A few years back, my three-year-old son Max had an unyielding passion for Thomas the Tank Engine trains. Piece by piece, he accumulated a rather impressive collection. But here is the thing that fascinated me as a parent: every time Max received a new train that he had obsessed about, which he just had to have, he promptly took out the catalog to identify the next train that he could no longer live without. So once he acquired Thomas, Fearless Freddie had to be next, then Clarabel, followed by Duncan, Rusty, Diesel 10, and so on.
As parents, we naturally anticipated after each purchase that Max would finally consider his collection complete. But for Max, what was equally natural was to expect his train portfolio to continue to expand indefinitely, or at least until the enchantment ended. A big part of the thrill of building his collection in the first place was the possibility of its everlasting expansion and enhancement.
What Max’s experience demonstrates is that there is no such thing as a perfectly and permanently satisfied customer. Put another way, customers by nature are insatiable and continuously yearn for things they don’t yet possess. Their satisfaction frontier is always beyond their grasp.
Therefore, trying to enduringly satisfy your customers is dangerously misguided. Instead, you should strive to infatuate them – over and over again. Infatuation implies a very strong yet short-lived attraction, which captures the true essence of customer experience. Understanding its implications is critical for your ability to maintain ongoing relevance.
Gabor George Burt |
Is a global authority on re-imagining boundaries and creator of the Slingshot Platform, enabling organizations to overstep perceived limitations and to carve out successful growth strategies.