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For many of you who have followed my writings or have seen me speak, you have heard me talk about the Zero Moment of Truth. For those who may not know what that is, it is based on a book by Jim Lecinski for Google coining this term as the space between initial stimulus of marketing and interaction with the brand. Simply put it is the research phase we all do when we “Google” something.
I have asked the question many times to audiences, “What do your potential customers see when they Google you?” Some of the audiences have done the research; others are unaware. I have also preached that businesses have an obligation to be involved with what they find and can actually impact what is written by customers.
The title of this article stems from a growing phenomenon in the industries I work in. What I am finding is that businesses are buying new technologies or signing up for the newest social media platform without understanding what to do with them. They think that showing up to the party is enough. They do not understand that getting to the party is just the beginning. It is the interaction you participate in at the party that creates the great experience. Do you remember being a wallflower and saying, “Wow that was a great time?” It's just not the same as being an active participant.
The question is not how is Digital Marketing or Social Media selling more products or services, but it should be how are Digital Marketing and Social Media leveraging the experiences I am delivering for my customers. How are you guiding people through the cycle of Stimulus to Research to Interaction to the use of your product? Lastly, but really most importantly, how are you helping to encourage feedback?
I just finished reading Brian Solis’s sensational new book“What’s the Future of Business”in which he coins this point of impacting feedback as the “Ultimate” Moment of Truth. What your customers say about your service, product or experience of doing business with you will feed the Influence Pool for the next group doing research. I had always discussed this important step for businesses in my workshops but now, thanks to Brian, having a simple term helps convey the message.
There are some businesses that can alleviate the human factor, but still there will be feedback expressed. It is why we are fascinated by reviews. We desire feedback to make sure we are making the right decision. We have been trained to ask for comments from friends, family and now social circles. We don’t go to a movie without reading reviews so of course this is very important for bigger purchases.
One problem is that dealers and businesses join a review platform, get people to post and think that is enough. Maybe they respond to a review, but are they taking this information and going back to see how they can change the experience they delivered in the first place?
People will talk and there is nothing that you can do to prevent that. If you are invested in finding out not only what they are saying but, most importantly, how this feedback can improve your business, then you need to invest in tools so your team can inspect, review, plan actions and train so that you can continually refine the experience delivered.
Just having the technology is not enough. What is the experience you want them to have.