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Clued In: How to Keep Customers Coming Back Again and Again Hardcover – May 24, 2004

4.5 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Good, bad, or indifferent, every customer has an experience with your company and the products or services you provide. But few businesses really manage that customer experience... so they lose the chance to transform customers into lifetime customers.

In this book, Lou Carbone shows exactly how to engineer world-class customer experiences, one clue at a time.

Carbone draws on the latest neuroscientific research to show how customers transform physical and emotional sensations into powerful perceptions of your business... perceptions that crystallize into attitudes that dictate everything from satisfaction to loyalty.

And he explains how to assess and audit existing customer experiences, design and implement new ones... and "steward" them over time, to ensure that they remain outstanding, no matter how yourcustomers change.

Experience as a value proposition
Building systems that reflect your customers' deepest needs and desires

The mouse vs. the orange roof
Why Disney succeeded and Howard Johnson's failed

The disciplines of experience management
Experience assessment, auditing, designing, implementation, and more

Experience stewardship for the long term
Refreshing your experiences to reflect changing needs and desires

  • Understand how your customers think and feel, and how they interact with your products and services
  • Assess, audit, design, implement, and steward any customer experience
  • Beyond Disney and Harley-Davidson: solutions for every industry, product, or service

Customer experience is your best opportunity for differentiation... often, your only opportunity.Clued In gives you the tools to craft an outstanding customer experience--no matter what you sell, or who you sell it to.

Lou Carbone reveals the sensory building blocks of experience you're already delivering toc ustomers, whether you know it or not. He shows how to re-craft these "clues" into a consistent, powerful experience that leads directly to customer preference... a preference that can help you differentiate practically anything.

Carbone covers the entire process, hands-on: organizing your "experience design" team...evaluating the experience you're already delivering... designing manageable clues that connect with customer desire... rolling out new experiences... and making customer experience both sustainable and profitable.

Your company needs to move from creating great products and services to creating great experiences.

About the Author

LOU CARBONE has been exploring the dynamics of experience creation and management for 20 years. He founded and currently serves as CEO of Experience Engineering, an experience-consulting firm whose clients include IBM, General Motors, Avis, Allstate, Audi, Blockbuster, RBC Financial, Office Depot, H&R Block, Taco Bell, Allina Health Systems, and many other leading organizations. Carbone collaborated with Steve Haeckel on "Engineering Customer Experiences," the seminal article that introduced the concept of customer experience.


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: FT Press (May 24, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0131015508
  • ISBN-13: 978-0131015500
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,274,344 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Craig Matteson HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on June 2, 2004
Format: Hardcover
There are so many business books with this or that approach to fixing what ails companies that it is hard to take them seriously and impossible to evaluate them all. What is sad about this is that good ideas tend to be seen in the same color of paint as the less than good ideas if they can be seen and heard at all.
This book is one of the very good ideas that should be seen, heard, and implemented. The main insight is that companies can compete more effectively by paying attention to how customers experience doing business with them. Too often companies measure what customers think about their company and its products. Mr. Carbone makes an effective case that what really matters is how the totality of the experience makes the customers feel of themselves. This is a big difference and a key insight. Companies that provide experiences that make customers feel good about themselves are going to have happy and repeat customers.
This book provides how companies can gather, measure, and use the clues customers provide through their interactions with the purchasing experience. The author discusses the methods necessary for implementing the steps necessary to take advantage of what was learned in the marketplace.
Mr. Carbone is wise enough to know that getting "Clued In" is not easy, nor is it a panacea. It is, however, an important tool for competing effectively. He also points out that what is a surprise and delight today may become the standard of delivery tomorrow and new clues must be gathered and implemented to gain a competitive advantage.
This isn't a long book, but it does offer substance for thought and action. I recommend it.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Customer Experience Management is an emerging and vitally important set of principles and disciplines that should concern every enterprise, profit and non-profit alike. Until recently, however, systematic approaches to Customer Experience Management have seldom reached print. Those that have have either failed to make the case at a deep enough level to evoke change, or have failed to provide readily transferable principles.
"Clued In," by Lewis Carbone, meets both challenges brilliantly. First, as the head of a non-profit deeply concerned with the guest experience, I am well aware that the first and perhaps greatest challenge in managing the customer experience is managing change within one's own organization. "Clued In" comes to the rescue! Using compelling stories and real life case studies, Carbone illustrates why Customer Experience Management is so vital as a value proposition, and he does it in a warm and readable style that will appeal even to those who typically shy away from business books.
Second, many of the recent books and articles that discuss aspects of Customer Experience Management expect too much of the reader. Most tell stories and share principles. Yet often the stories are too remote and the principles -- when there are principles -- are too abstract to allow the reader to make immediate applications to his or her own enterprise. "Clued In" is the great exception. Carbone goes well beyond the success stories of his clients to share transferable principles that you can put to work immediately in your organization. I know, because that is precisely what we've done in ours. Within weeks of the book's publication, we were already putting "Clued In" to work within several of our teams, with inspiring results.
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Format: Hardcover
Warren Buffett once said that price is what is charged for a product or service but value is what others think it's worth. I thought about that comment as I began to read Carbone's book. If Buffett's right (and I think he is), the key to getting customers to come back "again and again" is to create for them a purchase experience whose importance includes but is by no means limited to their perception of price relative to value. What else? Carbone: "The tangible attributes of a product or service have far less influence on consumer preference than the unconscious sensory and emotional elements derived from the total experience." He goes on to point out that creating value around multi-dimensional, well-integrated, and consciously managed experiences involves connecting with "the unconscious emotional passions of your customers and in the process, you'll discover how to differentiate yourself from competitors in ways that can be almost impossible to copy and commoditize." I agree.

In Part I, Carbone makes a case for experience management and then, in Part II, explains HOW to do that effectively. In chapters 7-11, he rigorously examines five separate but interdependent disciplines, devoting a separate chapter to each. I especially appreciate his provision of basic questions. For example, here are three which must be answered by application of the Discipline of Assessing Experience:

1. What potential impact does managing customer experiences represent for the organization?

2. How is the experiential value currently being created for customers?

3. What resources are available to improve and optimize the way your organization creates experience value?

The other four Disciplines involve auditing, designing, implementing, and stewarding experiences.
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