The 3 Magic Words of Customer Experience – Positive. Delightful. Exclusive.

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From Slumdog Millionaire to the Isles of Wonder at the 2012 London Olympics Opening Ceremony, film producer Danny Boyle has yet again delivered an artistic experience that was positively, delightfully, exclusive. That’s what you need to create a moment that remains etched in memory forever. It’s what gets you to say, “…there’ll never be another quite like this”. It takes creative genius and a spark of unrivalled innovation to take on the world’s largest sports event, the Olympics—the world’s eyes are trained on you and you literally, take it away! Wow.

Closer home, I experienced what I can well and truly call “a pilgrimage for foodies“. For someone who follows his passion for food and travel pretty much around the world, having to make a reservation months in advance at a local restaurant seemed a bit out there for me. Reviews from folks who have been here label it among the “top 10 fine dining experiences in the world”. I had to go. So I just picked up the phone and called them on a Thursday and asked for the next available reservation. I was in luck—they had a cancellation for Friday and I was booked in for the very next day. This is what I call “culinary luck”, like winning the jackpot! I was prepared to wait a couple of months to get a table but didn’t need to.

Amuse Guele: sweet bread, tuna, oysters and farm made ham

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Now here’s the surprise. This restaurant is Eigensinn Farm, close to Collingwood, Ontario and with my business associate, I had to stay overnight at a B&B in the area (thank heavens for that or we would have to drive back after all the sinful dining!). When we reached the farm, I only felt the slightest hesitation at the entrance to the restaurant. It could have been the door of a weekend getaway in cottage country; as simple as that. But, I won’t say unexciting. It was intriguing, in fact, because this is the brainchild of renowned chef Michael Stadtländer and his Nobuyo. I have to add that I could not help comparing Michael and Nobuyo to John Lennon and Yoko Ono.

We tend to associate fine dining with elegance and artistic creativity. There’s nothing wrong with that. I was at L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon in Paris last month. It would not be right to compare and contrast the décor and ambience of that with Eigensinn Farm. They are two very different restaurants, both the creations of master chefs. The earthy, terroir appeal of the farm is quite the opposite of what some may call over done style of Robuchon. But as I said, they each offer an exemplary experience and that’s what matters. The chefs at both places focus on the output and what they bring to the table.

The farm has dinner seating for only 12 people. It is open only 3 days a week. And as I said before, you have to book months ahead of time because the place is always full. People come from all over the world to experience the magic of Eigensinn Farm. They always leave with a great taste, in every sense of the term.

We enjoyed an 8-course dinner that lasted four hours. If ever there was a “farm to table” fresh food experience, this was it. Everything, the vegetables, herbs, even the livestock is grown or bred on the farm and served to you in culinary creations that I cannot even begin to describe. I mean, if I were to tell you we tasted the most exquisite “lavender dessert” you may imagine your hand cream, right? You have to experience it for yourself! From the amuse guele to the petit fours and everything else in between, Eigensinn Farm is a “food pilgrimage” that I’m glad I went on. Once listed at #9 among the “World’s 50 Best Restaurants”, there is no doubt this place still lives up to its billing.

In the world of marketing, customers are searching for innovation; quality is already a given. Of course, they want a positive experience with your company and your brand but they are looking for something more. Good and great are humdrum; customers now want to be delighted. They want exclusivity, and you can’t lure them in with aesthetic appeal or glamour. For all the fine dining restaurants with their fancy décor that I have visited, the earthy energy of his farm restaurant that Michael Stadtländer offered me is an experience so unique that I will always treasure it. This is a classic case of when “less done” but really well is better than “over-engineered more”. The art of simplicity with quality is a lost art and one that needs reviving.

We see many B2B marketers getting caught up and carried away by the glamour of social media for instance. Instead, if they made a conscious effort to integrate social media with traditional, proven marketing, the end result and deliverables would bring greater conversions. I’m sure Michael Stadtländer could cook his special sauce in an hour; but he chooses to reduce it over twelve hours. What can I say about the taste he delivers?

It is Positive.

It is Delightful. And it certainly is Exclusive.

What is it that you can do to take customers on a “pilgrimage”? Think specifically about B2B buyer behaviour. What recipe will you use to create your own secret sauce? Let’s discuss it on my blog.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Louis Foong
Louis Foong is the founder and CEO of The ALEA Group Inc., one of North America's most innovative B2B demand generation specialists. With more than three decades of experience in the field, Louis is a thought leader on trends, best practices and issues concerning marketing and lead generation. Louis' astute sense of marketing and sales along with a clear vision of the evolving lead generation landscape has proved beneficial to numerous organizations, both small and large.

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