Click here to read the article as published in the YourStory October 2023

Cracking the Code: Maximising ROI in B2C Marketing with Customer Emotion Insights

In the bustling heart of a busy city in Australia, there lived a Russian woman named Nadia. At 65, her life was a tapestry woven with routine. Every week, like clockwork, she embarked on a journey that ,she dreaded – a visit to her local bank.

Why did such a simple errand fluster her so much? It wasn’t the banking itself that unnerved Nadia. Nadia’s unease stemmed not from her lack of English language proficiency, but from the way these interactions unfolded. The staff at the bank resorted to raised voices, assuming it would break down the communication barrier. Instead, it left Nadia feeling more isolated and distressed.

These experiences were uncomfortable. Every visit left Nadia more anxious, and she couldn’t shake the apprehension of facing yet another unpleasant encounter during her next trip to the bank.

One Day Everything Changed

As Nadia walked into the bank one day, her reluctance and anxiety were as palpable as ever. Yet, something was different. There was a new face among the tellers. The teller noticed Nadia’s unease and offered a warm, reassuring smile – a small act that would set in motion a profound transformation. It was this simple yet powerful gesture that forever changed Nadia’s perception of the bank. Nadia maneuvered the queue, allowing others to go ahead so she could speak to this new teller.

Finally, it was Nadia’s turn to speak to the teller. What followed was a revelation.

A Transformative Encounter

The teller recognised that Nadia was uncomfortable and anxious conversing in English. Without hesitation, the teller suggested they move to a quieter, more comfortable meeting room. Nadia’s tense shoulders began to relax as she felt safer and comfortable for the first time.

In this private setting, the teller encouraged Nadia to share her financial concerns. Nadia, feeling valued and understood, began listing her requirements and seeking clarification on various matters. The teller listened patiently, addressing each query with care and attention.

The Magic of Connection

The result was nothing short of magic. Nadia left the bank with her faith in the institution renewed. She had experienced something beyond her expectations – a simple yet profound human connection that made her feel valued, cared for and supported driven by an extremely empathetic teller.

The Ripple Economic Effect

You might wonder what this heartwarming story has to do with the complex world of B2C marketing and ROI. The answer lies in the transformation that unfolded in the days and weeks that followed Nadia’s visit to the bank.

A few days later, Nadia transferred all her financial assets to this branch of the bank. More importantly, she returned in a few weeks with her friends who also transferred their financial assets to this very same bank. As a result, the bank overachieved its monthly targets and also earned a set of new loyal customers.

Emotional Connection Drives Loyalty

Engaged Strategy’s research has long emphasised the role of emotions in consumer-brand relationships. B2C marketing isn’t just about selling products or services; it is about forging emotional connections for a lifetime. Brands that resonate with customers on an emotional level enjoy benefits beyond transactional value.

Nadia’s story is a testament to the emotional connection she forged with the bank through a single empathetic teller. This connection not only delivered a great experience but also created a bond of understanding and empathy. These emotions made Nadia feel truly valued, cared for, and supported – three powerful emotions that can lead any business toward success and based on our research when delivered accurately and can increase Net Promoter Scores® by up to 70 points.

Emotions can be planned, ideated and measured

The first step is to workshop your exact CX DNA. In other words, how should customers describe their experience with you in functional terms, but more importantly, in emotional terms? How do you want them to feel after interacting with your brand?

Once you have decided on your planned emotions, you should engage your staff by involving them in ideating how best to deliver these emotions that are key to your business. The best way is by conducting facilitated ideation workshops that unleash their creativity.

The next step is to manage the delivery of these planned emotions. It is one thing to crystallise your customer strategic intentions and develop ideas, but if you cannot measure it, you cannot manage it. Hence, ask yourself about how will you identify the ‘Nadia-style’ experiences that have such a powerful economic impact.

Crafting strategic customer surveys after key transactions that measure not just the satisfaction with the touchpoint, but also emotions transferred, becomes paramount now. These surveys aren’t just questionnaires; they are your windows into the human soul of your customer base. They unveil the emotional drivers that ignite loyalty or reveal the pain points that threaten retention. They provide the compass guiding your journey toward best practices.

In my experience brands tend to measure the satisfaction of a transaction, but not the emotional resonance. It is important that these surveys deliver actionable insights that identify key emotional drivers and pain points and allow you to also identify and share best practice. In terms of insights, it is also critical to understand the economic impact of emotions on loyalty, recommendation and word of mouth.


Nurturing Customer Advocacy

Customer value is not merely the transactional sale value of a product or service. It is the sum total of customer loyalty, share of wallet, and how often customers recommend you to others.

Nadia’s story demonstrates how an empathetic experience fueled by key emotions not only retained her business but also brought in new customers and increased share of wallet, showcasing the tangible financial benefits of making customers feel the right emotions.

As competition intensifies, B2C marketers who leverage these insights gain a competitive edge. They understand that marketing isn’t just about acquiring customers; it’s about fostering relationships and delivering value. By focusing on what truly matters to their audience, B2C marketers can achieve not only short-term gains but also long-term sustainability and growth. In this data-driven era, measuring ROI goes hand-in-hand with measuring customer satisfaction and loyalty, and Nadia’s story illustrates the importance of deep customer insights that include emotions for B2C marketers aiming to thrive in the modern business landscape.

Nadia’s transformation from a reluctant customer to a passionate advocate is a testament to the profound impact of emotions in CX B2C marketing. It all began with a simple smile, a gesture of empathy, and a commitment to understanding her unique needs. It’s a story that reminds us that behind every data point is a human experience, and unlocking the potential of these experiences can lead to remarkable results in the world of marketing.

NPS®, Net Promoter® and Net Promoter Score® are registered trademarks of NICE Satmetrix Systems, Inc., Bain & Company and Fred Reichheld.

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