Make Marketing History

The views of a marketing deviant.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Customer Experience Is Not The New Marketing.

It's nearly a decade since Pine and Gilmore wrote about the Experience Economy. They saw services becoming commoditised and argued that differentiation could be achieved by turning retail into entertainment.

I recall that Banana Republic were one of their examples, but wonder if anyone still (or indeed ever) thought about shopping there as an experience. After all, do you want to experience retail or do you just want to buy something you like and to do so quickly?

Pine and Gilmore were right about the importance of the experience, but it's not about the spectacular. It's maybe even more about the small decidely unflashy things - from clear, engaging instructions through every aspect of interaction with the company before, during and after purchase.

People are starting to talk of customer experience as being the new marketing, but it's not. There's nothing new about it. It's not the latest thing. It has always been at the heart of marketing even if many people, including marketing directors didn't see it as such.


Blogger mweisburgh said...

I think people are looking for one of two things, either to save time or to use time. This goes for purchasing as well as other products or services. When they are looking to save time in purchasing, they want a quick in-and-out: find what they are looking for, make sure it's a reasonable price, purchase it, get it. When they are looking to use time, they want some enjoyment, perhaps interaction with someone, perhaps information, perhaps being part of a community or social group.

I think, when you are looking to sell something, you have to maximize for one of those.

9:29 AM, February 28, 2008  
Blogger john dodds said...

I think that's a good division Mitch - my response would be that when they want entertainment then you're in a different business and can major on the entertainment. But it's wrong to focus on the netertain ment if youre in the in and out business until you have got the in and out absolutely right. Otherwise the entertainment is irrelevant and - worse than that- an annoyance to the customer who see you spending time doing something that doesn't help them.

1:12 PM, February 28, 2008  
Blogger Robert said...

Am I the only person who believes 'experential marketing' was one of the earliest forms of marketing ever?

It's not part of the modern age, it's part of the nomadic age and whilst it may have developed out of all recognition, it still originates from the times when town markets were the shopping centres and passer-by engagement was a key factor in developing the sales opportunity.

12:12 AM, March 01, 2008  
Blogger john dodds said...

rob - always good to have your eye-witness reports from days of olde!

6:33 AM, March 01, 2008  
Blogger Robert said...

John Dodds - the Peter Pan of something :)

5:47 PM, March 01, 2008  

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