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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : September 19, 2016

Expert: How to create an interactive customer experience

Over the past year, the experience has begun to take precedence over simply being able to buy online. The problem is that many retailers still don't have a seamless, interactive experience. One expert offers tips to create an interactive customer experience.

by Kristina Knight

Know your customer

"In order to get your customers to interact with your event or experience, they will need to be interested in it. It is imperative to know what your customers' interests are, what motivates them, what trends are they responding to? Once you know this information, you can see how your product or service fits into one or more of those facets. It is within this combination that you will unlock the mystery of how to get your customers engaged," said Ryan James Dee, Creative Director for Interactions Marketing.

Make the experience sharable

"We live in the age of snaps and Instagram pics. To increase engagement, you will need to have some output that makes for a shareable moment. It could be a VIP area, or a selfie booth, or a cleverly designed product sample. Whatever it is, find it, and encourage your customers to share it with their friends and family," said Dee.

Allow your customer to participate in the experience

"Research within the Millennial and Gen Z generations has shown that each values experiences over material items. An event is an experience in itself, but you can go one level deeper by having them participate in the creation of that experience. Offer the chance to have customers create their own artwork, or if you're sampling a food or beverage item, have them make it their own by adding spices, mix-ins, or toppings. Doing things like this turns passive guests into active collaborators making the experience much more interactive and memorable," said Dee.

Have the experience live beyond the event itself

"Think of your initial event or experience as just the starting point of the conversation. Continue that dialog via social media and digital long after the event has ended. Have guests opt-in for follow up communication or create a hashtag to keep track of the ongoing discussion over social media. Keeping guests engaged not only extends the life of your event, but it will build relationships between your brand and your consumers that can evolve into brand advocacy," said Dee.

Tags: ecommerce, ecommerce experience, Interactions Marketing, interactive ecommerce

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