Think Different - What Private Clubs Can Learn from Apple's Marketing Philosophy


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This presentation from the 2013 Club Manager's World Conference explores the similarities in the challenges that private clubs face from a marketing perspective, and those of arguably one of the most successful marketing organizations in the world, Apple.

In the late 1990's Apple was struggling due to a number of reasons that many private club operators will empathize with. The story of how they overcame this adversity by focusing on a set of core philosophies, thinking differently, and delivering enrichment for their customers provides a relevant lesson for anyone faced with a challenging operating environment. At the core of their DNA, is Apple's Marketing Philosophy - a simple yet powerful model for marketing that should be examined by every private club and exclusive hospitality venue.

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Think Different - What Private Clubs Can Learn from Apple's Marketing Philosophy

  1. 1. Think DifferentWhat Apple Can Teach Private Clubs Presented By: Shannon Herschbach Pipeline Marketing Group 1
  2. 2. Introduction• 16 Years of Private Club Experience• Former Private Club GM• President of Pipeline Marketing Group • 22 Sales Professionals • Represent $40 million in annual membership and event revenue • 800+ Pipeline 360 CRM Users Worldwide 2
  3. 3. Agenda• Think Different (Changing Perspective)• Apple’s Principles of Success (Culture)• The Apple Store (Case Study)• Delivering Enrichment (Employees, Members, Prospects)• Takeaways 3
  4. 4. Private Clubs...• Struggled in Past 5+ Years• Complacency• Tarnished Brand Image• Unfocused Objectives• Slumping Sales• Niche Customer Base• Expensive Products 4
  5. 5. The Apple Doesn’t Fall Far...• Apple experienced massive failures in 1990‘s• Complacency• Tarnished Brand Image• Unfocused Objectives• Slumping Sales• Niche Customer Base• Expensive Products Brink of Bankruptcy in 1997 5
  6. 6. Think Different. 6
  7. 7. Think Different 1997 Apple Marketing Campaign 7
  8. 8. Think Different• Steve Jobs rejoined Apple in 1997 and launched cultural shift• Streamlined products• Challenged “it’s never been done that way”• Simplified and “removed clutter”• Implemented “emotional experiences”• Revitalized the brand image through marketing 8
  9. 9. Apple’s Principles of Success 9
  10. 10. Core Principles Drivers of Apple’s Success Passion“People with passion can change the world” 10
  11. 11. Core Principles Drivers of Apple’s Success Vision “Put a dent in the universe” 11
  12. 12. Core Principles Drivers of Apple’s Success Ignore the Critics“Great ideas often receive violent opposition from mediocre minds” 12
  13. 13. Core Principles Drivers of Apple’s Success Simplicity“What’s removed is as important as what’s added” 13
  14. 14. Core Principles Drivers of Apple’s Success Master the Message“Boil the story down to its syrupy goodness” 14
  15. 15. Core Principles Drivers of Apple’s SuccessSell Dreams Not Products “Help them reach their dreams” 15
  16. 16. Core Principles Drivers of Apple’s Success Enrichment“Create insanely different experiences” 16
  17. 17. Private Club Culture• Passion• Vision• Ignore the Critics• Simplicity• Sell the Dream• Master the Message 17
  18. 18. Case Study: The Apple Store 18
  19. 19. The Apple Store• In late 1990‘s Apple was losing control of the customer experience• Competitors were failing around them fast• Economy was in turmoil• They had no experience in retail• They had 4 products 19
  20. 20. The Apple Store• In 2001 Apple opened their first retail stores• Delivered an “Emotional Experience” - more than just a place to buy things • Touch Museum • Genius Bar • Unique Programming• No apologies for price - value through enrichment 20
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  27. 27. 27
  28. 28. The Apple Credo“We are at our best when we are creating enriching experiences.” But how do they do it? 28
  29. 29. Creating Enrichment1. Inspire Your Internal Customers2. Serve Your External Customers3. Set the Stage for Your Prospective Customers4. Deliver the Story 29
  30. 30. Creating Enrichment1. Inspire Your Employees2. Serve Your Members3. Set the Stage for Your Prospective Members4. Deliver the Story 30
  31. 31. Inspire Your Internal Customers (a.k.a. Employees) 31
  32. 32. 32
  33. 33. Apple Hiring High Standards “We’ve actually• Hire only “A” Players passed on smart, talented people that• Push past and outside comfort zone could have had an immediate impact on• People buy from people our bottom line• “Salespersonality” because they don’t fit in with our company culture” 33
  34. 34. Apple Hiring The Criteria1. Do they display “Grit”?2. Can they provide Ritz Carlton level service?3. Could they have gone toe-to-toe with Steve Jobs? 34
