Brainzooming – All Posts | The Brainzooming Group - Part 320 – page 320
3

Last Saturday, my niece Valerie treated us to roller coaster riding at Elitch Gardens amusement park in Denver. The afternoon provided great branding lessons on aligning naming and customer experience implementation.

A ticket booth sign promoted Rapid Ride passes – $14.99 add-ons permitting, as the materials stated, time savings by moving to the front of the line for rides. It was touted as improving your customer experience by providing more family time together at the Elitch Gardens as you enjoyed the park.

We decided to get three Rapid Ride passes. When Valerie bought the tickets, she received a receipt for one pass, but nothing we could actually use. The ticket taker told us to check with Guest Relations. The Guest Relations worker said the receipt was an internal stub, and that although she could sell the Rapid Ride passes, none had been delivered to Guest Relations yet. She sent Valerie back to the ticket booth to wait in line. After redoing the transaction for three Rapid Ride passes, they didn’t have the passes either. By the time a manager brought them over, we’d blown thirty minutes getting passes to speed up our park experience. Needless to say, we were seeing a disconnect in the Rapid Ride pass naming and customer experience we were enduring.

So think about these three branding lessons related to defects in aligning naming and customer experience:

  • A brand really is more than the name; it’s a customer’s experience with a product or service. When something’s called “Rapid,” everything about the customer experience better be “rapid.” It shouldn’t take thirty minutes for anything whose promise is based on rapidity.
  • Don’t get focused on narrow brand attributes during naming. While Elitch Gardens emphasizes speed in the name, we also got to select our seats before anyone else. For roller coaster lovers, riding at the front or back every time is nearly as good as cutting in line. But the name obscured this attractive customer experience feature.
  • Provide honest information about the customer experience people are purchasing. At the first coaster, it was unclear how to use the passes – there were no signs. Turns out there wasn’t a special line Saturday; we had to walk up a ride’s exit line. And only after checking the passes did we learn they were good only five times and only on certain rides at Elitch Gardens.

All three of these misaligned elements on naming and customer experience are important mistakes to avoid in reconciling what’s important to customers, the brand promise, and actual experiences! – Mike Brown

The Brainzooming Group helps make smart organizations more successful by rapidly expanding their strategic options and creating innovative plans they can efficiently implement. Email us at info@brainzooming.com or call us at 816-509-5320 to learn how we can help you enhance your strategy and implementation efforts.

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading

4

Experts are everywhere so in unfamiliar situations look for them to help you perform better. How to spot them?

  • Focus on people displaying multi-dimensional talents or responsibilities
  • Observe who others go to with questions – irrespective of formal title or position
  • Watch for people who look as if they know what they’re doing
  • Pick out those who appear to informally take charge

Setting up wedding reception music the night before my niece’s wedding ceremony in Denver, Chris was clearly the expert. Though never sure of his official title, he was a wealth of information about the hotel sound system, the reception set up, and how long the event would last and wind down. He predicted that after 4 hours there would be 15 people left; the next day, 3 hours and 50 minutes into the reception, there 16 people remaining. Chris knew what he was talking about!

Another advantage of finding experts is that it’s fun to push them to tap their knowledge to devise innovative approaches.

The wedding was on the hotel’s patio, and that morning Nate (my nephew) and I were still determining how to get enough volume through our small speakers. There were, however, four speakers outside playing house music. While Chris wasn’t available, Warren, who had cleared our table at breakfast (see the bullet about multi-dimensional responsibilities), was. I explained what we hoped to accomplish, showed him a hidden audio jack on the wall, and within 15 minutes, we were playing the ceremony music through the speakers. The hotel had never done this before, but now plans to make this available for future events.

The key was being open, willing to learn, and allowing ourselves to be seen as knowledgeable but uncertain. That’s when an expert will almost always go out of his or her way to come up with an ingenious solution. So remember, look for telltale signs of expertise to help you get smarter when you need it most.

Valerie

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading

1

We were in Denver this past weekend for my niece’s wedding. Travel always spurs blog ideas, so this week touches on ones from the trip.

Living an unconventional life isn’t something to which I’m inclined. My life tends to fall within some fairly standard bounds, allowing for the uncontrollable events that life always holds.

As I pointed out in the toast at the wedding reception, my niece, in stark contrast, had an unconventional life thrust upon her almost from birth.

Growing up amid a care group that depended on her extended family and close friends, she’s an interesting blend – a very loving young woman with certain traditional views surrounded by some very different experiences and twists on life. At several crucial junctures though, she has made incredible decisions that I view with tremendous respect and pride in her judgment. And among traditional aspects of the ceremony and reception, there were multiple unconventional elements for those that wanted to look for them. It was quintessential Valerie!

The whole trip was a reminder that it’s important to be open to and learn from life perspectives and behaviors that are very different from your own. Try to look for points of agreement where you may share views. And maybe wait a few minutes (or a few days, or even until the next trip) to provide your wisdom on life and how to live it. In so doing, you may get to learn all kinds of new things about tattoos, snowboarding, and what it means to be a polite graffiti artist!

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading

0

“Research is what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing.” – Wernher von Braun

“Generalizations are generally wrong.” – Butler Lampson

“Beware of the man who won’t be bothered with details.” – William Feather

“If you torture the data enough, it will confess.” – Ronald Coase

“Lies, damn lies, and statistics.” – Mark Twain

“The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it.” – George Bernard Shaw

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading

0
“Being respected is nice. Being spoiled is wonderful.”

Rushing through the Cleveland airport (which I always seem to be doing when in Cleveland lately), I saw a Continental Airlines poster that included the line above, give or take a few words (since I was rushing, I didn’t have time to take a picture).

Anybody responsible for addressing customer experiences can use the statement as a great starter for innovation. Ask: “What could we do to treat our customers so special that they’d feel as if we were completely spoiling them?’

The answers can be powerful in dramatically enhancing experiences for your customers.

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading

1

I downloaded a fascinating interview from emusic – an hour long interview with Johnny Carson on humor recorded in the late 1960s (it’s one of several such interviews with famous comedians). In one segment, the discussion turns to ad libbing. Johnny made the statement that rarely do comedians make up something entirely new right on the spot. He said instead, improvisation comes from having a good memory for things that you’ve said, done, or seen previously and the ability to switch things around to fit the current moment.

That’s a great formula for on-the-spot innovation whether it’s comedy or any other situation you face.

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading

3

Dave Wessling, one of my all-time most influential teachers, shared many comments that have shaped my thinking in so many ways. One that’s particularly relevant recently is, “Form should reinforce meaning.” It’s a great rule to apply when developing and assessing creative material against an underlying strategy.

The principle basically challenges you to consider everything (i.e., color, position, sequence, pacing, volume, length, vocabulary, position, shape, movement, tonality, etc.) surrounding a communications message (the form) relative to how strongly it supports the meaning of the message being conveyed. Substitute “creative” for “form” and “strategy” for “meaning” and you have a maxim you can use over and over again:

“Creative should reinforce strategy.”

You’ll never go wrong applying this principle in business, and particularly in marketing decision making. It’s especially helpful in an environment where people are advancing interesting, intriguing, even cool creative ideas that have little to do with any underlying strategy foundation.

Asking if the creative reinforces the strategy at the appropriate time (i.e., during a specific evaluation period and NOT during a divergent thinking exercise), will lead to making better strategy decisions and producing messages with stronger impacts. – Mike Brown

The Brainzooming Group helps make smart organizations more successful by rapidly expanding their strategic options and creating innovative plans they can efficiently implement. Email us at brainzooming@gmail.com or call us at 816-509-5320 to learn how we can deliver these benefits for you.

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading