It’s never to late to reinvigorate your customer experience!

Have you ever felt your competitors have overtaken you? As new entrants they’ve been nimble and responsive to customer needs. In contrast you’ve invested in systems and infrastructure that make it harder to adapt quickly. What options do you have to respond, to let customers know you’re still around?

Like many in Australia I have done my fair share of flying. I recently travelled to Perth to facilitate a customer strategy workshop for a client. When it comes to domestic plane travel I am a big fan of Virgin. They are vibrant, fun, easy to deal with, and really help take my mind off the travel.

For this trip I flew with QANTAS, my first time in a while. I was keen to see how they went. And you know what… they were great!

Funnily enough it was their aging fleet, in this case a loose headrest, that kick-started my customer experience even before we took off. The flight attendant was ‘all over it’ deciding quickly to relocate me for safety reasons, finding me a comfortable seat nearby with no-one next to me.

Although I had some work to do for the client initially, I was soon looking for something to take my mind off the 5+ hour flight. I had noticed an iPad in my seat pocket when I first sat down. I actually thought someone had left it behind and almost tried to give it to the nearest attendant so they could chase the passenger who may have left it. Then I realised every seat had one and that this was QANTAS’ new play against Virgin’s Live Foxtel and their own quirky, but archaic, entertainment system.

I ended up watching a movie on the iPad, which when combined with my noise reduction headphones (no more of those horrible double pronged earphones), produced the finest audiovisual experience I’ve had on a plane. Such a simple, and flexible solution compared to the installation of TVs into every seat.

The other point of difference with Virgin and QANTAS is the typical demographic profile of the flight attendants, and the stereotypes that go along with that. In the past I’ve been made to feel like I was ‘in trouble with the grumpy head mistress’ on QANTAS. Yet on this occasion the attendants were friendly, smiling, funny and personable, traits that are certainly not dependant on age or appearance, but on attitude. I can’t recall a trip where I’ve had more engaging interactions with the attendants and at each end when I hopped off the plane I realised I hadn’t once thought about the length of the flight.

How can you reinvigorate your customer experience?  No doubt many of your long-time customer have strong loyalty towards you – there is nothing better than giving them a reason to reinforce that loyalty. And in the process, you just might win over some of the new customers in the market!