As a service provider, your main focus is to provide the best overall experience to your guests. However, the backbone of what goes into a great customer experience is commonly overlooked by many. A quick Google search will return more information than you’ll know what to do with. Thankfully, this is NOT that type of article. The following tips and concepts below will guide you in creating and managing a successful experience plan.
#1 Conduct a SWOT analysis
The first key step in generating a guest experience is understanding yourself and organization. Identifying the strengths and opportunities can help generate ideas for unique offerings and align with your vision. This focuses the attention on the resources and things that you are good at. In addition, this model also identifies threats and weaknesses. External sources can also have a harmful impact. You should always be setting goals in areas that need improvement. In return, this can make you more aware of the surroundings and improve the guest experience.
#2 Segment Visitors
Understanding your guests will help you deliver the highest quality experience. Segmenting visitors based on several characteristics will make their encounter much more enjoyable and personalized. This involves differentiating by service offerings and tiering. You can group buyers by:
- Demographics: This typically involves age, race, religion, gender, family size, ethnicity, income, and education.You can pull census data to determine who, where, and how you want to market your product.
- Psychographics: Involves personality traits, values, attitudes, interests, and lifestyles. This occurs when you break your market down along these interests and attitudes so you can market the appropriate product to each segment of the market.
- Behavior: What are the observable behaviors of the customer (ie-spending, consumption, usage, desired benefits, etc)? Identify how loyal the customers are and tier products and services based upon this.
- Need-based: What does the customer truly want in a service? Are they more quality sensitive or price sensitive? How well does a product or service enable the guest to successfully execute any job? Customer needs-based segmentation is valuable because it reveals underserved and over-served market segments that exist in a market and the size of each of those segments.
Segmentation will allow you to better develop and market your products because there will be a more precise match between the product and each segment’s needs and wants.
#3 Plan for Success
Hiring qualified employees for the distribution and delivery of your product is very important. Being in the service industry, guests will encounter the service staff almost immediately, creating personalized relationships with them.
You should create better pay and benefits to attract quality staff. Be on the lookout for outstanding service performers as they bring in natural qualities that cannot be taught. Keep the job scope broadened to encourage the application of new skills. Also, ensure that relevant training and empowerment practices are implemented to allow for frontline staff to feel valued.
All of these cues will make employees happier in their work and provide higher quality service, thus creating a greater customer loyalty base and experience.
#4 Remember to Use and Craft the Service Environment
Crafting the service environment can help exemplify the experience for the guest. This includes the style, appearance of physical surroundings and other elements experienced by customers at “delivery” sites. The service environment can shape the customer’s experience, behavior, feelings, and reactions. The ambiance and spatial design can all increase the desire for certain goods, services, and experiences. It can also help to assess questions related to quality and brand as services are often intangible. Having a strong understanding of your guest’s emotions and characteristics will be key in aligning the proper environment.
#5 Identify Fail Points Through Blueprinting
Using a blueprint to plan out the experience for your guest will identify the on and off stage processes. In addition, this model can also exploit fail points in your service. A fail point is any point within the encounter that has the potential to affect customer satisfaction or quality. Risk is always involved in the service industry, as it is in any activity undertaken in life. However, proper management techniques can help reduce the effects that risk will have on a guest. Using total quality management methods will prevent errors in the delivering process. “Poka-yokes”, or fail-safe methods ensure that certain steps and standards are being followed.
This process allows the provider to understand the service/experience and improves areas that are weak and undefined.
So that’s it! We hope you take these tips into consideration and apply them in your organization to create a great customer experience!