The Essence of CX: How You Make People Feel

Ethan Beute, BombBomb, Chief Evangelist, The Customer Experience Podcast, Wall Street Journal bestseller, Human-Centered Communication, Rehumanize Your Business.

Ethan Beute

Former Chief Evangelist
customer experience, CX, essence of CX, what is customer experience

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Listen to “69. The Essence of CX: How You Make People Feel” on Spreaker.

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What does it feel like to work with you?

How do you make your customers feel? How do they feel about themselves in the context of you and your brand?

How does your product or service make them feel?

How do they feel about you? Your team members? Their last interaction with you?

The answers to these questions will show you just the type of customer experience you’re providing.

As Maya Angelou famously said …

“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel.”

But many still tend to incorrectly focus the customer experience on getting customers to do something. And while customer success – achieving an outcome – is an important part of customer experience, CX goes deeper.

One of our deepest human needs is to feel seen, heard, and appreciated. It’s part of the underlying motivation behind our behavior.

Our feelings precede our thoughts. And our thoughts precede our actions.

I kept that in mind as I prepared for a recent HubSpot User Group presentation about how to implement personal videos across the entire customer lifecycle and the entire employee lifecycle. I broke down some of the key learnings from our great guests here on the podcast, but I also wanted to summarize customer experience by putting into words what it is at its core.

Where I landed: customer experience is about how you make people feel.

On this short episode, I dive into:

How CX is defined by how we make people feel
What customers need to feel from their customer experience
Why getting people to do something is a direct outcome of their feelings
What needs to be done to deliver the ideal customer experience
How the way you operate bolsters relationships in multiple directions

The Essence of CX: How You Make People Feel

Please give this one a listen and reach out with feedback.

Do you buy it? If this isn’t the essence of CX, what is?

Hear the entire episode about the essence of customer experience right here:

Listen to “69. The Essence of CX: How You Make People Feel” on Spreaker.

Prefer to listen in a podcast player?

Subscribe, listen, rate, and review The Customer Experience Podcast here:

customer experience, how you make people feel

Full Transcript: The Essence of CX- How You Make People Feel 

Ethan Beute:
People will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

Ethan Beute:
A beautiful and often used quote from American poet, memoirist, and civil rights activist Maya Angelou and the foundation for this short episode of the Customer Podcast and the CX series on the B2B growth show. My name is Ethan Beute. I am your host. I’m also the chief evangelist at BombBomb and coauthor of the book “Rehumanize Your Business: How Personal Videos Accelerate Sales and Improve Customer Experience.”

Ethan Beute:
I often have the privilege of coming out to speak and present on the ideas that I’m learning and developing in my role at BombBomb, and I just put together a presentation for the HubSpot user group here in Colorado Springs where BombBomb is headquartered. I’ll be talking about personal videos, simple personal videos, webcam and smartphone videos that are casual, conversational, unscripted, and meant to replace some of your faceless digital communication. That plain black text on a plain white screen that doesn’t differentiate you, doesn’t build rapport and doesn’t communicate nearly as well as if you just look someone in the eye and spoke to him or her. So I’ll be talking about how to use those videos across the entire customer life cycle and across the entire employee lifecycle, all in service of a better customer experience and a better employee experience.

Ethan Beute:
And because there are so many ways to approach customer experience, for example, is it an outgrowth of customer success or an evolution of customer success or is the experience to be managed by the CMO or the CRO or the new CXO, chief experience officer or a CGO, a chief growth officer? There are so many ways to approach it, so I decided to put together a little three or four-minute piece near the top to get everyone on the same page with the primary characteristics of customer experience.

Ethan Beute:
And to wrap that section up, I wanted to put customer experience in the simplest terms possible. And what I’m trying out here, and I would love your feedback on it, is it’s about how you make people feel. The essence of a great customer experience is about how you make people feel, how you make people feel about you, you personally, your warmth, and your competence. How we make people feel about themselves. Do they feel smart, secure, confident? Is their identity enhanced by participating with you and your company and your product and your service? How do they feel about themselves when they interact with us? How do they feel about our team members? If they were to connect directly with a salesperson or a service person or a support person, or if they walked into your building and they interacted with someone at the front desk, or if they’re at a conference or a trade show, how do they feel about your team members and how do your team members make them feel about themselves?

Ethan Beute:
How does our product or service make people feel? Is it a rewarding experience? Is it may be easy or even fun? Have we removed friction so that they’re less frustrated and more productive? How do we make people feel about the problem or opportunity that brought us in relationship with them in the first place? Do they feel helped and supported if they tackle the problem or eliminated the problem? Have they taken advantage of the opportunity and what was our role in that? How do they feel about that situation? Is it something that they want to do again? How do they feel about that situation?

Ethan Beute:
Historically, it seems like sales and marketing, in particular, and even CS has been about what we can get people to do. Not so much about how we make them feel, but what they do is the outcome. Our thoughts and our feelings precede our actions, and of course, our actions proceed results.

Ethan Beute:
If we’re properly motivated, we’ll perform the necessary actions to get the desired results. Of course, that whole process leaves people with thoughts and feelings, but no action occurs in the absence of thoughts and feelings.

Ethan Beute:
And directly to the human side of this, what we want to feel most as individuals, I’m speaking a little bit as a customer now, the most important need that we have as people is to feel seen, heard, and appreciated. When we make people feel seen and heard and appreciated, we are in a great position. By making people feel that way, we can turn around a negative situation.

Ethan Beute:
If you remember the episode about the effortless experience, you’ll remember that one of the things people hate most is feeling like a number. They want to feel valued and appreciated and it doesn’t take much. We just need to be a little bit more intentional. We need to be a little bit more aligned across the teams and departments within our organization. All of the people who create these feelings within our customers. When we keep our customers in mind as humans, when we build that into the culture, when we keep in mind that we’re making people feel a certain way, whether we intend to or not, we’re putting ourselves in position to create and deliver better experiences for our customers to make more people feel good, more often, about us, about themselves, about our product or our service, about our team members, about the problem or opportunity that brought us together in the first place.

Ethan Beute:
And this feeling goes in multiple directions. It’s easy to think about and talk about customer experience as company to customer or employee to customer and it is, but this is also about employee to employee, customer to employee, and customer to customer. That’s the foundation for community and community can be the foundation of an incredibly healthy business.

Ethan Beute:
So are you buying this? When I put customer experience in simplest terms, did I oversimplify it? Is the essence how you make people feel? Please reach out. Hit me up on, my name is Ethan Beute, that’s E-T-H-A-N, last name is B-E-U-T-E or email me directly,, that’s I would love your feedback. I would love your questions. This is an ongoing conversation and if you haven’t yet done so, be sure to subscribe to The Customer Experience Podcast. You can find it in all the popular spots, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher. If you want to go inside the episodes, you can visit and to check out the definitive guide to better business communication, be sure to visit or search Rehumanize Your Business at Amazon.

Ethan Beute:
Again, my name is Ethan Beute and I thank you so much for listening. Have a great day.

Other Short “Self” Episodes You’ll Enjoy:

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Ethan Beute

Former Chief Evangelist

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