One of the biggest issues I see in customer experience today is a mismatch between “the retail brand” and “the experience”. However, using a customer experience compass (metaphorically) can help inform which experiences you should invest in and which ones you should leave alone.
Since psychology is all about understanding how people behave, feel and think, it’s a great place to turn when delivering the best experience for our beloved customers. Psychology can and does simplify your customer experiences.
Follow Your Customer Experience Compass
Throughout history, the same types of characters have consistently shown up in myths, in art and even blockbuster movies. Like a secret compass, these familiar characters give us a shared meaning and understanding of each other.
So, when it comes to the mystery of customer experience and how we can up our game, let the secret ‘compass’ of characters or archetypes guide your way.
According to psychologist Carl Jung, 12 archetypes or character’s have served as a compass to understand human behaviour and are imprinted psychologically in each of us.
When someone presents as “The Hero” (one of the 12-archetypes) in a movie like Wonder Woman, for instance, we understand her character and what she represents.
Because of our inbuilt compass, we expect her to behave in a certain way and can typically anticipate her action to overcome evil and prevail.
You see, each of us craves a connection with people – not products – so when your brand adopts a clear and consistent archetype, it becomes familiar, more human-like and trustworthy. In short, we recognise it, and it makes sense to us.
Prevalent in Branding, Less in Customer Experience
While brands like; Nike (Hero), Apple (Creator) and Disney (Innocent), have used brand archetypes for a long time now, translation into customer experience has been slow and lagging.
This lagging has led to customer disappointment in our retail experiences for customers and confusion over what new shiny objects we should follow. (yup, seems we all suffer from that one 😉
Think about a time when you’re the customer. I’m sure you’ve struggled through confusing experiences from a beloved brand. We know the experience isn’t quite right, but you’re not sure why it was disappointing? Typically, this is due to incongruence with the brands’ archetype.
Here’s what I mean, let’s say a retail brand is “The Hero” archetype. As you walk into a store your internal compass will pick up on the visual signs and previous advertising (memories) you’ve seen – innately you realise they are the Hero, even if you aren’t aware of the exact title of Hero.
Exploring Your Customer Experience Compass and Examples
Now, as an example, if you walked into the Hero store from above while they were running an experience or campaign that is more suited to a “Caregiver” (another archetype, known for caring, gentle and selfless behaviour) archetype, you may think – “hmmm, that’s really lovely”. While, you may FEEL like it’s a warm and fuzzy campaign, inside, you’re now either a little confused or it just doesn’t add to your experience of that brand – so it becomes more of a – “meh – okay”. It doesn’t seem to add to their brand experience and it’s certainly not congruent with their Hero persona.
Now, imagine if that same ‘Hero‘ retailer ran an experience or in-store event that brought out the Hero inside of you in some way. Again, while you may not be aware that this is the very attribute you like, trust and associate with the brand. Now, you’ve just experienced the Hero feeling first hand.
Becoming a Personal Experience is Different for Each Customer
This personal transformation and bespoke experience (in the Hero example above) will not only carry significance to your customers but also to your brand which has now been brought to life. The truth is, when the experience matches our in-built Hero compass, it drives home value, trust and ultimately loyalty and sales.
Having a deep understanding of not only what your customer experience archetype is, but also how they would act as a person is a great way to simplify the mysteries of customer experience. It also provides you with your own customer experience compass that can keep you on course.
Take this Customer Experience quiz and uncover your archetype as well as what experiences are best suited to your unique brand.
Want one-on-one help, book a Customer Experience Assessment, a 45 minute Free, 7 point assessment of your brand experience across your website, digital landscape and give you 3 easy to implement experiences that will drive sales and foot traffic.