Ep 397: 2 Customer Service Secrets that Will Grow Your Sales | Brittany Hodak Episode Recap

RV (00:07):
Hey, brand builder, Rory Vaden here. Thank you so much for taking the time to check out this interview. As always, it’s our honor to provide it to you for free and wanted to let you know there’s no big sales pitch or anything coming at the end. However, if you are someone who is looking to build and monetize your personal brand, we would love to talk to you and get to know you a little bit and hear about some of your dreams and visions, and share with you a little bit about what we’re up to, to see if we might be a fit. So if you’re interested in a free strategy call with someone from our team, we would love to hear from you. You can do [email protected] slash pod call brand builders group.com/pod call. We hope to talk to you soon.
RV (00:52):
The customer experience, customer secrets, customer service secrets so much to be said about that. And I have to tell, tell you that one of my favorite people ever on this topic is Brittany Hodak. And it’s not just cuz she’s a friend, and it’s not just because she’s a B B G client. I genuinely love her book and I love her experience and I love her take on customer experience and creating super fans. And she’s just awesome and so smart. And like I said, I read her book cover to cover and I fully endorse it. I did endorse it. And I, it’s, it’s, it’s phenomenal. So I hope you got a chance to go back and listen to the interview that I just did with Brittany and that you got some takeaways from that. Separate from that, it inspired me to share a couple of my favorite customer service secrets.
RV (01:47):
You know, this is, this isn’t something that I necessarily would con, I wouldn’t consider myself an expert on this. You know, I consider my expertise on the psychology of influence though, and moving people to action. And so what I wanna share with you in this lesson is two customer service secrets that will grow your sales. Two customer service secrets that will grow your sales. So customer experience, customer service, whatever you wanna call it. But specifically in the context of if you do these two things, it will help you actually grow your revenue which is definitely right inside of my wheelhouse. So number one is the concept of secret service. And I have to blatantly and boldly attribute this to John De Julius. John de Julius would be probably the number one person that I’ve learned the most from in terms of customer experience, customer service.
RV (02:46):
We love John’s philosophy of Secret Service in their whole company. We’ve, you know, I, I originally met John, I spoke at his event and then we became super fans of him and his work, and we’ve tried to incorporate that into our culture at Brand Builders Group and, and all the businesses that we’ve been a part of. And, and so here’s the difference between Secret Service and, and good customer service. Okay? Good customer service is doing is basically like being nice to people, doing things that are nice for them. But Secret Service is about doing things that are tailored for them. So it, it, secret Service requires that you learn and pay attention to the hyper-specific interest of each individual prospect or customer that you are interfacing with. All right? So a good example of this is, you know, giving out a rose to every woman who comes into your store or, you know, on Mother’s Day or to, on Valentine’s Day, let’s say it could be good customer service.
RV (03:51):
That’s a good thing. There’s definitely nothing wrong with that, that’s a great thing to do, but you’re doing the same activity for everybody, right? I mean, if, if someone comes and you say, Hey, how can I be of service today? That might be considered good customer service, but you’re doing the same thing for everyone. What’s next level though, from that is Secret Service and Secret Service is not doing good things for people. It’s doing tailored things for people and we we try to pay attention to what is going on in the lives of the people that we care about, right? So for example, one of our clients is Kiir Weimer and Kiir, if you know anything, he’s incredible. A incredible guy has an amazing story. But Kiir got into a boating accident when he was in his twenties. He ended up going to prison for it.
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And then, you know, he has this, this massive turnaround story for how he transformed his life and became this very wealthy, successful real estate agent. But he couldn’t never, he, he couldn’t get accepted back into a university for years. He came outta prison. You know, he had, now he had a criminal record. He couldn’t get a job, he couldn’t get, you know, schools to accept, and he ended up getting in real estate and becoming very, very successful. And very wealthy. But like, he didn’t actually you know, he struggled to get kind of the formal things, and one of ’em was a formal education and, and finishing college and graduate school. And so it was a really more of a personal thing for him. Kira eventually got accepted into N Y U and he’s going, you know, went back to school years later and he got his degree and we sent, we saw him post about it, we heard about it, and so we sent him an N Y U sweatshirt, right?
