Thursday, November 30, 2017

Amazon Is Nailing Micro-experiences

Micro-moments. They’re Google’s brain child and, in my opinion, a wonderful movement to get brands really thinking about their customer journey. To recap, Google defines a Micro-moment as, “an intent-rich moment when a person turns to a device to act on a need–to know, go, do, or buy”. It’s a concept backed by tons of research, but if you ask me we don’t even need to look at the numbers to know that it’s a trend–we can simply look at our own internet search histories. We, the 21st century consumers, are last-minute, need-it-now type of consumers. If we find ourselves in need of a piece of information and it’s not in the palm of our hand in three seconds flat, we’re gone. So, yes, Micro-moments are important for brands to capitalize on. But I think there’s one crucial piece missing from the four Micro-moment pillars of “I want to know, go, do and buy”…what about “I want to be delighted”? This is where Micro-experiences come in.

Micro-experiences? Weren’t We Just Talking About Micro-moments?
Yes, you heard me. We’re adding another micro to the mix. Where Micro-moments are all about need, Micro-experiences are about want. Sure, I might need to find a store that has my size sweater in stock, but when I get to that store, what am I going to want? What is going to win me over as a customer, and make me come back to that store and brand time and time again? A Micro-experience: a personalized mobile experience that meets me where I am in my customer journey and totally delights me as a customer. If you’re still a little confused, I’ve got the perfect example…

Amazon’s Gift Receipts
A friend sent me a gift via Amazon and when the package arrived in the mail, it came with this little slip of paper:

When I opened my iPhone’s camera and scanned the QR code, I was taken to an Amazon page that prompted me to “Say Thanks” for the gift with a personalized thank you email. Below the thank you note option was a photo of the item I had received with a link to the product’s details, and just below that was an option to return or replace the gift with something else from Amazon. It’s everything I could possibly need in that moment as the recipient of that specific gift, all at my fingertips with just a quick scan.

Could I have received this gift without this little slip of paper and still had a wonderful experience? Sure! Could I have found return information and sent a “Thank You” note on my own? Absolutely. Although this post-purchase moment wasn’t crucial to the success of my experience as a whole, it sure did delight me as a customer and compel me to share my experience with others. That’s creating a Micro-experience. Knowing where your customer is in their journey with your brand and how to connect with them in that specific moment ultimately creates brand loyalty that will pay off. In this case, I was a recipient of a gift, so I hadn’t chosen anything about the brand or how to purchase the product, so Amazon provided me as the recipient with resources to better my experience with the product that I very well could know nothing about, and allowed me to easily thank the sender for the gift. Now that I know how wonderful the experience of receiving a gift through Amazon was, there’s no doubt that I’ll turn there first when I need to send some Christmas gifts later this month!

When brands can hone in on specific touchpoints throughout their customer journey, and meet their customers there with these highly-personalized micro-experiences, they’re sure to be blown away. Even the smallest gestures (like including a little slip of paper with a QR code) pay off big time. Micro-experiences, big payoffs. Sounds like a good plan to us!