet so many companies decide to be boring. And that’s why when I talk about, you know, my favorite word is witty in talking about how to create remarkable experiences, because witty to me, it’s not about telling jokes or being funny because humor can be dangerous. It’s just about thinking about how we use language and trying to come up with a more clever, fun, personable human way of saying something, or in this case of maybe hiding a little wink, wink that not everybody’s going to get, but man, when they get it, they’re just going to love you because they’re going to feel like they’re part of a special club.

Joey Coleman (12:07):
Absolutely. So friends, how can you apply the same level of playfulness and creativity? And one might even go so bold as to say Curiosity that the NASA team did? Well first and foremost, let your loyal fans interact with your products and services, not just use them, explore ways for them to have a relationship with your products and services that goes beyond just the typical use case, create some unscheduled or found moments of surprise and delight. I think a lot of brands think about, Oh, what are going to be our surprise and delight moments. But with Easter eggs, you can kind of bury those surprise and delight moments and your customer will find them on their own schedule and it will feel more authentic that way. It will feel more random that way. It will feel more unique that way. And last but not least, let’s just have some fun. I mean, it’s not rocket science!

Dan Gingiss (13:02):
I see what you did there Joey!

Joey Coleman (13:06):
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.

Joey Coleman (13:27):
Hey, Dan, let’s play a game I like to call “Name that Acronym!”

Dan Gingiss (13:33):
It’s “Name that Acronym” folks!

Joey Coleman (13:36):
Yes. Well, in the last segment we talked about NASA and so I was thinking…

Dan Gingiss (13:40):
National Aeronautics and Space Administration?

Joey Coleman (13:43):
Oh, very good. You’re ready already. I like it. I like it. Well now let’s see what other acronyms we know. And let’s maybe go with some acronyms that are a little more business oriented. All right, Dan, are you ready?

Dan Gingiss (13:56):
I am ready.

Joey Coleman (13:59):
All right. B2B?

Dan Gingiss (14:01):
Business to business.

Joey Coleman (14:03):
B2C?

Dan Gingiss (14:04):
Business to consumer.

Joey Coleman (14:05):
C2M?

Dan Gingiss (14:08):
Consumer to Marshmallow?

Joey Coleman (14:11):
I like the creativity of that, but that’s not exactly what I was going for to be honest. And this was a new one for me until very recently. It stands for consumer to manufacturer and this is a newly emerging approach to production. That’s getting a lot of attention in China, especially as we kind of navigate through the pandemic. Now there are several versions of C to M, but in essence, C to M is pairing big data. That’s gathered by a tech platform with artificial intelligence in order to identify the latest consumer shopping trends. And then with this insight manufacturers make products directly for consumers, cutting out all of the intermediaries with more direct insights about customer demand. There’s less need to create excess inventory buffers, which improves margins and reduces waste.

Dan Gingiss (15:06):
Now I’m all for getting rid of them middle man, cause they rarely add a whole lot of value. But what you’re saying here sounds like we’re listening to customers and developing products based on their use cases or what they’re saying or doing. I mean, can you give me an example of maybe a Chinese C to M business?

Joey Coleman (15:26):
I can and what I would say Dan is, yes we are. But what’s unique about C2M is these tech platforms are taking it to the next level. It’s not about the brand listening to what their customers are saying. And then creating new products, it’s giant social media platforms or e-commerce platforms tracking search behaviors and buying behaviors, extrapolating that data. And then using AI to partner with manufacturing firms to go straight to production. So you might’ve heard of the Chinese company Alibaba before.

Dan Gingiss (16:02):
Of course China’s biggest e-commerce platform.

Joey Coleman (16:06):
Exactly. So Alibaba clearly has all of the big data they need. They also have a thriving SITA em business unit. Now earlier in the pandemic, the CTM team at Alibaba noticed a sharp rise in demand for alcohol based car, cleaning supplies, things people want to use in order to stop the spread of COVID infections. Now Alibaba approached Otis, which is a company that makes car cleaning products who ironically enough at the time was really struggling with their sales. And Alibaba suggested that Otis create a line of portable sanitizing sprays instead of car cleaning products. They had all the ability to put, you know, to kind of create the, the spray bottles. If you will. They had all the ability to create the solvents that would go inside those, but they kind of suggested that based on what they were seeing in the marketplace, they should create something that was a portable sanitizing spray. So the team had Otis takes this data. It takes this suggestion and within three days rolls out a new product. Now, normally it takes them over three months to create a new product. What’s interesting is because Alibaba does so much e-commerce they had partnered customers were able to pre-order this spray before they even started manufacturing. So think of it as like Kickstarter, but without the Kickstarter platform and more than 200,000 bottles of portable sanitizing spray were sold in the first 24 hours,

Dan Gingiss (17:40):
That’s it huh? Just 200,000?

Joey Coleman (17:41):
That’s it! Just a brand new product launch with over 200,000 items sold in the first day, a brand new product that this company had never made before. Do you think that made the folks at Otis had a little bit happy? I imagine it did!

Dan Gingiss (17:54):
Especially with those struggling sales that were no longer. I mean, this is interesting. I would say I’m reminded of the fact that in the early months of the pandemic, there were many companies that started making things that they weren’t normally making because they had the supplies to do that. We talked here about some alcohol companies making hand sanitizer. We know that some car companies were making respirators and all that sort of thing. So let’s talk a little bit more about how this is similar or different.

Joey Coleman (18:24):
Well, I think you’re spot on we’ve we’ve seen other companies do that, but like let’s take example of the alcohol company that made hand sanitizer. They had to go out into the marketplace. First of all, they had to figure out how to do that. They had to create new bottles, new packaging, retool their systems internally, retrain their workers internally to create this. And then they had to go to their alcohol customers and say, Hey, I know you’re used to buying alcohol from us, but maybe you might like to buy hand sanitizer from us. It was a little bit of a leap. If not, a pretty significant leap…

Dan Gingiss (19:00):
Not as tasty for sure.

Joey Coleman (19:01):
Not as tasty a leap. And again, their marketplace that they were selling to was their existing customer base. Now counterbalance that against what Alibaba is doing. They already have everybody on the platform shopping they’re used to coming shopping. And so imagine taking an analogy here instead of the distillery selling sanitizer at their closed down, you know, custom craft brew shop or distillery locations instead, imagine walking into the mall and seeing this you’re expecting to see different types of products. So the reality is the more options that consumers have for where to shop and the more information they have at their fingertips about what to buy, the more these manufacturers are going to need to adapt to the products they’re creating.

Dan Gingiss (19:48):
Well, another example of how deeper connection with customers can lead to new products can be seen in the actions of the global spirits company Bacardi during the pandemic lockdowns Bacardi has hosted live streamed whiskey tastings on Amazon, introduced espresso martini cocktail kits for at-home mixologists, and gain the attention of single malt whiskey influencers with an Aberfeldy scotch dubbed, wait for it. The Loch Down, “loch” L-O-C-H.

Joey Coleman (20:18):
L-O-C-H as in the Scottish lake. I like it. I like it. The Loch Down. My son’s name is Lochlan – I need to put him on lockdown more often. I like this. What I love about these stories in these examples is we’re seeing a lot of companies around the world start to experiment with this, but in China, this is something that’s been going strong for a few years now. Now granted, the marketplace is different. E-commerce is different of the influence is different, but I saw a story about a company in China called Pinduoduo.

Dan Gingiss (20:53):
Time out! Now I’m going to have to interrupt you there. Best company name in the history of Experience This: Pinduoduo?

Joey Coleman (21:02):
Pinduoduo. It’s a pretty good name, right? It’s pretty fun. It’s pretty fun. Pinduoduo. I think I’m saying, hopefully I’m saying that right. The transliteration may not be spot on, but what pin duo duo did is they recognized that high-end robot vacuum cleaners kind of think like a Roomba or something like that, were selling in China for about 3000 Yuan. That’s about $500 us, which made them affordable to many of China’s richest citizens, but out of budget for a lot of their consumers. So they took this data, proving that there was a strong demand and then directly worked with the manufacturer to produce a much cheaper version. And then they shared their after sales data in order to help the manufacturer improve the product. Now, again, what I think is fascinating about this is these are the platforms taking a lead on this behavior. This is not the existing brands, the existing companies. These are the platforms, figuring out a way to use all of this data and all this insight they have by combining the data with AI, to then turn around and develop direct relationships to the manufacturers that they can then loop back around and have a direct relationship back to the consumer.

Dan Gingiss (22:22):
So you’re kind of saying, this is like if Facebook decided to sell staplers?

Joey Coleman (22:27):
Exactly. If they realized that everybody was posting about staplers and everybody was talking about staplers. I mean, it’s a variation on a theme on what Amazon does with Amazon Basics, where Amazon looks and sees which products are selling the best. But this is actually doing a little more of a sophisticated kind of sentiment analysis for some social media platforms and things like that, where they’re actually tracking the trends and the interest level. And then pairing that in. And what I also like, which Pinduoduo is doing is this loop that comes back in after the sale. Because right now a company that let’s say manufacturers, a product they’ve got to have the, as you talk about all the time, Dan, their customer experience listening going on, and they’re kind of listening to voice of the customer and they’re doing surveys, and they’re trying to see what’s being said about their brand on social, but this to me is an entirely different level of the platform providing that data back to the manufacturer. It just seems like a really fast moving change of how it’s going. And while this is certainly popular in China, we haven’t seen it as much in Europe and in the United States yet, but I think it’s just a matter of time.

Dan Gingiss (23:38):
Well, and it is always great to look at other countries to see what’s hot and what’s going on because trends often cross the globe. And we’ve talked about that before with VR (virtual reality) and how I had seen some of it in Japan years ago before I ever saw it in the United States. So I think it’s worthy to look at this and I do think it’s very interesting that almost any company, essentially, if it has an audience and data can work with a manufacturer to become a product creator. And I think that’s the takeaway is that no matter what business you’re in, it doesn’t mean that you have to expand only to ancillary businesses that are related to what you do today, that there might be something out there that using the data that you have, you can come up with something that is not so expected from your company.

Joey Coleman (24:33):
Dan, I totally agree. I think the reality is if we fast forward out, certainly 10 years, maybe five years, every product business should also have a service component to it. And every service business should also have a product component to it. And where I see this convergence with big data, I was listening to a presentation the other day from Peter Diamandis who is the author of the book, Abundance and the book, Bold. He’s also the founder of the X prize. And Peter said there are going to be two types of businesses at the end of this decade, businesses that are AI powered and businesses that are bankrupt. And so I think at the end of the day, the reason we wanted to share this segment is how are you thinking about incorporating AI into your business today? Because I promise you, your competitors are already thinking about this and many of them are already starting to do it.

Joey Coleman (25:33):
Almost everyone has interacted with chatbots, but all too often, it’s been a bad experience. In MythBusters, presented by Solvvy, we explore a common myth about CX chatbots and see how the right technology can create a positive experience, every time.

Joey Coleman (25:57):
It’s myth about chatbots, chatbots have bad analytics and lack insights. You probably think of chatbots as a customer communication tool and rightfully so, and as customer obsessed leaders know there is gold to be mined from customer interactions. Unfortunately, when it comes to capturing analytics and servicing actionable customer insights, most legacy chatbots fall woefully short.

Dan Gingiss (26:25):
Interestingly enough, the past is not the future. The best next gen chatbots include analytics and provide valuable insights into your customers and your support operations. For example, an X gen chat bot includes dashboards that do a lot of the heavy lifting for your team in seconds can see the types and frequency of questions that are being asked by customers and how the volumes are trending over time. You can also see how often your chat bot is successful in resolving different types of questions.

Joey Coleman (26:54):
Now, how does this help? Well, as a support leader the chat bot actually helps you identify customer pain points and prioritize the most impactful customer issues. First, furthermore, next gen chatbots, make it simple to drill down into specific conversations, to get more details about why an issue is occurring. This helps you better determine how to address the issue, whether that’s making changes to your help content or working with product and design teams to make fundamental improvements in your offerings.

Dan Gingiss (27:26):
Like using data and feedback to make improvements to a new lower end robot vacuum cleaner in China?

Joey Coleman (27:31):
Exactly. And that’s another Myth Busted, thanks to our friends and podcast supporters at Solvvy – the Next Gen Chatbot.

Joey Coleman (27:40):
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 (27:56):
I got an interesting little text message the other day, Dan, that I wanted to tell you about… I’m on a call and a text message comes across my phone that says the following: “AMEX Fraud Alert. Did you just attempt a $15 and 23 cent charge on your card? Ending two, three, one, one, one at tropical smoothie cafe reply one, if yes, two to call Amex.” Now this was a little surprising to me. So I finished the call and I checked in with my amazing wife. And the reason I checked in with my wife is because ironically enough, tropical smoothie cafe is a place that we like to order from, from time to time. And I thought that maybe my credit card had been saved on her account or something. And she had placed an order while I was on the phone.

Dan Gingiss (28:42):
And then I assume the next question would be, why didn’t you bring me one?

Joey Coleman (28:46):
But I did look at the amount and I was like, “Oh, this might mean she ordered one for me too.” But we also have two boys and I’m looking at it going, there’s no way we got four smoothies for $15. So this is not seeming to be the right setup. Long story short, she had not placed the order. So what did I do? I texted to back to the thread, I then got a reply that said, please call 1-800, it gave me a long number or the number on the back of your card. Now, as I mentioned, Dan, I was kind of going about my work day when this happened. And while I was concerned about this potential fraud, I was kind of in the middle of juggling, a lot of other things. And so as I was trying to kind of piece a few things together and kind of wrap up a couple other things, so I could make this call, my phone rang and it was the number that I have saved in my phone from Amex. So when I didn’t call within like 15 minutes of texting, they called me. Long story short. We have a long conversation. They say, is there any chance you used your card in Dallas, Texas this morning? I said, no, I did not travel to Dallas just to get Tropical Smoothie, although don’t get me wrong. I would go a long distance to get a Bahama Mama, Tropical Smoothie, moral of the story I did not. And they said, I’m guessing you might not have made these other charges. And lo and behold, someone had put my card information onto a card and they were going all around in Dallas, wiping it, trying to make lots of purchases.

Dan Gingiss (30:14):
You know, I hate when that happens, and coming from the credit card industry, it is a fascinating business, this fraud business, because it is very difficult to siphon out. The fraudsters are not always obvious in their actions. I remember for example, when I was down in Columbia, I was able to run my card at a Colombian coffee shop. But as soon as I spent $20 on some cufflinks at a jewelry store that got declined because basically the combination of jewelry store plus Columbia sent it.

Joey Coleman (30:51):
They were not liking it.

Dan Gingiss (30:53):
No – they didn’t like that. And, uh, but it’s really interesting because that happened to be a false positive or false negative. I don’t know whatever, but it wasn’t,

Joey Coleman (31:00):
You just wanted the cufflinks!

Dan Gingiss (31:04):
But you know, this reminds me also, I had a similar situation recently with another credit card company where I got a fraud alert and it turns out that somebody had set up an account at FedEx in Memphis and was shipping lots of packages using my card. And this was.

Joey Coleman (31:24):
Sorry about that Dan!

Dan Gingiss (31:26):
So this was pretty ingenious because since they had set up the account, it was basically like a recurring payment. And so the credit card company did what they should have, which is they shut down the card and they issued me another card. But a week later I got another fraud alert from FedEx in Memphis. And I’m like, wait a second. But you just changed my number.

Joey Coleman (31:47):
You already disabled this!

Dan Gingiss (31:47):
Yeah, and I just updated like 79 websites with my new number and all that sort of stuff. And so I called a guy and this is where you’re working at a credit card company has some advantages because I said, you know, I think what’s going on here is this is a recurring payment, which means, uh, one of the things that credit card companies have done to help consumers is that if you have fraud on your card and you need a new number, they’ll call, you know, they’ll tell your, your cable company, And your utilities and all that so that you don’t have to go change the number, they do that for you. Well, the problem is when somebody is fraudulent lately signing up for a recurring payment, then they also tell that person…

Joey Coleman (32:29):
FedEx, Hey, guess what? Don’t worry about it. Let the charges roll.

Dan Gingiss (32:32):
Exactly. So I got a third card and that card then had fraud on it. So when I went to the fourth card in less than a month, and I said, look, I’m kind of done with this. I said to them, I know what’s wrong. Please shut off the recurring payment and then issue me a new card. And they did. And it worked now the moral of the story there is you shouldn’t have to work at a credit card company to be able to explain to the credit card company what they need to do to stop this. Uh, but I think where you were going was this texting alert thing is pretty cool. It’s in real time, it’s a great way to very quickly, either verify or deny a charge. I’ve had it happen where I’ve been in a store it’s been declined. And the second after the cashier says, your card is declined. I get the text, I hit. Yes. And then the card goes through and I always feel good about that because it means the credit card company is looking out for me versus feeling embarrassed that my card got declined, but I don’t know maybe others don’t.

