How to create remarkable experiences – E59 with Dan Gingiss – FIRST HALF

Release date: January 31, 2022

link to the second half:

The Experience Maker – How To Create Remarkable Experiences – E59 with Dan Gingiss – 1st Half Customer Experience Goals with the CX Goalkeeper

The CX Goalkeeper had a smart discussion with Dan Gingiss

LinkedIn Headline: Helping Organizations Make Customer Experience Their Best Sales & Marketing Strategy By Empowering Every Employee To Become The Experience Maker™ | Keynote Speaker | Author | Content Creator | CX Consultant

In this episode you will learn:

– What remarkable experience are and why they are relevant

– The required balance between acquisition and retention

– The concept of the leaky bucket

… and much more

His book suggestion:

They Ask You Answer; Marcus Sheridan

Link to Dan’s book: The Experience Maker on Amazon

Dan’s golden nugget:

“Become a customer of your own company. If this is not possible, find a way to shadow your customers” @dgingiss on the CX Goalkeeper podcast

“Find your slice of cake & a candle and transform it into a chocolate box & a sparkler” @dgingiss on the CX Goalkeeper podcast

How to contact Dan:

Thank you, Dan!

#customerexperience #leadership #cxgoalkeeper #cxtransformation #podcast

click here to subscribe
my YouTube channel


Gregorio Uglioni 0:01
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the CX goalkeeper podcast, your host, Gregorio Uglioni, will have small discussion with expert, thought leaders, and friends on customer experience, transformation, innovation and leadership. I hope you will enjoy the next episode.

Ladies and gentlemen, today’s really a big, big pleasure. I have the Experience Maker with me the real Dan Gingiss. Dan, thank you very much for participating to the goalkeeper podcast. Thank you, Dan, how are you?

Dan Gingiss 0:41
Hi Gregorio. It’s an honor to be here. Thank you so much for having me. I am doing great. And looking forward to the conversation.

Gregorio Uglioni 0:48
Thank you very much. And me too. I’m really thrilled to have a big, big expert on customer experience, somebody that I’m following since yours with your outstanding podcasts, they “Experience Maker”, but also “Experience This”, I think these are two great shows that I am really following. And I’m thrilled to start the discussion with you. First of all, I really need to ask this question. And I am really sorry to ask it. How many credit cards do you have in your pocket?

Dan Gingiss 1:18
That’s a great question. Actually, I know that we both spent time in the industry. So I have there is one main card I use for personal and one main card I use for business. And then I have two other cards that I use for specific purposes like for one store for one set of rewards that kind of thing.

Gregorio Uglioni 1:40
And thank you for this question. I am quite a lot of credit cards in my wallet. Because we are we will Are you are you worked and I am working in the financial services credit card business and therefore it’s it’s quite interesting. And before we kick off the discussion, perhaps could you please introduce yourself because in in us, we everybody knows who you are and what you’re doing. But in Europe, you are not yet so well known. Please introduce yourselves.

Dan Gingiss 2:11
Fair enough. And hopefully we can change that over some period of time. But my name is Dan Ganga is I am a customer experience, speaker, coach, author and podcaster I spent more than 20 years as a marketer at some pretty large companies Discover card which owns Diners Club in Europe, McDonald’s you probably have heard of, and Humana, which is a publicly traded health insurance company. And throughout that time, I started in direct mail, I worked my way up through email and social media and SEO and all the digital channels, and then got into customer experience, which is where I really fell in love, and realized that customer experience had the power to be as good or better than any marketing campaign. Because after all, when we do it, right, we get our customers to talk about us, which is word of mouth marketing. It’s exactly what marketers are looking for. So today, and since 2019, I’ve run my own company called the experience maker. And my joke, which I hope translates Okay, is that I like working for the Dan better than I liked working for the man. So I get to work for myself now and work with amazing clients, speak on some great stages and really just spread the word about how important customer experience is. And the fact that it doesn’t have to be a multimillion dollar multi year transformational project, it can just be a series of little things that are easy. And so in the book, who I know, we’ll get to it, all of the examples that I share, and there’s almost 50 examples. They’re all simple, practical, and inexpensive, because I know how hard it is to get things done. I know how hard it is to get legal approval and budget approval and your boss’s approval. And so I want to give you ideas that are things you probably don’t even need those approvals for you can just go and do and make actual change.

Gregorio Uglioni 4:13
And I think this is also why you’re here we would I would like to discuss with you with about your latest book, The experience maker to create remarkable experience that your customer cannot wait to share. And we will explain everything. It’s an outstanding book. I have read it, I have it. It’s really outstanding and then to my audience. If you have time, please buy this bought this this book because it’s really outstanding. And you are really quite a lot of insights that you can learn from and reuse because these are practical ideas that you can really leverage in in your in your company. Before we start diving in your book and giving some some insights. You didn’t mention something you want to A lot of awards. And one of them is the JD Power with discovery. And it’s about customer satisfaction. And I think after six or seven years, then one company that I’m not going to mention one that because I need to cover that bit with beep, beep beep. How was this experience?

