Will there be a next time?
Our approach to researching experiences is different - we ask 'will there be a next time?'
Our key insight is that how people remember their experiences is what drives repeat behaviour. Will shoppers come back to your store? When customers call your call centre, what do they remember about it most afterwards and how does that fit into their image of your brand?
This is Daniel Kahneman's 'remembering self': 'It is a basic fact of the human condition that memories are what we get to keep from our experience, and the only perspective that we can adopt as we think about our lives is therefore that of the remembering self. 1
Experience and journey research does not have to be - and sometimes cannot be - tracking someone's moment-by-moment experience as it happens. If such a thing was realistic, it would only tell us about the customer's behaviour at the time. It cannot tell us what will happen next time, or even will there be a next time? To conduct this type of research, we draw on theories of frames and schemas, and theories of symbolism and ritual as well as our own sensemaking framework.
1. 'Living, and thinking about it: two perspectives on life.' Daniel Kahneman and Jason Riis