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People make mistakes. It happens. “To err is human. To forgive divine”, right? Well, not always.

When companies make mistakes, customers aren’t always in that forgive-and-forget mindset and may even lash out against brands publicly. Take the recent Ulta Beauty email debacle for example. Yikes.

When business is transacted at the speed of a click or a swipe, trust can be lost in a millisecond, and brand loyalty isn’t even a consideration. This is especially true when the communication channel is as immediate and personal as text messaging.

Understanding how and why consumers abandon brands to which they were once loyal is now a critical component of doing business digitally. 

Zero ToleranceIn the pandemic environment, digital business models were adopted at a previously inconceivable pace and have since transformed the customer-brand relationship. Consumers’ tolerance for being bombarded with too many messages, inappropriate messages, and general blunders from brands is almost non-existent now.  

Boo! Brand ghostinga startling 71 percent of consumers would unsubscribe and opt out of all communications interactions. 

Strike one, you’re out—76 percent would immediately stop purchasing a brand when trust is lost. 

No friction, pleaseif a customer doesn’t like a brand’s UX, they go elsewhere to find a better, seamless experience. 

[Source: Adobe 2021 Future of Marketing Report] 

Opportunity vs. Risk: From Transactional to Experiential

Doing business digitally can be a win-win when companies treat every customer touchpoint as an opportunity to strengthen the customer-brand relationship, while at the same time considering each touch as a potential risk to lose a customer. These interactions are no longer just transactional; they are experiential. Every single customer email, online chat session, automated voice customer service interaction, and text message must be treated with the utmost respect and consideration for the customers experience. Even more so when it comes to SMS. A customer’s mobile number is a highly personal communications channel and should be treated with great care–it’s next to impossible to get a customer back after an OPT OUT.

Take it Personally

Brands must put themselves in the customers’ shoes when crafting messaging and visualize what the experience will be for customers. Will they feel personally valued as a customer or will they feel as if they are just one of many being broadcast to? As customer expectations rise to a new level in the digital space, be there to meet them or risk being ghosted and losing them.

Author Dave Baxter


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