Customer Experience News & Trends

5 customer experience lessons from the Royal Baby

Whether you’re American or British, male or female, you have to appreciate the smarts of the royal family when it came to the way it handled the birth of the royal baby, George Alexander Louis, the Prince of Cambridge.

The royal family’s savvy marketing plan captured the hearts and minds of not just the British, but also all of Europe and America. And it did it by creating an experience nearly everyone wanted to be a part of.

The family’s strategy is one businesses should sit up and pay attention to. It’s an example of how companies can gain — and keep — the attention of their target audiences, and create a well-rounded customer experience.

Here are five things Prince William and Duchess Kate of Cambridge did to turn the birth of their son into an experience millions of people around the world wanted to be a part of:

1. Show your human side

Whether you run a Fortune 500 company or a mom-and-pop-shop with 10 employees, you want to connect with customers by showing that you’re one of them — not someone who’s above them.

That was a card the royal family played very well. Following the birth of their son, William and Kate addressed reporters and adoring fans with stories about their challenges with parenthood, which every parent could relate to. They discussed the naming of their child, installing a car seat and changing the first diaper.

What they didn’t mention was how their standing in life would help them with parenting, which would’ve only served to alienate them from their fans.

Businesses need to strive to do something similar. Be down to earth. Don’t just show customers the glitz and glamour of your business. Tell them about the blood, sweat and tears that went into making you a success — either on social media or your website’s “About Us” page.

If you open up to customers, more of them will open up to you.

2. Use the new, but don’t forget the old

Social media’s soaking up all the marketing headlines today, but traditional media like print ads and press releases all still have their place — especially when combined with social media.

The royal family announced the birth of Prince George on Facebook, Twitter and Instragram before word had spread to the local media outlets. That meant its closest fans and followers got the news first — a great reward for those hanging onto the family’s every word.

But the family didn’t forget its roots either, as it delivered the news the old-fashioned way, too — by placing a framed note from Kate’s doctors on a ceremonial gold-trimmed easel just outside Buckingham Palace stating the Duchess had “safely delivered” a boy.

The pageantry then continued with a 62-gun salute at the Tower of London.

The lesson for businesses: Combine the old with the new to reach both segments of the market — the tech savvy and the traditionalists.

3. Join the conversation

Customers are talking about you somewhere. Don’t let those conversations pass by without being a part of them. By joining them, you not only help shape the message, you can help spread word-of-mouth about your business.

By using the social media hashtag #WelcometotheWorld, the royal family was not only able to join the conversation, it also made joining the conversation easier for others.

In addition, the family encouraged others to share their own birth announcements using the hashtag. This made fans feel valued — and that their thoughts and comments were wanted.

This is something all companies should strive to do. Don’t just make the conversation about you — via posts and updates about your products and services. Ask customers for their input as well.

4. Build anticipation

The way the royal family handled the announcement that William and Kate were going to have a child is similar to the way businesses should handle the launch of a new product or service: You don’t want to break the news the day of the launch.

The family not only announced Kate was pregnant long ago, it kept fans and supporters in the loop throughout the pregnancy.

But it still managed to keep everyone in suspense by keeping the sex of the child under wraps until the birth. That intrigue kept even casual followers from losing their interest.

Even the birth of the King-to-be didn’t end the suspense, as the family took its time announcing his name.

Surely, all this was not done by accident. The family knew releasing info in dribs and drabs would keep fans and followers salivating for more.

The same works in B2B and B2C marketing: If you’ve got a big new launch coming, teasing customers with bits and pieces of info in the style of “something big is coming” keeps them hooked.

5. Pay no mind to naysayers

Some people are just negative — it’s in their nature. You’re not going to be able to turn them all into fans. And the sooner your company comes to that realization, the better.

Rather than trying to convert the haters, focus your efforts instead on celebrating your fans.

That’s exactly what the royal family did.

Men, especially American men, were much more ambivalent toward the royal birth than women. But the royal family didn’t try to win over the hearts of those who were irritated by all the coverage the baby was getting.

Instead, it kept filtering news down to those who did care. And as a result, Prince George got more than one million Facebook mentions within an hour of his birth.

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