In customer experience, we’re often laser focused on the granular details that lead to high behavioral loyalty. I think of some of the brands I’ve stuck with for years, such as Ritual vitamins, who keep track of when I need vitamins and send a package before I run out. Another reason I’m loyal is a less tangible emotional tie I have to this brand, and I think it stems from their commitment to using high quality real food-derived ingredients, testing their ingredients to make sure my body can absorb them easily, ensuring that all of their packaging is sustainable, and bringing new products to me that, just like the original, taste really great day and and day out. They make sticking with an important healthy habit super easy, and delightful as well.

Let’s take another great experience as an example. My family and I recently flew on Play Air for the first time, a new airline out of Iceland with really reasonable flights. I was a little skeptical of my husband’s purchase of the flights but my emotional tie to Play Air completely changed with the experience of the flight. Instead of focusing on in-air entertainment, there are no display screens, no WiFi, and the cabin is the typical one with small legroom. And there were no free drinks or snacks, so already they may seem like their focus is only in the behavioral loyalty camp. Keep flying with Play Air and save money on flights with a no-frills option. To my surprise, they had a wonderful menu of snacks, lunches, and drinks all from Iceland to purchase and this was a fun way to really start to experience Iceland before we landed. The staff were also super nice and patient when my kids kept ordering snacks in between their carts moving through the aisle. Play Air did a great job of ensuring my loyalty by focusing on two important sides of the coin.

So let’s turn the focus on your brand experience. In what ways are you mapping out the entirety of the end-to-end customer experience, from all of your varied personas and their points of view, in order to reduce friction? Look for gaps in the experience where your customers may turn to a competitor or worse, go online and vent about their experience. But don’t stop there. Take it a level up by bringing your customers into co-creation sessions with you to design delightful moments throughout your experience that will arrive at a time that they least expect it. Depending on your brand promise, these can be moments of warmth, joy, or even humor that will set your customer experience apart.

Mapping your customer experience, eliminating points of friction, and developing moments of delight is not a one and done process. We map the CX in digital tools so that we can ingest data, make rapid pivots when the marketplace changes, easily zoom in and out on an experience, and even workshop with our clients. This also allows you to filter on your emotional touchpoints only, or your behavioral touchpoints, to investigate how healthy your mix is. From there, go forth with your behavioral and emotional loyalty plan!