  35. 35. Apple Hiring “Salespersonality”• Educate Gracefully “People need to trust the• Take Ownership Empathetically messenger before they trust the• Recommend Persuasively message”• Get to Yes Respectfully 35
  36. 36. Private Club Sales & Marketing The Lonely Island? Experience Goals Support Selling Skills Training Tools Mentoring Tracking Collaboration Inspiration Too Many Hats 36
  37. 37. Private ClubsChief Operating Officer Superintendent Golf Professional ? Executive Chef Controller Sales & Marketing 37
  38. 38. Great Salespeople Nature 1. Rarely perceive obstacles Nurture 1. Pre-call planning Born or Made? 2. Overcome rejection 3. Read and relate 2. Cold calling 3. Networking 4. Like people 4. Gaining commitment 5. Don’t need to be liked 5. Pipeline management 6. High sense of urgency 6. Sales processing 7. Listening 7. Buying motivesYou can train a salesperson 8. Definitive lifestyle goal 8. Outcome setting to be good... 9. Empathetic 10. Ambitious 9. Stating control 10. Rapport building 11. Modest 11. Time management 12. Lack of gregariousness 12. Handling objections 13. Fearless 13. Negotiating At least 50% is Nature 14. Conscientious 14. Closing skills 15. Curious 15. Technically savvy 16. Assertive 16. Service model 17. Tactful 17. Follow up 18. Persuasive 19. Honest 20. Patience 38
  39. 39. Training Apple Private Club ?• 14 Day Initial Sales Training• Ongoing Structured Mentoring 39
  40. 40. Apple Training Sales Philosophy: “Everyone is in the Business of Selling”• Approach customers with a personalized, warm welcome• Probe politely to understand all needs• Present a solution for the customer to take home today• Listen for and resolve any issues or concerns• End with a fond farewell and an invitation to return 40
  41. 41. Apple Training “Presentation Matters” Do Not Use Use “Unexpectedly Quits”• Body Language “Crash” “Hang” “Does Not Respond” “Stops Responding”• Eliminate Negativity “Bug” “Condition” “Issue” “Problem” “Situation” 41
  42. 42. Training vs. Mentoring “The Recipe”• Training teaches the recipe• Memorize the recipes - cook a few meals• Sets expectations• Provides foundation for future growth• Provides tools and best practices 42
  43. 43. Training vs. Mentoring “The Technique”• Mentoring teaches and hones the technique• Builds on training - cook thousands of meals• Provides a framework• Facilitates action• Increases productivity, confidence and close ratios 43
  44. 44. Mentoring “Fearless Feedback”• Objective data• Peer review• Inspect what you expect• Collaborate, Inspire, Challenge Focus on Activities, Not Results 44
  45. 45. Serve Your External Customers (a.k.a. Members) 45
  46. 46. Apple Service Service Philosophy: “Make the Customer Happy”• “We guide every interaction”• “We strive to inspire”• “We enrich their lives”• “We take personal initiative to make it right” 46
  47. 47. Apple Service “Create Enriching Experiences”1. Tell them how your products will enrich their lives2. Unleash their “Inner Genius”3. Build relationships = Loyalty4. Make customers feel celebrated for who they are 47
  48. 48. Private Club Service “Enrich their Lives”• Life Support - Concierge• Health & Wellness• Security & Safety 48
  49. 49. Private Club Service Unleash their “Inner Genius”• Guest Speakers• Instruction (Cooking, Dance, etc.)• Reciprocal Privileges 49
  50. 50. Private Club Service “Building Relationships = Loyalty”• Unique Programming• New Member Integration• Retention Initiatives 50
  51. 51. Private Club Service “Make Members Feel Celebrated”• Surprise and delight - even they’re away from the Club• Celebrate milestones• Appreciation for supportive Members 51
  52. 52. Set the Stage 52
  53. 53. Apple’s Marketing “DNA” 1. Empathy 2. Focus 3. Impute 53
  54. 54. #1 - Empathy “Understand Their Needs”• Benefits vs. Features• Emotional vs. Rational• Friendly• Remove Barriers• Communicate in the Language of Your Audience 54
  55. 55. Empathy This is how Apple does itMac PCThey make high-tech friendly 55
  56. 56. FeaturesThis is how most Clubs do it 56
  57. 57. BenefitsBut isn’t this what people really want? 57
  58. 58. Emotional vs. Rational“Reason Leads to Conclusion, Emotion Leads to Action” Emotional Rational Experience First: Rules Second: • Awareness Events • “Must be Sponsored” • Club Functions • Prices on Website • Club-Sponsored • Application Materials Community Service • Rules & Regulations • Guest Speaker Events • Bylaws • Holiday Events • Credit Check 58
  59. 59. Friendly• Private clubs must prove they can be friendly• One of the best ways to establish a friendly brand is through validators• Marketing should be geared towards validating your brand 59
  60. 60. Remove BarriersNegatives: Silent Objections:•“No”•“Restricted”•“Prohibited”•“Required”•“Limited”•“Strictly Enforced”•“Only” 60
  61. 61. Use Their Language• Use FAQ’s to Explain the More Complicated Nuances• Legal Jargon Should be Reserved for the Club’s Bylaws / R&R’s• Don’t Make It Intimidating, Just Explain the Basics 61