Joey Coleman (33:32):
No, I think you’re spot on Dan. And that’s the main reason I wanted to talk about this is the power that comes from anticipating customer headaches. To your point about the FedEx story. No customer has to, wants to, have to call back again and again and again, when something is going wrong, right? Fraud on your credit card is not the usual thing you like to see. It’s a problem. And you start to get worked up about it. You want to solve the problem. They want to solve the problem, et cetera. But what I love about what American Express did here is they anticipated the problem and made me feel like they were doing me a favor by checking in. The reality is in most jurisdictions, there are very specific laws about how much liability you can get when a credit card is fraudulently used. And in most places, it’s usually about $50. You probably know the specific numbers in the specific jurisdictions, but on average, it’s about $50. So the reality is checking in on these fraud charges helps the credit card company more than it helps me. Because my liability is capped at $50. They have to pay all the rest. If these charges get run up in a significant way multiple times, but this idea of making it feel like they’re looking out for me or anticipating my problem makes me feel like they’re doing me a favor when the reality is, they’re kind of doing themselves a favor. So what can we learn from this story? I think where possible we want to be looking at what are the potential headaches that a customer has from using our product naturally? It’s natural that I would go to tropical smoothie and swipe my credit card and use it. So what are the consequences of that potentially while someone might get my credit card and use it fraudulently, what can they do anticipate the problem that I’m going to have and jump ahead to solve it. So how much of your time, fellow listeners of the Experience This Show, are you spending anticipating the problems that your customers might have in order to deliver a remarkable experience and remove that problem before they’re even aware of it?

Joey Coleman (35:43):
Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This! You are the best listener ever!

Dan Gingiss (35:54):
And since you listened to the whole show,

Joey Coleman (35:56):
Yay you!

Dan Gingiss (35:57):
We’re curious – was there a specific part of this episode that you enjoyed the most? If so, it would mean the world to us if you could share it with a coworker, a friend, or someone that just loves listening to podcasts.

Joey Coleman (36:08):
And while you’re in the sharing mood, if you felt inclined to jump over to iTunes, or wherever you find your podcasts and write us a review, we would so appreciate it. And when you do, don’t forget to let us know as we might have a little surprise for you.

Dan Gingiss (36:23):
Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more

Joey Coleman (36:26):
Experience!

Dan Gingiss (36:28):
This!

Episode 125 – An Experience to Remember

Join us as we discuss getting people to come to court, when the custom clothing experience just doesn’t measure up, and a remarkable birthday celebration at a car dealership.

Summons, Suits, and Surprises – Oh My!

Referenced in the Show

• “Behavioral Nudges Reduce Failure to Appear for Court” – by Alissa Fishbane, Aurelie Ouss, and Anuj K. Shah in Science magazine

image courtesy of Shimkat Motors
image courtesy of K.C. Coleman
image courtesy of K.C. Coleman

• Shimkat Motors – Fort Dodge, Iowa

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

Learn more about our Season 7 Partner – Solvvy – The NextGen Chatbot

Episode Transcript

Download an unedited transcript of Episode 125 here or read it below:

Joey Coleman (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (00:08):
The podcast that celebrates remarkable customer experiences and inspires you to stand out from the competition by wowing your customers.

Joey Coleman (00:17):
Each episode, we bring you a healthy dose of inspiring stories, funny interactions, and practical takeaways. Marketing and customer experience thought leader, Dan Gingiss…

Dan Gingiss (00:30):
shares the mic with customer retention and employee experience expert, Joey Coleman, helping you to get people talking about your business.

Joey Coleman (00:40):
So get ready because it’s time to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:49):
Get ready for another episode of the Experience This! Show!

Dan Gingiss (00:53):
Join us as we discuss: getting people to come to court, when the custom clothing experience just doesn’t measure up, and a remarkable birthday celebration at a car dealership.

Joey Coleman (01:07):
Summons, Suits, and Surprises – Oh my!

Joey Coleman (01:15):
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,

Joey Coleman (01:33):
Have you ever been summoned to go to court, Dan?

Dan Gingiss (01:37):
Wow! What a way to start off a conversation.

Joey Coleman (01:41):
I’m leading into the episode strong.

Dan Gingiss (01:43):
Yeah. And I’m not so sure I should answer that question. Do I need a lawyer?

Joey Coleman (01:47):
Well, fair enough. Fair enough. But as most of our listeners know earlier in my career, I was a criminal defense lawyer, which is why I was very intrigued when I came across an article in Science magazine that will serve as our CX press article in this episode. The article was titled “Behavioral Nudges Reduce Failure to Appear for Court,” and the introduction explained the situation quite well so I quote, “[e]ach year, millions of people in the United States are required to appear in court for low-level offenses. Many defendants miss their court dates. Criminal justice policy often uses punitive sanctions to deter these failures to appear. For example, when defendants fail to appear, arrest warrants are issued, which draws defendants further into the criminal justice system. These policies presumed that defendants pay attention to those penalties and weigh them. When deciding whether to appear in court. In this study, we explore a different possibility for why defendants might miss court: simple human error. Although defendants are given all of the relevant information they need, they might be insufficiently aware of the information, it not be salient enough, or the defendants might forget it.”

Dan Gingiss (03:03):
In other words, they might be human?

Joey Coleman (03:06):
Exactly! A misnomer in the criminal justice system, I think for a lot of folks outside of the criminal justice system, who kind of presume that if you’re supposed to be in court, you must have some level of guilt, which of course is not at all the way it works – at least here in the United States. What I thought was interesting about this article, Dan is it described two large scale field studies conducted in New York city. And these studies explored ways to make defendants more aware of their court information. Now in the first study, the team redesigned the summons form that defendants receive for low level offenses to start with the old summons was labeled “Complaint Information. The People of the State of New York versus.” The new summons is labeled “Criminal Court Appearance Ticket.”

Dan Gingiss (03:54):
Yeah, that’s a little clearer!

Joey Coleman (03:56):
A little clear, a little less legalese. It’s pretty obvious what we’re dealing with here.

Dan Gingiss (04:03):
It’s just a little bit shy of get your “beep” to court.

Joey Coleman (04:07):
Let’s just say it’s right on the edge there. It’s pretty straightforward. The old summons had the court information far down the page and listed the date of the required appearance, and the location of the required appearance, in two different places on the complaint. The new summons moves the court date, the time and the court location to the top of the page, right underneath the defendant’s name – so it’s literally the first thing they see on the page after seeing their own name. And finally the old summons made passing reference to the consequences of failing, to appear for the court date, whereas the new and improved summons clearly States in bold typeface on the front of the form that missing the assigned court date will lead to a warrant being issued for your arrest.

Dan Gingiss (04:52):
You know, I can’t help, but think about the discussions we’ve had on this show about user experience, which of course is generally considered a digital term because it talks about the ability to navigate a website for example, or find what you’re looking for. But user experience can be everywhere. It can be in physical products and certainly it can be in a court summons. And I think that’s what they’ve done here is they’ve basically taken the most pertinent information and put it up front and made it clearer. They’ve boldfaced things that they want you to pay attention to. And they’ve used language that is simpler to understand, and those are all user experience things. So I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that this study resulted in more people showing up to their court appearances.

Joey Coleman (05:39):
Well, Dan, you may not have spent a lot of time in the criminal justice system. Good on you. Good law abiding citizen! But your instincts about the human condition are spot on. And they were proved out once again, in the criminal court system in New York, the result of using the new summons was pretty impressive as failure to appear. Rates went from 47% down to 40%. Now this 7% reduction avoided 23,000 warrants from being issued.

Dan Gingiss (06:13):
Wow. And if this were a business, you would start to calculate what’s the cost of issuing 23,000 warrants, and sending them out, and having the police follow up on them, and scheduling a new court date, and everybody’s time and all that sort of stuff. It must be substantial in terms of what the city was able to save from eliminating that many warrants, not to mention that people don’t really like it when they have a warrant out for their arrest. And if all you had to do is show up for, um, uh, what seems like a minor offense, it seems like it also provided a better experience if you will.

Joey Coleman (06:49):
Well, it provides a better experience. I think for everyone, for a couple of reasons, number one, this is keep in mind friends. This is a low level offense, these aren’t major crimes. Okay. So the fact of the matter is we don’t need to escalate to a warrant being issued for someone’s arrest. And in fact, we’ll talk about this later in the segment, but lots of times people miss their court date for really common reasons, but there’s this presumption that it’s nefarious because it’s criminal. So not only have we created a scenario where when they do come to court, everyone’s presuming that they must be bad because they didn’t come when they were supposed to. And we had to issue a warrant for their arrest, but imagine what it feels like to be the defendant and to be showing up in court in response to a warrant for your arrest and having a summons. And now you have two issues to deal with the original issue that the complaint was for, and on top of it, a warrant for your arrest for failure to comply with the complaint. So it gets pretty messy, pretty fast. But as if the results of this first study, weren’t impressive enough in a second companion study, the design team, augmented the form by sending text messages to highlight critical information in the week, leading up to the scheduled court appearance. So anyone who is willing to provide their cell phone number would receive a text message a few days before reminding them of the date and the time and the location of their appearance. And then another one the day before and defendants who didn’t receive text messages, fail to appear about 37.9% of the time in the study with text messages, those numbers dropped to 29% resulting in over 7,800 warrants being avoided on top of the ones that were already avoided by failure to appear because they didn’t know where there was supposed to go. So between the two impacts, we see double digit reduction in the number of warrants being issued and the number of people who are actually showing up as they were supposed to.

Dan Gingiss (08:53):
Well, it let’s back up a second here because you kind of glossed over something that I thought was pretty interesting in the studies. The city hired a design firm to design these letters, right? And that seems like a small thing. And yet look at what happened by focusing on, again, the user experience, all of the clarity of the letter or of the, of the text messages, but you wouldn’t necessarily think that a design firm would be needed for something like this. And I want to have, I want to challenge our listeners to think about places in your business, where maybe you do need a new set of eyes and you need somebody with some communication skills or different communication skills to come in and redesign. I don’t know, a welcome letter, an offer letter, a contract, something that may be causing confusion in your business, that, with simpler language highlighting the right things may eliminate that confusion.

Joey Coleman (09:52):
I couldn’t agree more Dan in your you’re absolutely right to be candid. I’m not exactly sure whether it was that they hired the design firm or the design firm was working with the scientists who were conducting the study, so I’m not exactly sure there, but what we do know is there were design elements that were enhanced in the printed summons form and improved on. And then they added the technological piece of the text messages, and then they ran a controlled science experiment to see what would happen. So this was not just a, Hey, this might be interesting to see what happens. No, there was actual data here. And what’s also fascinating is the impact it had in terms of people’s thought process. And I alluded to this earlier, but in some associated laboratory experiments, they ran at the same time that they were doing the tests – now, mind you, they did these in the lab, these weren’t with people that were actually receiving the summons – they kind of brought in groups to study their reactions. The researchers examined a lay persons and an experts belief about whether failures to appear were intentional or not. So they lifted a variety of lay people, a variety of experts from the criminal justice system and asked if somebody doesn’t show up for court when they’re supposed to, is that intentional or not? What was interesting is that study participants believed that failure to comply in criminal situations was more intentional and less accidental than in other domains, like missing a doctor’s appointment. If somebody was an expert, if they operated in the criminal justice system, they actually had better understanding that mistakes happen and that sometimes people just don’t show up. So what was fascinating is the lay people were actually harsher on the criminals or the alleged criminals in this case, then the actual people who worked in the criminal justice systems and the final findings showed that the people who saw the new forms were able to identify the court information more quickly and recalled it more accurately when asked about it later, which suggests that a meaningful portion of the defendants who fail to appear aren’t intentionally skipping court, but it’s really that they’re just unaware of the requirement to be in court.

Dan Gingiss (12:03):
Yeah. And this gets to the fundamental, I guess, argument in business that we think our customers know all that we know about our products and services, and yet we live and breathe them every day. So we are of course the experts in them and our customers often don’t have all that information. And that’s why self-service has become such a popular thing. The fact that we even have to self-serve sometimes is frustrating. But heck when we do, we want to be able to find information, don’t assume that your customers know everything about your business, how it operates, what you want them to do, how you want them to do it, and when you want them to do it. And I think that’s what the court system figured out was that just because it all made sense to us, does it mean that it made sense to in this case, the most important person, which is the person that we’re requiring to show up?

Joey Coleman (12:55):
Absolutely. You know, what can we take away from this? We recognize friends that the majority of you are not involved in the criminal justice system, but in almost every business on the planet, there are behaviors that your customers are doing that you’re not happy about. They’re not showing up. They’re not completing forms fully. They’re not putting the right signature. They’re not giving the data that you need so that you can continue to deliver on the service. They’re not doing these things that you think are pretty basic. We have a tendency as humans to presume that that’s because the other person is just not complying or they’re not respecting us, or they’re affirmatively deciding to go against our wishes or they’re not smart, or they’re not smart when the reality is it may be our fault. We may not have expressly stated what needed to be happened. We may have not presented it in a way that was clearly understood to your point earlier, Dan, which I absolutely loved. It’s time to look at the aspects of your business, where you’re not getting the level of customer compliance and participation that you want and ask, could we design the experience to be better? And as a result, get a better experience for our customer.

Joey Coleman (14:13):
You listened to us, nNow 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.

Joey Coleman (14:29):
Congrats are in order, Dan. But I think I should let you share the big news instead of me sharing the big news here.

Dan Gingiss (14:38):
Oh, thanks buddy. I really appreciate it. Well, uh, on February 14th Valentine’s day, I got engaged and I’m super excited to have, uh, found the love of my life. And, uh, our listeners, our astute listeners may know that, uh, this is my second time around, but that’s just because we had to, we had to practice first to get it right. And, and now, now we’re going to get it right this time. So super excited.

Joey Coleman (15:03):
I love it. I love it. So excited for you, Dan, so excited for your lovely bride to be. She has definitely found a fantastic guy and in the spirit of joyous celebration, but with a tinge of a cautionary tale, as you begin to think about what has preparations, I have a little story. One of our loyal listeners, Cody Wales is the Manager of Consumer Experience Design at Advent Health. And he had a frustrating experience recently, as you prepared for his wedding. And he reached out to tell us about it, here is Cody sharing what happened:

Cody Wales (15:40):
So I have a customer service failure that I wanted to share. Uh, recently I went to a made to measure suit and dress clothes company for my wedding for to get suits from myself and my groomsmen. Uh, we drove down to Miami, which was a three plus hour drive, to their showroom so that we could have their tailors and their team measure us to reduce the probability of any miss measurements. It was a great in-store experience, but then when it came time for the suits to arrive and for us to try them on, we found that my, one of my groomsmen’s sleeves were four inches, too small. So immediately I reached out to the customer service team and they said, yep, we’ll make a remake, you know, shipped by this day and three to five day shipping. It’ll be there in plenty of time. That time goes by and I’m following up multiple times, haven’t heard back and suddenly they reach out and say, we’re sorry, it’s not going to ship until the day before the wedding. Obviously this is a huge issue. And they said, yep, sorry. And that’s it. I got ” we’re sincerely sorry,” via email. Uh, nothing else still working on resolving the issue, but what a failure of making it right. They could have gone above and beyond for such an emotionally important event and made me a customer for life. But now it’s the opposites opposite experience that I’m telling everyone not to use the service because they let me down on my big day.

Dan Gingiss (17:09):
Well, obviously Cody didn’t go to Gingiss formal wear. That was the first problem. I love it. You noticed? No, it was not the family formal wear business. No, I know it wasn’t cause it isn’t there anymore. So I can say that with some confidence, but man, I, that, you know, that definitely sounds annoying. And I know my dad who was, is definitely listening now would say that one of the biggest challenges in this industry is that you really only have one chance to get it right, because the wedding or the graduation or the prom or whatever it is, the big day happens once. And if you screw up the clothes for the other, for the customer, you don’t get a second chance. And so it has to be perfect. And in this case, it seems like it was far from it.

Joey Coleman (17:57):
Absolutely. And you know, weddings are high stress as is. And to your point, they’re operating on a fixed deadline. So if you operate in any business, forget the wedding industry, any business that is high stress with a fixed deadline, you must be ready for last minute resolutions and realize that missing the deadline is just not an option. You know, sometimes you’re in a business where, you know, if, for example, if I’m ordering a book online and the book arrives two weeks from now, as opposed to two days from now, it may be annoying, but it’s probably not a major crisis unless I needed to read that book and write a book report on it, or unless I was, you know, doing a podcast about the book and needed to read the book before we had the conversation. But again, if you’re in this business or you can envision scenarios where your customers might be in high stress, fixed deadline scenarios, you’ve got to be ready for the last minute craziness.

