We all engage with brands in search of value. But for any brand, pinpointing and delivering on the value customers seek, and doing it consistently, can be daunting – customer needs evolve, even within their buying journey. How should brands evolve what they deliver in response?

When we think about a customer experience as exactly that – the customer’s experience – the role of the brand becomes much more clear. Through that lens, here are five important steps to designing customer experiences with value.

  1. Remember the job to be done

A customer interacts with a brand because they perceive it as being capable of helping them accomplish a goal, whether that goal is functional or emotional (most often, both!). What are you providing that helps them get the job – or jobs – done? That orientation around value should inform the entire customer experience and the ways you actively design it.

  1. Focus on moments, not “touchpoints”

Designing a customer’s experience only by its touchpoints reflects an inside-out approach to viewing their journey – placing unnecessary limits on value creation. Your customers interact with a brand in a series of moments, many of which may live in-between traditional brand-led touchpoints. Every moment can negatively or positively affect the customer’s overall experience, so pinpointing and investing in the moments that matter allows your brand to optimize the customer’s experience (as well as your financial returns).

  1. Nail the mechanics and the magic

A brand that doesn’t get the simple things right risks losing its customers, but so does a brand that disappears in the sea of sameness. Delivering a great customer experience requires a delicate balance of mechanics and magic – the gears that keep the experience spinning and the unique aspects that give it life and personality.

  1. Look to your WX (workplace experience)

Employees are often on the front lines, delivering the moments that make or break a customer’s experience. Empower them to do what is right and remove the hoops they need to jump through – a stellar workplace experience translates into exceptional customer experiences.

  1. Iterate, iterate, iterate

Your customer’s world is constantly in flux, and what works on paper (or as a prototype) may not always work in real life. An agile, iterative approach to designing allows brands to test, learn, and retool their experience to incorporate new learnings and meet customers evolving expectations.

Co-authored by Bryn Snyder, brand strategist at Joe Smith, the growth & innovation consultancy of Padilla.

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