In customer experience, the only constant is change. How customers shop and interact with brands is constantly changing, which means organizations need to stay ahead and lead new trends to provide amazing experiences. This week brought three examples of how consumers are changing and the opportunities and challenges that brings for brands.
Rent The Runway Doubles Down On Customer Experience After Complaints
A company that aims to bring luxury to the masses wasn’t providing a luxurious experience for its customers. After months of customers complaining about long wait times to talk to representatives and threatening to leave the rental clothing company, Rent the Runway announced it will double the size of its customer experience team. The company held a Twitter town hall where it addressed questions directly from disgruntled customers. It also plans to create a new Twitter account dedicated solely to service questions, create a second fulfillment center to speed up order delivery and open return kiosks at select Nordstrom stores.
Rent the Runways shows the power that comes from acknowledging issues and facing them head on. Instead of making excuses for dissatisfied customers, Rent the Runway realized the problem and quickly put plans into action to make things better. This is especially important for a business that relies on customer experience and word of mouth recommendations. When customers feel valued and respected, they’re much more likely to put up with having to wait on hold for a few minutes.
Millennials Moving To Suburbs In Droves Could Create Growing Pains
Young people used to flock to the fast-paced lifestyle of big cities, but millennials are once again bucking a trend, this time with housing. After surviving the economic downturn, many millennials are now getting married and starting families later than previous generations. As housing prices rise in larger cities, millennials are moving to the suburbs to enjoy a lower cost of living and a more family-friendly environment. However, many suburbs are experiencing faster growth than they can keep up with, leading to growing pains. Some suburbs, especially those with good weather and job opportunities, are growing twice as fast as neighboring cities.
Millennials do lots of things differently than previous generations, so the move away from the cities shouldn’t be a big surprise. The impact, however, could be quite large. Suburban living is very different from living in an urban area and impacts how people live, work and shop. The trend also shows how Millennials are growing up and shifting their priorities as many start families. Brands should understand these changes as they aim to understand their evolving customer bases.
Taco Bell Hotel Sells Out In 2 Minutes
Apparently, travelers don’t want to give up their fast food to stay at a luxury hotel. Reservations for Taco Bell’s pop-up hotel sold out in just two minutes, even after an extra weekend was added. For select dates during the summer, Taco Bell will take over the V Palm Springs Hotel to cater to its extremely loyal fans. Everything about the experience will be Taco Bell themed, including restaurant-themed room décor, mini fridges stocked with Taco Bell favorites, taco-themed salon services and giant hot sauce pool floaties. The weekends will also feature a full schedule of activities and a chance to try new Taco Bell menu items. Clearly, Taco Bell fans are jumping at the chance to experience the restaurant unlike ever before.
Modern customers crave experiences, and Taco Bell is jumping into the trend at full force. Giving fans a new way to connect with the brand builds a new group of loyal customers and expands Taco Bell’s brand of fun, unique food. Taking over an entire hotel for multiple weekends could be a little risky, but the reservations selling out so quickly shows that Taco Bell could be on to something big.
Modern customers are bucking trends, experiencing new things and want to have their voices heard. None of these stories could have happened 10 years ago, which shows the importance of building relationships and staying connected to customers.
Blake Morgan is a keynote speaker, futurist and author of two books, “The Customer Of The Future” and “More Is More.” Sign up for her weekly customer experience newsletter here.