Great Customer Experiences Can Start With #EmployeeAppreciationDay
Consumers want to feel good about what they’re buying. To that end, companies participating in #EmployeeAppreciationDay last week went a long way toward making great customer experiences more likely to happen for their brands.
The Masseuse is on there way to the Office to relieve the stress of last month, Free Breakfast has been ordered and “treats throughout the day” First treat below! What has you Boss done for you?? #EmployeeAppreciationDay pic.twitter.com/Q2uOR1QKkG
— Chris Brett (@Brett_Testing) March 1, 2019
There are at least three reasons celebrating #EmployeeAppreciationDay on March 1 can help brands create great customer experiences: Consumers who see a company treating its employees well may be more likely to buy from that brand; customers may already know the employees and think of them as your brand, considering they’re the faces they see at your business; and happy employees can translate into happy customers.
Customer Experiences Rooted in Buying Decisions Based on Doing Good
As Target Marketing blogger Jeanette McMurtry says, customers support brands they see doing good, and that good makes them feel good about their purchasing decisions.
“One of the five drivers of human happiness, according to Jonathan Haidt’s book, ‘The Happiness Hypothesis,’ is being part of something that does good in the world. This new generation of customers not only seeks to do good in the world themselves, they seek to purchase from and align with brands that also do good in the world.”
Target Marketing blogger Summer Gould says marketers can’t ignore this consumer need among Millennials.
“The most important thing to know about Millennials is that they value social issues over economics. So you need to make sure that your messaging taps into that need.”
Beyond brands taking a stand on societal issues, consumers pay attention to how brands treat staffers. Tech companies got black eyes when women revealed internal issues ranging from sexism to sexual harassment. IBM got rid of more than 20,000 U.S. workers aged 40 or older within five years, ProPublica reported last year. And last year, Facebook had to agree to stop letting third-party advertisers exclude “ethnic and religious minorities, immigrants, LGBTQ individuals and other protected groups” from seeing ads, including for employment, according to Adweek.
“Business leaders must recognize that a company’s employment practices can shape brand perceptions just as much as traditional marketing efforts. Public relations firm Weber Shandwick found that when consumers discuss companies, the top five topics include how they treat their employees and news about their involvement in scandals or wrongdoings. And Edelman reports that no single action by a company is more interconnected with its ability to build trust with the public than ‘treating employees well.’ So in their pursuit of employees with desirable skills and profiles, companies must be sure they aren’t alienating customers and other stakeholders. After all, does any company really want a reputation as a firm that won’t employ older workers or women?”
Employees Are Front-Line Brand Representatives, Advocates
And now for the horror stories. As I wrote in “United Sorry About Dog Death — Make Employees Brand Reps?” there’s a danger in not training front-line employees/not investing in them. (I’m not saying United didn’t do so.)
If they’re underpaid or treated poorly, they’ll talk about it. (See “Killing Your Brand Reputation With Pathetic Pay.”)
But if they’re happy, they’ll tell people, too. Or you can, marketers. Enter #EmployeeAppreciationDay.
It's #EmployeeAppreciationDay, but at @TMobile we don’t have a single day to celebrate - we have 365 days for it 🎉 All our success, all our wins🏆 have been possible because of our amazing employees and the heart and dedication they put in every day. Thank you for all you do 💗 pic.twitter.com/prb9j9OmfF
— John Legere (@JohnLegere) March 1, 2019
And that’s where “Customer Experience Must Be Corporate Culture to Succeed” comes in. The following is already true for many companies:
“Every customer touchpoint needs to enhance the customer experience, and the main way CEOs and CMOs can make that happen is to make it everyone’s responsibility.”
Happy Employees Mean Happy Customers
This is a generally accepted statement, backed by proof from Shep Hyken on Forbes.com:
“It’s simple — happier employees make happier customers. And, there are plenty of statistics and facts to back this up.
“Gallup reports in “The State of the American Workplace” that employees who are engaged are more likely to improve customer relationships, with a resulting 20% increase in sales.”
What do you think, marketers?
Please respond in the comments section below.
— Jennifer Morgan (@JenniferBMorgan) March 1, 2019
Related story: Customer Experience Must Be Corporate Culture to Succeed