Think of a time when you had an incredible experience with a brand. Perhaps the product shocked and inspired you with its ease-of-use, or a service blew you away with its personalization and concern for you as an individual customer. You probably told your like-minded friends about this experience, recommended the company to family members, and you found yourself becoming a loyalist.  It feels good to promote a brand you love, doesn’t it?

As a business owner, you can leverage this phenomenon to work in your brand’s favor. Nowadays, people favor experiences over products. By taking the time to craft memorable and personalized brand experiences, you will find faithful customers, improve your reputation, and solidify a premium spot at the top of your target customer’s mind.

Understand Your Customers:

The first step to getting to know your customers is by building customer personas. Not sure where to start? Follow our guide to creating these personas and segmenting your target psychographics. Then, brainstorm ways to research these customers. Perhaps you could conduct a targeted survey or host a focus group. (A word to the wise: don’t host a focus group for feedback on your ideas. Host the focus group with the intention of fully understanding your customers before any brainstorming— that way, you can start from the right place). Research and work to understand the things that fascinate and delight your target customers. Maybe they are intrigued by displays of sustainability or quips of wisdom. Each market is unique.

Start Brainstorming:

Now that you have a clearer picture of your target customers, you can start brainstorming. Brand experiences come in many forms. Technically, a brand experience is shaped by every interaction a customer has with your brand. These interactions, whether major or minor,  are called ‘touchpoints’. These experiences include your:

 - Marketing

 - Content

 - Product packaging

 - Branding and design

 - Product features

 - Events

 - Brand Voice

 - Customer service

Smaller interactions might include the way your employees answer the phone, the UI design of your digital touch points, or the outfits worn by your employees.

Every effort should be made to maintain a consistent voice, tone, and style across all of these channels while ensuring that your audience feels recognized and personally acknowledged at each step.

Don’t forget to take the words ‘surprise’ and ‘delight’ to heart. It’s not time to play it safe. Subtle touches are welcome, but the goal of this process is to disrupt the status quo and draw attention to your business. An easy and ethical win in today’s market is to create packaging that is eco-friendly, user-focused, and easy to discard sustainably. Another is to create innovative experiences that are easily shareable via social media. For example, Red Bull’s “Space Jump” stunt engaged with over 7 million social media users.

Find ways to take your brand out into the real world and show people the value that your brand could offer the community. Plan events or creative marketing stunts that will draw in your target audience and establish brand allegiance. Follow this simple and proven formula to create modern campaigns that succeed: Do > Invite > Document > Share. Pull off the stunt, invite others to participate either in person or online, document the stunt or event, and share the results.

Brand experiences that surprise and delight are hard to come by, but by following these steps and investing the time and effort necessary to get creative in the process, it is possible to create innovative experiences that capture the attention of the market and help skyrocket your business. All it takes is one well-executed great idea.