What makes an Apple store different from other 'big box' technology stores? Individuals are able to interact with the products. Apple employees go so far as to measure the exact degree to which MacBooks are tilted each morning, to ensure that customers will have to move the screen in order to see what is on it.
All iPads and computers in Apple stores are loaded with various apps and are connected to the Internet for the same reason – to encourage customer interaction. Consumers are encouraged to touch the products, surf the web and are not held to a time limit. According to Carmine Gallow, author and communications coach, interaction leads to a sense of ownership and that ownership experience is more important than a sale.
"You see, Apple has learned what many other businesses are just beginning to figure out," Gallow wrote in a Forbes contributing column. "Make it fun for people to connect with your product using all their senses."
The same thing holds true for the Build-A-Bear Workshop, where children participate in the creation of their furry friends. As Gallow said, Build-A-Bear "won the hearts of millions of children by turning a commodity into a treasured childhood memory." The human brain loves multisensory experiences, and the more customers' senses are engaged, the more likely they are to engage with a product on a personal level.
Partnering with a live answering service can help a company push towards that same level of engagement. By allowing customers to interact with a real person, either through phone, email or text messaging services. This level of personal interaction shows individuals that their questions and concerns will be dealt with in a courteous and professional manner. Also, the ability to choose between different methods of communication allows customers to experience a sense of ownership over the service process, leading to a greater likelihood of forming a connection with the company.