The Unappeasable Hunger for Life and Expression
Pack a punch. That’s the phrase American author Thomas Wolfe penned in a letter describing the debut of one of his plays in 1938.
That happened to be the same year Wolfe – who kind of gets a raw deal in the world of literary acclaim – died of tuberculosis of the brain. This was the guy William Faulkner (if you haven’t heard of Wolfe, you likely HAVE heard of Faulkner) called “the best talent of our generation.”
After Wolfe’s death, the New York Times wrote, “There was within (him) an unspent energy, an untiring force, an unappeasable hunger for life and for expression…”
Whatever else he may have been (and believe me when I say Hemingway’s interpretation wasn’t nearly as flattering as Faulkner’s or the Times’), Wolfe did indeed pack a punch.
In the world of marketing, I think that’s worth aspiring to. In fact, truly successful marketing demands it these days. “Untiring force” and “unappeasable hunger for life and expression” certainly doesn’t hurt either.
To ensure your business’s marketing packs a punch – that it’s not only powerful but lands where you intend – requires analyzing every aspect of the customer experience, from the inside out.
Customer experience is a combination of feelings, thoughts, emotions evoked throughout a customer’s interaction with your brand. This doesn’t just occur when someone walks in your doors. It’s happening when a customer sees one of your ads in a magazine, interacts with your business on social media, listens to a friend complain about his or her own poor experience with your business, etc.
And get this – the part of the brain that controls feelings also happens to control decision-making. So it’s pretty easy to see why customer experience is important to your bottom line.
As a business owner, there is no infallible way to control every aspect of customer experience 24/7. But there are ways to ensure brand consistency, to become closer to your customers during their interactions with your brand and capitalize on moments of impact.
Ask yourself these three questions to start:
1.) What are all the possible ways customers and prospective customers interact with your brand? (This will likely be a long list; include any and all opportunities for experiencing your brand- from Little League sponsorships to traditional advertising to customer service).
2.) Reviewing the above list, how consistent is your brand throughout all of those interactions? (Is the message in your TV commercial the same message given when a customer walks in the door? Are the promises made on your website upheld when a customer calls with a complaint?)
3.) What tools and resources are in place to ensure not just your marketing but your employees adhere to your brand as well?
The basis for any solid customer experience program begins there. And if it seems overwhelming (and we know it can at times), that’s where BOLD come in. As Thomas Wolfe once said, “Make your mistakes, take your chances, look silly, but keep on going. Don’t freeze up.”
And above all, pack a punch.