Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The Good Shoe Problem

The Good Shoe Problem

For a number of years, I have used the metaphor of "The Good Shoe Problem" to communicate how once you have had an experience of a good product (e.g. a comfortable pair of shoes), it is extremely difficult to go back to a less good shoe.

On a humorous note, it may well be the case that some will complain that many women wear uncomfortable shoes, but perhaps the issue is that those wearing good looking shoes and experiencing the consequences of looking or feeling good in a good looking shoe are just looking for a different kind of experiences.

But a key aspect of experiential marketing is the transforming nature of using a  product such as software and in particular when the product is a great product/service that produces a great experience for the user. Like an insight in cognitive psychology, such an experience reframes the purchasing and usage criteria of a user and is particularly obvious in high tech products and software interactions.

Amusing and embarrassingly, this past week, I attended a conference on Predictive Analytics. Two hours into wandering around the conference, I notices that I was wearing one red and one brown shoe, admittedly in the same style, from the same vendor. Fortunately nobody appeared to notice.

So, there appears to be a corollary to the "The Good Shoe Problem". Even if a customer has fallen in love with your experience, there are still opportunities to go wrong. :-)

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