I'm pretty certain even hearing the word 'taxes' sends a knot through your stomach. No…
You read the title right.
I went to a Taylor Swift concert over the weekend and she knocked it out of the park. Absolutely nailed every aspect of her performance.
While I was singing and dancing along I was not thinking about my pet sitting business; it was as I sipped coffee the morning after that I had a chance to really think about the experience.
Things you can apply immediately to your business to knock it out of the park like Taylor:
It’s the little things.
Vance Joy, her opening act started on time. Not a minute late. I even heard a murmur from behind me of surprise that the concert started when they said it would. She came on exactly an hour after Vance started.
- Answer your phone. If you can’t, return all messages the same day they came in.
- Return emails within 24 hours.
- Text your clients with updates. It takes literally 30 seconds. You have time to do this and it goes a long way.
Shake it off. (Come on, I had to use her catch phrase song!)
You are going to have clients, possibly IC’s and/or EE’s that are not a good fit for you and your company.
THAT’S OK. THAT’S NORMAL.
Don’t get into a self-esteem spiral and wonder what it wrong with you, what is wrong with your company, what is wrong with how you do business.
Taylor talked about how when she would see herself on magazine covers with stories about her that were untrue and totally made up, that it used to bother her, she used to take it personally, used to wonder how she could please all of those haters.
Key words: used to. Know who she focuses on? The 13,000 screaming fans in the audience.
I had a conversation with my mentor (who is conveniently my dad) about a client that dropped us for another sitter. What did I do wrong to lose this client? What did I do? What didn’t I do? What could I do to get them back, should I send them a gift or apology??
My dad asked “Did you do anything inherently wrong? Like forget a visit, did the pets get injured in your care, did you under deliver?”
No. None of those things.
Then they really don’t matter. Move on to the clients who use you who love you and who will refer you to their friends.
Haters are gonna hate.
Know your audience.
While there were grandparents and parents on down to kindergartners in the audience, Taylor has a gift for empowering young adult boys and girls. Especially girls. She knows exactly what struggles and what pressures young girls go through because she has gone through them herself. And she’s not afraid to talk about it.
When she looks in the mirror – she is her audience!
Like attracts like. Blog about topics that are important to YOU and you will start to attract clients who have the same interests.
Say you have a knack for cats who need medication (which I definitely do NOT). Here are some titles for you:
Does Your Cat Need To Take A Pill? How To Make It Easy For You And For Your Cat!
Common Medications For Cats
How To Give An Insulin Shot To Your Diabetic Cat
If I have a dog, I am not going to be searching for any of the above keywords.
0% of dog people are going to find those articles helpful.
GREAT!! YOU DON’T WANT DOG CLIENTS!
You want to speak directly to your ideal audience of cat owners. That’s who YOU are.
Be you. With no apologies. You don’t need to pretend to be someone you are not for your clients.
Everyone talks about Miley Cyrus and how much she’s changed, she’s gone off the deep end, she used to be such a good role model as Hannah Montana…but…
she was never that girl in the first place! Maybe if she hadn’t spent a decade being put in a certain box we would be more accepting of her now.
Be you. No one else does you like you. That’s what makes your company stand out from the competition. What do you have that no one else does? YOU. You have you.
Treat each person as an individual.
This was my most profound take away. It seems so simple doesn’t it? Like of course each client, each pet has their own story. Duh.
But do you really listen to their story? Or are you on a conveyor belt of visits. Checking them off as you go through your day.
Cat fed, dog walked, litter changed….check, check, check.
When we found our seats at the concert, there were fit-bit looking bracelets taped to each chair. Throughout the concert they would light up, change colors, blink on and off to the beat of the different songs. It was pretty amazing to see the entire arena lit up like fire flies.
When Taylor was catching her breath between songs, she explained the reasoning for wanting 13,000 bracelets.
“When we are up here on stage looking out at you, our fans, our supporters, our reasons for being here in the first place; often times the lights are too bright and we can’t see you. But when you have your bracelet on, we can see each and every one of you. We want to see you because you matter. You have meaning. You have value. You are responsible for the light”. (I may be paraphrasing a bit but you get the point).
From a personal experience, I was a wrangler at a summer camp. 16 horses to saddle and unsaddle daily, 4 trail rides a day. On our 24th ride of the week we were pretty exhausted, we wanted to head back to the barn and relax.
But you know what, our 24th ride was the 1st ride for the campers we were taking out.
The horses were often the highlight of their week at camp and who were we to claim we were too tired, too burned out to give them the full experience they deserved?
You may have over 10 visits per day. You may be tired, burned out, ready to get home, whatever. You may be complaining about the weather, about cleaning up poop, about whatever.
But for the kitty that rubs up against your leg, she only gets 1 visit per day. Make it count. She matters. She has value. It’s her only visit for the day.
The nervous pet parents that need a text at every visit. They matter. The more you can understand their concerns/worries and put them at ease, the better your relationship is going to be with them and the more they are going to trust you.
And trust in this business is everything.
Each one of your clients and potential clients has a story. It may have to do with pets, but it may be centered on travel, or a new job, a new baby and have a pet as a central character in their story.
What is your story and how can we help you continue it?