Dan Gingiss (18:56):
Yeah, for sure. And I think what’s also interesting here is that Cody had a couple of choices. He could have measured himself and his groomsmen and submitted the results online, which is convenient, but understandably, maybe a little nerve wracking that you might not know how to do it correctly. You might mess it up. So he drove those three hours to the company’s show room and said he had a great experience doing that. But if the customer goes out of their way to reduce the chances of error, that it would seem to me that the company should go out of their way to, uh, reduce the chances of error or at least to resolve things when an error happens. And obviously one of the other challenges here is that he couldn’t call customer service. There was only online options and those online options weren’t helpful. And I think about, uh, when people ask me how available they should be on social media, do they have to, you know, be around 24/7 to answer customer comments and complaints and I always say, it depends on what business you’re in, right? If you’re an international airline. Yeah. You bet you’re going to have to be there 24 seven. If you’re a mom and pop grocery store, no, you don’t have to, you can be there during business hours. But man, if you’re a company that provides people with clothing for their wedding at, which is a high stress and time sensitive situation, and you’re not there to answer their questions or to provide customer service, you’re not going to keep customers very long. And I do want to point out that at the end of Cody’s recording, he talks about how he’s telling everyone not to use this service. Right? And, and, and the reverse could have been true. He could have been talking about how great it was and how they have a customer for life. But instead he is telling people not to. And this is, this is the difference folks. This is the difference between having a happy customer who tells other people and creates more customers for you or having a disgruntled customer who tells other people and keeps new customers from coming to you. It seems like a simple choice.

Joey Coleman (21:00):
It’s it does seem like a simple choice, Dan, but you know, we wouldn’t have careers and a show. If everybody got this and behaved accordingly, right? This, the fact that things are going to go wrong is not what we’re trying to prevent, because things will always go wrong. There’s always the chance that something is outside of your control or mistakes happen, or situations arise that create scenarios that we’re not happy about, or that our customers aren’t happy about. But how we respond to those scenarios is what changes the story. And in fact, you can actually hear it in Cody’s recording. You know, he, when the suit arrives and the, it doesn’t fit, it’s like, Oh, okay. I reached out right away to let them know so that hopefully we could get things taken care of. And they’re like, Oh yeah, we’ll get to work on that right away. Up until that point in the story, if they actually delivered, Cody would probably be singing their praises. And would, even though there had been the misfire in the mistake, you would probably be like, you know, it didn’t go as well as I would have wanted on the first try, but man, they hustled and they got it done. And we were able to still pull off the wedding with no problems. The issue. I think if we really listened to the story that he shares, is that he didn’t feel that there was a proper level of empathy or apology for what happened. And I think the secret here is you need to quickly evaluate the significance of the problem when something comes up for your customers. And it’s not about how bad you think it is as the provider is the business. It’s about how bad the customer thinks the situation is. And if you are going to fail, you got to make sure that the apology is both sincere and significant.

Dan Gingiss (22:39):
Absolutely. I mean, I would have liked to see this company drive those same three hours from the showroom to the wedding location to deliver the suit, rather than putting it in the mail and depending on some shipping service to get it there on time as well! So there are things that you can do. And again, you know, you want to avoid the problem in the first place, but if you have a problem, how you react is going to go a long way to determining what customers do next and who they tell about it.

Joey Coleman (23:07):
Now, as you’ll notice, we didn’t mention the name of the made to measure suit company during this segment, because we have a policy here on experience, this of avoiding any brand shaming for bad experiences, but guess what? Customers don’t have that same policy when something goes wrong, they do name names and they are happily telling everyone they know not to do business with you because of the result of their bad experience. Now, if you want to make sure that customers are singing your praises, you need to make sure that you have systems and processes in place to make sure that when things do go wrong, like they did with Cody sued, you do everything to make it right. And speaking of spreading the word about remarkable customer experiences, if you’ve got an amazing customer story to share, or even a story of an interaction gone bad, we’d love to hear about it. Just visit the Contact Page at ExperienceThisShow.com and you’ll be able to leave us a voice recording and share your story. We’re excited to hear about your experiences and hope you’ll make the time to share for our next listener story.

Joey Coleman (24:11):
Almost everyone has interacted with chatbots, but all too often, it’s been a bad experience. In MythBusters – presented by Solvvy – we explore a common myth about CX chatbots and see how the right technology can create a positive experience, every time.

Joey Coleman (24:35):
Today’s myth about chatbots? It’s hard to measure the ROI of a chat bot. You might be thinking about adding a chat bot and automation tool to your website or your app, but it might not be a hundred percent sure about making the business case for adding this type of technology. Perhaps you’re concerned that proving the return on investment will be too difficult.

Dan Gingiss (24:57):
But the fact of the matter is it’s very easy to both measure and report on the value you get from a next gen customer support chat bot. The easiest way to make the case is by looking at how many customer questions, a chat bot resolves all on its own versus how many questions need to be resolved by contacting your customer care agents. Each instant resolution equals time and cost savings for your team. Often measured internally as cost per ticket or a similar metric add up instant resolutions and you can see how many tickets aren’t being created and how much agent time you’re saving straightforward.

Joey Coleman (25:32):
That’s simple ROI math to me, Dan! But you don’t even have to do the math next gen chatbots come equipped with intelligent dashboards that very quickly give you this information and tons more right out of the box. So it couldn’t be easier to explain and demonstrate the savings you’re getting immediately. Now there are other benefits to chat bots of course. Customers will love getting their answers quickly. Agents will love not having to field simple, repetitive questions all day. And when something goes wrong, like I don’t know a wedding suit that doesn’t fit properly. Your chat bot can make sure to properly escalate things, saving you time, money, and your reputation. The ROI for adopting better next gen chat bots and automation tools is easy to calculate once you project and then quickly prove the huge savings you’re getting.

Dan Gingiss (26:20):
And that’s another Myth Busted thanks to our friends at Solvvy – the Next Gen chatbot.

Joey Coleman (26:28):
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 (26:42):
One of the best things about my recent move to Iowa with my family is that I’m getting to spend more time with my nieces and nephews. And recently my wonderful niece, Charlotte, had a memorable sixth birthday experience. Now my brother, KC, who is Charlotte’s dad, explained what happened in a post that he wrote about on Facebook. And I’m going to quote his post and then kind of interject as we go to explain some of the things for our listeners.

Joey Coleman (27:10):
“Over the course of the last year, our family outings have been rather limited due to COVID. That being said, riding to town is frequently a highlight for our cabin fever country kids. Charlotte would consistently get excited as we drove past Shikmat Motor Company, and would profusely express her need to drive over the new Stonewall display at the corner of their dealership.” Now friends and listeners, I need to interject here to explain this wall to people who don’t live in my local community here in Iowa. At Shikmat Motors, they recently installed a large rock wall display. (You can see pictures in the shownotes at ExperienceThisShow.com). But when I say large, I mean five to six feet tall, 10 to 12 feet wide, and about 80 to a hundred feet long made of stone. Now the wall actually has a ramp running along the top so that the folks at Shikmat can drive cars up the ramp and then park them on the wall for a nice display. Well, let me get back to the story my brother KC is telling. “Charlotte wanted to do this so badly that she asked every time we drove past and may or may not have suggested that we quote “sneak in at night when they’re all sleeping to drive over the wall.” This is Joey. Again, to be clear as my niece’s official legal representation, we do not admit to that allegation. Okay. Sorry. Back to the story once more. “On Friday, Charlotte got her chance as she turned six years old and the team at Shikmat made her birthday extra special. Not only did they let her drive the Shikmat golf cart over the wall, but they also greeted her at the door with a happy birthday and a logoed Jeep duffel bag filled with balloons and car themed presents waiting for her. Our family was so impressed by the team and their willingness to make our little girl’s day. We can’t thank them enough for a memory that will last forever. This was such a simple but special win, and it is utterly refreshing to see a business go out of their way to do something so selfless. If you are thinking about a new vehicle, the team at Shikmat is truly amazing and they’re more than willing to do whatever it takes to provide a great “future” customer experience. Happy birthday to our sweet little girl and thank you Shikmat Motor Company for making her birthday wish come true.

Dan Gingiss (29:27):
All right, now I have to ask Shikmat Motor Company know about uncle Joey?!

Joey Coleman (29:34):
They don’t that it’s the crazy thing about this. They do not know anything about me. They do not know any of the things. Let me give a little more background story. So this literally I’ve heard about this for months. My niece is constantly talking about this, but I didn’t know what my brother had done. So one day he’s driving by and he’s like, you know what? I’m just going to go in and see if I can make something happen. So he drives in, in his Ford pickup, to a dealership that sells Dodge, Ram, Chrysler, and Jeep brands. And he asked the salesman, Hey, would it be possible to arrange somehow for me to be able to drive over the wall with my daughter for her sixth birthday, right? I mean total craziness, but the salesman says, you know, that’s totally fine with me, but I should probably check with a manager. This salesperson was willing to go the extra distance to ask to advocate and guess what they said, yes.

Dan Gingiss (30:41):
I think that’s amazing. And I’m sure that Charlotte, and KC, and you will never forget that experience, which is awesome. And again, we mentioned this in a previous segment. I want to point out that your brother ended his post by saying, if you’re thinking about a new vehicle, let me recommend the folks at Shikmat, even though he’s not a customer.

Joey Coleman (31:03):
He’s not a customer, but I will tell you, what’s interesting. I asked him about that that night. I said when, when they taught week, cause she came over for a birthday and of course my niece was raving about you just driven the wall at Shikmat and had this amazing experience. And I asked him and he said, you know, when we buy our next car, that’s where we’re going. Like it literally changed their purchase decision. And as you know, Dan cars, not the cheapest investment, like this is a major impact in terms of the bottom line at Shikmat, because not only will my brother buy his next vehicle there, but I gotta tell you, I’m sitting here thinking when it’s time for me to buy a vehicle, I want to go there as well, as does my family as does a lot of people in our community that are hearing this story.

Dan Gingiss (31:47):
Absolutely. And that’s why, whatever it costs them to do this, it was worth it. Now I do know that you’re the recovering lawyer on the show, but I, I got to say, I was a little bit worried about maybe the insurance implications of this.

Joey Coleman (32:01):
You know, Dan, you are not a lawyer, but you could play one on TV with that type of question. I love it.

Dan Gingiss (32:05):
Or at least on a podcast!

Joey Coleman (32:05):
At least on a podcast. So for insurance reasons, they couldn’t have my brother, or a six-year-old for that matter, drive my brother’s truck or one of the showroom models over the wall. But the team at Shikmat got creative and what they could allow was them to drive the golf cart that they have on site to like try people around the dealership. So it allowed them to avoid any insurance concerns. And my six year old niece, Charlotte got to sit on my brother’s lap and actually steer so she was quote unquote the one actually “driving” the golf cart over the wall.

Dan Gingiss (32:44):
Well, that’s fantastic. And I can tell you as a parent of two teenagers, golf carts are very, very appealing to kids. Like the coolest thing ever. I’ve actually been asked. No joke. When I was asking my 15 year old son, what he wanted for his birthday, he said, can I get it golf cart? And I was like, what are you going to do with that? So I love it. Yeah, clearly is a lot of fun. And I think it’s such a great story. I love that they added the, the Jeep swag. I think that made it more special. So she had something to take home. And like I said, this is an experience she’ll never forget. And it doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with selling Jeep vehicles. Although as you noted it eventually will connect to selling Jeep vehicles.

Joey Coleman (33:33):
It absolutely will. And here’s the interesting thing. Not only did the folks at Shikmat not know that I had a customer experience podcast, but they didn’t ask my brother to tell this story now, to be clear prior to him posting about it on Facebook. And prior to us recording the show, he asked them, is it okay if I promote this and tell this story? And they were like, yeah, we’d love that. But you don’t have to. Here’s where it gets really interesting. So since the birthday surprise happened, my brother of course has shared it in dozens of conversations. And so have I, and now of course, we’re talking about it on the podcast. So tens of thousands of people all around the world, they’re going to be listening to it. He also did a Facebook post that within 48 hours had received 245 likes and over 40 comments, which is pretty amazing engagement. But what really caught my attention is over 20 people shared the post and these are people that live in the community. Now I’m not going to call out Shikmator any other type of auto dealership, but let me tell you, I’ve spent enough time on auto dealers websites to know that it’s pretty rare that they do a post on Facebook that gets 245 likes over 40 comments and 20 shares. So the moral of the story here is when your customers are raving about you, that’s marketing, you can’t buy, but you can generate that kind of marketing when you’re willing to do things that are unique and unexpected.

Dan Gingiss (35:03):
Absolutely! Creating positive experiences gets people to share. We know because we’ve shared the shared the research here on the show that people are more willing to share positive experiences than negative ones. It’s just that we don’t have enough positive ones to share. And so when we actually have a positive experience, we want to tell people about it. I’ve done this survey tons of times to audiences. When I’m doing a keynote speech, I’ll ask the audience, raise your hand. If you remember the last time you were wowed by a brand and you couldn’t wait, tell people about it. And two, three, maybe four hands go up. And then I say, now raise your hand. If you remember the last time you were disappointed by a brand, every hand in the audience goes up. I mean, and that’s why I do it right? Cause it works every single time. We don’t have enough positive experiences to share, which is why, if you’re listening to the show, one of the tens of thousands that you referenced, creating positive experiences can become your best marketing because when other people are talking about how great you are, it sounds better. It’s more credible. It’s more genuine. If I say that, Joey is a fantastic keynote speaker. That sounds a lot better than Joey saying that Joey is a fantastic keynote speaker, right? And I know he is because I’ve seen him speak. So that’s more credible. And you know, I’ve never heard of this car dealership before, but I can tell you the next time I’m driving through Iowa, I’m going to determine if I need a car right then and there. Cause I want to go see these guys just because of a story that you’ve now shared.

Joey Coleman (36:36):
I love it, Dan. So what can we all learn from this story? Even those of us that aren’t involved with a car dealership? Other than my little brother, KC, who is clearly a rock star dad… when you go above and beyond to create remarkable experiences, people want to talk about it. I have to imagine that the team at Shikmat Motors in little old Fort Dodge, Iowa never expected a prospective six year old customer would want to drive over their new stone wall. But when they realized they could make a birthday celebration, that won’t soon be forgotten, they leapt at the chance. Now I’m guessing that’s why they’ve been in business for 70 years now, and will probably be in business for at least another seventy years.

Joey Coleman (37:16):
Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This! You’re the best listener ever.

Dan Gingiss (37:28):
And since you listened to the whole show…

Joey Coleman (37:29):
Yay you!

Dan Gingiss (37:31):
Were curious, was there a specific part of this episode that you enjoyed the most? If so, it would mean the world to us if you could share it with a coworker, a friend, or someone that just loves listening to podcasts.

Joey Coleman (37:41):
And while you’re in the sharing mood, if you felt inclined to jump over to iTunes, or wherever you find your podcasts, and write us a review, we would so appreciate it. And when you do, don’t forget to let us know as we might have a little surprise for you.

Dan Gingiss (37:57):
Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more,

Joey Coleman (38:00):
Experience

Dan Gingiss (38:00):
This!

Episode 123 – Precision Produces Enhanced Experiences

Join us as we discuss an advertisement with extra special details, cutting edge research on the power of online reviews, and a creative way to get customers to follow your directions.

Skiing, Reviewing, and Cooking – Oh My!

Referenced in the Show

Check out the ad Joey saw from Stellar Equipment that showed the model’s name and size!

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

Learn more about our Season 7 Partner – Solvvy – The NextGen Chatbot

Episode Transcript

Download an unedited transcript of Episode 123 here or read it below:

Joey Coleman (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (00:07):
The podcast that celebrates remarkable customer experiences and inspires you to stand out from the competition by wowing your customers.

Joey Coleman (00:17):
Each episode, we bring you a healthy dose of inspiring stories, funny interactions, and practical takeaways. Marketing and customer experience thought leader, Dan Gingiss…

Dan Gingiss (00:30):
shares the mic with customer retention and employee experience expert, Joey Coleman, helping you to get people talking about your business.

Joey Coleman (00:40):
So get ready because it’s time to Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (00:49):
Get ready for another episode of the Experience This Show!

Dan Gingiss (00:54):
Join us as we discuss: an advertisement with extra special details, cutting edge research on the power of online reviews, and a creative way to get customers to follow your directions.

Joey Coleman (01:07):
Skiing, Reviewing, and Cooking… Oh my!

Joey Coleman (01:14):
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!

Joey Coleman (01:34):
I have a question for you, Dan… When is the last time that you saw an advertisement and thought, “now, I haven’t seen that before!”

Dan Gingiss (01:41):
It’s probably like every time my 13 year old daughter finds something like the perfect pineapple corer or the avocado saver, or…

Joey Coleman (01:53):
Those slicers are lovely savers – a separate conversation.

