When a global pandemic disrupts and impacts everyday life in unprecedented ways, the longing for human connections is paramount. Business leaders are compelled to redefine the customer experience and ensure that their products are helping people cope and thrive. Apple is undoubtedly leading the pack as it forges on with a strong focus on building relationships — and humanizing technology through experiences that empower customers.
The numbers are clear: Apple is consistently setting records for revenue as the company enables more customers to study and work from home during the health crisis. Always at the forefront of technological innovation, the company continues to push boundaries and provide personalized, authentic experiences that allow customers to lead better lives even in challenging times.
The tech giant has always been beyond grabbing market share and selling the most fabulous products. Time and again, Apple has proven its credible ability to deliver a human-centric customer experience that revolves around care and empathy.
Why are customers so loyal to Apple?
Apple’s commitment to building trust with customers defines the loyalty that people have to the brand and its products. There’s no doubt that Apple continues to impress, with customer satisfaction and loyalty levels growing steadily over the years. More than anything, Apple continues to innovate by understanding what customers want and need and proactively delivering solutions that complement their consumers’ changing lifestyles.
Apple’s penchant for putting customers first is ingrained in every aspect of the business. Apple has everything — meticulous attention to detail, passion, dedication in making quality products, and relentless drive to make customers feel special and offer them the highest degrees of convenience, customization, and personalization.
The tech giant takes personalization to a whole new level by investing heavily in training and employee support. Apple’s adherence to the “people over products” mantra is evident in its Genius Training Student Workbook. This guide helps employees develop essential people skills to engage and support customers in remarkable ways.
Apple gets it just right when it comes to solid employee experiences and satisfaction. From the get-go, Apple’s employees are extensively trained on the breadth of knowledge that is required to effectively deal with customers and cover several complex scenarios that are unique to a specific customer. This includes troubleshooting, repair, and education services that stand the test of time.
The people behind Apple make it possible to deliver exceptional customer experiences wherever and whenever customers need them. Even with the absence of face-to-face interactions during the pandemic lockdowns, the company makes the brand accessible to customers no matter where they are. By expanding their online and phone support services, Apple successfully sustains an emotional connection with customers.
The Apple Experience
What makes Apple stand out from the competition is its ability to create and sustain a remarkable experience ecosystem. It won’t be easy to get out once you’re locked into the Apple ecosystem because the company makes it a point to give you everything you need at your fingertips.
The striking appeal of the tech giant’s straightforward interface and a superb line-up of integrated products is that they make the Apple experience an integral part of everyday life. From managing your workload on your cell phone or desktop to controlling your home electronics, staying on top of your calorie count, making secure payments, and more — you can do all these while moving from device to device with ease and convenience.
Apple’s unconventional ways of doing things are reflected in its stores. The company has revolutionized how users view the retail store by emphasizing that the in-store experience is more than just the selling: it’s about inspiring customers to imagine how the products will fit their life goals.
From the impressive portfolio of Apple products on the shelves to the Genius Bar and interactive classes about getting the most out of your iPhone, Apple facilitates hands-on experiences that enable its employees and customers to work more closely. The tech giant’s staff are trained to dive straight into the user’s questions and needs — and see through the resolution of all issues no matter how complex they may seem.
In the face of the pandemic, Apple has managed to take this immersive customer experience online. Apple Geniuses and helpful online support staff are available 24/7 to take care of all your needs and problems on the spot. You’ll still be able to enjoy the VIP treatment on your screens —through a one-stop online shop that features the latest cutting-edge devices, great deals, top-notch videos by Apple’s Creative Pros, and more.
How Apple Utilizes Customer Feedback to Improve Customer Experience
Listening to and acting on customer feedback play significant roles in Apple’s continuing stellar success. Paying attention to customer feedback is crucial for Apple. In fact, every user who interacts with the brand — either by purchasing a product or scheduling an appointment to try the latest technology — gets email surveys right away that compel them to rate their experience with Apple.
The tech giant relies heavily on the Net Promoter Score to gauge customer satisfaction. Employees make good on a promise to make all Apple customers feel valued, especially the brand’s critics. By being proactive about collecting, analyzing, and embracing all kinds of feedback and working as a team to swiftly and thoroughly resolve issues and right the wrongs, Apple has built a solid reputation for transparency and long-lasting relationships with customers.
Apple’s relentless drive to manage and respond to negative reviews continues to pay off and generate massive returns on investment. The Apple team makes it a point to follow up with dissatisfied customers within 24 hours — and goes the extra mile to learn more about what went wrong, acknowledge mistakes, and work to improve services and operations. This simple initiative proved beneficial to Apple’s strategy and allowed the company to convert critics to loyal followers and millions in additional revenue sources.
Customer feedback is also essential to Apple’s user-oriented personalization of products and services. By opening channels for prompt, accurate feedback, Apple can gain valuable insights into how users perceive their latest products. This allows the company to innovate and give customers the high-end products they want and expect — simple, highly reliable, and trustworthy.
Applying This to Your Customer Strategy
The core of Apple’s business model is to encourage ongoing relationships with customers through inspiring, irresistible, and holistic customer experiences. Here’s what businesses can learn from Apple’s way of excelling at customer touchpoints to win the devotion and loyalty of customers.
Build a customer-centric work culture
Emotion is key to brand loyalty. Without an emotional connection to your target audiences, you won’t be able to convince customers to believe in your message.
Apple’s strategy of integrating real product benefits and powerful emotions is evident in its Genius Training Student Workbook. The guide emphasizes the Three F’s of empathy: Feel, Felt, and Found. Apple sees to it that customers get more than just a one-off transaction. The Apple team is trained to empower the consumer to become self-sufficient in using the products. This way, Apple employees keep customers happy, inspired, and excited to tell others about the experience.
No less than Apple founder and high profile tech entrepreneur Steve Jobs was a firm believer in the power of customer experience. He went on to say that “You‘ve got to start with the customer experience and work backwards to the technology.”
Manage, track, and prioritize feedback to boost satisfaction
Customers must feel that they can depend on you to consistently develop products that enable them to navigate their changing lifestyles with confidence. One way to achieve consistency when it comes to unique customer experiences is to be proactive about customer feedback.
Your team must be able to monitor and analyze satisfaction data as they come in, prioritize negative reviews, and act on them as soon as possible. Make sure to communicate thoroughly and professionally at each step of the business process, especially in dealing with critics and dissatisfied customers. Regularly tracking feedback and customer satisfaction will not only allow you to map the customer journey from all angles but also assess how the company performs at all stages and make meaningful improvements accordingly.
It’s the little details that count. Apple is very obsessive when it comes to product quality because the tech giant knows that customers notice even the most minor details — and that can sway the audience’s perceptions of the brand.
Brand loyalty begins from the inside out. You can maximize touchpoints by investing in your employees first. Tap into their talent and creativity and help them to become more empowered. Develop a culture of excellence with them, determining all the ways to make your product or service more human, productive, and exceptional.
Being careful and thoughtful about the details will allow your brand to deliver first-class experiences that will capture the hearts and minds of your customers. Communicating your core values clearly is one of the best paths to brand loyalty success. You’ll be able to turn customers into brand ambassadors who will rally behind your products and services.
About the Author!
Chris is a long-time gadgets enthusiast, writer, and tech consultant for Macs4u. He is an avid collector of “vintage” gizmos and loves to watch 80s sci-fi movies in his leisure time.