“I want to help you lift enormous things.” – At Transformation, The Tragically Hip
Increasingly, your clients are probably looking for ways to become better people through your product or service offerings – to transform themselves or their business. They are not buying things (products, investments) for what they do; they are buying them to become someone better/different.
Self-actualization: Achieving one’s full potential, including creative activities
In the Experience Economy, businesses create memorable encounters. Thus the experience becomes the product. When the experience changes the individual in some personal and meaningful way, it segues into the Transformation Economy.
A great question to ask when you are thinking about improving your client experience is, “How do I want my customers to feel?” Once you know this, you can start to build a specific and customized experience around your offering that makes each client feel a specific way.
In the Transformation Economy, customers are seeking something beyond experiences. They crave something authentic and meaningful to which they can connect on the most personal level, and in doing so, undergo a sense of transformation. Thus the client becomes the product because the ultimate value of the client’s investment is a personal change.
A great question to ask when you want to help your clients achieve a personal shift for the better is: “Who do I want my customer to become?”
Here is an easy way to conceptualize this:
If you sell yoga pants or yoga classes, you are in the goods and services business and you compete on price.
If your yoga pants or classes are merely a part of a larger experience that you stage to delight and engage your customers on many levels, then you are in the experience business, and people will pay you more for your pants and classes.
If you sell time at a yoga retreat and people cry, hug each other and swear off meat and motorized transportation and through their sobs promise that “they will never be the same again ever, man” then you are in the transformation business and really soon an army of man-buns who are looking for the same transformation will be creeping up to your door in Birkenstocks looking for enlightenment.
Thankfully for you, you sell investments and not yoga retreats.
When your customer experience is in some way transformative – i.e. resulting in the improvement of physical or emotional well-being – it becomes all the more meaningful to your clients.
Do you really want to find some traction and get a serious shift going? Then figure out who you want your clients to become.
Can you imagine if you sat down with your client in a perfect setting and had a conversation where you asked some of these questions?
- Are you doing what you love? Consider family, friends and work. Are you doing anything outside of work that you love that is creative or adventurous?
- Are you surrounded by people you care about?
- How do you define success?
- How do you want to be remembered?
- What makes you happy? (This one can be surprisingly hard for people to answer, so if they get stumped, maybe ask what makes them miserable …)
- Where do you rate yourself on the optimist scale?
- What are you waiting for?
No offense intended to those of you who enjoy yoga. Those of you who may have a man bun are likely not offended because you have already established that you have no shame.