After I accepted the challenge of doing the Ignite! Presentation, titled the Silk Experience, I realized that the rules impede us from mentioning any brand so this became the blank experience.
I was asked recently: If I went back in time and had to do it all again, would I change anything? Well very little. I learnt many valuable lessons which I will take with me in every future venture and I would like to share them with you, even if some may seem painfully obvious – isn’t it always? Here are just some of them...
As we get older, we get more serious, cynical, and risk averse, discarding the dreams and ambitions of adventure and discovery. Some even eat them. The real problem is not what we DON’T know but instead what we DO know - our mental baggage, our ill founded judgements, our peer pressures, our rules, our negative experiences, our “friends”.
Our goal was to recreate the childhood sensation of going to a party and the desire to want more.
How different from what we do when we are older
We live in an experience economy. Everything and everyone visible to the consumer is an actor on stage. The props are a mere distraction, the actors the true enablers (or not) of the ultimate experience. WORK IS THEATRE AND BUSINESSES THE STAGE
Today’s actors need to be authentic, transparent, human, humble and emphatic. If you doubt the existence or even the importance of the actor, his character and his wardrobe ...
As someone working in a bank and responsible for accepting credit requests for new ventures, would you risk your career introducing these two to your manager? Even if the idea was apparently a winner?
Have a strategy – preferably a Blue Ocean strategy. Why would you want to live your life looking over your shoulder? Make your competition irrelevant. It´s not about price, not about discounts or vouchers and it’s not for everyone – that’s commoditization – the kiss of death.
Why would you do what others are already doing? Open a Chinese restaurant in China Town?It’s all about making your competitors irrelevant.
Marketing sucks - it’s not all about the 4 Ps – in fact nowadays it’s all about differentiation, excellence, our in our case, in the beginning, it was all about the 5 Ls – location, location, location, location, location.
But it quickly however became about YOU, our customer. All about you. Our life revolves around you. It’s such a cliché but very few do it. My relationship with most brands is stressful at best. Why wouldn’t they minimize my sacrifice and maximize my satisfaction? Everyone says that the customer is king – who cares? They are the customer and they have reason – their reason.
You need New Customers and You need to keep old customers. Obvious. Communicate with everyone. Help them become customers, help customers become better customers, help better customers become friends – good friends are with you in good and bad times.Work these two areas in parallel and understand the whys.
Why do they want to join? Why did they hear about us? Why are they so keen? AND ALSO – Why did he leave? Why do they stay? Why do they spend less? More? Revealing answers require intelligent questions!Wouldn’t you want your customers to really desire you & your brand?
Organic growth is fundamental. Not sexy, won’t make you rich quick. Will give you time to TRY and get it right. WOM is the catalyst, your new friends are your ambassadors and the social network your residence. We have a private social network and people talk with me not the brand Silk. “It won’t last. It’s a fad.” Maybe. Maybe not.
The Long Tail, enabled through the use of social media, significantly increases the total value of the business through lower value customers 20/80. It’s a fine balance but a necessary one.
The lower value customers help you through the dips within the calendar year. They lower your risk, increase returns, create stability and ensure the future sustainability of the business. Some even graduate to the top 20%.
It’s a brave new world out there – but it’s exciting as hell. Be scared – you have a lot to lose. So why not get that hero outfit out of the closet and join me in being risky, in experimenting, FAILING, discovering and exhibiting proudly your greatest passions. It’s better to fail many little times than one big cock up.
In the end, we all look for the one same thing even if disguised in different forms – to be different, to be individualistic but not solitaire. SO what’s the big idea, what makes you tick, what actor will you be in which production, how will you get there and more importantly stay there? Why would you want to stay there? The only constant is change. So we might as well get used to it.