Don’t you just love passionate people?
Yesterday was the first meeting with a lovely lady supported by her husband on their start-up business.
From the moment we started talking, the passion she felt for the product she wants to sell was very evident and extremely infectious.
The couple described the origins and the inspiration for their new product. They shared details about their joint African background and how their roots are what made their product special.
And they talked about the reason they had decided to turn this passion into a product – to raise money for their local charity.
And the product?
Well, it would be inappropriate at this stage to go into details, but it was absolutely delicious and is sure to be a hit.
Who knows, this budding entrepreneur could become the next Levi Roots.
She has a fantastic product, a great story and a passion to make it work – but not the slightest idea how to make it happen!
So, we’ve agreed 4 steps to build her very own Breakthrough Process;
- Get the message right – we’re not selling a product, we are telling the story and telling it in a way that prospects see the passion, understand the value and are excited into wanting to engage.
- Plan the marketing – this is a start-up so there is not much money to play with, so once the message is sorted, we will agree what strategies would be best, then build a tactical plan around those strategies to includes all the usual elements (website, social media, product branding and packaging, sampling, referrals, joint ventures and the many other tools available).
- Implement the plan – we’ll do this quickly and professionally. However, the biggest concern is that this lovely couple will get over-whelmed so we will implement in a simple step-by-step way.
- Review progress – at every step of the way I will teach them to constantly re-evaluate what they are doing. If something doesn’t work and shows no sign of working, we’ll stop and do something that will work. They are on too tight a budget to waste money and time on things that don’t produce clear and measurable results.
Time will tell how they will get on, but one thing is absolutely clear;
Passion is the first step on the road to success!
I would much rather work with a person who has limited knowledge but boundless enthusiasm, wouldn’t you?
So, if you get stuck building your business, try our FREE test drive and let us help you build your own Breakthrough Process.
A close friend mentioned that he was in a restaurant recently and was astonished at how poor the customer service had been – this was particularly disappointing as it was a good quality restaurant and still relatively new.
This comment coincided with another made to me by a friend who commented that she only ever seems to go to a restaurant 3 times – first to try it out and be pleased, the second time to take others as she has recommended it and after the third she would swear never to go to that restaurant again due mostly to variable food and poor customer service.
You may have a great product, but if the service is poor, consumers will not bother and this can make or break your business. None of us much patience for lousy customer service and easily get tired of waiting for a menu or that first drink you are gasping for. We get fed up trying to get a live person on the line, going through an interrogation to return something or trying to communicate through a language barrier.
Whatever business you run, if you provide your customers with a simple, efficient, pleasant experience they will revisit your business over and over. More importantly, they might tell others how good your business is!
There are a number of secrets to good customer service, the first one is knowing exactly what YOU want.
You are the captain of the ship and the visionary for the future of your business, so you need to have a clearly defined plan for your business and that must include customer service. There are 3 main goals you need to consider:
- It needs to be easy for your customers to do business with you. You can do this with help guides, advertised discounts, easy-to-follow prompts, your website and other technology based programmes to help them shop.
- Doing business with you needs to be a warm and pleasant experience. Your staff must be knowledgeable, approachable, warm and patient. Regular training is an essential part of investing in your staff’s knowledge. Most importantly, your customers need to feel like they are getting a good value for their time and money. Perceived value goes beyond the price of the products and extends to their entire shopping experience.
- You must change your mind set and ask yourself “How can I NOT afford to do these things?” This shouldn’t be a question of expenses, but making and keep happy customers.
With these thoughts in mind, regardless of how big or small your business, you also need to take a few things into consideration when deciding on the actual programmes and standards you’ll put into place.
- Share your customer service vision with the rest of your staff – make sure they’re on board.
- Connect your staff incentive programmes and bonuses directly to customer service.
- Monitor the level of customer service your staff is putting out by regularly surveying your customers.
- Know when you can ignore what your customers want.
- Continuously focus on your business goals.
Now, that you know what you want, you can starting thinking about how to meet those wants and create a positive customer service experience.
Remember, if your customers have a good experience of your business, they might tell others how good it was – if they have a bad experience, they absolutely will tell everyone they know about that too!!
If you’re having a hard time deciding on what you want, the tools, resources and coaches in our FREE test drive can help you define the wants and needs of your company in relation to customer service.
Here in the UK, it’s a great time to get gardening. But I must confess, I’m not very good at it – but there are few things more enjoyable than seeing a plant you’ve put in the ground grow and flourish.
It’s difficult not to draw significant parallels between gardening and running a business.
Think of building your business like planting a tree.
At first, it’s so small and weak you wonder if it will even make it through the night. But, you keep watering, fertilising and nurturing it.
Your values and ideas will grow the trunk and each of the different strategies and tactics you employ will extend out as the branches of your increasingly strong tree.
Finding the perfect partners, support staff, employees, vendors/suppliers, joint ventures and other relationships will make your tree flourish with leaves and flowers.
It’s no surprise then that you often here about people in business talking about the ‘seeding of an idea’ or that ‘Seed capital’ is the initial capital used when starting a business.
If yours isn’t flourishing, then perhaps you need to rethink whether you have got the right ideas, strategies, tactics, tools and partners?