Consumers want brands to leave them alone

e117dc60eaa0935a78c914d2852172d0The notion that consumers want so many brands in their lives is a pure canard.  Too many brands have been misled by pseudo marketing experts who, in order to inflate their own personal brand, are only interested in becoming social media stars so they can attend conferences like rock stars.

Everytime I take my Subaru in for service I usually get at least one email from Subaru and a call from the dealer asking me if I was happy with my visit.  Then there are the numerous emails I get from brands that I have purchased asking me to write reviews about their products on sites like Amazon.com.  While I realize the importance of customer service overwhelming consumers with surveys is having the opposite effect; it’s pissing customers off.

Two months ago I led some qualitative research for a car company on how to get customers to rate the purchase experience.  By far Millennials were least willing to spend the time rating brands, but it went far beyond just auto brands.  Millennials said that such surveys are often time consuming and brands don’t offer them any reward for the time it takes to fill out the surveys.

It-s-a-beautiful-day-to-leave-me-alone

Boomers as well said they had enough. One woman said she is getting calls from a local dry cleaner constantly asking her if she is happy with her laundry.  It got so bad, she said, that she cancelled the delivery service.

So how can you ensure you are providing a top brand experience?

1ne: Offer consumers a reward for filling out surveys such as a discount on a future purchase or service.

2wo: Measure new customers vs. returning customers.  A drop in returning customers is a huge issue as it costs five times as much to win new customers as retain current ones.

3hree: Don’t overwhelm customers or phone calls.  Remember, they may be getting calls from other companies as well.

4our: Your most important customers are your employees because they are your brand to customers. Treat them well and weed out people who view their jobs as just ‘work”.

I understand the importance of good brand experiences but continually bothering customers to ask “how are we doing?” may not be the best approach in a time constrained world.