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The Changing Customer Experience

BITAC® Owners Keynote Urges Attendees To Examine Their Operations

Wednesday, November 07, 2018
Dennis Nessler
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The annual BITAC® Owners event got started earlier this week with a keynote address that emphasized the importance of branding and enhancing the customer experience.

Taking place at Breathless Riviera Cancun Resort & Spa in Mexico, the keynote was delivered by visibility coach, speaker and author David Avrin.

Avrin began by cautioning attendees about the potential cost of missed opportunity.
“Your biggest source of lost revenue for your business is the customer, the client or the prospect that you never knew about. They drove by but they didn’t stop. They called you on the phone, but they hung up because they didn’t want to navigate your voice mail system. They came in and left without being engaged and they went to the website and clicked away without leaving their information or buying anything. The worst part is you have no idea who those people were or how many of them there were,” he said.

Avrin went on to address the increasing challenge of getting repeat business. “Customer loyalty isn’t dead, it’s just much harder to earn and much harder to keep because it’s so easy to leave you today. The options are vast,” he stressed.

The keynote speaker also stressed the importance of introducing relevant new product while he encouraged attendees to really examine their company’s strengths and weaknesses by asking some difficult internal questions.

“What is it that people don’t like? How can we innovate within our companies? How can we present it in an engaging way? We have to innovate; we have to look at how our customers experience us at every point of contact,” he said.

Avrin later addressed how the mindset of today’s customer has changed. “They’re expecting to be able to find what they want when they want it,” he said.

According to Avrin, everything we do is driven by three new expectations, which he cited as immediacy, individuality and humanity.

Avrin used the increased presence of self-checkout at retail outlets as an example of retailers forcing customers to do something they don’t necessarily want to do. “They’re driving you to do business the way they want you to do business. Your opportunity is not to be that company. Give people the choices of how they want to buy. Yes, we can create wow experiences but I’m much more about facilitate to understanding how they want to buy,” he noted.

The importance of branding was also a point of considerable emphasis during the discussion. “Your brand promise is who you say you are. ‘This is what we promote, this is what we talk about internally,’ but the customer experience is judged by your customers…Are you living up to what it is that you say that you do,” he said.

Avrin continued, “Anybody can get up here and talk to you about having a great wow customer experience. But if we can create process ‘this is how we do it all the time,’ then you build a brand around it. It becomes an expectation; these guys do something different in their own special way.”

There’s no disputing the impact of social media on a company’s brand reputation. Avrin acknowledged both the potential benefits and pitfalls as well.

“We all heard this basic guest relations philosophy that says the average person with a positive experience will tell two or three people but somebody with a negative experience will tell 10. None of that is true anymore. Today we tell thousands; today we tell millions. People feel it’s not only their right, but it’s their obligation,” he said, referring to it as “oversharing.”

Avrin further added, “If you want people to talk about you give them something to talk about. Stories are shared, great experiences are shared.”

In summary, Avrin urged attendees to “fix anything and everything that’s not great. Your customers and prospects will notice,” he said.

Dennis Nessler    Dennis Nessler
Hotel Interactive®, Inc.
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