No one cares if your customer experience is 5% better, they care if you are 1% different.

Call it the 105% Rule. From a word-of-mouth perspective, it's virtually impossible to discuss an experience that is 5% better than the norm on all dimensions. People don't talk like mystery shoppers, reporting diligently on each relevant feature. People talk about the exceptions, the unexpected, the highlights. via fastcompany.com So you have just revamped your customer experience process. You took a look at your touch points and made them more fluid, you have made your communication more transparent and real. You think you've made it. In fact, mystery shopping and customer satisfaction surveys show that you have increased customer satisfaction by a whopping 5%! That's great! But it is not. Ok let's take the edge off this, it is actually good and kudos for getting this far. Great that your company is thinking about the customer experience and great that you have improved it. But that is not all. I stumbled on this quote (see above) by the guys behind "Switch" (beware, affiliate link, but it's a great book so buy it anyway!), Dan and Heath. They wrote it in 2007 and it keeps on resonating. It's about creating remark-ability, it's that one percent that makes people talk, the one that sparks conversation. So how do you spark that? Dan and Heath name a few good examples:   ...consider Doubletree Hotels. In the lodging spectrum, Doubletree is a "medium"--nicer than La Quinta but not as full service as Four Seasons. It should be hard to find something to say about a medium player. And yet there's a conversation everyone has about the Doubletree: When you check in, they give you delicious, fresh-baked chocolate-chip cookies. These conversations provide a concrete symbol of warmth and homey service. (We baked cookies for you!) Cost aside, Ritz-Carltons would likely outrank Doubletree hotels in every conceivable survey dimension. Except the one that creates conversation. And. ...If you go to Portland, Oregon, everyone wants to talk about Voodoo Doughnut. They talk about the caffeinated doughnut. Or the chocolate-glazed chocolate doughnut rolled in Cocoa Puffs cereal. Or the voodoo-doll-shaped doughnut that bleeds raspberry filling when impaled with a pretzel pin. Oh, did we mention that a Voodoo founder will conduct your wedding--with doughnuts and coffee for 10--for $175? Sy Taylor has a thought about communications which is labeled SHOQ, now I don't know the details yet but I do know it stands for Simple, Human, Open and Quirky. So look at your brand, it's communications and SHOQ it up. Make something quirky and shareable. So something unexpected. How will you quirk up your brand? How do you make your customer experience one that is shareable and remarkable?

Call it the 105% Rule. From a word-of-mouth perspective, it's virtually impossible to discuss an experience that is 5% better than the norm on all dimensions. People don't talk like mystery shoppers, reporting diligently on each relevant feature. People talk about the exceptions, the unexpected, the highlights.

So you have just revamped your customer experience process. You took a look at your touch points and made them more fluid, you have made your communication more transparent and real. You think you've made it. In fact, mystery shopping and customer satisfaction surveys show that you have increased customer satisfaction by a whopping 5%! That's great!

But it is not.

Ok let's take the edge off this, it is actually good and kudos for getting this far. Great that your company is thinking about the customer experience and great that you have improved it.

But that is not all.

I stumbled on this quote (see above) by the guys behind "Switch" (beware, affiliate link, but it's a great book so buy it anyway!), Dan and Heath. They wrote it in 2007 and it keeps on resonating. It's about creating remark-ability, it's that one percent that makes people talk, the one that sparks conversation. So how do you spark that? Dan and Heath name a few good examples:

 

...consider Doubletree Hotels. In the lodging spectrum, Doubletree is a "medium"--nicer than La Quinta but not as full service as Four Seasons. It should be hard to find something to say about a medium player. And yet there's a conversation everyone has about the Doubletree: When you check in, they give you delicious, fresh-baked chocolate-chip cookies. These conversations provide a concrete symbol of warmth and homey service. (We baked cookies for you!) Cost aside, Ritz-Carltons would likely outrank Doubletree hotels in every conceivable survey dimension. Except the one that creates conversation.

And.

...If you go to Portland, Oregon, everyone wants to talk about Voodoo Doughnut. They talk about the caffeinated doughnut. Or the chocolate-glazed chocolate doughnut rolled in Cocoa Puffs cereal. Or the voodoo-doll-shaped doughnut that bleeds raspberry filling when impaled with a pretzel pin. Oh, did we mention that a Voodoo founder will conduct your wedding--with doughnuts and coffee for 10--for $175?

Sy Taylor has a thought about communications which is labeled SHOQ, now I don't know the details yet but I do know it stands for Simple, Human, Open and Quirky. So look at your brand, it's communications and SHOQ it up. Make something quirky and shareable. So something unexpected.

How will you quirk up your brand? How do you make your customer experience one that is shareable and remarkable?