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Suzanne Banta

#006: There is No Perfect Client Experience
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Hey! Tony Banta here and on this episode of the Client Whisperer Show, we’re going to talk about how there is no such thing as a perfect client experience, but that doesn’t mean that it’s not your responsibility to make your client experience great. We’re going to show you the five areas where you want to pay attention to that and so much more. Stay tuned.

Welcome to the Client Whisperer Show. I’m your host Tony Banta, and I am the Client Whisperer. I’ve spent over a decade running multiple six and seven figure client businesses and I’ve learned that the secret to success in a client business comes down to one thing, leadership. Bad client behavior is the enemy. And with the right curriculum, infrastructure and mindset, you can lead your clients to great success and scale your business the easy way.

So client experience, if I were doing this as a talk in front of a bunch of people, I would say by show of hands who feels bad that their client experience of their program isn’t good enough? Who feels like they’re missing something? So here’s the good news. I’m always the least worried about those of you who say, “yes, I feel bad that the client experience isn’t good enough. Yes there is room for improvement in our client experience. “

Why? Because you’re looking at it. You’re paying attention to it. And it’s precisely that paying attention to it. That’s going to guarantee as long as you have some of the help that we talk about in this episode, it’s going to guarantee that you serve your clients impeccably. So let’s dig into it.

There’s no such thing as perfect. We all know that, but that doesn’t mean we still don’t need to provide an excellent level of client support. In three weeks from today, from when this episode goes live. We are launching a new series called Client Success Legends, where we have about five interviews with some client business owners, some leaders who provide legendary service support coaching expertise to their clients. And it’s got me thinking a little bit about what it means to provide legendary service. Retention is of course, one measure, one way that we can measure that. Uh, right. We, we legend, we legendarily only um, sell a relatively few amount of people, but we have clients who stay for long periods of time because we help continue to find value in their business. We help to continually improve that value.

So other business models may be in that same boat. Um, other business models may not count on longterm revenue, although I think a backend program is something that just about every coach, consultant, service provider should be including. But what we want to hone in on is those lead indicators, not just the lag indicator of “do clients stay?” The, the lag indicator of “what’s our lifetime client value?”

We want to look at the lead indicators of “how are we doing towards serving our clients?” What we like to say impeccably and impeccable is another word, is another way of saying flawless. And I believe that there’s a difference between flawless and perfect. We’re never going to have perfect client fulfillment. Perfect client fulfillment by rearranging this a little bit, we might have perfect client fulfillment. Perfect client film. It is client fulfillment that gets clients results, period. Flawless or impeccable client fulfillment and impeccable client experience is one where we’ve intentionally reduced every possible friction point along the client journey. And the reason why that’s so important is because the more friction points there are the more areas that are in our program that provide difficulty towards the client getting to their results. And again, this doesn’t matter if you’ve been listening to this show for any, for any period of time, I say this often, it doesn’t matter whether you’re a coach, a consultant, or whether you fulfill a service for your client.

If you’re working with clients, the reality is they need a mix of leadership and things to be done for them. They need someone to help coach them out of their own way and they need people to do critical functions for them to help them with at least tools, templates, tricks so that they can get started.

So impeccable is what we’re going for not perfect. Impeccable means we’ve removed that friction and there are five critical areas that we’re going to talk about where we can can remove that friction and make what we’re doing even more impeccable. The goal, of course with all of this is that we want our clients to get amazing results. That’s what it means to be a client, a client success legend. It means that we, like clockwork. We help our clients achieve incredible results.

Like I mentioned, coming up in three weeks, coming up in about three weeks. We have a Facebook ad. We have a Facebook ad agency owner who use to be a pilot to millionaires and billionaires. We have a coach who coaches families out of their own way. We have one of the top producing realtors in the DC, Maryland. Uh, the DC, Annapolis Metro area. We have a fish salesperson. He, he, he does protein sales for a number of, uh, the brands that he’s, if you’ve had fish recently at any number of, of chain restaurants, they probably came from him.

So we have these incredible experts. We have a coach who helps women spend more time, break out of the corporate molds that they’ve, that they’ve been stuck in and in, you know, especially those women that have been an unfulfilling careers and she coaches them to launch their own business or to transition their business to transition their role in corporate into something that serves them better, get paid what they’re worth, have the kind of free time so that they can have the family life that they want. Just just some incredible leaders that we have to introduce you. But what is a common thread through all of them is that they’ve systematically looked at the friction points that their clients go through and they’ve tried to make that journey easier because the more that we reduce friction and we increase momentum, cause that’s what happens when we reduce friction.

