The Best Feelings in the World

The Best Feelings in the World

I did a creative talk yesterday and asked everyone in the room to describe your favorite feeling in the world. It was strange because the quietest guys in the room had the most elaborate descriptions of their favorite life experiences and feelings. We wrote them down on a whiteboard.

The answers came rushing in:

  • adrenaline rush
  • excitement
  • relaxing on a sandy beach
  • accomplishing something unreal
  • being appreciated
  • feeling loved
  • laughing out loud about something really funny

Then, "How do people feel when they come into a particular company for services, products or experiences?" or "How do people feel when they are interacting with you?”

There was silence in the room and then the hands went up:

  • agitated
  • rushed
  • welcomed
  • pretty good
  • guilty
  • let's get it done
  • belonging
  • hopeful
  • curious
  • excited

One more question, "How do people feel when you ask them to take the next step and be involved in your company or get closer to your community?” For example, a bank asks its customers to come to a Christmas party, or a grocery store is doing a Fun Run for charity, etc.

  • Oh heck!
  • How long will it take?
  • Will it cost me anything?
  • Why?

With every feeling that you experience, there is an action that preceded it. Not many things just happen. A series of actions or inactions brought the feeling to you.

This means that we really can control the climate of our customers experiences.

If people are asking questions when they are invited to join a "tribe" or “community," it means we haven't done a good enough job at being compelling, simple, clear, and engaging.

So there were three boxes on the whiteboard.

  1. First Box: The Best Feelings in life.
  2. Second Box: The customer’s feelings when he/she interacted with the company.
  3. Third box: A customer’s feelings when she gets asked to become part of the tribe.

They're all so different.

Why wouldn't we be giving our customers the best feelings in the world? Why is there a gap between the best experiences and the experiences we give to the people we are trying to win over as lifelong customers?

Disney gets this. It's the reason people all over the world go to Disneyland again and again, and we get involved in their community. It's a theme park, YES, but it's a business. There's an art to giving people an experiential high, but we don't often think about it. And for some reason we've settled for giving okay feelings and just okay experiences to our customers when we could be giving them gushes of great experiences and feelings.

It all starts with action. Boring, slow, normal, good, pleasant actions won't bowl them over. Engaging, thoughtful, hopefully, curious, excited, fun, and relaxing just might.

(photo via puck90)