Dan Gingiss (01:56):
Those items that only work for one thing…

Joey Coleman (01:59):
Fair enough, yeah, fair enough. I appreciate that. Well, I had an experience the other day where I got an email with an ad for something that in some ways I’d never seen before, but I had wished that I had seen many, many times, but first of all, before I explain the ad, let me give you a little backstory. So about two years ago, I stumbled across an ad on Facebook for a company called Stellar Equipment. Stellar creates high performance outdoor equipment using the best materials and factories in the world. Their specialty is ski wear jackets, pants, shells, layers. They offer entire technical outerwear systems (that’s their words – or ski outfits like you and I might say) that allow for optimal performance on the mountain while staying warm and looking good. Now they sell online and in two showrooms, one in Sweden and one in Switzerland now to be clear, Dan, I am not an amazing skier by any stretch of the imagination, but I do enjoy it. And after a decade or so of using my old ski pants and jacket, I thought it was time to invest in some upgraded ski wear. So in early 2020, about a year ago, I decided to purchase their signature system. And as a result, I started receiving their e-newsletter, which brings me to the advertisement that I referenced earlier. So if you go to our show notes page had ExperiencedThisShow.com you can see the images I’m about to describe, and we’ll include a link to the stellar website as well. So stellar sent this ad, announcing their new padded pants and shirts. This is basically a mid-layer, which is a fancy way of saying it goes over your long underwear and under your ski jacket, right? A mid-layer. And they describe the outfit as follows quote, “Using dermisaxNX from Japanese innovators Toray, this three layer shell is lightweight and stretchable while completely waterproof, completely windproof, and extremely breathable. In fact, you’ll have a hard time finding any shell material that can compete with its comfort and performance.

Dan Gingiss (04:00):
Joey windproof and breathable sounds sexy, right?

Joey Coleman (04:04):
So fun.

Dan Gingiss (04:05):
Well, it sounds pretty cool, but uh, why exactly did this ad stand out so much?

Joey Coleman (04:11):
Well, the ad stood out, not because of the copy, which was great, but because of the picture accompanying the copy now in the photograph, it showed a male model standing in a ski lodge, wearing the padded shirt and pants that were being advertised. But here’s where it got interesting super-imposed on the image was the following message. Cody is 184 centimeters and 78 kilograms or six foot one and 172 pounds wearing size L. In all my years, Dan of looking at ads where models were wearing clothing. I had never seen an ad calling the model by name and sharing their height and weight. So when I was looking at it, I could say, huh, he’s six one, I’m six, two. He weighs 172 pounds. I weigh a little more than 172 pounds. I would probably want size large. And I didn’t have to look at a sizing chart. I didn’t have to order both sizes and have them both shipped here and try and both on and decide which one fit and, you know, do the customer convenient, but environmentally unconvenient, send one back. I knew from the ad exactly what I was supposed to order if I wanted to order these clothes. So

Dan Gingiss (05:29):
I think that’s really neat. I also like the personalization of knowing his name, that it’s a real person. I think that was kind of clever. Now I want to ask you and, uh, and, and folks joy doesn’t know I’m going to ask him this question, but was your response so positive because he was so close to your size? Or, I mean, what if he was five foot, six and 320 pounds? Would you have been like, Ooh, so cool that they shared his height and weight or was it just that it happened to be close you?

Joey Coleman (05:58):
That’s a great question that I hate. I’m not exactly sure. I think it was relevant and not relevant. Here’s what I mean by that on one hand, I’m in that unique spot, especially when you think about European sizing where like in America, often I end up sizing towards the large size, maybe the extra large size that usually is height dependent in Europe though. It’s kind of a weird thing because as a general rule, Europeans maybe skew different sizes and shapes then most folks from the United States. So given that it’s a European country, I appreciated not only that they broke down and did me the courtesy of giving it to us in English instead of just in metric. But the fact that I could look at it and go six one six, two, Oh, that’s pretty close, large. I can see that, you know, there’s a little bit of extra length in the leg. That’ll probably be fine with another inch. So I think it was really useful that he was my size. What was interesting though, is if you go to the website, they also have a picture of a female model wearing their women’s version. And that version identifies the model as Emma being 169 centimeters and 56 kilograms or five foot seven, 123 pounds wearing size S – small. So again, they’re giving you some guidance visually in terms of the body shape and answering questions about the product fit that I think is going to help a prospective buyer realize not only how the outfit might look on them, which I think is lots of times what we think of when we look at a model, but also what’s it going to drape like, what’s it going to fit like?

Dan Gingiss (07:34):
Yeah, I think it’s really interesting and if I, if I could make a suggestion of even sort of where you would take it next would be to have the customer, have the ability to put in their own height and weight and to adjust the so-called model. Hey, maybe we’ll get little, Lil Miquela to be our model.

Joey Coleman (07:51):
I love that. Shout out to a previous episode, Dan love it.

Dan Gingiss (07:55):
Uh, but we could, you know, you basically, you could see a real live model that was your shape, shape and size because I think it’s great. I think it even, you know, I’m thinking to myself, okay, I’m not anywhere near six one. And so I think I probably could tell from looking at this guy that I would be a medium, but am I sure. And so I think it would be fascinating to be able to just put in your, you know, your own height and weight and get the picture or the model. But I think this is a really interesting start and I, I think it’s, I’m glad you called it out. I think it’s cool.

Joey Coleman (08:28):
Yeah. I’m excited. Cause I felt like it was a step in the right direction. I can not think of an ad that I have ever seen that called the model by name or gave their height and weight. Now sometimes you can look at it and you can make a guess, but let’s be candid – most of the models and clothing ads have bodies that the average person looking at the ad wishes that they had, you know, it’s like, hi, we’re selling this scarf with our six pack abs. And you’re like, what did the abs have to do with the scarf? Nothing. But what it does, what this ad from Stellar did is it, let me see, okay. I could see myself in these clothes and I could have a better idea of what I was going to, uh, look like wearing the clothes. You know, it’s interesting, I’m reminded of an ad. I created years ago when I was running my ad agency for a company called SMO, they were a heating oil and propane company in Southern Maryland and they did this huge rebrand and as part of the rebrand, we redesigned truck wraps for all of their vehicles. They had hundreds of vehicles and we did custom designs for the left side of the vehicle and the right side of the vehicle. So they were all different. And then we put a series of phone numbers on the different sides of the trucks, so that we could start to get an idea of which ad led to the most inbound calls, you know, kind of like split testing in a digital world but in the physical world with these trucks driving around the community, we had funny ads. We had poignant ads, but here’s the thing. The ad that drew the most phone calls was a picture of a dog in a bathtub with a line that said, “Don’t worry, we’ll keep the water warm” because they’re home heating oil and propane company, but here’s the thing, Dan, it, the phone rang off the hook like five to one for that ad. But everybody who called in wanted to know what the dog’s name was. Now, interestingly enough, the dog’s name was stock photo.com dog. You know, I mean, it was just, there was no name and we didn’t do a photo shoot. We bought a picture of a dog in a tub, but it opened my eyes in that moment to the fact that when we can personalize the advertisements, people connect at a much more emotional way, connect in a much more emotional way in a much deeper fashion.

Dan Gingiss (10:40):
Yeah. It’s like, we’ve talked about a number of products on this show where when you receive the package in the mail, it says it was packed by this person. And you know, you may not know that person, but at least you see it’s another human being or they sign their name or something like that. I’ve definitely liked the personalization. I think it’s a great ad. I love it.

Joey Coleman (11:00):
So what can we learn from this, forgive the pun, stellar ad from the team at Stellar. Like what I did there Dan? So if you want to introduce a new product to your customers, don’t just focus on the sales language and imagery. Personalize the conversation by telling us the name of the model. Let us see how the product is going to work for us by telling us about the environment where the images were taken, the models, using the product, how they’re interacting with the product. The more your communications can humanize your products and services, the more the humans you’re advertising to will want your products and services.

Joey Coleman (11:40):
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!

Joey Coleman (11:59):
You’ve had the opportunity to speak for the fine folks at Podium – didn’t you, at some point in the past?

Dan Gingiss (12:05):
I did and in fact, I’m still doing so – they are a client of mine now and, uh, really liked those guys. I like working with them…

Joey Coleman (12:12):
They are fantastic folks. I had the pleasure of speaking to the Podium team as well last year. Uh, but to be clear, the story that we’re about to talk about is not a sponsored segment. In fact, Podium has no idea. We’re recording this conversation right now. Dan, you had no idea before we started recording tonight that we were going to be recording about this, but I had the chance to read their brand new 2021 State of Reviews Report. And to be honest, it was so full of actionable insights and just really eye opening observations that I wanted to share it with our listeners. Now, for context, if you haven’t heard of podium before podium is a fast growing software company that specializes in customer interactions. Now they call their solution, the “ultimate messaging platform,” because it allows for multi-channel communications to funnel into a single location. So you can text with your customers, connect with your website traffic, request and comment on reviews, collect payments. You can do so much more all in one software solution. Now I came to know of podium for their expertise in helping local businesses do more, to get reviews and then use those reviews to grow their business, which is why I was so curious about their findings in the 2021 State of Reviews Report.

Dan Gingiss (13:28):
Yeah, it’s obviously a fascinating and sometimes terrifying part of running a business, right? Is this whole thing around reviews. When do you ask for them, how do you ask for them? What do you do about them? Do you respond some sites? Don’t let you respond at all. What if they’re anonymous? What if people are complaining about you? These are things that keep small business owners up at night so it’s a very important topic.

Joey Coleman (13:55):
Absolutely. And you know, it’s interesting because I think it’s one of those topics, Dan, that everyone knows it’s important, but it’s kind of hard to know where to dive in, but there are so many moving parts to this, and that’s why I loved this report. So the 2021 State of Reviews rReport starts out with the following observation, which I found pretty profound, quote “Reviews have never been so important or influential. In the wake of COVID-19 the information they provide and customer experience they paint are closely and regularly analyzed by consumers. In our digital marketplace reviews are the first link to connecting with your business and the first deciding factor in moving to a competitor. To stay competitive businesses must proactively remove any obstacles that prevent customers from leaving reviews.” Now, the report goes on to share the findings of a survey that they did in October of 2020, across a US audience that included 1,543 consumers (aged 18 to 99, in all regions of the country) 455 small business owners or managers, and 378 enterprise business leaders in businesses with a local presence. Now let’s talk about a few of the interesting statistics that we found in the review. Dan, do you want to share one that you liked?

Dan Gingiss (15:15):
Sure. Well, the top characteristics that consumers say are most important when choosing a local business: Location is number one at 61%, Price or Promotions at 55%. And then we get into some interesting pieces: Personal recommendations at 50%, and Reviews at 41%.

Joey Coleman (15:36):
You know, I thought that one was really interesting, Dan, because when we think of a local business location, location, location, right, that’s pretty obvious price. Hello, die. Everybody knows about that personal recommendations. If you can get word of mouth, of course, but coming in, in the strong fourth place with double digit 41% reviews, I was somewhat surprised to see it that high in the list. But I wasn’t surprised when I learned the next statistic, which was 65% of consumers have read a review of some product or service in the last week. And 85% have read a review in the last month. People are reading reviews like crazy left and right, and that’s contributing to their buying decisions.

Dan Gingiss (16:22):
It makes sense. And 58% of consumers are willing to travel further and pay more to patronize a business with higher reviews. And this actually happened the other night was my daughter’s 13th birthday. She asked for sushi and she found, online, a new sushi place that we hadn’t been to. That was frankly, a little bit farther away than normal, but it got terrific reviews. And that’s why we tried it. And guess what? We loved it and we’re going to go back.

Joey Coleman (16:47):
I love it. I love it. Now here’s the question, Dan, have you written a review?

Dan Gingiss (16:52):
Great question. I have not. I probably should.

Joey Coleman (16:55):
Okay. If you haven’t because it illustrates the point. Here’s the crazy thing. 81% of consumers leave a review four times a year or less. So the majority of people, if they are going to do a review are going to do no more than four in a year, which means super reviewers are really rare. 20% of people say they have never left a review, in any capacity, for any product or service. Now I know from our conversations, you’ve left plenty of reviews over the years. But what I think was interesting about this statistic is what can we do to get people who like you had a great experience to actually write about the fact that you went further than you normally would, that you went for a special occasion, right? That you were doing this effort to go above and beyond because you wanted to try a new place and how it really paid off because of the reviews.

Dan Gingiss (17:47):
Well, and just to stay on that story, I’ll tell you exactly how they should have done it. They, I called in the order. So they had my name and phone number. And when I went to pick it up, I told them it was my first time being there. And she asked me where I lived and she said, Oh, you drove a little ways to get here. I said, yeah, they, all they had to do was call me half an hour later and say, Hey, how was your dinner? And ask me to write a review. And I, boom, I would have done it immediately.

Joey Coleman (18:10):
Or my gut instinct is you gave them your cell phone number. They could have even texted. You could have texted them interestingly enough – and this is a plug for our friends at Podium. I guess they have a texting solution that allows you to solve for that problem. But this kind of illustrates the point you were making earlier that we’ve got to know when to ask for the reviews and we have to actually do the ask. It’s not enough just to have a great product. We need to remind people that we made a promise of a great product we delivered on that product. And part of the payment that they can give back to us is to write a review.

Dan Gingiss (18:44):
Yeah. And one of the things I learned in corporate America was find that place where, you know, you make your customers happy and that’s when you ask them. So when I worked at discover, what we realized was the moment they were happiest with us was when customers redeemed their rewards, because it was like getting free money and who doesn’t like free money. So we learned that that was the moment to ask for a review because they thought they thought we were awesome. Right? And so we didn’t put on the website, leave us a review in 70 different places. We put it in the places where we knew that they were in, that customers were in a good mood and really happy with us. Right. And it worked, it, it it’s, you know, if you hit them at the right time, especially local businesses. And I think so many people now we feel for local businesses, we want to support them. And if a review helps you do have to make the because it’s not that I meant to not leave a review of this place. I just never thought about it.

Joey Coleman (19:39):
Right. And you got caught up with other things you had ordered dinner. I presume you were driving all the way back home to then sit down and have sushi dinner with the family. So what’s interesting is the report actually speaks to this. They noted that after having a good experience with a local business, consumers are 12% more likely to leave a review if they saw a sign asking them to in the business establishment, and 36% more likely if they receive an email invite to leave a review. Now, I’m not sure if there was anything in the research that talked about getting a text message to leave a review, but I bet that’s even higher, especially in like a takeout scenario like this, where if I could just click, Hey, I’ll give you five stars. Boom, they’ve got the review, which led to another interesting stat that was in the reports, which is 86% of consumers require at least a three-star average rating in order to even consider engaging with your business with 3.4 being the average star rating required. So if your business doesn’t have 3.4 stars out of five, they’re not even going to consider you. You’ve got to get that up in the four and five range.

Dan Gingiss (20:46):
Yeah. Would say personally, mine, my limit is usually a four.

Joey Coleman (20:51):
You have a higher threshold for awesomeness.

Dan Gingiss (20:53):
Exactly – or for pain – I don’t know. I know there are another related statistic here, which you and I have talked about before is that 68% of consumers agree or somewhat agree that they don’t trust a high review rating unless there’s also a high quality of reviews. And we’ve talked about this. I think I mentioned in a previous episode, how happy I was to get my first three star review on Amazon for my book, because everything up until then had been five stars. And it isn’t believable. I mean, even though they were all real people don’t believe that any product or services is exactly five stars. And so that one, three star review brought me down to like, uh, you know, whatever it is at 4.8, 4.9 and now it’s realistic.

Joey Coleman (21:35):
Absolutely. You know, it’s so funny. Dan years ago, a friend of mine had written a book and he had asked me to do a review and I knew how reviews worked. And I went on Amazon to see, and he had like twenty 5 star reviews. So I decided to write a four star review and I wrote the review and I made the lack of the fifth star. I called out why I wasn’t giving it a fifth star. And it was some benign reason like, Oh, I wish there would have been three more chapters. You know, something that anybody who is actually reading a review, it’d be like, Oh, just get over yourself. Give them the five stars. But when my friend, when we talked about it, he’s like, Oh, why didn’t you give me the four star? I was like, I give you the four star to help you. I’m not hurting you with the forced arm actually helping you. So I do think that it’s one of those things where we don’t want to always strive for just the five star reviews. Interestingly enough, one of the things that they also found in the study is that how you comment on reviews like negative reviews is really important. So there’s an encouragement there for any business that has reviews comment on the reviews. If at all possible. Now I get in some formats, you can’t do that. And in some platforms where reviews are left, but if you get the chance to actually comment, thank them for the review, acknowledged the review. If something has gone wrong, explain why it went wrong. Don’t get defensive, but either just genuinely apologize or point out some additional facts that might’ve been left out of the review, your customers and your prospects who have never done business with you are less crazy than the people who write one-star reviews and they will read through and become advocates for you.