It’s basic physics, right? The client gets to the result quicker. And when we lead clients to get to their result quicker, we are awarded with higher lifetime client value, higher prices that we can charge. Period. Higher retention referrals, raving fans. That is the outcome here.

So what are these five areas? Well, it starts with onboarding. We have to start with when clients first join the program. Onboarding is this critically important phase and it’s not just enough to send them a little welcome gift or something like that. I hear people say that like, no, no we do good. We send him a welcome email and then we sent him a gift in the mail. It’s not what we’re talking about. Onboarding is critically important because you have to transition from the client being a lead from the client being interested. You need to codify and finalize their commitment to actually joining your program to actually doing things differently.

And it’s important to do this because we need to set expectations. I’m going to circle back around expectations in a little bit cause there’s expectations in the middle of our programs as well, but we have to get them started on the right point where they know what to expect and that around onboarding is even deeper than just what to expect of you or of the program. It’s what you’re expecting of them cause you’re not just, even if you provide a service, you’re not just a service provider, you’re not Comcast just providing internet or Verizon, wherever your internet comes from, you’re not just a service provider where it, where you provide this stuff, your electric companies is another example. Break out of that mold. That’s not who you are. You provide a life changing or business changing or both program for people. Treat it with that kind of seriousness and expect clients.

People join high school classrooms, the best high school teachers, right? Expect a lot of people. College you, you go, I mean now college has gone downhill a little bit. I won’t get on that rate on that rant. I’ll, I’ll a sidestep that soapbox. But college, back in the day when I was in college, I was told that they had expectations of me,. That I needed to show up in certain ways that I needed to do things because I was representing that university in what I did in the classroom, but also in how I represented myself outside of of off-campus, outside of the classroom. There were things that were expected of me and it should be no different inside of your program. You should be telling clients what’s expected of them and celebrating that amazing commitment, that amazing decision that they’ve made to keep things moving.

Now number two, training. This is the second friction point. No matter what you do, there is some amount of information transfer that has to take place. You need to take information that’s in your brain, right? Cause if you were in the client’s shoes in the, at least in the area where the client is struggling, you would be able to do great, right? You would be able to run their business better than they could at least in that area that you’re helping them or run their life in better ways than they can’t at least in that one area, right? So you need to take that knowledge, that understanding, that way of thinking, the way of being that is so clear to you, you need to transfer that to the client. Even if you provide a service for the client, even if you’re an ad agency, you still have to teach the client on what it is like to run a business that has the result of your ads coming through that has lead flow, that has those things coming into your business on a regular basis.

So that is the training area. The key with training is that most people miss that creates a lot of friction is that you have to meet clients where they are. You have to actually put on a client mask when you’re making some of that training or writing that training would whichever medium you want to do that in. And in time the medium of those things matters as well. You want to find out from your clients what do they like the most? Is reading it good? It’s providing an audio version even better. We have some clients where where we’ve helped them, you know, build an app so that the client can be, you know, consuming that information. The audio version of it while they’re on the run, right? While they’re in the car on the go, what way, what mediums? What methods of transferring that information are most valuable to your clients?

It’s an important question. Besides that, meeting them where they are is more a principle of we need to first identify the questions that are going on in their head. What are they wondering, and then we have to walk them through the answers to those questions. Most clients are going to wonder, “why hasn’t this worked for me in the past?” When they’re joining your program, they’re going to wonder, “why have I struggled so much before?” What’s gonna make this different? Really. So it’s important that you are asking them what those questions are and that you’re answering those things that are going on for them as you step through.

Next, expectations. I said we would talk about expectations before expectations are key and not just on onboarding. Expectations or setting client expectations inside of your program are also really important. What can they expect from you in terms of turnaround time?

I see. I see coaches and consultants make this mistake all the time where they think, especially when they’ve charged a lot of money, they’re selling high ticket now. They’re charging lots of money and they feel beholden to their clients to answer their questions whenever they need. And a lot of money can be different to different people, right? I’ve heard people charge three or five K for the first time and then they feel beholden to their clients. We have clients where we charge them 50K at a time and we set the expectation of what acceptable communication is. Why? Because our job isn’t to be at to be, sir, we of course want to be servant leaders, right? We want to serve our clients, but our job is not to be servants at the beck and call of our clients.

