What Should the Customer Leave With?

Pg. 43 of the book Priceless: Turning Ordinary Products into Extraordinary Experiences:

  • Disney released the Lion King computer game just befrore Christmas…
  • … but didn’t think through the experience they were going to provide (on Christmas morning)
  • They got lots of angry calls, because the software wasn’t easy to install (and there were lots of kids who wanted to play their new games!)

Next christmas Disney wised up. They released another computer game, but this time they planned for their customer’s Christmas morning experience:

  1. They sent clear instructions
  2. They sent a separate note with the instructions advising parents to test the game out before Christmas morning
  3. They sent a clearly labeled 1-800 support number with the instructions

Believe it or not, this DOES apply to libraries. What is the experience we want to leave our library customers with when they visit our website? FIGURE THAT OUT – and then plan services accordingly. Another way to ask this question – What do we want the customer to leave with when they visit our website? A call number? A book that’s been placed on hold? An article? A list of hot resources the library owns? Or the knowledge that our board voted on carpet colors (egad!)? Answer that question, and then use the website as a tool to point the customer to appropriate resources – the resources that answer the question and/or fill the need being addressed.

The tricky part is that we want the library website customer to leave with more than one thing when they visit our website – so we have to think globally about our resources.

This question works well for a library’s physical building, too: what do we want the customer to leave with when they visit us in-person? And, is our physical building, signage, and arrangement set up to help the customer leave with those things?

Hmm… stuff to think about…