If you’re a regular reader of our SoGoSurvey blog, you’ll notice that we spend a lot of time focusing on CX. Today, though, we’re looking not at customer experience but a slightly different kind of CX.
With summer well underway and the COVID-19 pandemic slowly coming to a close, summer camps are back on the schedule for many! Some of you may have never gone to a summer camp before, or maybe all you remember from your childhood summers are summer camps! Maybe you’re even helping out with a summer camp right now. Whatever your experience may be, I don’t think people talk enough about CX – not customer experience (our blog has plenty of that!), but camp experience! So, without further ado, let’s go over some things to keep in mind to have a great summer camp!
Let them eat cake! Seriously…
This isn’t applicable to all camps, but I remember at the end of the day during my camp experience there was an announcement that there would be cake available for everyone! Except there were only 20 slices, yet there were at least 100 kids.
Don’t make promises you can’t keep, especially to teenagers. Everyone was unhappy (including myself, if you can’t already tell) and it was a loss for everyone, except for the lucky few who got cake.
It doesn’t have to be cake; it can be anything (s’mores, anyone?) – but don’t advertise something if you can’t bring it to the table. This is relevant for everyone trying to provide a positive experience to their target audience, from Fortune 500 companies to small summer camps.
Don’t make optional mean mandatory
There is nothing worse than saying that something is optional when really it’s completely mandatory. It sets up false expectations that is going to upset almost everyone. If it’s mandatory, label it as such. Maybe this is a specific situation, but I think it applies to most things whether you are at summer camp or working in an office.
Consider what your audience wants and what they need. Passing a swimming test before you’re allowed in the pool or late? Definitely something that should be mandatory. Early morning “polar bear club” swimming opportunity? Optional, please!
Teamwork makes the dream work!
Again, this depends on every individual’s camp experience – but for me being on a team for the duration of camp was super helpful. For nervous teenagers, being part of a team (even if it’s apparently randomly assigned!) can provide an immediate circle to start socializing with rather than trying to fend for themselves. This structure can be great and also make everything easier to keep track of from an administrative standpoint, too. For your camp counselors it will also be easier to keep track of a team rather than random individuals.
To be honest with you, a lot of this advice is coming from an experience I had almost 10 years ago. I’m sure camps have changed a lot, especially since the world turned upside down because of the COVID-19 pandemic. But there are some things that will be around no matter how much the world changes: friends you made at camp, the fun adventures you went on, and even the not-so-great parts. If you take the time to make the camp experience as great as possible, you’re going to reward those children with many happy memories for decades to come.
Working instead of playing this summer? Consider how to bring all the best of summer camp (cake?! team competitions??) to your audience. Whether it’s a chance to grow engagement in your employee experience efforts or an opportunity to have some fun with your customers, it’s always a great time for — wait for it — s’more. 😉