Wait time is the single most important factor in customer satisfaction.
And yet, it seems no matter how fast we work, how hard we try, how much we promise, how big we smile, how friendly we act and far we reach, customers always find ways to complain about how long it’s taking.
So if we can’t make more time, why not try to bend it?
We can change the customer experience of time so that its passage is more enjoyable. We can keep customers happy by keeping them company. And we can employ a few artistic measures to influence the mood, modify the energy, enhance the environment and up the vibe, thereby changing the dismal experience of waiting into something more interesting.
What if you commissioned local cartoonists to create work for your walls that started conversations, offered hope and delivered inspiration?
What if you hired a team of local magicians to work the room and entertain so guests lose track of time while they wait for their table?
What if you projected on a screen that aggregated a stream of pictures, tweets, reviews and other mobile updates from customers who used branded hashtags?
What if you had live cigar rolling demonstrations to authenticate the evening and leave patrons with an artifact they could keep forever?
What if you stationed a glass blower in the lobby to create small sculptures on demand for people while they stood in line?
That way, people won’t look at their watch, they’ll forget that they’re wearing one.