4 Steps to Making a Human Connection With Welcome Messages
Before discussing what recent data reveal about the dynamics of welcome messages, I thought you might need a break from endless droning about increasing this and decreasing that. How about a quick thought experiment? This might be a bit easier if your brand has brick-and-mortar locations, but anyone can play along.
Think about a recent trip to the mall. You enter through the food court, avert your eyes from the Cinnabon that mocks your attempts at healthy living, and head towards Nordstrom. Along the way you are impulsively drawn to a number of shops. Entering the Apple Store, a blue-shirted associate approaches with a boisterous, "Hi! I'm Mike! What are you looking for today?" Passing by the Abercrombie & Fitch store's beachy, shuttered doors, a modelesque teenager folding ripped jeans calls out, "Hey! What's going on?"
How about a slightly less sensory-invasive example? You walk into an AT&T store and within 10 seconds someone greets you, takes your name and tells you an approximate wait time. That greeting is not happenstance. It emerged as a result of considerable research into customer experience preferences. As Forbes contributor Carmine Gallo reported in 2011, the "10-feet-in-10-seconds-or-less rule" was developed after testing customer satisfaction with similar wait times.
In an A/B test conducted by AT&T, one group of customers was not greeted immediately, but received service after waiting for three minutes. Those in the second group were greeted within 10 seconds and told there was a wait time of three minutes. Two groups, each waiting the same amount of time to be served. When it came time to leave, can you guess which group scored their experience with AT&T higher? That's right! The group that was greeted immediately was more likely to be satisfied with the same level of service.
Welcoming a customer is the focus of intense retail research, but email marketers often overlook the importance of that first interaction.