What message does the sign on the front door of your business convey to prospective clients?
While you might not have a brick and mortar location, metaphorically you still need to know what you would put on the sign on your door so that people get what you/your business does and that you are clearly open for business. When someone asks “What do you do?” or visits your website or LinkedIn profile, you want that initial message to clearly convey who you work with and the base line experience the client will get when they work with you. Square peg, square hole. Right?
Think of it this way: say you go to a new restaurant. From the outside, it looks like a nice place so you peruse the menu that is hanging outside. You think, “This looks yummy!” When you go inside, you want the experience to match—and hopefully exceed—the promise made by the outside. If the restaurant is all that plus more, you will come back again and rave about the experience. If not, you probably won’t go again and you will likely tell your friends to avoid the place as well.
You want the experience of your business to be that “Plus More” experience, meaning you deliver all that you promise to your prospective clients, PLUS something even more/better than they expected.
What are some things, big or small, you could do that could make your client experience exceptional?
When it comes to marketing, make sure what you promise is something that you can deliver to every client who works with you. This is where having a niche pays off: you can be really specific about the results you can achieve with your clients.
When you consistently exceed expectations, clients are more likely to continue working with you even after your initial package is complete because you’re giving them what they want and need. What would it be like to have clients stay for years and years? How would that change your experience of running your business?
Sometimes clients consistently get a “Plus More” experience that is not the message we want to put on the door; it’s not the motivation we want people to have or it may set an unrealistic expectation for some of your clients. For example, my client Gigi works with busy professional women to help them create the balanced life they crave. She puts a heavy focus on wellness and setting boundaries. It just so happens that many of her clients also want to lose weight, and in going through her program and prioritizing self-care, they tend to.
But Gigi knows that if she were to put “lose weight” on the sign on the door, she would suddenly attract people whose primary goal was to lose weight and that’s not her ideal client.
So, although the experience of losing weight is wonderful for her clients and a huge value add in terms of the benefit of working with her, she won’t speak to that in her messaging. She’s clear that it wouldn’t serve her or her clients to put it on the front door even if it’s a benefit that many of her clients get from working with her.
Ask yourself: What is the reason my clients are raising their hand to work with me? What are the desires they have that I love supporting them in getting? What do I feel confident I can put on the sign on the door and have them say, “Yes, this is my person!” without setting unrealistic expectations?
Make sure that the promises you make on the sign on the door matches or exceeds the experience your clients receive, and continue to refine it until you feel confident you are setting expectations you know you will meet.
Tara Butler Floch