Dan Gingiss 5:23
Well, I won’t mention that company either. And as we, as we spoke about offline, in the United States, that company has a very good reputation and, and deserved the award for a number of yours. It happened when our chief marketing officer basically declared one year, we’re tired of being in second place, we’re going to win this thing. And what was really interesting about that, it was a great way to get the whole team together to really be focused on a singular goal. And I was fortunate enough to be on a very small, you know, committee with him in terms of how we were going to make that happen. But I was also overseeing, at the time, digital customer experience in both the website and the mobile app, and even a smaller credit card company like discover, had at the time, 50 million plus logins every month, so pretty busy website. And I realized very quickly that even the tiniest changes could have really big effects on how people perceived the experience, how satisfied they were, etc. And since the JD Power award is all about satisfaction, the idea was how do we look at all of the things that our customers do on the website? How do we just get out of their way, and make things easier, because as I’m sure you know, but sometimes it’s hard to admit this, nobody wakes up in the morning wanting to go to their credit card website, it is not something we wish to do. And I think once I got my team to understand that, that our job was to help people accomplish their task as quickly as possible. Then once that became the mindset, we just designed a better site. And we made it so that people we cheered when people logged in and then logged right back off, because we knew they got exactly what they wanted. And so we just looked at it from a very different perspective. And I have to say winning that award was a really high point in my career, because it was this third party validation by a very reputable company that said, we were doing something right, and that we had really made progress in customer experience, and more importantly, that we had made our customer satisfied, which is what we were trying to do. So it felt really good that a third party could say that versus us just saying, Well, you know, we think we’re doing a great job.

Gregorio Uglioni 7:58
And I think the feeling of beating American Express in America, it’s it’s quite, it’s quite good. That’s fully transparency at the end. Also this these are really important companies. And it’s you cannot always win. But at the end, I was several times in the US. And I understand how people are feeling what are the feelings of people around American Express. And this is an outstanding feeling. And therefore it’s important that we compete or you compete. We also work with other companies. And then the next question, I would like to ask to understand a bit better, how you are performing your work and are you’re creating everything that he that you’re doing, which are the most important values for you.

Dan Gingiss 8:45
Which are the most important values?

Gregorio Uglioni 8:47
Yes. Which are your values that drive you in life?

Dan Gingiss 8:51
Well, for me, first of all, I think it’s doing what you love. And that is something that having spent 20 years in corporate America, I’ve realized in the last couple of years working for myself that I spent so much time focused on salary and bonus and stock and titles and politics and all these things. And I didn’t spend nearly enough time focused on job satisfaction or mental health or general happiness, life happiness, and so now I feel very fortunate because those are things I can focus on while still making a good living and you know, and earning a paycheck etc. But it’s a that’s been a really important finding for me and I do want people that are listening to really remember that it’s okay to do something that you love. It’s okay to find a job that you really like getting up in the morning to go do and if you’re not in one of those go find something else. It’s, it’s, you know, it is you don’t need to I know we call it work for a reason. It’s not play. But at the same time, it is so much better when you’re doing something that you love. And so, for me Gregoria passion has always led the way for me when a passionate about something I do my best work, I get more involved, I’m willing to work harder and longer. Because I want to not because I have to. And that is, is definitely one of the things that I live by, I would say Secondly, professionally. You know, the whole reason I got into customer experience was that a mentor and a boss of mine observed something about me before I even observed it. He realized that when I was in business meetings, I was, as he said, always wearing the customer hat, that I was always trying to solve problems through the lens of the customer. And I really try to live that every day and try to teach others to do that as well. Because at the end of the day, no matter what business you are in, your two biggest assets are your customers and your employees. After that, the rest all falls behind that, right. Because if we don’t have customers, and we don’t have employees, we don’t have a business. And so I think if we treat customers that way, as our best asset, it’s going to change how we invest marketing dollars, how we invest resources, how we position our employees within the organization. And instead of focusing so much time constantly on sales and bringing in new customers, we can focus as much time on keeping the ones we have giving them a great experience and getting them then to do the marketing for us.

Gregorio Uglioni 11:52
Thank you very much. I really liked that. And I think this is something that all the people in the customer experience community have in common. It’s really that passion about what they’re doing. They loved it. And basically I know also that you love baseball, and you use you often use one sentence, do simple better. Could you elaborate on that?

Dan Gingiss 12:12
Sure. And I know that Europeans are not as big baseball fans as we are here in the US. So I will

Gregorio Uglioni 12:17
try. Sorry for my pitch in the background.

