Consultants Dan Hay and John Marshal recently published a research study entitled the Happiness Halo that identifies three parts of the customer journey that enable showrooms to make emotional connections with their customers. They are anticipation, interaction and afterglow.
When customers begin their journey to obtain a new kitchen, research reveals they spend months investigating different products and options. Resources such as Houzz.com, Pinterest, Instagram and others make it easy to dream of what may be possible. University of Missouri Professor Marsha Richins explains in When Wanting is Better than Having, positive emotions were strongest prior to a purchase and the more expensive the products were, the greater the emotional attachment.
The second component, interaction, is the actual purchase and afterglow is how customers feel after their project is completed.
The lesson for kitchen and bath showrooms is to capitalize on customer research to make emotional connections and whet your customers’ appetites for their desired outcomes. That’s why it’s important to understand who will use the new kitchen, how it will be used and the frequency of use. Determining the importance of technology to your clients can help determine whether you need to specify connected appliances. If your clients like to bake, they may find a hands-free faucet indispensable.
Tapping into the emotional benefits of anticipation can also help ease the potential negativity of having to explain lead times. Explaining what your customers can look forward to after their new kitchen is completed is another method to connect emotionally. Using the word imagine is especially effective. “Imagine how much joy you will experience when you make Thanksgiving dinner in your new kitchen and everyone raves about the best turkey they have ever eaten? Imagine how much fun you will have inviting your best friends for a gourmet meal prepared in your state of the art kitchen.” Touting your ability to provide custom products and solutions to your customer’s project is another means to connect emotionally.
As Maya Angelou said, “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”