My wife and I like to dance. I admit it. Typcially, we’re 20 years older than most of the patrons in the clubs that we go to though. She – typically to Rock… me too, although I am a big fan of swing dancing and love Midsummer Night Swing @ Lincoln Center.
But last week we had a really interesting experience that got me thinking about how customers behave/react to your marketing and customer experience that your brand is aiming to deliver. Do they truly experience your marketing and get immersed in the brand experience or do they simply observe it but don’t react?
We were at the Santos party house in TriBeCa. And we were having a great time, Cold drinks, Hot dancing… a perfect early summer evening. The band wasn’t playing many covers… mostly original stuff, which we were digging and we were just flowing and dancing. We stopped to get a drink, went back to our spot on the dance floor and noticed something odd — we were the only people in the place that were dancing. Everyone else was just standing there.
Now, there were three reasons why they were just standing there – (1) they thought the music sucked so they were waiting for another act to come on – but that clearly wasn’t the case because most of the audience knew the lyrics to the songs being sung and were in fact singing along. (2) Kids these days (just loved using that phrase) didn’t know how to have a good time – well I ruled that one out too for some obvious reasons or (3) the audience was observing the event and not experiencing it. They were not immersed or connected to the event emotionally and so they didnt’ dance.
Was there something different about my wife and I vs. the Millenial rich audience we were a part of? Did they not enjoy dancing? While this notion of experiencing v. observing is an easy one to latch on to, I think there is a more nuanced reason behind the difference in behaviors. The millenials in the room were experiencing differently. Their enjoyment of the event was derived by a personal connection to the performer… talking to him – which they did, singing his songs and swaying to the music. My wife and I, on the other hand, had different intentions… we went their to dance… we had a different intent based on our life experiences.
The same happens with the the experiences that brands try to deliver to their customers. Brands today are trying to deliver compelling customer experiences in the digital engagements they serve up to their customers. But they typically neglect to customize those experiences based on customer intent or generational influences. One size does not fit all. It doesn’t work for digital engagement nor in-person. The same holds true to sales engagements. If, as a sales rep, you are not customizing your engagement strategy based both customer intent and generational influences you are not optimizing that engagement and are most likely leaving cash on the table.
If your brand caters to multiple generations or customers that engage with you with different intents, its a necessity to customize the Cx to those intents and generational differences. To not do so, leaves loyalty and revenue opportunities on the dance floor.