The future of CX: the creative experience
As competition on the digital landscape becomes fiercer, creativity is crucial to differentiating your brand and inspiring customers. For The Drum’s Creativity in Focus Deep Dive, Michael Vromans, chief creative officer at DPDK, explores customer experience's next frontier: the creative experience.
Creativity touches almost every aspect of our lives. It’s how we separate the ordinary from the extraordinary - in what we wear, how we speak, and the brands we market.
DPDK explores how brands can make better and more creative use of the UX experience.
Even so, creativity has come to something of a standstill in recent years. The consequences are showing: customer experiences (CX) have become stagnant and brands are falling prey to digital sameness.
The C in CX
Customers are spoilt for choice, with hordes of brands competing for their attention. To win, brands need to offer meaningful and memorable experiences that intrigue and entice customers: experiences that provoke an emotional response and keep them coming back for more.
Enter the creative experience.
At DPDK, we see the creative experience as an evolution of CX. It involves applying creativity to every customer touchpoint and placing it at the heart of CX. Creativity can transform the CX landscape. I’ll even go as far as to say that we need to change the way we look at CX: from customer experience to creative experience.
Creative experiences are more than just websites or apps with seamless navigation and fast-loading pages. Creative experiences go beyond that by evoking a sense of curiosity.
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They tickle customers’ minds by bridging the gap between reality and imagination. In doing so, they leave a lasting impression.
Think of how Aesop quietly conquered the world by embracing design and providing a unique in-store experience. Or how Aldi revolutionized grocery shopping by straying from the norm and positioning its brand as the “good different.” Or how Pixar combines storytelling and technology to build emotional connections with customers and differentiate from the competition.
These brands are successful because they use creativity as the guiding principle in the experiences they craft. They build experiences that customers enjoy and remember.
The art of crafting creative experiences
Creativity is our superpower here at DPDK, and embedding it into our agency culture has enabled us to create innovative and award-winning creative experiences.
Forward You (FWU), a German fintech insurance brand, were about to make a big move and transition into a whole new market. Moving from a business-to-business brand to a business-to-consumer brand isn’t easy - especially when coveted millennials are your target audience and competition is brutal. We saw this as an opportunity to rebrand and set FWU apart using creativity as the differentiator.
FWU is all about making people’s dreams come true with tailor-made investment solutions. For the rebranding, we leveraged creativity and the emotional core of the brand’s mission to highlight what makes FWU unique. We developed a hybrid animation style combining illustrations, photography, and film. This became the creative focus of the new visual identity.
The illustrations are hand-drawn and make FWU’s new look instantly recognizable while conveying its brand promise of making customers’ dreams a reality.
FWU’s rebrand was applied to their new website and customer portal. Creativity played a big role in attracting FWU’s target audience, communicating the brand’s story, and positioning it as an innovative insurance brand with more to offer than their competitors.
So, life insurance definitely doesn’t have to be boring.
Another great example is the virtual reality (VR) experience we created for Peugeot. Following the launch of the Peugeot 208, the brand asked us to help drive awareness for the new car.
The experience needed to match its TV commercial, which featured a flying red dragon.
Inspired by the dragon, we created an interactive VR experience that lets viewers take the car for a spin and feel its power while engaging in a game that challenges them to “catch the dragon.” We recreated the dragon using a responsive custom front-end and a combination 2D and 3D visuals to create a 360° view of the beast. We enabled the dragon to fly and (dis)appear anywhere we wanted it to.
Creating a space for creativity to flourish
Nothing worth having comes easy. This applies to building creative experiences too. It’s key to nurture your team’s creativity and create an environment where creativity can flourish - from your design team all the way down to your tech department.
When you make creativity a priority, it enables teams from different departments and fields of expertise to work together in unison toward a shared vision. Creativity becomes the means to the end, and that’s when truly exceptional experiences are produced.
In a sea of digital sameness, creativity is your lifebuoy. Instead of taking it for granted, use it to your advantage. It’s time to level up your CX and lead with creative experiences.
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