Dan Gingiss (23:15):
Absolutely. And this is why we to ask for reviews of the ExperienceThisShow at the end of every episode. And here’s what we know from our friends at podium, even though we’ve been asking only a small percentage of listeners actually write reviews. So we want to make that easier for you.

Joey Coleman (23:32):
So we came across this interesting new service called love the podcast. Okay? So you have to participate. All you have to do is visit LoveThePodcast.com/ExperienceThis. And what it will do is it will identify what platform you’re on, either Apple or Android, and it will give you an easy way to leave a review for our show in the platform that best suits your needs. I know lots of times we talk about leaving a review on iTunes. This will, with some technology, figure out the best places for you to leave reviews. And if you do leave a review, please make sure to let us know so we can appreciate your review and all sorts of fun and creative ways.

Joey Coleman (24:15):
Almost everyone has interacted with chatbots, but all too often, it’s been a bad experience. In MythBusters – presented by Solvvy – we explore a common myth about CX chatbots and see how the right technology can create a positive experience every time.

Joey Coleman (24:40):
Today’s myth about chatbots? Chatbots are glorified search engines. Allow me to explain. Straightforward questions should have straightforward answers correct? So why is it that so many chatbots respond to straightforward, basic customer questions by providing a list of helpful links or perhaps a massive article that takes 10 minutes to scroll through, just to find the one piece of information that you actually need. I’m not sure about you, Dan, but when this happens, I wind up asking to talk to an agent or I submit a support ticket. So I don’t have to waste my time with the chat bot.

Dan Gingiss (25:16):
Yeah, I hear you Joey, but while there’s a myth that chatbots are glorified search engines, the reality is that intelligent chatbots provide specific answers and use images, videos, and even interactive tools to provide customers with great support. For example, let’s say a product you purchased, isn’t working the way you hoped you bought some ski pants for example, and they don’t fit! If you visited a company’s online help center, an intelligent chat bot is able to ask short questions to help narrow down your problem and effectively troubleshoot the issue instead of displaying a bunch of random links or just copy of the manual that came with the product, which you probably have anyway, the chat bot shares the specific instructions or videos that you need to resolve the problem with a next gen chat bot. Common questions do have straightforward answers.

Joey Coleman (26:05):
That sounds like such a better customer experience. It’s about time that the technology provided straightforward answers to straightforward questions. We’ll learn more about advances in chat bots and support automation throughout the season.

Dan Gingiss (26:20):
And that’s another myth busted – thanks to our friends at Solvvy, the Next Gen Chatbot.

Joey Coleman (26:27):
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 (26:41):
As our loyal listeners probably remember, when it comes to the co-hosts of the Experience This Show, Dan is by far the better of the two of us when it comes to things like pinball, Chicago Cubs fandom, Twitter, and cooking.

Dan Gingiss (26:56):
Oh, well, hey, thanks man, pat me on the back! I really appreciate all the fine compliments. Uh, you’re definitely better when it comes to hair. I would say definitely a better singer. I would say for sure.

Joey Coleman (27:11):
No, no, not!

Dan Gingiss (27:11):
A better LEGO builder absolutely. Uh, but hey, I’m glad you called out cooking because I do love cooking and I am proud to say that I cook for my kids multiple times a week, usually at least four times a week and I have so much fun doing it. Now I’ve got them involved in it too.

Joey Coleman (27:28):
And you cook for teenagers and they eat what you cook, which is pretty impressive Dan! It shows that you

Dan Gingiss (27:33):
They do eat a lot of what I cook!

Joey Coleman (27:34):
They eat a lot of what you cook. I love it! So here’s the thing, I’ve got to confess, as we start out a new year, I’ve been considering some enhancements in my personal life. And one of those areas is to potentially improve my culinary skills. So I actually helped to make dinner tonight before we recorded this episode.

Dan Gingiss (27:54):
Really? Now I know your wife Berit is quite a good cook, so what was on the menu tonight?

Joey Coleman (27:59):
Yes. Berit is definitely the better cook in the family. She is normally the one providing all of the meals, which I so greatly appreciate. But tonight I thought I would start with pasta in boiling water.

Dan Gingiss (28:10):
Wow Joey! You’re like next stop, Top Chef right?

Joey Coleman (28:17):
And I can feel it coming well, no, I let’s be candid folks. We got to start somewhere. Right. But I have a question for you, Dan. How do you know when the spaghetti is ready?

Dan Gingiss (28:28):
The spaghetti is ready? Uh, well, uh, you know, usually I asked my friend a L E X a to set a timer for me, but if I forget, I kind of have to do the old, like tasted, burned my hand on the hot pasta if it’s too crunchy, put it back in. Okay.

Joey Coleman (28:44):
All right. So either the timer or the taste method, I also know this, throw it against the wall method. I’ve heard about, I’ve heard about the cut it in half method, which some people swear by, some people think that ruins the entire meal, but I tonight actually had some additional help in the kitchen that went beyond any of these techniques. I had some help from the fine folks at Barilla.

Dan Gingiss (29:09):
Barilla, like the Italian pasta company?

Joey Coleman (29:12):
Yes. And they helped me with music.

Dan Gingiss (29:17):
Music? I’m not sure I understand.

Joey Coleman (29:20):
Well, here’s the thing… A few weeks ago, a series of custom playlist appeared on Spotify. So let me play you a little sample:

Barilla Narrator (29:27):
[Italian well wishes…] [Inaudible].

Dan Gingiss (29:39):
Wow. Well, I didn’t really understand that, but I think the speaker was speaking Italian. What was being said there?

Joey Coleman (29:48):
Yeah – I have no idea. I agree. It was Italian and I don’t know what the speaker was saying, but here’s what I do know is that that clip came from the Mixtape Spaghetti playlist.

Dan Gingiss (29:59):
Of course it did!

Joey Coleman (29:59):
Play last mix tape spaghetti, right? This playlist is nine minutes and three seconds long. And if you start playing the playlist, when you add the spaghetti to the boiling water, when the last song ends on the playlist, you know, it’s time to remove the spaghetti and it will be cooked perfectly.

Dan Gingiss (30:18):
Nine minutes and three seconds.

Joey Coleman (30:20):
And three second!

Dan Gingiss (30:21):
I’ve never waited that three seconds.

Joey Coleman (30:27):
And there you go.

Dan Gingiss (30:28):
I love that. That is a kind of a fun way to it’s better than just a timer, tick, tick ticking, or, or the silence that you hear when you ask for a timer on your phone or your A-L-E-X-A. That was fun!

Joey Coleman (30:40):
Absolutely. And let’s be candid if you’re into pastas other than spaghetti, don’t worry. Barilla’s got you covered. In addition to Mixtape Spaghetti, you can listen to the Boom Bap Fusili, the Pleasant Melancholy Penne, the Moody Day Linguine, Top Hits Spaghetti, Best Song Penne, Timeless Emotion Fusili, and Simply Classics Linguini. All of those have their own playlist in short, there’s a musical playlist for pretty much every variety of pasta you might hope to cook.

Dan Gingiss (31:13):
I love that. And I, I would assume that sometimes you have to cook different pastas for different lengths. So I assume that

Joey Coleman (31:19):
Play this role different way.

Dan Gingiss (31:22):
Cool. It kind of reminds me, uh, you know, somewhat recently we were talking about, uh, the LEGO white noise music that you played for me.

Joey Coleman (31:30):
Uh, yes Dan, that would be Episode 121.

Dan Gingiss (31:34):
Aay! Look at you!

Joey Coleman (31:39):
Yeah, two episodes ago – this is not a huge stretch friends, but yeah, this whole idea of products that are going to be in people’s homes, providing a soundtrack for the product. So what can we learn from the creative folks at Barilla? Well, part of the customer experience is what happens when a customer is using your product or service and you’re not in the room with them to make sure it goes well. For years, companies have printed recommended cook times on the box of pasta that sometimes are read and followed, but most times aren’t by creating a Spotify playlist, Barilla is bringing some fun and entertainment to the kitchen. They know you might be listening to music while you cook. So why not let the music be part of the cooking experience. Now Dan and I realize you may not be in the business of making pasta and the playlist may not enhance your customer’s experience, but it does beg the question: what can you do to help your customer succeed when using your product or service? And how can you be creative in a way that lets them comply your instructions, even when you’re not in the room and thus get the full benefit of choosing to do business with you. Bon Appetito!

Joey Coleman (32:48):
Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This! You are the best listener ever!

Dan Gingiss (32:58):
And since you listened to the whole show…

Joey Coleman (33:01):
Yay you!

Dan Gingiss (33:02):
We’re curious… Was there a specific part of this episode that you enjoyed the most? If so, it would mean the world to us if you could share it with a coworker, a friend, or someone that just loves listening to podcasts.

Joey Coleman (33:12):
And while you’re in the sharing mood, if you felt inclined to jump over to iTunes – or wherever you find your podcasts – and write us a review, we would so appreciate it. And when you do, don’t forget to let us know as we might have a little surprise for you.

Dan Gingiss (33:28):
Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more.

Joey Coleman (33:31):
Experience

Dan Gingiss (33:33):
This!

Episode 122 – Crystal Clean Experiences with Innovative Videos

Join us as we discuss using video to help explain things to your customers, avoiding irrelevance through digital innovation, and a maid service that is doing far more than just sweeping and dusting.

Fixing, Digitizing, and Cleaning– Oh My!

Referenced in the Show

Check out the video Dan received from his auto technician:

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

Learn more about our Season 7 Partner – Solvvy – The NextGen Chatbot

Episode Transcript

Download an unedited transcript of Episode 122 here or read it below:

Joey Coleman (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (00:07):
The podcast that celebrates remarkable customer experiences and inspires you to stand out from the competition by wowing your customers.

Joey Coleman (00:17):
Each episode, we bring you a healthy dose of inspiring stories, funny interactions, and practical takeaways. Marketing and customer experience thought leader, Dan Gingiss…

Dan Gingiss (00:30):
shares the mic with customer retention and employee experience expert, Joey Coleman, helping you to get people talking about your business.

Joey Coleman (00:40):
So get ready because it’s time to Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (00:49):
Get ready for another episode of the Experience This Show!

Joey Coleman (00:56):
Join us as we discuss: using video to help explain things to your customers, avoiding irrelevance through digital innovation, and a maid service that is doing far more than just sweeping and dusting.

Dan Gingiss (01:11):
Fixing, Digitizing, and Cleaning – Oh my!

Joey Coleman (01:17):
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 (01:31):
So Joey – you may remember from way back in Season 1, Episode 10, that I’m a big fan of BMW. And I believe that the ultimate driving experience not only describes what it’s like to be in the car, but it actually describes what it’s like to have the car serviced after you purchased the car.

Joey Coleman (01:53):
Yes, I do recall. What’s interesting Dan is I’m remembering that you really loved the place where you took your car to be serviced. And we’ve talked about that before, and we’ve talked in past episodes about how much I love the place where I took my car to be serviced. I think we are probably the should buy a lottery ticket because it is rare that two people would find such love for their auto mechanic.

Dan Gingiss (02:16):
For sure. For sure. Now I wanted to come back to this same dealership, which is Field’s BMW in Northfield, Illinois and talk about something that I like to call blind transactions.

Joey Coleman (02:29):
Ooo blind transactions – do tell us more!

Dan Gingiss (02:32):
Well, this is where a customer doesn’t really know what’s going on and just has to trust the provider. So think about going to the dentist. And the dentist says, Oh, this tooth needs a crown. And you’re like, okay, I guess I got a crown?

Joey Coleman (02:50):
Sure it does!

Dan Gingiss (02:51):
I mean, I don’t know any different. I got to trust the dentist, right. Or I had a refrigerator guy out one day and my refrigerator wasn’t cooling. He said, well, you need more Freon.

Joey Coleman (03:01):
Was it Freon? It’s like, literally the only thing I know about refrigeration is that Freon is somehow involved. How much, how you know if you need more, I have no idea?!

Dan Gingiss (03:11):
Well, and they’re also phasing it out because it’s environmentally disastrous. And so it’s like 400 dollars.

Joey Coleman (03:16):
Freon is not free kids!

Dan Gingiss (03:19):
Anyway. So going to the auto mechanic is kind of like that for me, I’m not much of a car guy. And so when they say, Hey, you need new brake pads. I’m like, Oh, okay. Brake pads sound important. We better get those. Right. I mean, so it’s a blind transaction for me.

Joey Coleman (03:32):
I had a teacher in high school that always used to joke about with kids to prove this point. He would say something like, well, if I told you you needed a new muffler belt, what would you say? And what you’re supposed to say is you’re crazy because a muffler doesn’t have a belt, but the majority of young 16, 17 year olds didn’t know that answer. Right. They had no clue. So yeah, this, this shows up in a lot of industries now that you bring it up.

Dan Gingiss (03:57):
Yeah, definitely does. So anyway, I went in for just an oil change, real, pretty easy. And as part of the oil change, they do a whole once over of the car and house, as I was checking out the associate that was helping me said here, I want to show you this video. And he brings up on his screen and they also emailed this to me about a two minute video of the auto mechanic underneath my car and showing me all of the parts underneath my car and how he was inspecting them. And what was so cool was like when he went to check the width of the tires, right. To make sure that, uh, that there wasn’t too much wear…

Joey Coleman (04:40):
The car is on tires! Ladies and gentlemen, we’re seeing just how much of a blind transaction this actually is for Dan!

Dan Gingiss (04:47):
Oh, geez. I mean, but anyway, he was looking at, uh, you know, to, to look at the treads, right. He’s looking at the width, but what’s cool is in the video, you actually see the measurement tool that he’s using and you can see the measurement. So it’s not like he’s, you know, you don’t have to worry about him, lying to you and saying, Oh yeah, it looks just fine. Or, Oh, you need new tires. He’s actually showing you measuring, showing himself, measuring it and giving you the results. So let’s cut to the audio. I understand folks that the audio is going to be a little bit different on a podcast, but Hey, it’s a podcast. So we’re going to listen in and just imagine Jerry, the mechanic is literally underneath my car with his phone, taking this video.

Jerry the Technician (05:30):
Hello. My name is Jerry. I’m the technician forming services on your vehicle today. Uh, just a quick look at your undercarriage, starting with the rear tires. I’m going to clear out of the way. Uh, if you see the measurement sets seven millimeters and the CADing it’s in like-new condition, uh, same thing goes for your brakes. Uh, pads are measured at 10 millimeters rotor faces are in good condition. There’s no corrosion or pitting. So those are looking good. Uh, following the suspension over here, there’s nothing bent or out of place. Everything looks like as it’s supposed to. I was rear differential, no leaks left rear tire also measured at seven millimeters in the green. Continue on air exhaust is free of damage, positioned correctly, free of leaks transfer case transmission pan will pan are all clean and free of leaks. I’m trying to get a good view up here and it kind of crowded your valve cover everything up there at the top of the engine is clean and free of leaks. Uh, your front tire is also measured seven millimeters. So they’re also in good condition. Your suspension everything’s tight as it should be. Nothing loose, nothing damaged a tire person for adjusted. We’re going to continue the inspection at the top of the vehicle. All right, here, we have a shot at your engine bay. We’re about to pull the engine oil and complete your service washer solve. It was full or filled. I’m sorry. Cool levels. Check the field. It prompts me to service a top of the engine. Does that reveal analytics doesn’t look like there’s anything or worry about. Um, so your inspections good. Uh, nothing further to report. If you have any questions regarding this video, please contact for service advisor. Otherwise thank you for trusting Field BMW.

Dan Gingiss (07:34):
So Joey, when I saw this video, I’m not saying that I felt like a car guy, but I certainly felt a whole lot more educated and informed. And I felt like I had the peace of mind that they checked everything over and I could get in my car and drive on the snowy icy roads home, and that I was going to be safe. And I thought that was fantastic.

Joey Coleman (07:55):
Well, I also thought my goodness, I’ve learned a thing or two about the underside of Dan’s car and Dan takes really good care of his vehicle. Yeah. I loved this for so many ways. And I actually like, and we’ll we’ll post the video on the show notes page at ExperienceThisShow.com, but I actually liked listening to just the audio because with the narration alone, you get an education, you get some insight as to what’s going on and what came up for me to be completely candid. When, when you shared this video, Dan, is that why doesn’t every mechanic do this? I’ve actually spoken to an association of auto mechanic repair shop owners, which yes, it exists. And what was fascinating is we were talking about using video and no one was using video in any capacity. And here’s your mechanic. Who’s not only using video to create connection, which we’ve talked about many times. This is such a great thing, but it’s using video to do education. It’s highly personalized and customized. And I don’t know if I was anywhere in the Chicago land region and I had a BMW. I would want to go to this place if nothing else, because they’re creating remarkable experiences and proving their work, showing, you know, bringing sight to the blind transaction as one might say,

Dan Gingiss (09:21):
Well, exactly. And that’s, I think the importance and what we are, we all need to think about in terms of using video in customer experiences. Because as you said, there’s blind transactions all over the place. There’s scary for the consumer. Nobody wants to be taken advantage of or to lose money. And so, but we often just don’t know. And yeah, I think this should be true of pretty much every industry in which you have to trust. Right? And, uh, and we’re seeing stuff in the dental industry too, with this 3d imaging where dentists can now show you a 3d image of your tooth and, and at least better than kind of the old x-ray where they’re like, you know, “You see there, you’ve got all of this kind of like…

Joey Coleman (10:02):
Where’s the funny bone? Can you read that one?

