By Shep Hyken
Today I share with you a fable.
Once upon a time a great genie paid a short visit to the town of Businessland, where he happened upon three entrepreneurs, each of whom wanted to open an ice cream shop. The great genie offered to grant each of them a wish, but only if that wish would absolutely guarantee the success of their venture. The first entrepreneur said, “I wish for the best tasting ice cream in all of Businessland.” The genie frowned and said, “I will not grant your wish. The best ice cream on earth won’t guarantee your success.” The second entrepreneur said, “I wish for the best location in Businessland.” Again, the great genie frowned and said, “No, I will not grant that wish either. Even the best location doesn’t guarantee your success.” The third entrepreneur thought for a moment, and then she said, “I wish that every day I will have a long line of customers who can’t wait to buy my ice cream.” The great genie smiled and said, “Your wish is my command!” With that, the third entrepreneur reaped the success of a never-ending line of loyal customers.
Here’s the point. Without customers, it doesn’t matter how good your ice cream or location is. While those are helpful, what really matters is that you have customers.
You can’t have a successful business without customers. Once you have them, don’t blow it. While you probably don’t have a real genie to bring you customers (although I don’t want to completely rule out the possibility), you probably do have people managing your marketing and sales efforts. Those people will bring you customers. But their efforts are worthless if, once the customer finally decides to do business with you, they are disappointed with their experience. Disappointment can come from any number of places—a process that’s marred with friction or a bad experience with an employee.
That’s where I come in. Almost everything I’ve written about and shared via video since I’ve been in business for more than 38 years has been about customers—specifically, getting customers to love doing business with you, come back time after time and become an extension of your sales and marketing efforts by evangelizing your products and services. Why? Because of an amazing customer experience!
If you’ve made it this far, it’s obvious customers are important to you. How can you create an amazing experience for them? I suggest you read some of my past articles or watch my videos. The story about the genie comes from the first chapter of the updated and revised edition of my book, The Cult of the Customer. If you liked it, you can preorder the book through my website, which will get you immediate access to the eBook free of charge, along with another special gift. So you see, you have many resources at your disposal to help you create an amazing customer experience. Best of all, you don’t have to wait to be in the cult you really want to belong to… The Cult of the Customer!
(Copyright © MMXX, Shep Hyken)