That sacrifices the second part of servant leadership, the leadership part, because it’s our job to lead our clients and we can only lead our clients if we’re leading our own company. So for instance, we have a rule here where where we, we frequently will not reply to client email in fewer than 24 hours. Why? Because we don’t want email to become instant messaging. We have set communication times for our clients. We have those things built in and we don’t want either myself or our team for that matter, to live inside of their email inbox. Those emails from clients that come in are a symptom of waste. They’re a symptom of the fact that we’ve missed something else along the way for the client, and so the way that we set some of those boundaries, we, some of those expectations with clients is that we cycle, we have a feedback loop where we build that in so that the emails that we do get in, the questions that we do get from clients, we bake that right back into the system to make that better so that clients never have that question again.

Number four, overcoming resistance. This is probably the biggest of all of these items and in fact we’ll go deep in this in in time, but overcoming resistance, it’s your client’s resistance and it might be exactly what you’re thinking it is that that the client is resisting the growth. The client is resisting what you’re telling them you need to do, but what that resistance you’re seeing is really the tip of the iceberg to the deeper resistance of their subconscious. And in time, we’re going to share a little bit of some of the, the academic research and the, the, the industrial psychology that a lot of our methodologies that we teach are built on top of, but the client’s resistance really is their subconscious sabotaging what they’re trying to do. It’s them not necessarily feeling safe or even wanting what they say they want.

And there’s some fascinating experiments that, that some, some neuroscientists have done. Neuroscientists, psychiatrists, psychologists, all working together have done some fascinating experiments that that literally show that different parts of the brain want different things. Yet that’s all baked into one human client for us. Right?

So if you’ve ever been frustrated that your client says that they want something and then repeatedly doesn’t do what you tell them to do so they can get what they want, ding, ding, ding. That’s the resistance. Finding that is critically important. Letting that client’s resistance expose itself so that you can deal with it is a critical component that may feel like friction especially if you don’t like conflict. If you don’t like challenging conversations, that can feel like friction, but in most instances it’s actually the quickest pathway. To let that resistance, the client misbehaving would be another way to say that like we do in our, in our intro, right?

Bad client behavior is the enemy. Letting that show itself so then we can have a conversation, a nonjudgmental conversation, but a conversation that at once reaffirms where our boundaries are of where those clients have to have to show up for themselves and also shines a light into why is the client struggling with this? Why are you struggling to get what you say you want? It’s really powerful when we get that right, so that’s the fourth area.

The fifth area is the relationship transition. The fifth and final area, we like to call this the commencement, right? The initial program’s done. They’re ready to roll into the next phase of the program or into the next continuation program that we want to sell them into. This is a really powerful time, but we need to get it right. We need to celebrate the successes that they’ve had so far, even if they’re not achieving financial ROI or the ultimate success that they wanted, right?

Because ultimately that depends on their ability to manage their own resistance. That’s a factor of them being able to manage what they want for themselves in time for them to actually do the tactics and do what they need to within your program. So some critics and critical things going on around there, but we want to celebrate the successes, whatever they’ve had so far, and we want to figure out what they need. We want to assess where they are and what they need so that we can shine a light down the pathway of what they need to do from here, whether that’s with our help or otherwise.

Most importantly, we want to make sure that they don’t stop. We want to make sure that they have enough so that they can keep moving, which is critically important, critically important. So those are the five areas, the five critical areas where friction can show up and where we need to remove that to make an impeccable client experience. This is how you provide legendary client service and I’m super excited to see you implement some of these things to dig into your own program and look at, even though it can’t be perfect, how do you make it impeccable? How do you remove that friction?

Okay. As always, this has been the Client Whisperer Show and I have one final note. If you’re listening to this and you don’t know where these areas are inside of your program, it’s a really good sign that I want you to hop on a call with us. I want you to hop on a call so that we can find that out with you. We provide client success audits where we actually look inside of your program and they are for an incredibly low price, comparatively speaking. I’ve mentioned how we have clients who are $50,000 or more, to be honest, but who we provide these audits for just a few thousand dollars. And we do that because we want to help as many people as we can. We’re actually right now in an open enrollment period for client audits starting in the first quarter. So if you’re listening to this and you want to know where your client fulfillment is, book a call with us, ClientSuccessCall.com through watching the YouTube version of this, it’s flashing on the screen. As always, it’s in our show notes. You can just click that link and hop right on, uh, to book a call and we can see if that’s the right fit. Give you some clarity on the call and see if our audit is the best fit for you. As always, thanks for tuning in.

Have a great week. See you soon.

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