FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Pressnews.biz (Press Release) Oct 24, 2013
-- In living history we have never had greater technological connectivity. Yet why is it then that people, specifically customers, have never been more disconnected?
One key manifestation is the shift in the customer purchasing process.
The selling cycle has changed, in fact, at Brandheart we think it’s safe to say that there is a significant shift from selling to buying – more over we would add that for most categories the buying cycle is over well before the seller is even aware it happened.
Once upon a time you had sales people who where trained to ‘sell’ – now for the most part these people are simply conducting transactions or worse still are standing around doing nothing much.
So what is ‘now’ becoming the typical customer purchasing method?
Customers are increasingly doing their brand and product research online: they go to various suppliers and check the offers and when they find what they want they then go and do online price comparisons.
They review other buyer testimonials, get opinions in forums and they may even go to their local store and test or try on the merchandise for size…after that they then they go back online and find where it’s cheapest, which could be anywhere on the planet.
In a few days the product arrives…and if they don’t like it they send it back and get a full refund. Otherwise they feel they are a ‘smart’ consumer who has done a great deal, in the most convenient way possible.
This ever-increasing purchasing approach is very frustrating for many brands and businesses because of the lack of engagement and brand loyalty through brand positioning and the seemingly insatiable desire for the customer to get the cheapest price.
Most of these businesses say they are trying very hard to ‘connect’ with customers yet a great many are in fact acting like ‘commodity traders’ whose only attraction and engagement weapon is price-cutting. Little wonder people are not emotionally engaging.
With profits reduced these very same businesses are forced to compromise the customer experience through poor environments, and personnel who are not themselves engaged, so customers detach and go elsewhere…increasingly they are going online where they are replacing emotional connectivity with lower order criteria such as convenience and price.
It simply doesn’t need to be this way. So let’s look for a solution by seeking answers from those that, in these difficult times, are thriving.
To that end, we have chosen a case study based on a recent personal experience of Brandheart founder and managing director Glen Campbell and we trust this will give you cause for contemplation and positive change in brand building strategies.
Glen recently purchased a Tag Heuer wristwatch in their flagship store in Sydney. The store is truly magnificent with beautiful fittings and merchandising that showcases the products in a way that entices.
The purchasing experience was not about selling but engaging and seducing. At no time did the Tag representative try to sell or coerce.
They simply went into stories about each watch like it was a living, breathing organism that was born and bred to be something that could not be owned but was passed from generation to generation.
That day Glen tried around 10 different styles and tried to stay ambivalent yet he feely admits he very quickly became deeply emotionally engaged. Of course he purchased the watch, which was treated like a ‘baby’ by the representative.
Several weeks after the purchase a package arrived for Glen. It was completely unexpected. Glen opened a beautiful box from Tag Heuer, which contained a Tag Heuer pen and a peak cap. The letter thanked Glen for his support and offered him these free gifts along with a membership to the Tag Heuer 360 Club, which offers special discounts for products, merchandising and events.
This of course this surprise served to deepen the brand connection with Glen immensely. Now Glen is a brand loyalist who is unlikely to move to any other brand development strategy.
While other businesses are complaining that customers are becoming increasingly disconnected, what is happening at Tag Heuer is quite the opposite.
The fact is people don’t want or like being disconnected; they’re actually seeking connection, to be a part of a community, even a cult, now more than ever before.
Should you create that around your brand it is highly likely you will both lead your category and never have to deep cut discount your prices. Whatever business you are in, whether it’s telecommunications, banking, accounting or a butcher shop the key to engaging and more deeply connecting with your particular customer base is about leadership that has a high EQ, or emotional intelligence; a well defined and shared set of values and a brand promise that is happily delivered consistently through a team that enjoys a harmonious culture.
Tag Heuer has made it happen and so can you…and like them I suggest you will have no shortage of customers who will love the experience and come back again and again and pay with pleasure what you are asking.