#DiscoverDepot Spotlight: How to Surprise and Delight Your Customers
August 3, 2021
By Jason Eisenberg Community Program Manager for Office Depot
#DiscoverDepot Spotlight is a content series highlighting some of our brand ambassadors who are also business owners, sharing their tips and insights on how they start, run and grow their businesses. If you would like to become an ambassador and potentially get spotlighted, sign up here!
As more stores and retailers continue to work and enhance their ecommerce strategies, there are many brands who are successfully mixing the best of both worlds to keep their customers happy and engaged. Meaning their customers have the ability to purchase products/services online with ease, as well as enjoy the experiences your brand has to offer. There are many ways to bring your brand to your customers, whether it’s through the packaging of your product, the branding of your social media or engaging events like fun content or giveaways to your most loyal fans. Business and branding consultant, Christina Kanu shares her four fundamental keys to branding and how they connect to surprising and delighting your online customers.
Four fundamental keys to branding
According to Christina, branding without these four points is essentially a waste of time and energy as it may get you some attention, but it won’t create lasting impressions on could-be customers.
1. The first key is understanding your target audience – Without this knowledge, your business is very much taking shots in the dark, hoping to hit something. With information at our fingertips (literally, the Internet), there is no excuse to take wild guesses on who your target audience is. Take the time to do the market research. What are their hobbies, where do they live, what is their income, marital status, what do they do on a Saturday? These insights will help determine who and how you brand to customers.
2. Cohesion – Branding needs to be cohesive, everywhere. Now that there are more touchpoints for customers to find you, it’s up to you to make sure they all have the same branding. Make sure your physical signage, social posts, blog content, packaging, etc. are all branded the same. This can help create brand recall (“hey, I’ve seen them before”) as well as help avoid confusion if they saw the same brand that looks like two different businesses.
3. Consistency – Your customers want to know when and what to expect from your brand. Aside from obvious issues like product and service consistency, it’s equally important to be consistent in your branding.
4. Creativity – Arguably the most fun part of branding is the fact that it requires a bit of creativity. If it makes sense for your business, don’t be afraid to get creative in your branding. People want value out of what you provide, whether it’s humor, inspiration or educational – do it. And do it in a way that’s unique to your brand.
What is 'Surprise and Delight'?
Surprise and delight is a form of marketing that is designed to attract and nurture customers by offering unexpected rewards. It’s about going above and beyond expectations. This approach is used to increase customer loyalty and engagement – plus if you truly surprise and delight your customers, they may just post their brand love without you having to ask, thus fueling your User Generated Content.
How to 'Surprise and Delight
There are many ways you can surprise and delight your customers – here are a few easy ideas to get started.
Christina believes one of the easiest and most effective way to surprise and delight your customers is through your packing – especially if there used to be a physical experience associated with your brand. Creating unique moments out of what seem like mundane orders can help make your brand pop out. Whether it’s a large campaign that includes giveaways or a simple ‘thank you’ note with your personal signature on it, you never know who might connect with it.
One of the most effective ways to help your brand stand out is by developing creative, consistent and helpful content both on social media and in your physical brand. For instance, if you’re a candle creator like Unlax Candles who recently shared how to brand on a budget, suggesting how to maximize the use of the product – like finding the right setting or listening to a curated playlist can help your customer fully enjoy your product or service – and they’ll remember that you helped them with more than just your product. Your brand went beyond basic expectations of just sending a nice candle.
“It’s important to make sure customers know how your product or service is going to be used. You can use video on social media or a personalized note sent with their purchase.”
Advice for getting started
Christina’s hurdles when starting her business included many things, but one of the biggest ones was that she was doing everything all at once.
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