Dan Gingiss (10:08):
Um, but you know, this actually got me thinking Joey, about our very first ever book report on Experience This, it was Episode 4, Season 1. Do you remember who that was?

Joey Coleman (10:20):
Oh, geez. You’re going to call me out here?

Dan Gingiss (10:22):
Videos the hint – video.

Joey Coleman (10:25):
Video killed the radio star. Uh, I do I’m…

Dan Gingiss (10:29):
If you said Marcus Sheridan’s book, “They Ask, You Answer”

Joey Coleman (10:40):
His new book is The Video Sale. Yes. The Visual Sale. Yes.

Dan Gingiss (10:45):
Actually we’ve done both of his books. That’s right. We started with, They Ask, You Answer and his new book is The Visual Sale. But point is Marcus talks about using video in sales and marketing, and he’s an inbound marketing expert, but there’s no reason why we can’t use video. Once people become customers. And you know, it helps people through these blind transactions and allows them to feel confident in where they’re going. And like you said, I am always going to bring my car back to this dealership. I know, I know there’s probably a mechanic down the street. That’s a little bit less expensive, but I like how I’m treated there. I like the omelets. I like the waiting room. And I like being able to see underneath my car and understand something about it.

Joey Coleman (11:30):
I love that some people might want it might think, geez Joey is so bougie with his bull kelp salt. But you, with your omelets, while you get an oil change, you are definitely the more high maintenance of the two [inaudible]. I’m just jealous. I wish omelets were on the menu when I was getting an oil change. You know, I will say the only gentle suggestion I would give for this video, I wish it would have started with the camera, which I presume that person is filming, with their cell phone, I mean, the way the video looks, I would have loved it. If the camera would have started with a selfie shot of the technician, “Hey, I’m Jerry. And today I have the pleasure of working on your car. Mr. Gingiss let me show you a few things…” And then turn the camera around. It adds an extra layer of humanization. And when we think about this blend between remarkable customer experience and remarkable employee experience at the end of the day, what I think we’re striving for is remarkable human experiences. The experiences that allow us to connect personally, that allow our humanity to be part of the conversation. And one of the great ways to do that is to let your customers see your employees and let your employees be seen. Now, some employees may not be super excited about that in the beginning, but I promise that as you do it more and more, they will feel more connected and engaged with the customers as well.

Dan Gingiss (13:00):
Oh, absolutely. I could see people coming into this place and requesting Jerry is their mechanic. Now they know him. So love it. And Hey, if you have any questions regarding the video, please contact your service advisor and not Dan because he doesn’t understand all of it, but he sure felt better about getting this car fixed at Fields BMD.

Joey Coleman (13:23):
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.

Dan Gingiss (13:35):
Today’s Book Report is about “Winning Digital Customers: The Antidote to Irrelevance” by Howard Tiersky with a foreword, by the way, by Michelle McKenna, who is interestingly the CIO of the NFL.

Joey Coleman (13:51):
That’s gotta be a cool gig. The CIO of the NFL? I love it. I love it. I’m not a huge NFL fan, but I have to imagine that’s a fascinating, uh, gig.

Dan Gingiss (14:02):
Well, I am a big football fan and I, I definitely think it is. So I got a chance to talk with Howard Tiersky and fascinating guy, uh, with a fascinating background. And I really, really liked this book. And as you know, as well, Joey, when he sent us copies of it, he sent it in a customized box that arrived and like the box had the cover of the book on it in printed.

Joey Coleman (14:30):
I was going to say, I loved this book before I opened the book.

Dan Gingiss (14:35):
Totally.

Joey Coleman (14:35):
Right. Because the packaging and you know, that age old phrase, don’t judge a book by its cover. Other reason why it’s an age old phrase is because people do judge books by their cover all the time. And the idea of the package that he sent the book to us in coming and looking beautiful and having messaging on it and the book cover on it. Oh, I too was intrigued before I even cracked the spine of the book and started reading.

Dan Gingiss (14:58):
And when you did crack the spine of the book, it’s a great book. And I think it’s so important that we’re talking about digital experience, especially now in 2021, when 2020 caused a lot of customers to have to go digital. And maybe even the unwilling ones, everybody went digital because you kind of had to in so many different industries. And so digital was big before it’s now an absolutely required part of the business. So as always, we asked Howard to give us an overview of his book and Here he is:

Howard Tiersky (15:32):
Hi, this is Howard Tiersky author of the wall street journal bestselling book, Winning Digital Customers: The Antidote to Irrelevance. Now who should read this book? Well, I’ll tell you, I wrote this book with the executive at a large enterprise in mind, who’s responsible in some way for driving the digital success of a legacy brand, which is to say someone could be in marketing. Someone in technology, someone in operations could even be a CEO, a CFO, chief marketing officer, somebody who has responsibility for driving digital though. In reality, what I found is I’ve talked to so many people who’ve read the book and been applying. It is that it’s applicable. First of all, to really anybody who has a responsibility associated with driving customer behavior at a company. And second of all, I’ve discovered that small businesses and medium-sized businesses are applying the principles of this book really just as effectively as large enterprises. My experience is mostly working with our enterprises, but what I’ve heard from companies at a variety of sizes is that while my examples in the book are largely focused on large enterprises, frankly, the techniques and practices described in the book are applicable at businesses of any size. So I would encourage anybody who’s interested in the topic of how a company could more effectively serve its customers and especially more effectively adapt today to today’s increasingly digital customers. I would encourage anyone like that to pick up a copy of winning digital customers or read the free chapter, which is available online at: wdc.ht/freechapter.

Joey Coleman (17:06):
Oh, there are a couple of things I love about this, Dan you’re right. Not only is digital more relevant today than ever before, but I love the way Howard kind of calls out this distinction that I think so many readers and people that are working on their businesses think about they’re like, well, but that’s a big business. I run a small business or that’s easy for a small business to do. You don’t understand. We have a large enterprise folks. These are fictions in your mind in the same way that the difference between B2B and B2C a lot of companies make that out as a huge difference. No, it’s, HDH, it’s humans to humans. I think at the end of the day, what I love about this and about Howard’s message is yes, a lot of the case studies in the examples in the book are from larger enterprise companies, but the applicability to anyone who’s interested in the topic of increasing the digital experience for their customers permeates the entire book. So this book is just chock full of fun passages. Let’s let Howard, the wonderful author, go first with his favorite passage:

Howard Tiersky (18:19):
You have a problem. If you are trying to make a legacy brand successful in today’s digital world, you got a problem, but this book is going to tell you exactly what to do about it. My seven-year-old son, Joseph likes to text our family group chat with news stories that he thinks we need to know about such as the recent sightings of giant squids off the coast of Japan. One evening last year, my phone dinged with a group text from Joseph sharing the announcement that very soon every single Toys”R”Us in America would be closing. I was well aware of the problems that the company faced. In fact, Toys”R”Us executives had recently visited our offices to talk about bringing my firm in to help improve their customer experience. But time just ran out. I was disappointed that I wasn’t going to be consulting on a Toys”R”Us turnaround, but little Joe’s text prompted me to imagine how truly devastated I would have been had Toys”R”Us disappeared. When I was his age. I figured I should probably check in. I headed downstairs and approached Joe, who was still at the kitchen computer. I gently asked how he was feeling about the news of the chain’s closure. He thought for a second and then answered with a cheerful shrug. I don’t care seeing my surprise reaction. He gestured back at the screen and reassured me, dad, don’t worry. We can just order whatever we need from Amazon. Some say Toys”R”Us went under because they had too much leverage debt. And it’s true. That was a genuine problem. Others say that downloadable video games reduce the demand for physical toys and they have a bit, but Toys”R”Us died from something more profound, a lack of love. They just no longer mattered as they once did. If seven year old boys don’t care whether your toy store stays or goes, you’re done for. At Joe’s age I did love Toys”R”Us. I also loved my Kodak camera with its flashbulbs speed racer by Timex digital, watch my Atari and I hop a few decades later in life. I loved Borders Bookstores, Melrose Place, and my Blackberry. Today I love my Mac, Google slides, Alexa, and Game of Thrones. And I’m back to loving. iHOP again. How about you? What do you love Disney World? Chipotle, Fortnite, LuluLemon, Snapchat. More importantly, do your customers love your business? This book is a blueprint for earning love from today’s customers who I like to call digital customers. And it’s a treatise on the idea that customer love is the single most important factor in the success of your business.

Dan Gingiss (21:18):
Aww – I love that he talked about Toys”R”Us, cause I use this as an example too. I mean, man, when Toys”R”Us went out of business, it looked exactly like the store from when I was a kid.

Joey Coleman (21:30):
So true! And I was a big fan of Toys”R”Us, like I remember, you know, going to the mall with my parents and begging to be able to go in the Toys”R”Us like begging sure. When you couldn’t just go to Amazon or, or have a digital experience back when we were kids, when the competition for Toys”R”Us was the Sears catalog coming to your house like Toys”R”Us was the real deal. A whole store just filled with toys. Oh my gosh. Yes. It was definitely a sad moment. You know, absolutely. We wax nostalgic for Toys”R”Us, but my favorite passage was about some other brands that I’ve actually got a fair amount of experience with. Here’s the passage from the book:

Joey Coleman (22:16):
Uber eliminates the inconvenience of taking 30 seconds to pay the driver. When you arrive at your destination, Netflix auto starts the next episode of stranger things. So you can binge watch for hours without lifting a finger. Alexa will check your Amazon package delivery status. If you just ask it three words, where’s my stuff. No doubt. They are working on getting that down to one. Digital leaders, obsess over removing every little bit of unnecessary effort that they possibly can.

Dan Gingiss (22:48):
I loved this too. And, and in that same section, he referred to this idea as hyper convenience. And he did credit his friend who was, uh, Avis and Budget Rentacars. But I love the concept of finding a way to reduce the number of steps everywhere you can go. And as we’ve said on this show before, and as I’ve said, many times on stages, this is what I did at Discover Card. When we won the JD Power award for the first time. And we finally took it away from American Express, which of course is an amazing customer experience company. We took a look at our web and mobile digital experiences, and we removed every barrier. We could find hundreds of them, little tiny things that annoyed people, and they complained about it. And we got rid of all of them. And there’s definitely some debate in the CX world about whether you should be getting rid of pain points or creating new experiences. I think you need to do both. And this is a terrific example also of, uh, of how you do that. Now I picked a, a little bit of a longer quote and I want to set this up because I learned something here and was absolutely fascinated. So it turns out that another company that we put in the same category as Toys”R”Us is Blockbuster. R.I.P. Blockbuster spent a lot of time there as a kid. And it turns out that Howard and his consulting team were actually consultants to the leaders of Blockbuster when a little company called Netflix came onto the scene.

Joey Coleman (24:20):
He’s been on the front lines of like a lot of these really pivotal times in big brand life. I mean, he’s the guy, right? He’s been there, done that, got the t-shirt!

Dan Gingiss (24:27):
And he actually said one of his biggest regrets was not successfully convincing Blockbuster management to listen to them because they were providing them with good advice. So let me read:

Dan Gingiss (24:40):
They certainly weren’t clueless. I can tell you that there were many super smart people there. We collaborated with them on a vision that in many ways looks a lot like Netflix today. Streaming services, episodic television with great navigation multi-screen devices. In those days, Netflix was exclusively in the DVD by mail business. Blockbuster was much larger with more money, more customers, more Hollywood relationships, and just about every advantage, but one – they loved, who they already were. As an example of this let’s drill into one of the more profound barriers that kept them from committing to the bold digital vision that they paid us to develop. What was it? Candy. At its peak when blockbuster had 9,000 plus stores, those stores rented a lot of videos, but they also sold a lot of M&Ms, Skittles, and giant Kit-Kats. It was becoming harder to make a significant profit renting DVDs, especially after they stopped charging late fees, because the studios negotiated a fair chunk of the rental price for themselves. But the margin on candy, as well as microwaveable popcorn buckets was huge. Our proposed digital vision faced significant resistance from executives who were perfectly willing to believe that customers would stream video to their homes, but repeatedly pointed out you can’t stream candy. How could the company be successful without candy? It seems to be core to their business model and that mindset made it insurmountable side note. I reviewed Netflix his most recent annual report and still to this date, $0 from the sale of candy. So I guess it was surmountable after all!

Joey Coleman (26:22):
So true. Oh my gosh. Fantastic, fantastic story! You know, there was one, I mean the whole story is beautiful, but there was one sentence that I felt when I was reading it, uh, reached out and grabbed me by the shoulders and shook me.

Dan Gingiss (26:36):
I know which one it is!

Joey Coleman (26:36):
Let’s see, it’s where they say “they loved who they already were.”

Dan Gingiss (26:43):
Yep.

Joey Coleman (26:43):
How many businesses are so caught up in the identity of who they are today, that they are going to be a footnote in history tomorrow? Like I think there is an incredibly valuable exercise for everyone listening, get your team together, get your smartest people in your organization together and sit down and say, if tomorrow we were prohibited from making money, the way we currently do from our number one way that we make money, we weren’t allowed to do it for whatever reason. You know, a law was passed, you know, the supply chain blew up, whatever it is, we have to take that off the table. What do we need to do? I feel like if you’re not regularly and by regularly, I’m thinking at least once a year asking yourself what are the things that we are so entrenched in believing to be true, that you’re not, you know, questioning that and thinking through strategically how you would roll with that. You’re done for, and you know, frankly, the last year has shown a lot of businesses that reality. You know, Dan, you and I both pre COVID a significant part of our life was spent on airplanes. A significant part of our life was spent traveling around. And if we were so in love with who we were in the past, we wouldn’t have been able to be who we are today. So long story short, go check out Winning Digital Customers. It’s a fantastic book. You’re going to want to pick up a copy of this Howard Tiersky, it’s just full of stories and ideas and things that are going to make it so that you can connect more digitally with the customers that you have.

Joey Coleman (28:31):
Almost everyone has interacted with chatbots, but all too often, it’s been a bad experience. In MythBusters – presented by Solvvy – we explore a common myth about CX chatbots and see how the right technology can create a positive experience, every time.

Dan Gingiss (28:57):
Today’s myth about chatbots? All chatbots pretend to be a real person. And usually don’t do that. Great. A job of pretending, for example, you start talking to a support agent named Mary on a website or app. You’re having a great experience close to finding an answer. And then you’re struck with the dreaded, sorry, I don’t understand you. Which is a phrase that no human has ever said in the history of mankind. Did you know that in one study over 50% of individuals said that they were disturbed when they realized they were chatting with a robot and not a real person?

Joey Coleman (29:34):
Understandably so, I mean, the reality is that modern chat bots don’t need to hide behind a persona. While still Being conversational. Leading chatbots today are now able to provide next level customer experiences without having to pretend to be a real person. In fact, most people find these experiences more authentic than getting stuck, chatting with a robot named Mary who doesn’t understand you. Plus it won’t feel awkward in the event that you do start a live chat with an actual real person.

Dan Gingiss (30:06):
Well, I am glad for one that the next generation of chat bots are comfortable in their own skin joint because it’s kind of afraid we were going to have another Lil Miquela situation here.

Joey Coleman (30:20):
Callback! That was nice!

Dan Gingiss (30:21):
But hey, these guys are robots and they’re proud of it.

Joey Coleman (30:25):
That’s another Myth Busted thanks to our friends at Solvvy – the Next Gen Chatbot.

Joey Coleman (30:33):
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 (30:51):
Joey and I recently received a terrific voicemail on our website.

Joey Coleman (30:59):
Oh, we so loved this one. It’s so nice. We love hearing from our listeners!

Dan Gingiss (31:02):
We do. And this one in particular was amazing. Her name is Robin Murphy and she’s the owner of Maid Brigade a franchise in that covers a number of counties, Westchester, Fairfield, Rockland, and Putnam counties in New York and Connecticut. Now, before we get to Maid bBrigade, when Robin sent us this voicemail, of course, cause it’s what Joey and I do. We responded to her over email. We started communicating and it turns out she loves the podcast and she left us the voicemail because she was sad that we are on our hiatus Joey and was waiting for us to come back.

