We live in a fast-paced world where anything we want, we can get with the click of a button. The world has become smaller and more connected than ever before.
This world is the only one that the younger generations have ever known. This is their ‘normal’.
As much as this may seem daunting to Generation X and even the elder millennials, the expectations of the younger Generation Y and even Z are what we all need to start delivering on.
This is because the rise of the millennials is here.
Businesses need to adapt in order to survive.
The only way to do that is to first understand what it is the modern spender expects and then figure out how you can deliver on that consistently and effectively.
I’ve narrowed down the top 6 service elements that the modern spender expects today, based on extensive research from the likes of JD Power, Gallup, TripAdvisor and Forbes to name a few.
These 6 things need to become your target for every experience that you aim to create for today’s customers.
1. We Are Individuals
Modern spenders what to be acknowledged as individuals, not just another customer for the day.
They want to feel like the staff know who they are and engage with them on a personal level.
This all comes down to the staff and their ability to emotionally engage with the customers through natural, personalized conversation that is not forced or repetitive.
A sure way to address this expectation is to get to know your customer’s name and use it.
2. We Value Intuition
Customers today don’t want to ask for things over and over again. They expect you to already know what they need before they have to ask for it.
And no, I’m not saying that you need to be psychic (although that would be helpful).
It’s all about being anticipatory with your service and this comes from being a good observer.
What coffee does your customer always order? Do they need a water refill? Do they have butter on the table when the bread is served? Did you give them a steak knife if that’s what they’ve ordered?
It really is common sense and a bit of logic. But the trick is to be so good at observing what is going on that you stay one step ahead of your customer.
Don’t let your customer wave their hand at you to ask for that darn butter.
3. We Need To Be Connected
For the modern spender, good Wi-Fi is a necessity, not a privilege.
Why should they have to pay for a service that the local coffee shop down the street is offering for free?
A good connection is expected everywhere a customer goes, not just coffee shops or airports.
Today’s spenders want to stay connected to their friends and social channels, allowing them to document and share their experience wherever they go.
This is an easy one — just buy a router and invest in a good Wi-Fi connection that you offer for free.
And please don’t put a time cap on it, that’s just annoying.
4. We Don’t Like To Wait
Today, we can get a loaf of bread delivered to our door within 10 minutes. So why should we expect our customers to wait 15 minutes for a cocktail?
Immediacy has become part of the culture of today’s society and we need to embrace it, instead of complaining about how spoilt and unrealistic millennials are these days.
It’s not going to get you anywhere.
The reality is, is that modern spenders do not like to be kept waiting. So, efficiency needs to become a part of your business, without comprising on quality or emotional connection.
Staffing will play a big factor here, making sure that you have enough people to deliver efficient service and that they are highly trained to do so.
Also, internal processes will be key. Trying to streamline operational procedures and standards will help you to eliminate redundant steps and create a process that is as efficient as possible.
5. We Are Conscious
The modern spender is a mindful consumer.
They are a lot more aware of their impact on the wider environment, animals and other humans, and are actually making spending decisions based on this.
Business who are able to implement and communicate its conscious practices will certainly win more market share of today’s customers.
This includes things such as plastic-free initiatives, recycling, a more plant-based menu, non-dairy alternatives, free range and/or fair-trade products, the support of a local charity, etc.
There really are a number of ways for your business to give back, so choose something that is relevant to you and go for it.
6. We Expect Value For Money
Value for money is everything.
It dictates whether customers will come back to you or not, and whether they will talk about you in a positive or negative way, or maybe even talk about you at all.
It’s all about showing your customers that they will get more bang for their buck. And it’s not necessarily about the price, but rather if they feel that what they’re getting is worth it.
Now, this can be a tricky one as the idea of value can be quite subjective to each person. However, there are some key trends that tend to work, such as:
- Portion size needs to be in line with price
- Facilities (e.g. pool and beach at a hotel, bathroom at a restaurant)
- Complimentary bread baskets or pre-dinner nibbles
- Service that is efficient, friendly and personalized
- Complimentary water at restaurants or pool-side
It’s up to you what you choose to do, but the trick is to try and find a balance between cost and quality.
Now that you know a little bit more on what the modern spender expects from you, what are you going to do about it?