We all know that creating an engaging and informative customer experience is crucial when it comes to delighting our audience. "Customer Experience" is at the forefront of marketing strategy.
The thing is Generation Y and Z are less interested in a rigid, produced experiences with limitations and boundaries. Dubbed the DIY generation, these younger cohorts are technology natives who know how, and enjoy, navigating the infinite knowledge in their pockets.
Do me a favor here. Pull up Google.com on a new window, tab, or device in incognito mode (to avoid your previous searches from coming up). Go ahead. I’ll wait.
Type in “How to …” and just start messing around. How to tie a tie. How to DIY ombre your hair. How to make the perfect steak. How to build a computer. You can learn how to do almost anything yourself. In this day and age not knowing how to do something is less of a barrier and more of an opportunity.
This is the world of self-made, self-served, self-starters. They don’t want you to provide them with your "experience", they want to do it themselves and create their own experience. It’s not that they don’t want you to provide customer service, they just prefer to forage their own path and receive individualized customer attention. If you’re going to treat them like a number they are going to avoid working with you.
Don’t be tempted to say, “well Generation Y and Z are not really our preferred demographic,” or “that’s only one slice of the population, so we don’t need to cater to them.” You would be very wrong in that assumption. Generation Y and Z are half of the population.
Now the big question. How should you work with the DIY generations?
Help them DIY.
It’s important to facilitate younger customers to realize their purchasing goals while minimizing third party involvement. You can do this in two ways. Offer more self-service options via machines like touch screens and touch kiosks and give them more opportunities to self-serve by offering more functions. This can range from self-checkout or customizable purchases.
Sephora has started to work with this generation’s preference to do it themselves. The Skincare IQ is available at most stores and asks a series of questions about your skin and concerns. Then it pulls up products and a regime that would suit your needs best. Sephora helps clients self-serve and maximizes their satisfaction by helping them pick better products for them.
Even companies like McDonald’s are exploring self-service too.
Remember to focus how you’re going to help customers self-serve.
Work on making your customer service "run" by and for your customers to use. Have a rich FAQ page to maximize what customers can do on their own. Automate support when possible. Use touch screens, touch kiosks, or video walls to provide support. Even simplify the product to make it easier for customers.
It's also important to remember that Millenials and Generation Z are less inclined to "fall for" big and polished advertisements. Make a shift towards more personalized or customer created content. Companies like Starbucks are using Instagram posts for a campaign called “Meet me at Starbucks.”. Or GoPro who revolutionized advertising by utilizing user-generated content.
The last big method is customization. Make their shopping experience online or in the store unique to them. This can include product personalization or personalized marketing efforts.
Are you ready to update your customer experience? Maybe it's time to look at integrating interactivity into your customer experience. Just remember with Generation Y and Z want you to collaborate with them to provide better service. They know what they want, let them work towards it themselves and provide customer support when they ask.
Author Bio | Adia Thornton | Horizon Display
Adia Thornton, Marketing Coordinator, is fascinated with why people do what they do. Her inquisitive nature and psychology background led to her enthusiasm for marketing. When she's not getting inside someone else's head, she is often quieting her own in Crow Pose. With her self-professed catch phrase, "create and innovate!" she brings a fresh perspective to tasks and problems.