Joey Coleman (31:37):
And we were like, Oh my gosh, they are listening. It’s so kind. We love it. Thanks for letting us be on hiatus and letting us know that we were missed while we were on hiatus.

Dan Gingiss (31:47):
Yes – and then Robin was also super kind enough to leave us a positive review on iTunes. And I’m going to read that in a second. But back to Maid Brigade. Maid Brigade is known for its commitment to best practices. And it is the only local company in this area that is green, clean certified. Also Robin and her husband are former franchise of the year winners in the maid brigade franchise system.

Joey Coleman (32:13):
No surprise there once you get to know Robin!

Dan Gingiss (32:15):
Yeah, exactly. They know what they’re doing, but let’s get to this iTunes review. She wrote, “I’ve been listening to the experience this podcast for six months now. And I look forward to when it shows up as a new episode, Tuesday mornings as a small business owner, I understand the value of great clients and my learning from Joey and Dan has been benefiting every aspect of my business, not just a relationship with our clients, but also our employees, and even our vendors, all important to us.

Joey Coleman (32:44):
Woo hoo! Oh, I love it. Thank you Robin. For the review, we love getting reviews on iTunes as it really helps draws new listeners to our show, but you know what? I love even more about the review. Dan. I love that Robin is getting benefit. Not only in terms of her customer experiences, but with her employee experience and her vendor experience. You know, increasingly so many of our conversations are about the human experience. I absolutely love this. So Robin, you let us know that we were, uh, we were providing some value and you provided some lovely value to us. We so appreciate it.

Dan Gingiss (33:17):
Well, as it turns out, Joey, Robin, isn’t just a fan of the show. She is also a big fan of your book. Never lose a customer again.

Joey Coleman (33:27):
Oh, so sweet.

Dan Gingiss (33:28):
Best of all, she has actually implemented some amazing experiences for her customers. See Joey’s book is practical. Guys. You can do it too. Let’s hear Robin. Tell us a little bit about what she’s been doing at may brigade.

Robin Murphy – Maid Brigade (33:45):
Hi Dan and Joey. This is Robin Murphy of Maid Brigade. We are a home cleaning company dedicated to helping people be home. Happy housecleaning is considered a commodity. We get it. It’s easy to find someone who can clean your home for a lot less money than we will, which is why we make sure to give our clients and experience they aren’t going to get from anyone else. Of course, it includes our excellent cleaning by fantastic staff. But it’s more than just that we send reminder emails, texts when we’re on the way check-ins after the service handwritten, thank you cards. We do what we say we’re going to do. And if we fall short, Hey, it’s not often, but it happens. We make sure to make things right, no matter what. And while we love all of our customers, those clients who use us on a recurring basis are very special. So we take even better care of them. We have a customer retention program where among other things, we send them specially curated gifts, which promote home happiness and show our appreciation based on the thank yous we receive and especially our very low customer cancellation rate. We know that they appreciate us back. Another special thing we give our clients is free cleaning solutions to use in between our visits. They’re the best cleaning products, people, pet, and earth safe and unrivaled by brands you buy in stores. On our first visit, we give our clients a kit and we refill the bottles every time we’re back. It’s free cleaning products for life so long as they use may brigade. I also want to mention what we do for clients who spread the word, refers to their friends and who posts reviews about us on social media reviews are invaluable gifts to us. They are seen by thousands of people every month, looking for someone to do what we do and a great review attract great new clients. So to those who post reviews, we send a special bottle of beautifully packaged olive oil that they’ll enjoy for a while. And we hope that they’ll think of us when they do. At Maid Brigade we are very customer centric and love putting together initiatives that give our clients what they’ve never expect from their main service and that they won’t get from anybody else, but Maid Brigade.

Joey Coleman (35:47):
Dan, I will say, well, forgive me. Let me say as an author. And I know you’ve had this experience many, many times before. Nothing makes you happier as an author than to find out that someone got your book, read your book, implemented the ideas and had great success from it. I mean, it is why the majority of authors, especially in the business space write books, and this was such a lovely audio for Robin share. Robin and I in the interest of full disclosure had never had any interactions before this. I didn’t even know about this recording. She was talking to Dan about it. So I just got to hear it in preparation for our episode today. And it just thrills me to see so many things that they have done and implemented in their business.

Dan Gingiss (36:35):
Yeah. I mean, definitely they read your book. They’ve been listening to the show and they’ve been implementing, which is awesome and let’s face it. I think she actually pointed this out. People don’t have particularly high expectations of the cleaning crew that comes to their house. And so as with many industries, experience is a way that you can stand out and exceed expectations with your customers. And that’s exactly what Robin is doing at Maid bBrigade. Now she gave some examples in her audio, but she also emailed us some other examples that I wanted to chat about because man, any one of these things would make Maid Brigade stand out to me as a company, but yet they’re doing all of them. So besides from that, you know, free cleaning products for life, they also offer a home happy hour where after 10 visits, they’ll take care of an extra task, like cleaning the refrigerator or sweeping the garage at no charge, which I love because that builds loyalty. Obviously, if I’ve stayed for 10 visits, now I’m staying for another 10 because I know my refrigerator can wait, but I mean, it’s a great little reward, their customers for staying with them. And it really doesn’t cost them a whole lot. Maybe it costs a few extra minutes for a crew to be there, but the impact is huge.

Joey Coleman (38:05):
Absolutely. And you know, the, one of my favorites that Robin shared, which ties to this one is that through their analytics, they have found that if they can keep a client for at least eight visits, that client will usually stay for, wait for it over 40 visits. So if they can get past eight, they’ll get to 40. Now friends, I get that you may not be in the maid business, but when you can figure out what your “keep them until” line is in your business, you know, Robyn figured it out that it’s eight visits. And then you see the dramatic impact that the retention in the loyalty has. It makes focusing on those initial visits that much more important. And what I think is interesting is eight visits. You figure the average cleaning crew is coming twice a month. Huh? Let’s see, four months. Oh that, Oh, what would that be? Just right around the hundred day mark, you know, just a little bit past the a hundred day Mark, the first hundred days really matter. So I love that they do this. And they’re specifically doing handwritten cards and gift certificates that are coming in in the first eight visits. They’re showering with the customers with love in those first few visits, because they know that that’s a foundation to build long-term loyalty from.

Dan Gingiss (39:26):
For sure. And the other thing that they do is they will also send a gift when they mess something up. And by the way, those were hers words, mess something up and I’m like, Oh, that’s funny. I like that. But Hey, when they, she did say, Hey, stuff happens sometimes and they immediately take ownership of it and they send some sort of gift. And her belief is that that gesture lessons, whatever problem was caused. And I think it certainly does. Now look, they break a fine vase where thousands of dollars, it’s probably not going to fix the vase, but I think we all know that mistakes happen. We all know that no business is perfect, but taking that ownership, not hiding behind it, not trying to sweep it under the rug…

Joey Coleman (40:10):
Bah dumb da!

Dan Gingiss (40:12):
He did that. Didn’t he, but actually coming out in front of it and apologizing and, and sending the client a gift is such a great idea because we’ve all seen those stats. That one break in the customer experience can cause someone to leave, but not if you do that.

Joey Coleman (40:29):
Yeah. It’s, it’s just a beautiful deposit in the karmic bank account that allows you to keep that customer, you know, the last one that Robin shared in her email to us, uh, which I think interestingly enough, ties back to the conversation we were having about Howard’s book and kind of this balance between big companies and little companies. You know, as we mentioned, Maid Brigade is part of a franchise. And while they certainly have their franchise website, they’re in the process, that is Robin and her husband, of putting together their own website that is based on, wait for it. Another callback here, our good buddy Marcus Sheridan’s book, They Ask You Answer, where they take commonly asked questions by their customers about their cleaning services, about when to clean, how to clean, et cetera, et cetera, and put them on the website so that they’re continuing to provide content and value for people in that digital experience. So look, this, this one’s fun. We’re getting to connect a lot of different pieces of the conversation here. And as we often talk about on the Experience This! Show, it’s not just one thing that creates a remarkable experience. It’s the blending of all the touch points, all the interactions to create the overall feeling that your customers and your employees and your vendors have when they think about you and your brand.

Dan Gingiss (41:48):
Well, Robin Murphy of Maid Brigade, I’m sorry. I used to live in Fairfield County for real. I don’t anymore, but yes, I would move just to have your company service my home. And thank you so much for listening to the show for engaging with us and hey, other listeners, you see what happens when you just send us an email or leave us a review. Next thing you know, we might be featuring your company on a future episode.

Joey Coleman (42:19):
Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This! You are the best listener ever!

Dan Gingiss (42:25):
And since you listened to the whole show…

Joey Coleman (42:28):
Yay you!

Dan Gingiss (42:29):
We’re curious, was there a specific part of this episode that you enjoyed the most? If so, it would mean the world to us if you could share it with a coworker, a friend or someone that just loves listening to podcasts.

Joey Coleman (42:39):
And while you’re in the sharing mood, if you felt inclined to jump over to iTunes or wherever you find your podcasts and write us a review, we would so appreciate it. And when you do, don’t forget to let us know as we might have a little surprise for you.

Dan Gingiss (42:55):
Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more.

Joey Coleman (42:59):
Experience.

Dan Gingiss (42:59):
This!

Episode 119 – Using the Power of Nostalgia to Build Customer Connection

Join us as we discuss why your branding may spoil the experience, how to use nostalgia in unexpected ways, and what your culture says about your customer experience.

Packaging, Listening, and Interviewing – Oh My!

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

Learn more about our Season 7 Partners – Solvvy – The NextGen Chatbot

Episode Transcript

Download an unedited transcript of Episode 119 here or read it below:

Joey Coleman (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (00:08):
The podcast that celebrates remarkable customer experiences and inspires you to stand out from the competition by wowing your customers.

Joey Coleman (00:17):
Each episode, we bring you a healthy dose of inspiring stories, funny interactions, and practical takeaways. Marketing and customer experience thought leader, Dan Gingiss…

Dan Gingiss (00:30):
shares the mic with customer retention and employee experience expert, Joey Coleman, helping you to get people talking about your business.

Joey Coleman (00:40):
So get ready, because it’s time to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:49):
Get ready, for another episode of the Experience This! Show.

Dan Gingiss (00:54):
Join us as we discuss: why your branding may spoil the experience, how to use nostalgia in unexpected ways, and what your culture says about your customer experience.

Joey Coleman (01:07):
Packaging, Listening, and Interviewing – Oh my!

Joey Coleman (01:13):
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 (01:28):
Welcome back to Season Seven. Woo! We are so excited to be here with you. You know, who would have thunk back when we started out with Episode 1 that we would be coming to you in Episode 119 seven seasons later?! We are so pumped and excited for this season. We’ve got some new segments, we’ve got plenty of new stories, some new features for you to get more involved with the show. Woo! Lot to cover, but we’re going to get to that… Before we get started though, Dan, how was your holiday break brother?

Dan Gingiss (01:59):
Well, thanks for asking Joey and great to hear your voice again. It’s been a while since I’ve heard that melodic voice and great holiday season, as you may or may not know my birthday is on Christmas as well. So all the fun we had a great time and, you know, during the break, you and I also got to chat with our brand new partner for this season, Solvvy – The Next Generation Chatbot… And I’m really excited about this because I’ll be honest, I started off as a skeptic on chatbots and having talked with Solvvy, I’m now much more excited about chat bots because I understand them better and I understand what they can and can’t do. And that’s some of what we’re going to share with you, the audience during the season. And I think what will be a really cool segment,

Joey Coleman (02:49):
Absolutely super excited for these Solvvy conversations. You know, my holiday was a lot of fun as well. We’re settling in here in our new house in Iowa, which I’ll honest is a bit snow year and a good bit colder than it wasn’t Colorado, but we had a great Christmas with less people than usual. Like I’m sure with a lot of our listeners had that same experience. Yay, thanks COVID! But still had a lovely time. Although I must confess Dan, I had a bit of a customer experience snafu and I wanted to start things off on the show talking about it today.

Dan Gingiss (03:22):
Oh boy. So not everything was a holly jolly Christmas.

Joey Coleman (03:26):
No, no, it was not. And uh, to be honest, this is something we’ve talked about before on the show, but this time, this scenario showed up in a different way. So let me explain my incredible wife, Berit loves gifts and presents. If you were to look at the book, The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman and put her through the test, which we’ve done many a times, both. She and I have taken that test. She scores 12 out of 12 on gifts and presents. So I tried to surprise her with gifts and presents whenever I get the chance. And she’s very health conscious and we’re here in the Midwest now, and we’ve talked about farming and we have a family farm and I decided to order her an indoor lettuce farm. So it’s basically a vertical garden with grow lights that lets you grow more produce at home, which is better for the environment. It helps keep our family healthy too. And I was super excited about this gift and really wanted to surprise her because she loves surprises, especially when it comes to Christmas, but I’d never ordered for this company before and kind of didn’t know what to expect, but I signed up to receive the delivery alerts so I could make sure to sneak the box into the house. Cause I knew it was going to be a big box before she saw it.

Dan Gingiss (04:41):
Oh, I think I know where this is going,

Joey Coleman (04:44):
Dan. I think you may be correct. Well, here’s the scoop. So we’re coming up towards Christmas. We’re about two weeks out. I receive a message that the package was scheduled to be delivered on a Friday. I’m feeling good. We’re going to have plenty of time to wrap for Christmas, but on Wednesday morning, keep in mind. It’s supposed to be delivered on Friday. I come out to the kitchen to find Berit with kind of a guilty look on her face. Let me guess she had seen the present. Dan, not only had she seen the present, but the company who shall remain nameless here because it’s not really there. Now it’s debatable as to whether they’re to blame for this, but I just hope people will think differently after listening this segment – the company had written their name in huge letters all over all three of the large boxes and it was painfully obvious that this was a home-based lettuce growing kit, given the branding.

Dan Gingiss (05:42):
I have to laugh twice. I think I’ve laughed. Actually. Number one is I I’m still back at the whole concept of a lettuce farm, which I think is outstanding. But if you asked me, “Hey Dan, take a guess what we’re going to talk about in the first episode of 2021 it’s not what it’s not going to be. What I came up with

Joey Coleman (05:59):
And knowing you’re a big produce guy, Dan, I got to say you can grow more than lettuce. Okay. But let’s just say lettuce was the intention, the brand, there were some challenges.

Dan Gingiss (06:10):
All right, got you. Yep. And the other thing though that I was laughing about was you actually had the opposite experience a few years ago, I believe with a LEGO box.

Joey Coleman (06:19):
Yes, exactly. I regularly order from Lego and they go out of their way to ship their boxes blind – that is they ship them without any branding or labeling. Even the return address is impossible to decipher because they know that their products are often given as gifts.

Dan Gingiss (06:37):
I think that was Episode 56 of Season Three.

Joey Coleman (06:42):
Our loyal listeners will continue to be impressed with your rain man, esque knowledge of our back catalog of episodes. Dan, I guarantee. But yes, the fact that LEGO shipped the boxes blind way back in season three. And by the way, they still do it today because LEGO was another package that arrived at our house this Christmas and was a big hit. It shows that LEGO has thought through the trade-offs between promoting their brand and ruining the surprise when the package is delivered. Something that I wish this in-house, indoor, vertical farm would have done.

Dan Gingiss (07:16):
You know, I think this is interesting because I’m not so sure that the branding on the boxes does a whole lot. I mean, if you think about it, depending on the community that you live in, it might be sitting at someone’s doorstep that, you know, if you have any length of a driveway at all, you can’t see from the street. And so unless you’re trying to convince the mailman or mailwoman to, to purchase from your company, like, I don’t think this is one of these cases where millions of people are seeing it. Now

Joey Coleman (07:45):
It’s all about getting ups and FedEx drivers to buy more of your product!

Dan Gingiss (07:49):
It could be, I mean, I’m thinking two things, one, obviously the ubiquitous Amazon box, which you see a thousand times a day and almost any neighborhood, you know, that might be an exception. But I also, I wonder whether you know this, Joey, do you know that for years you were not allowed to have any branding on anything on any box shipped through the postal service. And that actually has changed. I have a feeling that Amazon ended up changing that, but for a while, if you, even, if you tried to reuse the box, for example, you had to cover up all the branding because the advertising wasn’t allowed.

