In today’s fast-paced, always-online environment it’s more critical than ever that we create a strong base of die-hard fan clients and die-hard fan employees. Our always connected society gives our customers and employees immediate access to options, and if we’re not taking care of them they will find someone who will.
Regardless of your title or position – individual contributor, front-line or middle-manager, executive or CEO – creating and keeping die-hard fan customers and employees is a key component of what you must be doing. [bctt tweet=”Regardless of your title or position creating and keeping die-hard fan customers and employees is a key component of what you must be doing.”]
What is a die-hard fan client or die-hard fan employee? They are those people who believe so strongly in your team, department or organization that they sing your praises to everyone. They are willing to stick with you through thick and thin, and willing to give some forgiveness for mistakes. And they are more important today than ever before.
If you’re not already striving to create die-hard fans, or if you’re looking for ways to increase your fan base, these three ideas are a great starting point:
- Intentionally create WOW experiences. Tony Hsieh built Zappos from a start up to a billion-dollar company by selling shoes online. In his book, “Delivering Happiness” he talked how they created WOW experiences for customers and employees. Zappos has always had a free shipping policy, both when you order and for returns (which is unusual in itself). But Zappos went beyond that: they would intentionally WOW customers by randomly selecting people to receive an upgrade to free overnight shipping. This strategy created huge enthusiasm among customers, but the employees also loved it because they were delivering happiness. How can you intentionally create some WOW for your clients? Maybe it’s an upgrade or delivering something they didn’t expect. For employees, maybe it’s celebrating a birthday or recognizing employment anniversaries. WOW experiences don’t require huge investments of time or money – sometimes it’s a small thing done with great meaning that creates the biggest splash. [bctt tweet=”WOW experiences don’t require huge investments of time or money – sometimes it’s a small thing done with great meaning that creates the biggest splash.”]
- Create a die-hard fan culture. Happy employees equal happy clients. Herb Kelleher, co-founder of Southwest Airlines, was asked how he got his employees to have so much fun on the job. He said, “It’s easy. I hire fun employees.” Are you being intentional about what values and behaviors you want as part of your culture? Once you’ve identified what they are, are you modeling them personally? Are you interviewing and hiring for those values and behaviors? A die-hard fan culture doesn’t just happen. It requires commitment and intentional focus to identify the behaviors and then action to put them into place. [bctt tweet=”A die-hard fan culture doesn’t just happen. It requires commitment and intentional focus.”]
- Have a purpose. What is the purpose of your team, department or organization? What is the purpose that is greater than just making money or building great products? Both of those are critical, but you need a purpose that’s bigger than that. Deloitte just released their 2016 Millennial Study and one of the things that was interesting was that 87% of millennials said it was important to work for companies that have a purpose beyond making money. Rocket Mortgage recognized this: in their marketing, they talk about their new app and how easy it is to apply for a mortgage. They do a great job explaining the reason an easy to use interface is important: if it’s easy to apply for a mortgage, more people will do it. If more people buy houses, it helps with growth, supports the economy, suppliers do better and so on. Rocket does a great job of showing the economic impact to the greater good of society through an easier to use mortgage app. You have a purpose behind your business, your department, your organization. What is it? If you can’t answer that immediately, try asking why. Ask why to the fourth or fifth level and you’ll uncover your greater purpose.
What difference would it make to have die-hard fan clients? How could die-hard fan employees help you innovate and build even more die-hard fan clients? Start with these three steps and watch your die-hard fans grow as you create a better environment for your team, your clients, your organization and yourself. Which key will you start with?
Ready to learn more about creating die-hard fans? Contact us today about bringing our Loyalty Isn’t Luck workshop to your organization. This dynamic, interactive workshop is available in several formats, ranging from one hour to a full day. Die-hard fans require intentional plans – kick your plan off today.