Wednesday, October 25, 2017

In The Age of The Millennial Buyer, Customer Experience is More Important Than Ever

There’s certainly no shortage of blogs, infographics, and research studies circulating on why customer experience is important, all of which will tell you that 72 percent of businesses say that improving customer experience is their top priority, or how about 68 percent of marketing leaders say that their company is increasingly competing on the basis of customer experience. But do they actually get to the why? Yes, there is a shift happening where marketers can no longer rely on their holy trinity: Price, Product, and Promotion. But why? I think I know why. Better yet, I think I am the why.

My name is Lauren Hlavin and I am a Millennial.

Why Millennial Needs Matter
Ok, now that the bias of me being a Millennial is out in the open, I’ll tell you that I’m not just speaking from my own generational experience. GoldmanSachs dove into some of the important trends that accompany this generation coming into peak buying power:

“The Millennial generation has far surpassed the Baby Boomers in terms of size of living generation.”

So, we are everywhere.

“The range to be considered a true ‘Millennial’ is from 1980 – 2000.”

So, we hold the economic power as our prime spending years are approaching.

“Millennials are the first true digital generation.”

So, as consumers, we expect our information to be accessible, timely, and served at warp speed.

So, the peak consumer era for Millennials is coming. What does that mean for businesses?

Crowd Pleasers No Matter The Generation: Accessibility and Speed
While, yes, I have enough self-awareness to acknowledge that the Millennial generation is a “we want it now” type of crowd, we’re not the only ones. Let’s face it–we’ve all done it. When we want to know something we instinctively turn to Google, where we know that–in a matter of seconds–we’ll have pages upon pages of information related to our question. That’s just the nature of our digital world now. Accessibility is the standard. Somehow though, it’s still not enough to have the answers right at our fingertips. Think about how frustrating dial-up internet used to be; Accessibility to information was there but the speed was not.

So, it’s clear that consumers today not only want accessibility and speed in their customer experiences, they demand it in order to become brand loyalists. And, as the most digital generation, Millennials are not afraid to share experiences (good or bad)–38 percent say they communicate with others about brands via social media, which means it’s more crucial than ever to get that customer experience right at every moment throughout the customer journey.

It’s time to start providing a customer experience that’s worthy of a brand-boosting Tweet. Ready to get started? Here are a few reflection questions:

  • Are we accessible to this digital generation? (via social media, a mobile friendly experience, etc.)
  • Is information about your products/services accessible and easy to find?
  • Are we responsive to support inquiries? Is the response timely?
  • Are we keeping a pulse on the demographic of our buyers via surveys or focus groups?
  • How can we continue to elevate our customer experience based on customer feedback?