On any given day potential customers will come into contact and interact with your brand. Any form of interaction is known as what’s called a ‘touch point’ and over time these culminate to form part of your customer experience. For high-end brands crafting a luxury customer journey its important to pay attention to forgotten areas where a customer might come into contact with your brand.
“Predicting a customer’s next move or thought plays a huge role in this kind of service and is something that often delights customers – which they’ll share with friends.”Elena Lockett
A touch point can be anything from your logo, to window displays, all the way to your app and social channels. A touch point may come in the form of a word of mouth recommendation or user reviews online, certain touch points like this are much harder to control.
Understanding touch points means guiding your customer journey
Mapping how your customers interact with your brand allows you to better understand the journey they are taking. Knowing this reveals areas that might be overlooked and creates a better overall customer experience with your brand.
For the majority of businesses their customers are expecting 4 basic criteria when travelling along their journey and they are to be:
However, for high end brands trying to craft a more luxurious customer journey, there are a lot more elements to consider, especially when your name carries a pedigree. We all know the infamous Warren Buffet quote:
"It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you'll do things differently."Warren Buffet
So, of course with this comes less room for dissatisfaction meaning luxury brands have to deliver a seamless experience or face losing customers.
Walk a mile in the customers shoes
Most organisations assume customers are going to be interacting directly, experiencing the brand in a linear way. This is pretty outdated thinking and keys in on the wrong aspect, it’s too company-centric.
If your brand is looking to deliver an exceptional luxury customer journey this will not suffice. Providing what’s expected is not enough for a luxury customer paying top dollar. Luxury brands need to surprise, delight and offer something the consumer didn’t even know they wanted.
When thinking about the key touchpoints customers are going to be engaging with its important to put yourself in the mindset of your audience. Ask yourself where do you go (and how do you get there) when you:
- Have a problem that needs to be solved?
- Compare problem resolutions?
- Make a purchase decision?
- Encounter the brand after a purchase?
Transitioning your business into modernisation and centering around the customer will prevent your customer experiences from becoming fragmented. By doing this you are able to build relationships between your brand and customer.
The Ritz-Carlton hotel chain has cemented itself as the eighth most luxurious brand in the Kadence Luxury Index 2018 they have achieved this through new definitions of the term luxury.
Luxury is a “combination of quality, comfort and elegance, alongside an element of scarcity, authenticity and increasingly, distinctiveness.”
Ritz's latest campaign titled ‘Let Us Stay with You’ gathered thousands of accounts of staff going above and beyond to create “wow” moments. One example given was one employee working with a local tailor to replace the contents of a guest’s lost luggage when all other shops were shut.
"Customer service shouldn't just be a department, it should be the entire company."Tony Hsieh
Feeling like they are more than just a transaction is just the type of delight and surprise high-end customers are expecting in a luxury customer journey.
Be consistent throughout your luxury customer experience
Ensuring a consistent voice resonates through your customer journey as a whole is very important in keeping your brand messaging cohesive. Keeping blog posts relevant and social profiles up-to-date means these touchpoints will always be a good point of contact for the customer.
Bentley has been ushering in personalised marketing tactics into their strategy with the introduction of ‘Bentley Road Trips’. Customers choose form 7 locations that the user is taken on a virtual journey, with descriptions of attractions and pit stops along the way. At the end of their journey users are given three options – find the route on Google maps, share the experience with a friend or download the route via PDF.
This paired with their ‘one of a kind’ Inspirator app that uses emotional recognition software to suggest the perfect Bentley car for you. By using facial and emotional reactions via the camera a Bentley with personalised colours and interior specifications, to present a product suited just for you.
Personalised marketing strategies offer great solutions when looking to provide a luxury customer experience. These can only be achieved through collecting reliable customer data allowing you to identity entry points for your marketing efforts. By implying you have taken the time to contact that individual personally, with relevant material specific to them and their needs, will help your brand stand you out as going further for your customer.
“Even if a customer hasn’t interacted with a company, they still want to feel known. Customers are 2.1x more likely to view personalized offers as important, versus unimportant.”Salesforce
Look at what works, according to ‘Reevoo’ 61% of people are more likely to engage with an advertisement if it contained USG (User Generated Content). As well as finding peer-created content is almost 2 times as influential as brand created.
Going online has given access to other people’s experiences so the customer journey is not as isolated as it used to be. Including user reviews and photos for marketing purposes will give a much more organic process to how your current customers interact with your brand.
To see how gathering the right customer data could help you get a better idea of where your touchpoints are chat to one of our experts below.chat to an expert
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