With the rise of technology and social networks, communication has shifted to involve less effort and personal interaction; an email instead of a phone call, an online transaction instead of a trip to the local bank and an automated system instead of a customer service representative.  In a society that strives to make things quick and efficient, have we really lost the need for a personal touch?

While consumers appreciate some of the “modern conveniences,” they still expect a level of personal connection.   They are looking for brands to stop pushing their message through traditional channels, and find ways they can relate to them.  While it may seem that people are looking for the quick solution, it is actually becoming more critical to humanize customer service and marketing campaigns.

Consumers are looking for more than just a 30 second spot about product benefits; they want to know why the brand is relatable to them.  The Ritz-Carlton launched a new video series that offers not only a behind-the-scenes look at the organization but also shines a spotlight on the people who work there.  The Ritz gives their brand a face and name, with personal stories that consumers can connect with.

“In these days of digital, high-tech, social media, we can’t forget how important the one-to-one is,” said George F. Schweitzer, the President of CBS Marketing Group, in a New York Times article. Understanding the need to reach consumers on a personal level, CBS is taking media “on the road” to reach consumers on their terms and turf as opposed to pushing its message through traditional media channels.  By going where consumers are; campsites, festivals, amusement parks, etc. – brands immerse themselves into consumers’ personal lives and naturally form a genuine connection.

Quality customer service and brand affinity is best accomplished through quality experiences with a personal touch.  Brands should utilize experiential marketing to show and tell their brand story live, while creating opportunities for dialogue.  Giving consumers a quality engagement will empower them to connect to the brand and share their positive experience with their networks.

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