Don't Say One Thing, Then Do Another...
Instead, create an "11 Star Experience" for your Ideal Clients.
Last week, I referenced Airbnb’s “11 Star Experience” framework when I wrote about the importance of customer development when creating and/or scaling your business.
For those of you who are new to Meeting of the Minds, I thought it’d be worthwhile to revisit this concept.
Below, I’ll share what not to do, and how to improve the quality of your service so that you can charge more, generate referrals, and work with more Ideal Clients.
But First, Let Me Share A Story…
A few months ago, I tried to open a new bank account with either a regional or private bank here in Atlanta, GA, and the experience was AWFUL.
In fact, I've yet to take my business to a new vendor because the four or five individuals courting me as a client have left such a displeasurable taste in my mouth that I've kept my money at Chase instead of diversifying.
Even after receiving warm introductions, these regional and/or private banks did absolutely zero research on me or my business, and didn't bother to review the information me and my team sent ahead of time detailing exactly what we are looking for in a new vendor.
While each person shared the same stump speech that the difference between a private or regional bank and the large institutions like Chase, BoA, or Wells Fargo is the relationships they enjoy with clients, only one of the private or regional banks I spoke with in the last few weeks sent me a follow-up email after our kickoff conversation.
The others either didn't even show up on time (or at all!) to our first call, took weeks before responding to an email from a pre-existing client introducing me to them in order to schedule a conversation, and promised various pieces of marketing materials during our calls, never to send answers to my questions or follow-through on their commitments.
Don't be like these companies, saying one thing but doing another…
Create an "11 star" experience for your clients instead.
During his interview with LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman for the Masters of Scale podcast, Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky explained how you can create a 5 star experience (or better!) for your clients and build a loyal fan base of Ideal Clients who'll refer you generously, enjoy spending money with you, and support you when you need it most (such as during a global pandemic).
Let's take your local supermarket for example.
3 Stars - Some employees are wearing masks, and there's stickers on the floor outlining where to stand for proper social distancing.
4 Stars - All employees have masks, and there's a hand sanitizer station by the entrance so you can clean your hands before and after you leave. Also, masks are required by clients and someone is standing at the entrance of the store to count the number of customers entering and leaving to stay below 60% capacity in the store to ensure proper social distancing.
5 Stars - All the above, plus you get a freshly sanitized shopping cart when you walk in, from an upbeat employee despite the fact that he or she has to wear a mask and ensures you are as well. All checkout lanes are sanitized after customers pay for their items, and you're given a 20% off coupon upon leaving for a "Movie Night" pre-cooked meal delivery service in case you don't want to make dinner later in the week.
6 Stars - Perhaps your local supermarket delivers all the items to you, including that "Movie Night" coupon, at no additional cost. They even throw in a freshly baked chocolate chip cookie.
7 Stars - One week per month, you receive all your groceries for free if you're currently on unemployment, and the Store Manager delivers your order personally, this time with an entire box of cookies, to give you a hearty "thank you" speech for your loyalty to the store in good times and bad.
8 Stars - Complimentary "upgrades" on items you've ordered (i.e. your $10 bottle of wine becomes a $35 selection from a certified sommelier) at no additional cost to you, in addition to everything mentioned above.
9 Stars - Fresh meals delivered to you, cooked with those upgraded items, by the best chef in town who has decided to partner with the supermarket while their restaurant is closed.
10 Stars - All of the above, plus the finest singers in town performing for you while you enjoy those perfectly prepared meals and all the perks mentioned above, and...
11 Stars - All of the above, plus the complimentary services of a celebrity trainer and nutritionist who will help you turn the chef-prepped meals from your upgraded grocery store selections into a chiseled six-pack, perfect blood pressure, and the vigor you need to power your business to a record year of growth despite the pandemic.
While stars 9, 10, and 11 might not always be viable for you and your business, it's important to consider all the ways you can improve the experience that your clients have when working with you.
That's your homework for the week.
Write out what an "11 star experience" would look like for your clients (and let me know what you come up with!).
P.S. - this is a free weekly edition of our newsletter. Each week, we cover practical insights and resources on marketing, sales, personal branding, community-building, and other building blocks for scaling a profitable bootstrapped business.
If you’re not a paid subscriber, here’s what you’re missing…
And dozens of other “locked” emails over the last year that are available only to paying, premium subscribers.
To receive ALL of our content, including our most valuable emails each Friday, consider subscribing by clicking the button below👇.
Jared Kleinert is the founder of Meeting of the Minds (motm.co), as well as a TED speaker, 2x award-winning author, and USA Today's "Most Connected Millennial".
Meeting of the Minds curates "super-connectors" and subject matter experts as invite-only attendees to 3 day summits in places like Napa Valley, Bermuda, and elsewhere, as well as “deep dives” such as this Marketing and Biz Dev strategy & implementation workshop. Members of the MOTM network include CEOs of 7, 8, and 9-figure businesses, creators of globally-recognized brands and social movements, New York Times bestselling authors, founders of pre-IPO tech unicorns, c-suite execs from Fortune 500 companies, and others.
Jared's career began at 15 years old when he started his first company, and took off at 16 while working as the first intern, and then one of the first 10 employees, for an enterprise SaaS company called 15Five, which today has raised over $40M and has almost 2000 forward-thinking companies as monthly recurring clients.
Later, Jared would become a delegate to President Obama's 2013 Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Malaysia, write multiple books including the "#1 Entrepreneurship Book of 2015", and speak at TED@IBM the day before he turned 20.
As a highly-sought after keynote speaker and consultant, Jared’s clients range from organizations like Facebook, Samsung, Bacardi, Estee Lauder, IBM, Cornell, Berkeley, AdAge, and the National Speakers Association. His insights on entrepreneurship, networking, marketing, and business development have been featured in Forbes, TIME, Harvard Business Review, Fortune, NPR, Entrepreneur, Mashable, Fox Business and more.
Don’t forget to share! :)