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Suzanne Banta

#023: 5 Symptoms Your Client Fulfillment Is Broken
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Is your client fulfillment working or is it broken? And you’re just beginning to see the symptoms of that. Now, today we break down the five symptoms to be on the lookout for when your client fulfillment isn’t working. Stay tuned.

Welcome to the Client Whisperer™Show. I’m your host Tony Banta, and I am the Client Whisper. 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.

Listen, don’t go monkeying with your systems. Don’t unless it’s planned or unless you have a problem. But how do you know when you have a problem? How do you know that’s not right now?

How do you know that that’s not happening? That there’s a problem with your client, fulfillment lurking in the background? How do you know that’s not going to keep growing until it’s a problem? Before you had time to actually pay attention to it. Solve it and get on the right track. Well today we’re going to tell you how you can know cause we’re going to show you the five reasons, the five symptoms to be on the lookout for that mean that there are some client fulfillment issues happening under the surface. Here’s the five things that you want to be paying attention. Now we recommend to all of our private clients and in fact this is a part of the systems that we help them roll out are ways to be measuring how clients are doing over time so that in a very specific, very targeted way, quarter over quarter they can be making their program better. We like to think of this as innovation. we like to think of this as a process that makes their business, their client fulfillment, the value that they deliver and therefore the marketing proposition and the value proposition that they have to the marketplace, unstoppable, unbeatable.

That’s what the clients who who are able to implement the best of our tactics are actually able to achieve. So we’d love to see you do that as well. We’d love to see you continually grow. Continue to make your program better. But the fact is there are all kinds of things to focus on. How do you know what the most important aspects of your business are? I mean, certainly if you’re struggling to get your first client, focus on that. If you’re struggling to make to pay your bills every month and you’re enrolling fewer than five clients, if you’re enrolling more than that and you’re struggling to pay your bills, please reach out to us. There’s a problem somewhere in there and that’s a really easy one to solve and we want to set you on the right path.

But if you’re, if you have fewer than that many clients, you need to get more clients. If you have fewer than five clients, you need to get more clients. You’re struggling with, with, you know, marketing. Certainly that’s a precursor to being able to really throw yourself into client fulfillment in a meaningful way. But, how do you know when you need to stop the marketing sales hamster wheel and actually pay attention, to client fulfillment. So here are the five reasons why.

Reason number one, you don’t want more clients. I can’t tell you how many of our clients have actually been at this point or past this point of emotional burnout by the time they found us. And that’s a really unfortunate, that’s a really rough spot to be in because you got into this because you wanted to make a difference cause you wanted to help people because you wanted to serve clients.

I don’t care if you’re, if you’re a business coach, if you’re a life coach, weight loss coach, relationship coach, if you’re a business consultant working on spreadsheets, you probably didn’t get into it just because you loved spreadsheets. You probably got into it because you loved what they did. You loved what they did for clients. So if you get to that point where you don’t want any more, ah, that, that’s a, that’s an identity crisis right there. It is. It’s, that’s, that’ll shake you to your core. Why? Cause you’re the one that helps clients. You’re the one that serves them, that leads them. And a leader who has lost that passion for what their clients can accomplish is a lost leader. And not like selling milk at half price, right? Not that kind of lost leader but a lost leader.

And you can’t lead clients if you’re lost. So that is symptom number one. If you don’t want more clients, there are really good reasons why. And I don’t want to shame you for that. I just want to give you a hug. I just want to tell you it’s a rough spot to be in. The way back though, is getting those things out of the way that make you feel like you can’t serve clients in the way that you know is possible. Cause that’s always what feeds that burnout feeling is that you’re stuck doing low leverage things. You’re stuck, not feeling like you can lead clients as aggressively as they might need when you feel like you can’t set the healthy boundaries on your clients to say this is what you must do and this is what we’re not going to tolerate. And that’s the mixture of attitudes and systems and everything else that you need to put in place.

So reason number two, clients aren’t happy. Clients aren’t happy, it’ a slightly reductive way of saying it, right? Because clients can not be happy for all kinds of reasons. I was just talking with someone today around the journey that clients go on, right? Where they’re failing, they’re not seeing things work yet, but they’re on the right path. And that can be an amazing feeling. But it can also make people say, this really stinks, right? I’ve talked before about some of the health issues that I’ve had and now cause my mindset’s dialed in, right? And now I’m in the right place. I feel really great to be able to say when I’ve crossed off a potential, a potential drug or a potential supplement or something like that that I’ve tried, that doesn’t work. That’s a great feeling. I’m still in pain.

I still have, I still have problems, right? I’m not at my solution yet, but I know I’m one step closer, but I haven’t always been happy about that. Right? So clients being happy could be for a mixture of reasons, but are they getting results? Are they getting the results that you know are possible? That’s the question. If clients aren’t getting the results that you know are possible for them. Well then that’s a problem. Now, we’ve talked about this before, this idea of the strata, the layers of clients. How you always have 10 to 20% of clients at the top end who are amazing. You will always have 10 to 20% of clients on the bottom end who are not so amazing and then you will have 60, 70% of clients in the middle. And the question is do you have more than the bottom 10 or 20% that aren’t getting results or is it just the 10 to 20%? Because you might not have a problem yet if it’s only the bottom 10 to 20% that’s not to say that you don’t wanna maximize what you’re doing with that group.

