This is the second article in a series exploring Rich Vallaster’s learnings and takeaways for eventprofs from Disney’s Customer Experience (CX) Summit.
Robert B. Konikow, author and tradeshow expert, writes in his book Exhibit Design, that the basic concept of a tradeshow could be traced back to the ancient bazaars of the Middle East. The modern tradeshow has roots in medieval Europe during the height of merchant capitalism. While we have evolved from merchants simply displaying their goods in a public place to massive 100,000+ attendee, multi-day events such as CES and AAPEX, one could argue we are at the cusp of a new era in the industry. An era which will be driven by smart technology and will be built mostly around the changing expectations of the customers.
For trade shows to remain competitive, and to retain and grow their audience base, the entire event management team must understand the customer experience – their journey with every touch point along the way.
So, How Does Disney Excel at CX?
Disney has remained true to a culture dating back to Walt and Roy Disney’s vision. They, however, have not been afraid to evolve, challenge and innovate. Karl Holz, New Vacation Operations at Disney put it best at the CX Summit, “Sacred cows make the best burgers.”
The four Disney Keys dating back to the 1960’s are:
- Courtesy – Treating every Guest as a VIP, a Very Individual Person
- Efficiency (originally Capacity) – Providing the smoothest possible operation.
- Safety – Providing for the welfare of the Guests and maintaining their peace of mind.
- Show – Providing a seamless performance and not allowing reality to interfere with fantasy.
Many would argue that the magnitude of the resources available to the Disney Company could provide endless means to improve their CX. That may be true to some extent, but it’s equally important to know that much of their wealth has been built upon their unwavering approach to providing the best customer service possible.
What are your tradeshow’s quality standards?
I feel the events industry can learn a lot from Disney’s own time-tested practices and forward thinking. Of course, your event’s CX ‘keys’ may be somewhat different from Disney’s. What’s important here is that your team create a list that helps you meet your objectives. To start this process, proactively focus on the words or phrases your attendees and exhibitors use to describe their ideal service experience. Listen carefully to online conversations, in-person feedback as well as survey responses to determine what kind of experience your event participants want. Once you have a good understanding of what exactly they are looking for, work with your team to prioritize special focus on areas that needs improvement. For this effort to succeed, everyone in your organization needs to be on board with this approach.
When your attendees and exhibitors experience the new and improved levels of customer service, they’ll respond by aligning their objectives with your goals and working with you to create success for the entire industry.
More to explore: