Most companies define customer experience as bi-directional brand interactions; the prospect reacting to an ad, a first time buyer, or a customer interacting with customer service. With the advent of social networks, the proliferation of mobile devices and fundamental shifts in the purchase process, traditional customer experience is being replaced by co-experience.
Consumers engage with your brand every day without any direct interaction. When a fan Tweets about a celebrity and their followers re-Tweet the same message, they are having a customer experience with your brand even if there is no direct interaction. Ratings and reviews take place more and more on websites like Amazon and Yelp. People “Like” products or brands on a 3rd party pages or websites. And word of mouth is between consumers and communities, whether it’s happening across the back fence, on a social network or via an eCommerce site.
The sum total of all customer experiences with a brand defines co-experience. Companies and brands have to understand all permutations of consumer relationships across media and channels, how they relate and interact with each other and ultimately how a company can participate in the co-experiences with relevant, contextual content and engagement that produce the most engaging and relevant customer experiences.