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My daughter is a charming little bundle of joy at 3 years and 6 months, she probably like all kids hates and no offence meant visits to her doctor for her vaccination program, we as parents have to convince her and persuade her in so many varied and different ways to get her to the clinic interact with her doctor and get her vaccination done.

During one of her visits, her regular doctor was not in and the staff referred us to his replacement for that day, and we were thinking- wow! A new face, which might mean even more drama.

We reluctantly opened the door and there was this doctor in mid 50s smiling. My independent girl showed her apprehension and caught my hand but then in the next 5 minutes magic happened and we bear testimony. The doctor did not go for the needle right away, he started interacting with my daughter, they both together sang a couple of nursery rhymes and tried to identify the colors on the walls and out of no where this doctor produced a soft toy for my girl and in the exact same color that my daughter loves and appreciates (every color is Pink to her!) a bond was made immediately not just because of that 5 inch miniature fluffy teddy but MORE.

For the first time there was no drama my child was happy and now trusted this 50 year old doctor that she knew would insert the needle which he did but no tears they both smiled and shook hands and my daughter for the first time thanked her doctor on her own without any persuasion from either me or my wife.

Thinking about it more

Thinking about it more

  1. I usually grab my coffee on way to work from the same store which I know will have that 40+ lady at the POS and would greet me with that curled Duchenne smile and we will indulge in small talk about the neighbourhood for a minute or two.
  2. I have been going to the same stylist for the last 8 years, not that she gives me any discounts or freebies but because she knows what I like, she knows that I do not like to carry the same style / length / cut she also knows that I do not like any chemicals on my head, she also knows which school my daughter goes too and vice-versa.
  3. I get my daily stuff from that one store which is a small mom and pop store and this gentleman that runs the business is as enthusiastic about tennis as I am. He also educates me on the new carpet cleaners have come in and which would be good for me to use, (price vs utility) and I trust him and he has never to date put me down.

So what are we talking about here? No it’s not about my routine or my preferences but we are talking about emotional connect.

Businesses small or big, retail or otherwise are I think are missing out on creating that emotional connect with their consumers and customers. Technology is ever evolving and even before customer recognize a new touch point – a new way to interact / engage / provide feedback for a brand or business –hmm businesses already have strategies in place to handle that “NEW” channel.

Is technology taking away the human element the human touch the human connect that a brand needs create with its customers? Is the brand evaluating that connect on the basis of loyalty programs / deep discounts / repeat business? Is the business evaluating customer service based on ROI?

A business needs to realize that customers / consumers happen to be people but not just patterns / rising trend / trending now on a “big data” analysts dashboard. A business in my opinion needs to get into programs that ensure continuous affinity between the brand and its customers. As we continue to evolve more in terms of processes and technology would we see a further decline in this emotional connect between brands and customer?

Let’s Build a Connect by

Let’s Build a Connect by

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  1. Delivering your promise
  2. Own up to your mistakes – the customer cannot just always be wrong.
  3. Engage / Interact in a more personalized setting
  4. Be honest in your advice to your customers if you want them to come flocking back to you
  5. Increase and support local community programs / causes
  6. Listen to your customers and take action on common pain-points that your customers might be facing even if these pain points do not have a direct impact on your top / bottom line
  7. Gain Trust by actions and your likability.
  8. Be eager to help / resolve
  9. Believe in customer service and not just customer service
  10. Keep it simple- a lot of us folks understand and remember simple stuff (Remember Google search?)

 

Connect emotionally with your customers, ask your-selves as business leaders / tech-gurus/ consultants why do you still visit those 5 places / sites which you frequent to fulfil your shopping needs or those 5 fine dining places where you love to spend your evenings? We are surrounded by obvious answers-we just need to recognize them and then act on them.

Ragib Hussain

Vice President e-Commerce Solutions & Consulting- e.Soft Technologies
Experienced B2C and B2B ecommerce, online marketing and internet strategy professional with over 14 years of ecommerce P&L management for successful businesses.