Joey Coleman (08:22):
Well, I don’t exactly remember that whether it was allowed or not, I’ll defer to your expertise on this Dan. But I do agree with you that there’s kind of this healthy mix. And I know for example, Apple intentionally doesn’t say Apple on the box because they don’t want people stealing the boxes. Right? So I, and I also get that there’s this fine line between if your packaging also shows up in a retail environment, you might want to have a boxed in a certain way because it’s going to sit in a store and be visible. And it kind of almost becomes an in-store advertisement. But this company to my knowledge only sells online. And I just, I, you know, I’ll admit I was a little bit bummed that the surprise was given up. Not because of me, but because of the packaging of the box. So what could this company have done differently? Well, I’m not saying that branding, your packaging is bad. In fact, when done properly, it’s a great way to market and promote your offerings. However, if you think there is a chance that someone might purchase your product as a gift, especially around the holiday season, it would be a great experience to let purchasers choose their delivery packaging. Or if that’s too logistically complicated, at least let them know that the package will be arriving with lots of external branding so they can prepare themselves accordingly. You don’t want to be the brand that ruined Christmas. And there is nothing worse than creating a bad brand experience before the customers even opened the box.

Joey Coleman (09:57):
Just because you have required elements of your business doesn’t mean they need to be, Oh, 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.

Joey Coleman (10:17):
I saw an interesting post on Medium recently from Tom Whitwell called “52 things I learned in 2020.” Tom is a managing consultant at Flux in London. And he shared a fascinating list of learnings, including one in particular that stood out to me. Number three on his list, “the hold music you hear when you phone Octopus Energy is personalized to your customer account. It’s a number one record from the year you were 14.

Dan Gingiss (10:44):
Well, first of all, octopus energy could be the best name of any energy company I’ve ever heard.

Joey Coleman (10:49):
It’s an awesome name!

Dan Gingiss (10:50):
but I love the concept of personalized hold music. I mean, we did talk about hold music way back in Season One, Episode 6, when we talked about that one impressed even me, ladies, I’m going to double down and say that we also talked about hold music on our other show, Experience Points – the game show – and Scott McCain was our guests that day. And, uh, we, we showed a couple of different, uh, hold music, examples, but nothing personalized to the year that you were 14 years old.

Joey Coleman (11:22):
This one feels really special. So when I first saw this, I had to learn more. So I checked out the octopus energy website and found some cheeky messaging. And I say cheeky, because they’re over in London that matched their creative hold music. Now this is how their about us page reads on the website. And I quote, “We’re doing energy better for you and for the environment. The energy industry in Britain is ruled by a handful of complacent, dinosaurs, peddling, fossil fuels, pricing, trickery, and poor customer service. In 2016, octopus entered the market to disrupt the status quo with energy that’s good for the planet, good for your wallet, and honestly, good for your soul. Since then, we’ve been picking up 30,000 customers a month on average, and now supply energy to 1.5 million UK homes and counting. To this day, 92% of our customers rate us as “five stars excellent” on Trustpilot. And we’re the only supplier to be recommended by consumer champion, which year after year, after a year, after a year.

Dan Gingiss (12:30):
Okay. Now I get the octopus joke because dinosaurs!

Joey Coleman (12:35):
There’s a lot of fun and games going on.

Dan Gingiss (12:39):
It’s outstanding! Gosh, where to start. You know, also I just love communication. I love words and how we talk to customers. And I do believe that every chance we have to communicate with customers in any channel is an opportunity to create an experience. That’s why we have this whole segment called Required Remarkable because so much of our communication is required and we don’t have to just make it boring. We can make it really interesting. And it seems like a, as they’re saying that what they’re doing is working because their customers love them. And let’s recall people, this is an energy company.

Joey Coleman (13:16):
Yeah. That’s the thing. This is an energy company and 92% of their customers rate them as five stars. Like we could just stop right there. I got to tell you, Dan, I wanted to become a customer of Octopus Energy and figure out how to make that happen – even though they’re based in the UK, because I was so intrigued by this! Well, and then I tracked down this specific page on their website that talks about their hold music and I quote, shut up and hold me at octopus energy, everything we make starts with the customer. So what does that mean for hold music? Well, if we have your birth date on file, we’ll play the song. That was number one when you were 14 years old. Keen to know what your octopus jam is? Just select your birth year below and we’ll let you know, and then you can type in your birth year and it tells you what the song would be. And I love this and think it’s a beautiful example of creating a required remarkable strategy that takes advantage of a nostalgia trend play.

Dan Gingiss (14:14):
Do go on Joey – say more about that…

Joey Coleman (14:17):
Well, I think, you know, as you mentioned earlier, Dan, we talk about this idea that there are required elements of your business, that you have the chance to make remarkable yet most businesses don’t do that. We’ve also talked about in previous episodes, uh, this whole idea of a nostalgia play, especially for folks who are over 30 and as you get older, the numbers that desire for nostalgia increases even more that if you can reach back and grab something from the past and bring it to the present, it gives us warm, fuzzy feelings inside. And I don’t know about you, but at about 14 music really started to play a different role in my life than it had before. And this idea of anchoring into some key songs that were right at that transitional period in life, I think is a great way to take customers of any age and bring them back to some really positive feelings around music.

Dan Gingiss (15:13):
Agreed and nostalgia, I think always plays it’s, it’s personalized in and of itself. We obviously all feel nostalgic about different things, but music is something that brings people together and, you know, the 14, I’m sure some report told them that 14 was the ideal year, but I think you’re right, that you know, that somewhere in your teenage years is where you really start connecting with music. And, and you remember those, those songs and, you know, Joey, I couldn’t help, but notice that you and I have the same birth year. We do. We do. I’m born at the beginning of the year. You’re a little youngster, you’re born more towards the end of the year, but I think it’d be, uh, I wonder if any of our listeners could guess given that you and I were born in 1973, what the number one song was when we were 14?

Mystery Singer (16:05):
Never gonna give you up, never gonna let you down, never gonna run around and desert you!

Joey Coleman (16:14):
Oh goodness. How about that? Who would have thought that two jokers like us would get to have the number one song when we were 14, be the song that is infamous on the internet?!

Dan Gingiss (16:25):
Fantastic. Love it. And it certainly that that song gets me home in every time and singing out loud. So I, I think it would work if I were waiting on, hold on. I also love the fact that I just want to go back to the fact that you said the website started with “Shut up and hold me!” And you know, I mean, I said before about the “I’m On Hold” song, my first experience ever with that song, I literally felt like I didn’t want the conference call to start because I wanted to hear the end of the song and think about how different that is from the feeling you normally have when you’re on hold. And so, yeah, obviously ideally, no one would be on hold ever. But given that, that does seem to be a fact of life playing a song that, you know, the person’s going to be rocking out to is a great idea.

Joey Coleman (17:15):
Absolutely. You know, friends auditing your customer touchpoints and looking for ways to enhance them is always a good idea, but it seems particularly timely at the beginning of a new year. You can get some fast wins. You can instill a sense of creativity and really start things off on the right foot or the right note as one might decide. So take some inspiration from the fine folks at Octopus Energy and go find ways to make the required elements of your business more remarkable.

Joey Coleman (17:50):
Almost everyone has interacted with chatbots, but all too often, it’s been a bad experience. In MythBusters – presented by Solvvy – we explore a common myth about CX chatbots and see how the right technology can create a positive experience, every time.

Joey Coleman (18:17):
Today’s myth about chatbots? Chatbots aren’t smart. Have you ever had the chance to ask a chat bot, something that you think is a very simple question and you get a response like I don’t understand or try asking again, that’s my chatbot robot voice, by the way, this is not only frustrating, but it leaves me feeling like I’m wasting my time. And as a result, I ended up desperately seeking a human.

Dan Gingiss (18:42):
Now while there is a myth that chatbots aren’t smart. The reality is that modern chatbots are intelligent. Chatbots are now using N L P – an abbreviation for natural language processing, which also allows a chat bot to interpret a customer question along with the intent behind it, regardless of how it’s expressed in a chat.

Joey Coleman (19:05):
For example, you might not have received a package that you were expecting, maybe something special you ordered for Christmas. If you were to type in, I haven’t received my package yet, or even more specifically, my indoor lettuce farm is missing modern chatbots like Solvvy interpret the intention you have to track or locate your package. The chatbot then guides the customer to the right place to do this. Fast resolution, a happy customer, no support ticket necessary!

Dan Gingiss (19:34):
Now that sounds like a much better customer experience. It is about time that the technology started to understand what I want. Even if I don’t say it as clearly as I could. We’ll learn more about advances in chat bot and support automation throughout the season.

Joey Coleman (19:50):
That’s another myth busted. Thanks to our friends at Solvvy – the NextGen chatbot.

Joey Coleman (20:00):
Have you ever found yourself saying, “I wonder what Dan and Joey would think about this situation?” Well, guess what? Now you can know, just tag us on social or message us through our website with a customer experience, scenario, a question or anything else you’re curious about, and you’ll get to hear our answers. When you Ask Us Anything.

Joey Coleman (20:27):
We are super excited to introduce a brand new segment this season here in season seven, doing things, new friends called ask us anything.

Dan Gingiss (20:37):
Similar to the famous, ask me anything – or AMA – that started on Reddit in the ask us anything segment of our show. Listeners submit a scenario, question, or topic for Joey and me to discuss, but the topics will all be customer experience related.

Joey Coleman (20:54):
Now, part of the credit for this segment goes to Tony Amante Schepers – the Director of Operations, Customer Success, and Customer Experience at OYO USA. Tony recently wrote an article on LinkedIn about the importance of sharing your company culture as part of your interview process. And he tagged Dan and me to get our thoughts on the subject. Now let’s be honest. Tony’s a great guy. We appreciate him and tagging us always good to tag Dan. First on the socialist friends, he’s the social media expert gets stuff out there on the socials for Dan, if you want to tag me as well, that’s fine too. But long story short, we saw the article and we thought this would be a fun way to have a new segment on the show.

Dan Gingiss (21:36):
Agreed. So it worked Tony! Let’s give you a brief overview of his article. It was called “Four steps to sharing company culture during the interview process and why you need to.” In the article, Tony shares research that the number one reason, someone stays with an employer is culture. And the number one reason, someone leaves an employer is culture. He goes on to define company culture as quote the day-to-day way things get done, how coworkers communicate with each other, how they communicate to the client, how often leadership mingles with, and if they listen to those lower on the totem pole, the frequency in which wins are shared and celebrated company-wide. And the way in which losses are treated as learning moments, not slaps on the hand,” unquote.

Joey Coleman (22:26):
Tony notes that while there is certainly a lot of churn in the marketplace, when it comes to employment right now, quote, “What will keep an employee present once the pandemic and lockdown ends is the employer valuing the hire from day one.” And by “day one,” what Tony means is from the start of the interview process, he believes that quote it’s vital to show how company culture operates, how a business communicates internally to accomplish daily tasks.

Dan Gingiss (22:55):
Tony outlines the four steps to sharing company culture as follows: (1) Get an internal pulse check by surveying employees about how they rate internal communication and then sharing that broadly across the organization and with new hires. (2) Try out new modes of communication videos, social media, et cetera, show the world, the business and the faces behind it.

Joey Coleman (23:20):
Number three, conduct a culture fit interview, giving job candidates, a brief personality test to see if their approach to problem solving will be a good fit for your company culture. And number four, share how teams talk be transparent in the interview process about how employees use things like Slack, Microsoft Teams, email voicemails, happy hours, all hands meetings, et cetera. So now that laid the foundation of Tony’s hypothesis, that culture really matters and that you should show that as part of the interview process, what do you think about this Dan?

Dan Gingiss (23:56):
I love the idea because the culture is one of the things that’s really hard to suss out as an interviewee, right? If you think about it, you’re going in, you’re talking to people, their job is essentially to say nice things about the company. And so if you’re doing your research, you’re probably looking at sites like glass door, or you’re calling somebody who used to work there, or what have you to get the real scoop because the front that companies put on is, you know, might as well be put out by the PR department with no offense to PR departments, because it is always so positive. Right? And then you get there and it’s like, Oh, well, you know, you didn’t tell me this part. I’ll give you a real life example from my career Joey. I know, you know, this one is I signed on to be the head of global social media at McDonald’s and it was not until my first day of work that I learned that in McDonald’s culture, the United States is not part of global. That might’ve been something…

Joey Coleman (24:58):
Such a mind opening experience!

Dan Gingiss (25:00):
Yeah. I mean, I, it might’ve been something that would have been cool to discuss in the interview. It never came up. I didn’t know that the company was divided into domestic and global and that global meant everything, but the U S but man, that was a real eye opener on day one. And I think that, you know, the cultural things, like, I mean, he mentioned Slack. For example, I was at a company, a late stage startup was my first ever exposure to Slack. I fell in love with it. I loved it. My emails were much, I got much fewer emails during the day. It was a great way to communicate. But man, if you’ve never used it before, that might be something that’s scary or

Joey Coleman (25:42):
Or if you have you used it like I have and you didn’t like it… If I found out after I got on the job, that it was a Slack shop that everybody was using Slack, no offense to the great team at Slack and what they’ve built. I would not be super happy about that because it’s like, Oh, on top of fitting in, I need to fit in, in the way that you’re fitting in with the technology tools. And that was the one I really liked. You know, I liked all the examples that Tony gave, but that one in particular I thought was a great way to give people exposure. Like maybe let them see, not only that you use Slack, but what are some of the chats? What are the things that people are saying? I think channels is the phrase that they use in Slack, you know, invite them to your happy hour, invite your interviewees, to come to your happy hour and see are these the kinds of people we want to hang out with.

Dan Gingiss (26:32):
So, by the way, we have a very, the old segment we have not used in a really long time. It might even be in retirement. We’re going to have to pull it out. It’s called “Agree to Disagree!”

Joey Coleman (26:43):
Aww – bringing us back!

Dan Gingiss (26:43):
We’re going to have one about Slack, Joey, because I love Slack. I love it. Yeah. And I think we should have that conversation. So that’ll be a future episode. Thank you, Tony. You are just continuing to contribute to our show. But you’re right. The happy hours, the meetings, even what people, how, how people dress. What’s appropriate and not in terms of, you know, a lot in startup culture, there’s things like ping pong tables and, and snacks and all that sort of thing. And you get used to some of that stuff, but then it’s also, you know, you switched to a more traditional company and that stuff all goes away or things like open seating that’s become that, that pre COVID was becoming so popular. That is something personally that I never particularly enjoyed. I always liked having my own space where I can put a picture frame and you know, my coffee mug and stuff like that. And, and having to just show up and pick a cube every day was very unnerving to me. So I do think those are all things that are very relevant to culture. And then obviously what’s not being said here is that when employees are happy, when they like the culture, when they enjoy going to work every day, that then gets projected onto the customers and customers can see when employees like where they’re working. I mean, I always like to give the example of when you walk into a fast food restaurant and a, and that person behind the counter, it looks like you’re interrupting their otherwise pleasant day by wanting to place an order.

Joey Coleman (28:12):
Yeah – “sorry for interrupting you!”

Dan Gingiss (28:15):
Yeah. That gives you a good sense for what it’s like to work at that company.

Joey Coleman (28:18):
Absolutely. And I think the parallel, some people might be listening to this saying, well, wait a second guys, how does this connect to customer experience? Well, and as we talk about a lot on the show customer experience and employee experience are two sides of the same coin. I think when you think about the culture of your organization, that absolutely spills into your customer interactions, and you want to make sure that a new employee is going to get the fit. They’re going to want to understand how you communicate. I mean, go back to the earlier conversation we had in this episode about Octopus Energy. If you’re a buttoned up straight laced, you know, traditional, conservative, corporate business person, you’re probably not going to fit in well at a place like Octopus Energy. That’s my guess, just based on the language they use on their website. So I think at the end of the day, there’s a real opportunity to preview what it’s going to be like to be an employee as much as possible. Because if we can get folks to understand before they start the job, what the job is really going to be like, there’s a much higher likelihood that it’s going to be successful for everyone, not only the employee, but for the folks that are inviting this new employee in.

Dan Gingiss (29:33):
If you’d like to submit a question, a topic, or a theory about customer experience that you’d like us to discuss as part of our next, ask us anything segment it’s pretty easy. You could just tag us on social media like Tony did or visit ExperienceThisShow.com, go to the contact page and send us a little message with your question. And Hey Tony, we’re going to send you a package of surprise and delight for asking our first question and well, we might do it for the second, third, fourth, fifth, and 20th questions too. We look forward to answering more of your questions throughout this season.

Joey Coleman (30:11):
Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This! You are the best listener ever!

Dan Gingiss (30:17):
And since you listened to the whole show…

Joey Coleman (30:19):
Yay you!

Dan Gingiss (30:21):
We’re curious… Was there a specific part of this episode that you enjoyed the most? If so, it would mean the world to us if you could share it with a coworker, a friend, or someone that just loves listening to podcasts!

Joey Coleman (30:31):
And while you’re in the sharing mood, if you felt inclined to jump over to iTunes or wherever you find your podcasts and write us a review, we would so appreciate it. And when you do, don’t forget to let us know as we might have a little surprise for you!

Dan Gingiss (30:47):
Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more…

Joey Coleman (30:49):
Experience!

Dan Gingiss (30:51):
This!

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!