That’s not to say that you don’t want to focus on putting targeted boundaries in place, but unless that 10 to 20% is really wearing on you and making you not want more clients, you don’t have a problem unless it eats beyond that. If you have larger groups of people who aren’t getting the results that you know are possible for them, who aren’t able to try what you’re teaching them in earnest, give it their best shot, give it their all, and then be able to make the decision of how much deeper do they want to go in your process, in what you’ve shown them is possible for them. Well, that’s a problem and that’s the reason number two, that’s symptom number two that you want to be on the lookout for.

Symptom number three is your first sale to a client is your last sale. Now this dives us right into the idea of lifetime client retention or lifetime client value.

You get that from retention, right? From actually retaining clients for not letting them leave from providing so much value that they don’t want to leave, that they want that they got great value and then they said, this was amazing. I want more. Can we do it again? This is what we want from clients. You know, we, I’m going to tell you, I’m going to fill you in on a little secret. We actually, um, we retain clients at huge numbers. Our top clients have paid us well into the six figures from just one client, right? Our top few clients have actually paid us multiple six figures, which is an incredible place to be. That’s an incredible, that’s an incredible spot to be in. And I don’t take that for granted at all, but how we’ve been able to do that is that we deliver incredible value that has kept them wanting to stay.

Now, the way in which we’ve served those clients isn’t sustainable, which is why we have more mass market products like our Client Success Audit. And I’ll talk about that in a little bit and what that does. But the secret that I wanted to share is we actually, our average client value, our average lifetime client value is more than 10 times what we charge for one of our front end offers that clients come in on more than 10 times. On average that means we collect more than 10 times the amount of money from a client then we charged them the first time around. How do we do that? Well, we bring them in, we give them great value, we show them everything that’s possible for them with that client success audit. We give them all kinds of resources so that they can chase that all those opportunities on their own, but they don’t want to, they want our help.

They say at the end, can you help us? And then we follow up and say, sure, here’s some options. Here’s some ways in which we can help you. And then when we’re done helping them with that, we then follow up and say, Hey, that was fun. Right? Do you want to do it again? Do you want to do it even bigger? Do you want to go deeper? Do you want to get on that innovation track that we talked about at the very of this episode? And then a bunch of clients say, yeah, that’s great, that’s awesome. And that’s how we drive that lifetime client value after that initial sale. But if your first sale to a client is your last sale to that client and you don’t hear from them again, then that’s a really good indicator that you have a problem. It’s also a really good indicator that you’re not going to be able to solve those problems with more marketing because increasingly advertising and marketing costs are going up.

Facebook ads are just not what they used to be. That’s not to say that the sky is falling or that there are terrible problems. It just means that the same thing that, that every business, every market comes into as it begins to mature. It means that the more mature players win and a mature player in the business of serving and leading clients means that you’re able to continue to provide value time after time to them. That you have more products to be able to sell them cause then your cost of client acquisition can go way up. We’ve actually put some things in place to where we’re actually collecting very little actual profit from our front end audit these days. That’s okay and it’s not okay that it’s not okay because it is okay. It’s not that it’s okay because we’re going to strong arm clients into giving us more money.

At the end of that, it’s that we’re going to provide so much value that they want to, that they ask to. That’s how we line that up and that’s the third symptom that you have a problem. If you aren’t finding clients, asking, Hey, can you help me even more? Can you help me deeper? That’s a sign that you want to tweak your client fulfillment.

Symptom number four brings us to the fourth. Do you have the same conversation over and over again? Do say the same thing over and over again. Is that wearing on you and you’re tired of that? That’s symptom number four. If it is, that’s a really good indication that you need to build in some leveraged value for your clients that you need to build and not just tools and assets that you can deliver to your client, but that you probably want to begin to step out of the mode where you’re delivering those things, period.

And that’s going to feed into our fifth symptom. But if you’re finding that you’re saying the same thing to a client over and over again, you want to look at where and why. And it’s also different. We should also differentiate are you saying the same thing to the same client over and over again cause that’s a really big symptom that there’s a problem that they’re not listening, that they’re not taking action after you say that thing. Right. If you’re saying the same to different clients over and over again, that’s more where leveraged value can help you out of that. Creating assets, building training assets, designing curriculum in way so it doesn’t need to be you delivering it. You can begin to use those tools to help you. Which brings us to number five because this is kind of what happens when you’re able to put some of those tools into place.

Symptom number five is you have staffing issues. Now you might not have been ready to hire yet. You might not feel like you can hire. That’s a kind of staffing issue in and of itself. If you don’t feel like you can hire and yet you have revenue, you have throughput, but you don’t feel like you can actually delegate things, you don’t feel like you know what you would hand off to someone. That’s a really good indicator that you have fulfillment issues.

