diagram of flu shot experience

Don’t forget about the after-action moment

Don’t forget about the after-action moment

Not long ago, I got my annual flu shot.

I knew flu shot season was upon us (it’s all over the news) and had intended to get one a while back.

I have my own motivations for getting the flu shot. Mainly to keep myself healthy and to reduce the risk of getting my parents or in-laws sick.

But, I still hadn’t done it yet. (We all know how that goes).

Then, I received a text from my pharmacy: “Schedule a flu shot now to save time in store. Pharmacists are taking precautions to keep you safe. Click here.”

Cool. I clicked on the link and it brought me to a website for scheduling my appointment with plenty of date & time options to choose from.

It also gave me the option to provide my insurance details and sign all the e-forms right there, so I wouldn’t have to do it at the store.


One hour before my appointment, the pharmacy sent me a text reminder: “Brooke, your vaccine is coming up today at 1:30pm. Upon arriving at store, tap for check-in & next steps.”

I wasn’t sure what the check-in step was all about, but once I arrived to the store I clicked on it and it must have alerted the pharmacy that I was there.

I went to the pharmacy area and was immediately seated behind the privacy screen.

While waiting, I saw 5 other people do the “walk-in” approach to the flu shot. Each one had to fill out paperwork first and were placed in the queue after me. It reaffirmed my decision to do it all online.

The pharmacist came over, double-checked my info, and gave me the shot.



It was just a plain old band-aid. Not even a cool one.

There was no sticker I got to wear saying I got my flu shot (like the “I voted” stickers).

I wasn’t offered a lollipop.

There wasn’t even any verbal affirmation, like “great job getting your flu shot. come back again next season!”

All these great steps they took to prompt me, to remind me, and to make it easy. Just to get my butt in this seat.

And here I am, left with only a sore arm and a bitter feeling.

It was a missed opportunity.

Their customer journey must have ended with me getting the shot.

Where I, as the customer, no longer existed on paper after that moment. Or at least, was no longer their concern.

They achieved their goal and they were done.

Yet, just one small, extra boost of validation after getting that shot would go far for people.

It would put a little skip in their step, put a little smile on their face, and put a little more feel-good in the process.

It also would make their customers more likely to tell others to get their flu shot, and feel a bit more motivated to repeat the process next season.

So, there would be a return-on-investment for the cooler band-aid, or sticker, or lollipop.

Are we leaving our audiences hanging?

Does your behavior journey end once the audience takes an action or adopts a new behavior?

If so, then it’s worth exploring how can you make that moment more special.

How you can provide a small, extra boost of validation, celebration, or recognition AFTER they complete that step.

How you can leave them wanting to tell someone else about what they’ve achieved.

Even just a little goes a long way.

P.S. I’ve been thinking about this experience so much, I even created an infographic about it.

Diagram of flu shot experience