We all talk about the importance of first impressions in dating and love. We even talk about first impressions in the hiring process. Less talked about is the significance of first impressions with members, customers, guests or attendees.
Experts say one of the new currencies of this decade is not money but attention. In this new digital world where users can actually be the product the more users you have the better. At the same time there are more and more demands on our attention. 3 TV channels are now 200. Best-selling books used to be on the best selling list for months now many a winner is on for just a week. Mobile and the internet have combined to make everyone connected every second of every day. There is an explosion of choice.
To even make that all important first impression you have to grab their attention – and you only have 8 seconds to do this.
Everything came down to the 8-second rule. In 8 seconds at 8 feet away can a shopper find what they are looking for in an 8’x8’ array of products? My product, often a very small box, had to stand out and quickly convey at least one key benefit to moms in just 8 seconds. That’s a tall order isn’t it?
Did you know that the 8-second rule applies to your organization? (More….)
In one-on-one conversations we spend some time on the hello-how-are-you’s. If the purpose of the conversation is to sell we get to the transaction (the exchange of money or product) later. First we build some rapport. When attendees come to our conference or a guest comes to our museum or zoo the transaction comes first and the hello-how-are-you might never come at all.
Is member engagement a top priority? Get better at your hellos and goodbyes.
18-wheelers and giant dump trucks careen over the hill and then rumble by just 20 feet away from our house. Because we live in a home with a blind-driveway on a country highway my husband and I have learned how to back into the road and then get heck out of there (think a Dukes-of-Hazard-style-pullout without all the flying dirt!).
Partly because guests seem to take their lives into their own hands when they come to visit us, but mostly because we like having visitors, we work hard to be welcoming (more…. )
Creating an experience
Most times people won’t remember a first impression as it exactly happened but they do remember a feeling. That feeling sets the tone for how they will perceive, interact with and even engage with a person, brand or organization in the future. The best organizations create an experience around this first impression.
The best innovations not only meet a need but also deliver an experience. One of the best at this is Apple of course. Every detail of a new product is calculatingly engineered, even something as small as the way the texture of product packaging feels in your hand.
As you touch the Mac packaging for the first time the color, the gloss or lack of, the texture and the weight of the box all tell you something about the contents. Then you slide open the box – no plastic, twist ties, staples, stickers, glue or tape to deal with. What a delight! And then you throw it away. This experience takes less than a minute (more….)
Many member organizations don’t understand what their first impressions are saying about them. Do you?