  62. 62. #2 - Focus “Eliminate the Unimportant”• Marketing Message• Subtract First...Add Second• Focus on Your USP• Know Your Audience• Eliminate the Clutter 62
  63. 63. Marketing Message “Everyone Needs a Headline”• Grabs attention• Offers core benefit• Sets up the story• Convinces them to learn more• Memorable and repeatable 63
  64. 64. Headlines Private Club Examples• “The Friendliest Club in Cincinnati”• “Club 33 - The Most Exclusive Address in all of Disneyland”• “100 Years of Tradition with a Modern Twist”• “An 88 Year Party” 64
  65. 65. Subtract First “Less is More”• Don’t ask “what we can add?”...• Until you first ask, “what can we take away?”• Don’t include everything 65
  66. 66. Unique Selling Proposition• Identify your unique abilities• Determine your strengths and weaknesses• What minimal effort = maximum benefit? (80/20 Rule) 66
  67. 67. Target Market• Identify Your True Fans• Demographics• Tapestry Segments “I don’t know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everyone.” 67
  68. 68. Eliminate the Clutter• With messages, think bite size morsels, not entire meals• Success is achieved when prospects easily repeat your message to others “A Club at the Finest Meeting of Land and Sea” - Monterey Peninsula Country Club 68
  69. 69. #3 - Impute “People DO Judge a Book By It’s Cover”• It All Matters• Touch Points• Extend the Experience• Branding• Go One Step Further 69
  70. 70. It All Matters• Attention to Detail• Consistent Brand Image 70
  71. 71. It All Matters Consistent Brand 71
  72. 72. It All MattersCurb Appeal Warm Welcome Sales Ready 72
  73. 73. Touch Points• Sequencing• Marketing Process / Calendar• Sales Process• Communication Protocols• On-boarding Process 73
  74. 74. Extend the Experience“The sale starts after the purchase” 74
  75. 75. Extend the Experience Passport Programs 75
  76. 76. Extend the Experience Ambassador Programs 76
  77. 77. Branding Apple ClubsPromo Hardware Promo HardwareStickers Guest Passes 77
  78. 78. Go One Step Further “Unboxing” 78
  79. 79. Deliver the Story 79
  80. 80. Deliver “Tell the Story” Online Marketing Offline Marketing• Social Media • Networking• Online Optimization • Community Involvement• Press Releases • Member Initiatives 80
  81. 81. Embrace Social• Reach Your Desired Audience• Reach their Friends and Business Associates Too• Generate Real Leads• Fraction of the Cost• Real Time Feedback• You Don’t Need a Profile Page 81
  82. 82. Embrace Social Facebook Campaign LinkedIn Campaign Message30 Qualified Leads in 30 Days Result 720,000 Impressions Total Cost: $400 30 Qualified Leads in 2 weeks 10,000 Impressions Total Cost: $200 82
  83. 83. Online Optimization• Online Listings: Google Places (Google+)• Update Profile Information• Use Your Headline• Use Non-Competitive Keywords• Pictures and Videos 83
  84. 84. Press Releases - Online• Reach Your Desired Audience• Big Reach• Relatively Low Cost• Live Online Forever• Use Keywords• Tell Stories - Don’t Sell• Include Links 84
  85. 85. Networking• Industry Organizations• Associations• Realtors• Awareness Events• Partnerships / Strategic Alliances 85
  86. 86. Community• Charities• Scholarship Funds• School Fundraisers• Disaster Relief• Holiday Campaigns• Environmental / Economic Impact 86
  87. 87. Member Initiatives“March Madness” “Just One” Referral Initiatives 87
  88. 88. Member Initiatives• Help your Members help you• Equip them with the right words and information• Reward them with things money can’t buy• Time-bound vs. ongoing• Internal communication = External communication 88
  89. 89. Takeaways 89
  90. 90. The Apple Brand Today• Simple • Innovative• Easy to Use • Personalized• User-Focused • Coherent• Fun • Quality• Humorous • Memorable Different 90
  91. 91. Apple Statistics• Annual Revenue $150 Billion = GDP New Zealand• Over 400 Million iOS Devices Sold (iPhones, iPads, iPods)• Nearly 400 Apple Retail Stores in 13 Countries• $50 Million Annual Sales per Store• 30,000+ Employees• Second Most Valuable Company in the World As of December 2012 91
  92. 92. Takeaways• Clearly define sales roles, responsibility and touch points• Remove barriers, silent objections and negativity• Know your USP• Simplify your message and remove the clutter• Ensure a consistent brand image• Identify the stories and develop the headline• Embrace targeted awareness through social channels• Get your story heard 92
  93. 93. “Look at the opposite of what people are doing. The methodsthe vast majority of people use are sub-optimal. If it is the only way it has everbeen done - how do you know it’s the best method?” Think Different. 93
  94. 94. Shannon Herschbach, President • Sales & Marketing ConsultingPhone: (888) 360-7473 ext. 101 • Social MediaEmail: • CRM SoftwareWeb: • Sales Mentoring • Sales & Marketing Outsourcing 94