Ever since my daughter was able to hold a pen, pencil, crayon, etc., she had held it in a very atypical manner. She contorts her fingers and hand in such a way that most would find uncomfortable and non-functional, but it works for her. That’s the background…now here’s the story.
While some people say not to correct a child’s pen/pencil grip, my daughter’s school teacher suggested that my wife and I try, because she can tell that our daughter gets tired of writing after a short amount of time due to her grip. So, we took the teacher’s advice and found a set of grip holders and bought them from Amazon. When the package arrived, we were all excited to try the grip holders, but there was a problem…all six of the holders in the package came in colors that our daughter did not like…they were “boy” colors (black, orange, green, etc.). Not that my wife and I try to appease our daughter on every little thing, but we thought it was important in this particular instance, because if she was not in favor of the colors, she was simply not going to use the grip holders at home or at school. My wife and I explained to her that we had no control over the colors, but we could return the package to Amazon and try to reorder in the hopes of getting different colors…”girl” colors (pink as illustrated, yellow, purple, etc.).
As this all played out, my daughter said, “Daddy, if I was the leader of Amazon, do you know what I would do?” I answered, “No, what?” Then, she said, “I would give people a choice what colors they could pick, that way they can get what they want.” Well, there you have it, marketing best practices as explained by a six-year-old.
If a six-year-old can see how marketing and the customer experience should work, why can’t people who are much older with more education and real-life experience figure this out? Time and again, I see one poor experience after another, and I simply don’t get it. Here’s another example.
Yesterday, as I read the New York Times, I noticed a QR code was being used in a luxury handbag advertisement. If you read my blog you’ll know that I am a proponent of QR codes when used correctly, but in this instance the code was so small and blurred there was no way a reader could effectively scan the code and interact with the brand/product as intended. Why? Why would the marketing team and/or agency make use of a technology that it did not fully understand how best to implement? Was someone bending their arm to do so? I doubt it. Why not take the time and expend the resources to map the customer’s journey or experience and realize: if the code is printed too small it will not scan, and if it will not scan the print to digital interaction will not move forward, and if the interaction will not move forward the prospect will lose interest, and if the prospect loses interest then chances are the sale will be lost. See where this is headed?
These experience failures simply can’t and shouldn’t be happening. Marketers need to take more responsibility and realize that the customer’s experience from first point of contact to the last, and everywhere in between, matters a great deal. Big or small, online or offline, real-time or not…the experience matters. Deliver a world-class product via a less-than-world-class experience and the failure to sell will result. At a minimum, word will spread and cause damage to the brand.
While my daughter might find it great fun to have her own phone and computer and sit at a big desk in your office, she is busy at school all day long and might have difficulties commuting. On the other hand, I am currently seeking a full-time marketing management position and would welcome the chance to speak with you should an opportunity be available. I can be contacted here.