Dan Gingiss 12:20
Oh, that’s quite alright. So I am a Chicago Cubs fan and have been my whole life. And probably you know that being a Chicago Cubs fan. For most of the last 100 plus years has been pretty difficult. We actually held the record, I think for any professional team. For the longest time without a championship we went 108 years. And then finally in 2016, the Cubs won the World Series they had their championship, the city went crazy. I still get shivers thinking about it because it was such a great moment in my life. And the manager of that team is a guy named Joe Maddon, who now manages another team and he was known for what were called modernism’s, these little quips, these little sentences that he would throw out that were just great. And like he would refer to in baseball, you usually play a series of three or four games. And he would refer to a three game series, he said, he would say that they wanted to meet loafing. And what that meant was that the singer meatloaf has a song two out of three ain’t bad. That’s the title of the song. And so his whole point was, you know, when we have a three game series, if we can win two, if we can meet low fit, then we’re in good shape. Well, my favorite Madden ism, that he said was called do simple better. And what he’s talking about really, in any sport, is that you have to do the basic plays, you have to be able to take care of the basic stuff. Because then when the hard stuff happens, you have a little bit more room for error margin for error. And so in baseball, it’s about when you hit the ball run hard to first base, even if you think you’re going to get thrown out, you still run hard, because hey, they might drop the ball, they might miss throw the ball. And so you still run hard, I guess the equivalent in soccer would be that even if you’re down by four goals, you still play hard because you never know what’s going to happen till the time is up. And you might score four goals in the last couple of minutes. And so that’s what do simple better is. And I always felt like that was such a great piece of advice for business as well and specifically for customer experience. So often, our experiences are complicated. They’re just too hard to understand. There’s too much legal there’s too much disclaimers, there’s too many acronyms and words we don’t understand. And the financial services industry as you know, is known for that between acronyms and jargon and and just, you know complexity. And what customers want is simplicity. It’s the opposite of complexity. So do simple better is just one of those phrases that I think applies. Every day, it’s one of those things you should hang up as a sign in your office to kind of remind you every day, are you making things simple for the customer? Or are you making them complicated

Gregorio Uglioni 15:09
And it’s quite clear, we often in businesses, doing that more complicated and not simple, therefore, it’s, it’s quite clear that I fully agree on this point. And we, as we discussed, we will, I would like to discuss about your book, the experience maker, it came out 14th of September. It’s it’s really a great book, and I think start kicking off into this discussion. One important topic that you are always mentioning, not only in your book, but in general, is the difference or the balance between the cost to acquire new customer, and cost to keep customers. Could you please elaborate a bit on that, because I think this is really key key. And quite a lot of businesses are not understanding that really the in the right way.

Dan Gingiss 16:01
You’re so it’s about cost, and it’s also about lifetime value. So the cost piece, it is simply less expensive to keep a customer than it is to get a new one. We all know that acquiring new customers is expensive. No matter what business you’re in, whether you’re b2c or b2b, getting a new customer is expensive, you have to spend marketing dollars, you’ve got salespeople, you might be paying commission, you have all sorts of work that goes into bringing in a new customer. The challenge then is if that new customer, if we spend all that money, and we bring in a new customer, and then they’re gone in 30 days, we’ve wasted all of that money. So why would we do that. And then the worst part is, what we do is we go spend the money again, we go get another customer who might stay for 30 days, or might stay for 30 years. But if we have a choice, we prefer one that stays for 30 years. And the way to get people to stay longer, spend more money, and then refer you to others is to provide them with a remarkable experience. And the reality today is that and the reason it’s so expensive to acquire new customers is that almost every product out there is a commodity. If they don’t buy your credit card Gregorio they’re gonna go get a different credit card, it’s not like they don’t have choices, you yourself said you have a whole bunch in your wallet, right? So it’s not, there is nothing truly distinctive, that you might offer some better benefits and maybe a little better rewards or you have a bigger fee or whatever, there’s some differences. But at the end of the day, if I need credit, and I need a credit card, I have tons of choices. This is true of doctors, dentists, plumbers, amusement parks, movie theaters, bookstores, anything, we have so many choices. And one of the things I like to say is that you you know competing on price has become a loser’s game, because you are always racing to the bottom. And the best example there would be a gas station or petrol station, there’s two across the street from each other, they’re both charging the same and gas, if one lowers the price, the other is going to lower the price. Next thing we know they’re given away, the fuel for free. Competing on product has also become so difficult at the gas station, people would attest but even think about a company like Uber, which we all agree is one of the most innovative companies in our time. And yet, in most places around the world, you can’t tell the difference between an Uber ride and a Lyft ride, mostly because it’s often the same ride. It’s the drivers working for both companies. So now they have a service that is indistinguishable from their competitor. At the end of the day, if you can’t compete on product, you can’t compete on price, what’s left is experience. And so companies have to be looking at spending money on existing customers, like they look at it for bringing in new customers. And what we’ll find is that we get those new customers to stay longer, we get them to spend more with us and come back to us. And best of all, is we get them to recommend other people. And so therefore they start doing some of that marketing for us, which eases the burden on our sales team or our marketing team and actually makes it so you don’t have to push as hard to constantly bring new people in the door. It’s just a balance of power kind of thing. And with most companies, the balance of power resources dollars that are associated with acquisition versus existing customers is way out of line. It’s like 8020 9010 and it should be closer to 5050.

