What a golf course taught me about customer experience…

9 May 2022

In the majority of markets, customer experience is more closely correlated with retention, referrals, growth and profitability than any other variable.

And yet what percentage of non-eCommerce businesses have defined their ideal customer experience – 10%? 20%?

I think one reason is deep down we know it’s going to be bloody difficult to manage. Employees have these irritating things called personalities and sadly they’re not as easy to control as an email autoresponder.

And would you want everyone to sound the same? Probably not. In fact it turns out that these difficult to control human behaviours contain more potential to positively impact the customer experience than anything else. Precisely because they’re difficult to control!

For most businesses, therefore, rather than prescribing every detail – a counterproductive task unless you work with big machinery or Big Macs – it’s better to identify a small number of critical moments, then make it your goal to become famous for them.

I played golf at Celtic Manor a few years ago. The course was pretty good I think; don’t really remember. And as for the accommodation, just another oversized 4* hotel. There is something that stayed with me though…

When I arrived at the pro-shop, a chap picked up my 23 year old clubs and drove them to the first tee, where he set them up next to a pyramid of golf balls so I could loosen up. I didn’t pay for this service and didn’t expect it, but for precisely those reasons I’m still talking about it today.

Every company has its opportunities to create these moments, and incidentally, the more boring your market the bigger impression they’ll make.

And of course, by doing something remarkable through a small number of interactions, it will shift the entire culture of the organisation. Or put it this way, the chap who painstakingly* assembled my pyramid of golfballs, probably didn’t then sit down next to them for a quick smoke and a Fanta.

Some people call these magic moments, others wow moments. It doesn’t matter. What they are is the backbone of your customer experience and the thing that will determine the strength of your brand more than everything else combined.

*I’ve since devastatingly discovered there’s a tool that erects these pyramids about about 3 seconds. But in my mind the nice man definitely did it by hand.


Sign up for free INSIGHTS

Sign up for free to get access to our bitesize reports and newsletters,  including:

  • Step-by-step guides and toolkits
  • Practical marketing tools and templates
  • Interviews and insight from top B2B marketers
  • Inspiring case studies from award-winning brands
  • Webinars and podcasts on the latest hot topics
  • Downloadable whitepapers from our trusted partners
  • Newsletters featuring the week’s hottest posts.

About Boss to Boss

Boss to Boss is part of The Insight Group, a collection of thought leadership websites sharing exclusive insight from the greatest minds in business.

Our ambition is to help raise standards across B2B, enterprise technology and professional service organisations by celebrating the leading minds and sharing their insight in a way that is concise and actionable.

Play Video