Many people might answer the question above by saying, “to make a profit”.
After all, why else would you be in business, if not to succeed and make a profit?
Fair enough, however, consider in another area of your life – health. Would you ever say, the purpose of my life in the area of health is to lose weight?
Losing weight and earning a profit are simply results of doing the right activities.
I would like to suggest that all businesses could have the same over-arching Strategic Purpose that is composed of 4 parts.
I can hear the groans already! What! The same Strategic Purpose as all other businesses?? How does that work? My business is unique, I can hear you saying…
Hang on, you are right, your business has a very unique strategic focus.
The 4 Purposes of a Business I am about to share with you are the umbrella that you hang all the specific things you will do to achieve your overall purpose.
Purpose #1 – To Create New Customers
If you are not in business to create new customers, then what are you in business for? Certainly, I am sure we can all agree that creating new customers is valid for all businesses.
Now, you will uniquely apply your creativity to figure out specifically how you will create new customers.
There are only two realities here – either you have nothing to sell, or you do, yet cannot convince people to buy it for any number of reasons – price, quality, need, timing, workability, competition and so on.
Ok, I know this is very basic, yet you must have a way to create new customers, or you don’t have a business.
Purpose #2 – To Make Sure They Keep Coming Back
Now, you have created new customers, how do you make sure they keep coming back?
Some businesses (no one reading this!) are like revolving doors. A customer comes in the front door and leaves, never to return, out the back door.
They leave, at about the statistically proven rate of 7/10 if they perceive you do not care.
Here, to ensure they keep coming back you must offer great products and services at fair prices, together with great service and incentives to make sure they keep coming back.
Can you see where this is going? It is not enough to create new customers; you must ensure they keep coming back.
Also, you can start thinking of how to ensure they keep coming back! Your own unique creative ways.
Purpose #3 – To Turn Those People into Advocates for You
Now it is getting progressively more challenging. To get customers coming back more often is one thing, to turn them into advocates for your business is something entirely different.
First, what exactly is an advocate?
An advocate is someone who is a walking billboard for your business. They love the service so much that they don’t just come back, they cannot stop talking about you.
Can you think of a business that you use as a supplier, or perhaps are a retail customer of, that you rave about? You literally cannot help talking about that business. It takes more to create advocates than just having great products and services. It takes more than having awesome service.
You have to exceed your customers expectations in both the core product/service of your business and also in how it is delivered – the soft skills in customer service delivery.
Take a look at this Chart below to see the rarity of it (only one box is reserved for it):
Starting at the bottom, if you do not meet your customer’s needs and they are dissatisfied with the service, they are “gone”.
They are searching for an alternative to your business when the service is satisfactory, but their needs are not met, or they are met and the service sucks.
You are “at risk” of losing them when you have added real value in your products or services yet service is bad, or if you have “just met” their expectations and they are “just satisfied” with the service, or lastly if you even dazzled them with awesome service yet the outcome was not met (shoddy product).
You can have loyal customers when you add extra value beyond “needs met” and satisfy them with service, or if you met their outcomes and dazzled them with great service.
The only box in the top right, reserved for your advocates, comes from exceeding their expectations in the outcome of the actual product/service and you coupled that to dazzling service.
Once you have that, you will need to spend very little on marketing because your customers will be raving all over town about your business…
Purpose #4 – To Have Fun Doing What You Do
If you and your Team are actually having fun (and that too is unique to each business) combined with the above three purposes, you will be rocking.
You will be adding value to your Team Member’s lives, your customers will sense the vibe of your business and be attracted to your special flavour of fun.
Having fun does not mean being childish or having a Foosball game in your office. For you it could mean an inner sense of joy bubbling through, with light-hearted humour, care, and love for your Team.
It could be the family atmosphere you created with your Team.
Creating new customers, keeping them coming back, turning them into advocates for your business, and having fun doing all that will be a very creative and unique challenge for you to solve for your business.
Can you also see how powerful that is, and that by doing this you would be pretty much assured that the profits are a result of taking actions in these 4 areas?
Thanks kindly for reading…