Is your brand’s customer journey worth the trip?

Drive big results by helping your dealers focus on small moments.

We marketers tend to talk at length about the Customer Journey and the Customer Experience. As well we should because these are important branding concepts. They can also be overwhelming since marketing’s role is to optimize every moment of a brand’s interaction with its customers. Each touchpoint deserves attention, especially when a customer experiences your brand through a Dealer channel. Here, little things mean a lot. You need to make sure your dealers are equipped to make the customer experience positive, meaningful, and memorable.

There are many ways to accomplish this branding trifecta. Here are a couple of my favorites:

Make it personal.

Effective personalization should go well beyond inserting the customer’s name into an email template. There’s a place in the sales funnel for the customized autoreply but be sure you’re also demonstrating that you understand the customer’s specific needs. Dynamically populating email blasts with relevant content is a good use of automation, but that’s not what I mean by “personal.” Personal means human, particularly in complex B2B sales. Make sure the process always includes ways for dealership sales associates to reach out directly.

Make it memorable.

This objective is less tangible but well worth the effort. It involves not just the “when” and “what” of the messaging but also the “how.” A truly memorable experience provides an opportunity to build appreciation for your brand through the numerous dealer-customer interaction built into the buying process. Maybe you provide your dealers with stationary so their sales personnel can send hand-written thank-you notes after an initial meeting. Inclined to think bigger? This example for Häfele Hardware allowed customers to experience the product in their homes while evaluating options.

Keep it relevant.

Now that we’re on the same page about giving dealers the tools to create personal, memorable moments with their customers, we need to make sure we’re aligned strategically. In the Häfele example above, we gave the customer an easy, unexpected way to experience cabinet hardware at home. But that’s only part of the story. Since the hardware line being pitched was all about innovation and efficiency, this clever and time-saving way to experience the product was right on target with the brand messaging. Avoid the urge to create materials that are splashy but lack a direct link to a larger message.

Why this matters.

Agencies and brands have known for ages that the most effective way to reach a customer is by making an emotional connection. This is true even in hard-core technical and industrial B2B environments. People make decisions emotionally and justify them rationally. And by keeping all touchpoints of the Customer Experience––large and small––as positive, meaningful, and memorable as possible, it’ll be a more rewarding Journey on both sides of the cash register.