Gregorio Uglioni 19:36
Yes, and two questions come to my mind now. But in order to make that understandable for also people that didn’t read your book yet, how do you define our remarkable experience?

Dan Gingiss 19:48
So remarkable the word remarkable the definition is worthy of remark worthy of talking about or discussion and I take Got a step further to really say worthy of sharing. Because what we want as marketers is we want people talking about us. Now that might be that they talk about us at a dinner party or cocktail party, that they talk about us at work, or that they go onto social media and talk about us, or they, or they write a review about us. That’s all being remarkable. And so the whole idea of the book is specifically around experiences that are worth talking about. And and so if you don’t mind, I want to jump to an example here, because I think it will, it will help explain it. So in the United States, and I’ve traveled enough, I believe this happens in Europe as well. It may not happen at every restaurant, but oftentimes in the United States, if you go to a restaurant and you tell some, you tell them that it’s someone’s birthday, they have a little surprise at the end of the meal, they bring you out a special dessert with a candle, and it’s usually a slice of cake, and a candle. And it’s a very nice gesture it is it’s a super nice gesture. It’s not remarkable, because everybody does it. And it’s almost become expected. And so I tell the story in my book of a steakhouse that we went to, and I told him, it was my son’s birthday. And when we walked in the door, the first thing that happened was the maitre d gave my son a birthday card that was signed by the staff. Okay, you and I are customer experience people. So the bar for us is a little bit higher, I was really impressed. And what’s funny is during dinner while we are enjoying our dinner, and this happens in families where the one of the parents is in customer experience, my kids were talking, and they were saying, Dan, if they gave us a birthday card, don’t you think they’re gonna probably do something special for us at the end of the meal, like probably better than a slice of cake and a candle and I said, Well, we’ll see. And the steakhouse did not disappoint. They came out with a box of chocolates that were handmade in their kitchen, it was sitting on a plate that had Happy Birthday spelled out in cocoa powder. And instead of a candle, they had a sparkler. Because we all know that sparklers are so much cooler than candles, and Gregorio what happened next is the whole essence of my book, without anybody telling us to all four people at the table, pulled out their phones took a picture of this beautiful display. The parents shared it on Facebook, because that’s where we are the kids shared it onto Snapchat, because that’s where they are. And this steakhouse got four different people talking about how great their experience was on social media to all of their social connections. And it was all because they decided to be a little bit different and a little bit better than everybody else. And that’s if you use that as a metaphor in your business, whatever business you’re in, find your slice of cake and a candle and change it to a box of chocolates and a sparkler. It doesn’t have to cost you more money, it doesn’t have to be more difficult. It just has to be different and worthy of pulling out my phone and taking a picture. And that’s really what this is about. It’s it doesn’t have to be that hard. But this place really understood. If we want people to talk about us, we got to give them something to talk about.

Gregorio Uglioni 23:14
It totally, it totally makes sense. And it’s really an outstanding example. It’s something that we are similar in Europe, but often we don’t get cake. Therefore, we would be happy also with a piece of cake. Joe, Joe by side, elaborating on what you’re saying, I think these are also the experiences that make the leaky bucket a bit smaller and smaller and smaller. Could you please explain to the audience your concern of the leaky bucket because it’s really outstanding.

Dan Gingiss 23:42
So a bucket that leaks, drips, drip strips water out of it. And that’s what’s happening with your customer base. In almost every business, there are customers that are leaving you every day. And the worst part is that they’re leaving you and not telling you why they’re just going. And when they leave, where do you think they’re going, they’re going to your competition, they’ve stopped using your credit card so they can go use a different credit card. So it’s a double loss for your company. And what I believe is that the focus on customer experience, the reason why we want to invest as much money on our existing customers as on acquiring new ones, is to stop this leaky bucket. Because this is costing us a ton of money. These are the people that we spent all this money to bring in and now they’re leaving. So we wasted that money. And when we stop the bucket and there’s no more leak, then all the customers stay with us and they stay longer. So it’s a metaphor of course but it is something that almost every company suffers from and they’re not paying attention which is exactly why the customer is leaving in the first place.

Gregorio Uglioni 24:53
Thank you very much as usual the outstanding explanation that they are that they are often given.

If you enjoyed this episode please share the Word of Mouth subscribe it share it until the next episode please don’t forget we are not in a b2b or b2c business we are in a human to human environment Thank you

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