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Customer Experience Journeys: Loyalty Loops Versus Involvement Spirals

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Anton Siebert, Professor Andrew Lindridge



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


Customer experience management (CXM) research is increasingly concerned with the long-term evolution of customer experience journeys across multiple service cycles. A dominant smooth journey model makes customers’ lives easier, with a cyclical pattern of predictable experiences that builds customer loyalty over time, also known as a loyalty loop. An alternate sticky journey model makes customers’ lives exciting, with a cyclical pattern of unpredictable experiences that increases customer involvement over time, conceptualized here as an involvement spiral. Whereas the smooth journey model is ideal for instrumental services that facilitate jobs to be done, the sticky journey model is ideal for recreational services that facilitate never-ending adventures. To fit the flow of each journey type, firms are advised to highlight purchase opportunities during the initial service cycles of smooth journeys or the subsequent service cycles of sticky journeys. In multi-service systems, firms can sustain customer journeys by interlinking loyalty loops and involvement spirals. The article concludes with new journeycentered questions for CXM research as well as branding research, consumer culture theory, consumer psychology, and transformative service research.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Siebert A, Gopaldas A, Lindridge AM, Simoes C

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Marketing

Year: 2020

Volume: 84

Issue: 4

Pages: 45-66

Print publication date: 01/07/2020

Online publication date: 13/05/2020

Acceptance date: 01/04/2020

Date deposited: 08/04/2020

ISSN (print): 0022-2429

ISSN (electronic): 1547-7185

Publisher: Sage


DOI: 10.1177/0022242920920262


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