The experience of something is personal. Often filtered through one’s beliefs, expectations, memories and opinions. The experience of something is not the creation or curation of space, time and sensory stimuli – done so by a restaurant, a venue, an organization. The experience of something is what the goer, attendee or participant experiences as a result of being in (and have gone through) a designated space, over time, having at least one of their senses stimulated.
“Who gets to tell the stories?” asked Tony on the Kenya episode of Parts Unknown, which he made with his CNN colleague W. Kamau Bell. It was the last episode for which he recorded narration, and the winner, in 2019, of an Emmy Award for television writing. “This is a question asked often. The answer, in this case, for better or for worse, is, ‘I do.’ At least this time out. I do my best. I look. I listen. But in the end, I know: it’s my story, not Kamau’s, not Kenya’s, or Kenyans’. Those stories are yet to be heard.” As shared in World Traveler by the late Anthony Bourdain, authored by Laurie Woolever
Experience is the opinion of one. One out of many. Often vastly different from one another.
Experience can be influenced. Managed.
Ultimately, the result of that experience is what someone, an individual, feels, thinks, and remembers.
And eventually, and hopefully – retells others.
The journey is part of the experience – an expression of the seriousness of one’s intent. One doesn’t take the A train to Mecca.
~ Anthony Bourdain
Quick and Easy Takeaways
- Influence the Experience – Give considerable thought to pre-experience elements. The aesthetics of space. Lighting design. Sounds and smells. Sensory elements, when intentionally combined, will have the greatest potential to favorably impact an individual’s experience of the event (dining, shopping, being entertained, etc.)
- Nurture the Experience – During the customer journey, continue to nurture the experience through immediate greetings, prompt service, overall exceptional hospitality.
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