As a small business owner, it’s critical that you know what your customers are feeling. At the Savannah College of Art and Design, students participate in a useful exercise that gets them in touch with exactly that. They draw maps of customer journeys, often including a section for noting customers’ emotions. Proud, excited, bored, harried, anxious - all of these feelings, and more, may be present along the way. You need to know what they are and, in particular, what emotions are foremost at the moment they make the decision to buy.
You can learn about these feelings retrospectively by asking customers what the big moment was and how they felt. But you should also ask prospectively. What are customers most looking forward to? What do they fear most about the experience you are providing? When they think about doing business with you, what expectations and concerns do they have? Don’t just trust your own instincts: Peak experiences for your customers may be routine for you.
Once you know the peaks and the emotions, decide what you want to do about them. Do you amplify them, the way music pumps you up on your way into a concert or a stadium? Or do you calm those emotions, the way tropical fish do in a dentist’s office? Use your customers’ emotions as a guide for how to improve your business and their experiences.