Today, I have the great pleasure to host a guest post of my friend Mike Bal!
Mike says about himself: “I’m very happily married to my wife, Ciara, and we have the most amazing son in the world, Lincoln. I’m a former competitive boxer and my interests span from tech to toys and anywhere in-between.” He is the Creator/ Author of Marketing Apocalypse, and Founder of
@creaturescontnt, a former boxer, break dancer and long-time Batman enthusiast. He spends WAY too much time on social media and has an uncontrollable addiction to coffee… and cookies.
- I know Mike for some time now. We worked together for about 3 years at the same company and we often had conversations about how social media has affected the way people interact and even ask for help on social networks.
Here you go:
How To Inspire A Better Product Experience
User experience is a term that most people associate with technology. Web designers create sites for the best user experience, app makers design their interface for a better user experience, and marketers optimize their funnels for the best possible user experience. While I find all of those elements incredibly interesting I can’t help but feel like we skipped a step. What about the user experience with physical products and non-digital services?
I’m not saying that no one is thinking about it because there are great product designers and customer service teams out there who make it their top priority. Unfortunately, I do feel like marketers have let it slip down their priority list.
Now that we have data available to justify all of our decisions and tactics we can zero-in on the main goal, which is usually acquiring new users or customers. After working with a very numbers-driven company for a few years, I found myself guilty of doing exactly what I just mentioned.
Why don’t we focus on the post-purchase customer experience more? Because it’s harder to quantify which makes it harder to justify when you’re sitting in front of your client or supervisor. Let’s be honest, it’s a lot easier to say, “We drove X new users which ends up being worth $XXXXX in revenue,” than it is to say, “Customers are happier than they’ve ever been and we think that’s leading to more WOM referrals.” I’m not going to dig into the customer acquisition vs customer retention battle because other people have already covered it:
I’m not talking about an in-depth FAQ section or a library of tutorials to help them use it the way it’s meant to be used. I’m talking about creating content that gives your product and your brand context within the customer’s daily lives.
This idea actually prompted me to start a new project called Creatures of Content and has so far proven to be extremely effective. What we’ve done is set up non-paid partnerships with businesses and brands we’re genuinely interested in. They’ll set us up with the product/service and we’ll create whatever content comes to mind based on our personal experience with it.
We don’t accept any payment because we don’t want to feel obligated to create something if we don’t end up having a good experience and also because we don’t want our fans to think of us as advertisers. We don’t plan anything with our partners because we want the content to be 100% genuine, which helps us maintain trust and credibility with our fans and our personal connections.
We’ve created everything from stop motion animation to custom recipes and we work with everyone from geeky subscription services like Loot Crate to designer app and technology companies like Fifty Three and we’ve had some great success. Here’s why:
- Our content showcases the product/services potential, which appeals to current customers and potential buyers.
- We’re not motivated to drive sales, we’re motivated to engage.
- We’re sharing from a customer’s perspective. not a brand’s, not a marketer’s, not a sales person’s.
- We’re moving beyond the obvious. Of course you can drink Craft Coffee but how about adding it to cookies?
You can take all of these elements and put them to use for your brand if you’re willing to split your focus. Help your customers see your product or service in a new way. Re-engage the customers who are coasting with a mediocre product experience. Create something for the purpose of improving their experience rather than just triggering their actions. If you genuinely commit to doing all of these things you’ll not only make your customers happier, you’ll turn them into your own team of content creators who gladly send new customers your way over and over again.