When it comes to consumption we have 2 conflicting personalities that work against one another - our consuming self, and our civil self. Their experiences are supported by separate systems and different organisations. The battleground is the customer experience, the prize - improving the negative impact of consumption.
Although an office based pulping and paper-making machine might bring an end to annoying footers about printing emails, it will achieve lots around closure experiences in the office environment.
Epson have recently released the worlds first office paper making machine, that turns waste paper in to new sheets. Although this is an enormous achievement for Epson, and will be greatly appreciated by many large companies and organisations, its real achievement is dealing with 2 closure experience issues common in offices. Firstly, it reveals the end of the paper life-cycle to the people that use paper. Secondly it securely destroys unwanted documents while the authors of those documents witness it.
Sky has displayed the usual paranoid business approach to customers leaving. In the process damaging the brand and providing some terrible memories for its customers.
People who have wanted to leave the Sky service have been trapped in sales conversation for over an hour, while the customer service team tries to sell them more products and stop them leaving. This is hard for many people to stand, and some give in and sign up for more services. Its a little like holding on to someones leg when you get dumped - it doesn’t build respect.
Virgin trains has announced an automatic payback scheme for delayed passengers. This is unique for a number of reasons, but the most interesting one is as a closure experience for users. In one initiative they have created a healthy Closure experience, changed the transaction model, and disrupted an industry.
Religion has owned the right to die for centuries. The common religious package of ‘a good life’ as an access to heaven is scattered across all structured belief systems in one form or another and is the power base by which religion controls, or “inspires” its followers. So it comes as no surprise that church leaders from all faiths recently announced their objection to the Assisted Dying Bill being pursued in the UK’s House of Commons.
Many companies overly focus on the On-Boarding experience because selling to more customers means more money -the status quo of business. Canon is no different this regard. The way they sell printer ink is a good example of a companies bias to getting more customers, over the Usage of the product or the Off-Boarding when the product comes to the end of its life.
The customer life cycle can be broken into 3 sections - On-Boarding, Usage, and Off-Boarding.
Sony’s robot dog, Aibo, is dying. But it’s achieved a surprising comparison with its canine doppleganger.
Although Aibo has been hugely successful, selling 150,000 models between 1999 and 2006, Sony has stopped repairing them. Heart broken owners of the robot dog now rely on hackers, and home technicians to achieve the life saving operations the robot dogs require.
Its unlikely you’ll ever hear your bank talk about the pros and cons of ending a relationship, but thankfully Money Saving Expert has put this interesting and informative piece together about what you should consider when leaving you Credit Card company.
Many of us would feel strange saying a clear “Thank you!”, “Well done” or a meaningful “Goodbye!” to products. Yet in Advertising and Branding we often tug on these emotional strings at the on-boarding stage of the relationship. Brand agencies often talk about giving the brand a “personality” or “brand promise” Advertisers talk about “having a conversation between the customer and the provider”. Are these not equally emotional triggers created to tempt us to commit to a product purchase? Isn’t it equally strange to have a conversation at the beginning of a customer relationship, as it would be to have a conversation at the end?
The difference is in the mode of thinking at the beginning and the end of the relationship. The beginning - on-boarding stage of the relationship triggers our aspirations. Telling us we will be better with this purchase. What should be in place at the end of a customer relationship is self-reflection. But this is sadly overlooked because it stops our focus for purchasing new items.
Emily’s Empathy Cards, bring a rare confidence and warmth to this situation. They are not the whimsical, or even meaningless ‘get well soon’ cards. But portray real feelings and some frustrations that are felt by the patient when dealing with close ones at this stage. They bridge the gap of not knowing what to say, when words are so hard to find. They are a great example of dealing with fatality of life.