Let’s say you have hired and you just don’t trust delegating things to those clients, to those team members. Well that’s a really good indicator too. Let’s say you have hired, you have delegated, it hasn’t worked and you’ve had to take things back or let’s say you have hired, you have delegated and staff hasn’t stayed. What that’s a sign of is that you have fulfillment issues because there’s too much variation in what you need your team to do, but you haven’t created regularity. You haven’t built the machine that can get client results, so you’re relying on the best instincts of your team and you always want to rely on the instincts of your team. You always want them to use their brains and everything else, but you need to give them a construct for how to use their brains. You need to give them a decision making tree. You need to give them structure so that they can make decisions that you can endorse, that they, that they’re making decisions without the fear that you’re just going to swoop in later and say, ah, that was a bad decision. I’m going to take this client over or I’m going to take you off of this thing. Not that that never happens, but if it happens, it’s part of the regular process of it happens because you haven’t designed the way that you want those fulfillment systems to go in the first place. That is a really good symptom that you do not have your client fulfillment working at the level that it needs to for you to be able to confidently hire. That is a problem. That is symptom number five. Variation. The really interesting thing about the variation in client work is it’s how so many entrepreneurs are used to building things with lots of variation there by and large quick. starts, right?

This is you. If you think of three new business ideas before you’ve gotten out of the shower and that’s great, you’re a value generating machine, but you can’t expect your employees to be able to be like that. And what’s more is you know, employees who are really good at things like that are also the type of personality where they’re entrepreneurial themselves, which means you’re going to have trouble retaining those people because they’re going to have other options. And so the second that it’s more painful, it’s more challenging to stay working for you than it is for them to go out on their own and experience the the ups and downs and the variation of them being in their own business. They’re going to leave.

That’s symptom number five that you have client fulfillment issues. So if any of these are true for you, then I want to share something with you. And I’ve mentioned this a couple times on the podcast, although we’re really careful not to sell on the podcast, not to push people towards a call or a sale specifically because we do this so that we can provide value, so that we can help you be better at leading your clients and scaling your business. But if you’ve gotten to a point where you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, if you’re looking at that, especially if you don’t want more clients, but also if you’re looking at these other challenges and you’re saying, I don’t know what that looks like on the other side of that, I don’t know where to begin or I’ve tried and I haven’t really been able to make a difference.

I haven’t been able to get success. Maybe this just is the best that it can be. I want to tell you, I don’t think it is and I don’t think it is because we’ve seen the inside of over a hundred client businesses now. We’ve seen the ups, the downs, we’ve seen what’s possible, we’ve seen what works, we’ve seen what doesn’t work. And in a ton of cases we fixed what doesn’t work and made it work and that’s exactly the experience that’s brought us to our Client Success Audits. This is one of the tools of the Client Success System®, which is the system that we have for systematizing, perfecting client fulfillment in any client business. Our client success audit is here for you. It’s an option. If you would like to sign up for call, we can run through a couple of quick things, make sure it’s a fit, share a little bit of that information with you so that we can take a look inside of your business and we can compare those best practices that we’ve been able to accumulate from years of doing this work and from seeing the insides of tons of client businesses, some of them probably a lot like yours. We’ll be able to take your data. We’ll be able to compare it against those best practices. We’ll be able to show you the difference, to show you the gaps, the opportunities, the friction points where you’re making it harder for your clients to really get the incredible results that you know are possible for them. We’ll be able to show you the areas where you might be asking clients to be more work for you, more of a pain for you, rather than setting them on path where they can get the answers and make the changes and grow on their own. We’ll help you optimize those. We’ll show you those opportunities and then, and I’ve said this before, there’s no secret, but we’ll also give you some options at the end of that for where we can help. Mark my words though. We have a special, we’ve, we’ve done this a couple times before.

If you mentioned that you heard about us from the podcast, when you’re on that call with our team, if we’re not able to find five times the value of what you paid for the audit in low hanging fruit that you can take advantage of in those opportunities, we will give you your money back from the audit. We don’t want your money. You know what we do want? We want you to have these client fulfillment issues solved in your business so that you can keep growing, you can keep serving, you can keep making a difference for the clients that you’ve dedicated so much time and energy and heart into helping.

You can sign up for an audit by going to clientsuccescall.com clientsuccesscall.com takes you to a little forms. You can sign up. Usually we have a waiting list, but as of when this episode is going live in February, middle of February, 2020 we are in an open enrollment season, which means we have 20 or so slots. We’ll probably fill them. We’ll probably fill them with audits over the course of the next handful of weeks, but we have the space so that we can help client businesses just like you get that clarity. I do not want you to struggle any more. Grab a time, grab that link, grab a time that works for you, and let’s see what we can do to help you make sure these symptoms do not grow into bigger problems. And in fact, you’ve set yourself up so that you can scale both your business, your revenue, and your impact to your wildest dreams and beyond. Talk soon.

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