Service design that gives you an enduring edge

It’s time to advance from service design focused on sheer customer orientation and simplification. Only unique brand experiences can build long-lasting competitive advantages.

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Services are increasingly business- and brand-critical

When it comes down to it, customers aren’t interested in you. Studies show that consumers wouldn’t care if three out of four brands disappeared today. They’re interested in their own lives, experiences and needs. It’s up to you to make yourself relevant and accessible at each point of contact in order to be given some of their precious time. This is increasingly done through extra services or expanding the core service experience.

Skjermbilde 2014-04-07 kl. 17.34.57The customer experience is the sum of all impressions a customer has with an organisation, product or service. As the digitisation of customer experiences continues at high speed, the borders between product, service and marketing are increasingly becoming blurred. In this context, many have realized that the service aspect of the customer experience is more important than ever, because it is often services that best offer the value that customers want. Over the past years this has fuelled the increased popularity of customer orientation and service design. Continue reading

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The uncertain future of the founder-led brand

The mouse outlives his inventor.

Those of us in branding admire often strive to learn from the world’s great brands. These are the brands that always seem to know who they are, what they do, and how to do it. But when you think about it, so many of them are founder-led and/or first generation. It’s hard to think of Virgin without Richard Branson, Google without Sergey Brin and Larry Page, Southwest without Herb Kelleher, Craigslist without Craig Newmark, and Ben and Jerry’s without, well, Ben and Jerry.

And of course, Apple without Steve Jobs.

The world witnessed Apple without its founder once before: The company lost its way, went “corporate,” and nearly went bankrupt. Only the residue of the great brand saved it for long enough that Jobs could return and change our world (four times, in fact). This has happen to other brands as well.

Continue reading