The importance of customer experience

I came across a great article which is an interview with new JC Penney CEO Ron Johnson.  One of the quotes from the interview was in response to a question about the fundamental change that Ron Johnson took regarding the experience customers had shopping at Penney’s and in direct reflection of the discount, sales, and coupons customers have grown so accustomed to with JCP.  Here’s CEO Ron Johnson’s response: “We’re changing our pricing strategy, because we want every day to be a great day to shop, and if you’re designing a new interface designed by its nature, whether it’s a product or an experience, what’s the most important thing it has to have?  It has to have integrity.  If you’re going to build a relationship, you’ve got to have integrity to that.  So it’s hard to have integrity when you artificially mark up products just to mark them down.”
The full article/ interview can be seen at : http://wp.me/pzwtX-o16 

Then I also came across a great article looking at the Marketing towards the Generation Y.  It can be viewed at http://bit.ly/OFbPaT

I find it interesting that Ron Johnson is the same leader who revolutionized the experience within the Apple stores across the globe and now is looking at the retail clothing in a new way.  Through his leadership Apple created the “We’ll set it up” program and drastically cut the set up time of the average Apple customer from 8 days to a matter of minutes within the store.  Now he has taken a look at the concept of the experience for customers in JCP.  For instance, JCP will be rolling out the Jeans store within the JCP stores across the nation.  Recognizing the growing need for experience is right in line with the Generation Y article and a strong trend growing within this group of customers.  Here is an excerpt from the Generation Y article:

Everything starts with an Experience
Generation Y is guided by emotions and are more emotional than previous generations. Especially the search for happiness is very important in their lives. (Van den Bergh, Behrer, 2011) Leisure activities such as entertainment, food and drink, and travel must have a strong emotional part so that they can escape the daily reality and relax. The tendency to ‘gamification’, fits perfectly in their lifes. Brands need to challenge their young audiences and present their products as performances or a moment of luxury to escape reality after a hard day’s work.

For those out there making the decisions related to reaching the Gen Y, keep in mind the concepts and thoughts from these two articles and make a difference.

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