The power of emotion in your customer future

MAt our UK Credit Risk Summit in October, Richard Seymour, Futurologist and Partner at Seymourpowell, gave a dynamic and exciting talk on the power of emotion in your customer future.

Richard believes it takes a minimum of 18 months for an idea to reach the shops, so commercial success to a large extent comes down to making accurate predictions of what people will want years into the future.

While not an exact science, there are many brands orbiting around you that have honed their ability to do this, by putting the individual they wish to serve at the centre of their thinking.

You must understand the end user to add value. These brands put anthropology before technology, closely observing their behaviour. And, as the future tends to be shaped by the young, they put significant effort into understanding the next generation of adults.

Humans feel before we think, which means we are always processing emotional data. These brands make an effort to tap into this powerful side of the human mind in order to create better solutions. They start by considering the most wonderful way for the future to look to them personally. If they love that vision of the future, others will too.

Brands that behave like people, not corporations, automatically garner loyalty. It is shown time and again that tapping into the human values of truth, honour and kindness wins you so much, despite costing so little.

The day of the stick is done. Brands should look to become more generous and enable the end user to be generous in turn to others. Honouring people in their tasks can also have tremendous results. Brands can generate greater loyalty by enabling customers and people to find greater self-esteem.

People want to engage with companies that talk like they do. The best brands avoid projecting industrial language and seek to better connect with their audiences by putting on their Saturday morning heads and talking more naturally to customers.

Many of the most fantastic breakthroughs have not been about developing new services, but instead enhancing existing services based on a better understanding of the customer. The journey of design should focus on understanding customers’ usual demands and expectations, what they do and like doing, and then helping them do more.

Some brands are also tapping into our natural desire to compete to get closer to customers. Turning ordinary interactions into a game helps them build brand affinity and garner incredible data.

So where to start? How can financial institutions and other credit providers become more human and use the power of emotion to get closer to customers?

Like that first handshake, every customer interaction conveys unspoken, emotionally based characteristics about your business. You are only perceived to be as good as your worst point of customer contact.

To view more content from our Credit Risk Summit, you can download the key takeaways here.


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