Creating delight and building connections

Stylish Black woman drinking wine

I’ve decided to eschew the crappy list-ification that you’ll find littering Google when you search Customer Delight, because while those lists might give you some very middle-of-the-road places to start, they don’t help you shift your thinking. Delight is a way of looking at communication and marketing that needs to be embraced by everyone on your team; it starts from a deep understanding of your customers, their needs, hopes, and fears. Delight is about connecting with your customers’ humanity first, pocketbook later.

So today, let’s start thinking about how we can create delight by being empathetic to the human needs of our customers. We’re skipping the lists and jumping into the biggies.

Be inclusive.

Don’t even get me started on under-servicing of demographics in wine marketing. Inclusivity delights at a deep and vital human level; when a person feels seen and represented, they have an immediate brand attachment that then gives you a space to share your message. While we probably see this most often in advertising, you don’t need big dollars to make it happen. Website and social media photos are an easy place to start, and there is no lack of stock imagery featuring LGBTQ+ and POC subjects.

Be accessible.

I know a lot of you don’t know this, and that’s okay because it’s not something that gets talked and written about in wine circles, but far too many websites and social comms are not easily used by people with disabilities and impairments. Imagine how this would make you feel. Then imagine how you would feel when you encountered a brand who did it right, optimized for visual and screen reader support? That’s a powerful loyalty builder that both technically and emotionally keeps them reading.

The implementation of good accessibility practices is beyond the scope of this newsletter, so I encourage you to read this article.

Speaking of loyalty.

It seems like whenever we read about loyalty in customer relations, it’s always the business trying to make the customer loyal. Turn that on its head. Be loyal to your customers. A good customer is like a best friend; when you have the opportunity to lend a hand, you do. How can you show (genuine!) loyalty and appreciation to those customers who have been with you the longest, or have promoted your brand the most? Now, how can that become a part of your everyday culture?

Take a stand.

You’ll delight as many people as you piss off, and that’s okay because the people who love you will really, really love you. They’re more likely to give you their time, read your posts, open your emails. From the biggies (US and UK politics), to the industry-specific (representation-initiatives, scholarships), to the totally unrelated (pick one!), your beliefs tie you to a world of people who share your views, they build connection and strengthen your community.

Provide a momentary escape.

Last, but not least, entertain…try a little humor. Probably the most obvious way to create delight, humor lifts the spirit, captures attention, and puts someone in the right frame of mind to hear your message. It diffuses tension, builds connections, and keeps them reading. Humor isn’t the same as comedy, and I’m not asking you to disavow the seriousness of what you’re producing, but isn’t it time for us to lighten up a little?

5forests A black-and-white photograph of a woman with medium-length hair wearing a striped beanie. She appears cheerful, embodying the customer-first marketing philosophy with her mouth open in a wide smile, and is

Polly Hammond

Polly Hammond is a dynamic speaker, podcaster, and consultant, and founder of 5forests. She helps businesses build and implement robust strategies that drive measurable growth.