RV (05:36):
And I mean, you would’ve thought that he won the lottery. He was so touched and so moved by that. That is Secret Service, okay? That is Secret Service. We also try to pay attention to when, when people have deaths in their family, right? We try to often do something that’s honoring to their loved one, whoever that is. Or, you know, sometimes it’s a pet, sometimes it’s a grandparent it could be a friend and just trying to be there for people. I mean, it’s, it’s, it’s a little bit weird to even call this customer’s service. And it’s, and it, and its definitely weird to think of this as like, oh, this is what will, you know, you do this to grow sales. You don’t do this to grow sales, and you don’t do this to have great customer service. You do this because you care about people and you wanna make them, you wanna let them know that they’re important to you.
RV (06:30):
And so when someone’s important to you, you wanna go out of your way to make them feel special, to make them feel important, right? If they’re important to you, you wanna do things that help them feel important, that, that help make them feel important. That’s a, a part of what creates relationships and bonds, right? And, and if you know anything about Brand Builders Group, like our vision is what we call a thousand messengers. It has been since day one. We’re not trying to have, we’re not trying to be a company that sells for hundreds of millions and billions of dollars, right? Like Brand Builders Group is not a profit maximization endeavor. It’s not. We are in impact maximization endeavor, and we said we want a thousand clients. That’s what we want a thousand clients who choose to be in our monthly program that we can work with, that we can know in, in, in an intimate way that we can serve in a, in a, in a, on a deep level and that who we can be a part of their life.
RV (07:24):
And we feel like we could build a team of maybe 50 people or so that feels manageable, where we could know our team and we know them well, and we all know the clients and we recognize them, and they’re not all, you know, just strangers in a crowd, but that we’re doing life with our clients and we’re helping them succeed. And that their wins are our wins, right? We’re not going, oh, just bigger is better. That that’s just not our game. And so our clients matter, and so we wanna celebrate their wins, right? When they have a win, we wanna celebrate them. I, I, when Amy Porterfield we worked with Amy Porterfield, and I remember when she hit the New York Times bestseller list, she post, she made this awesome post about, she showed her calling her mom, telling her mom on the phone that she was a New York Times bestselling author.
RV (08:10):
And it was like such a moving moment. It was so inspiring, and it was such a great win for her. But it was a great win for us to feel like, hey, we had a part in somebody’s journey, you know, building their brand to where they, they become a New York Times bestselling author, you know, a a small part of it, but a part of it. And to go that win, her win is our win. And that moment of her sharing that with her mom is our win. And so we sent her a, a balloon of this giant, a giant balloon that was like a Congratulations, New York Times bestselling author. And then she posted that we’re not trying to get her to post on social, we’re not trying to get more money out of her. She was the past client at that point, right? Like, we already had her money.
RV (08:52):
Like it, it was, it, it’s about caring for people and, and caring for them in a hyper-specific way, in a tailored way, in a unique way. Not that you shouldn’t do good things. Not that you shouldn’t be responsive and you shouldn’t be positive and you shouldn’t smile like you shouldn do all those things. Those are good customer service, but good customer service is markedly different from good Secret service or what John de Julius calls secret service. This secret service is this idea of going be listening. First of all, it’s listening, it’s caring, it’s watching, it’s paying attention. And then just looking for these natural moments where you can intersect into people’s lives and go, man, it sure feels like something big just happened for this person. And, you know, everyone gets birthday pre, everyone gets presents on their birthday, right? Everyone gets phone calls on their birthday, everyone gets presents at Christmas time.
RV (09:48):
It’s not that you shouldn’t send gifts to someone at Christmas or at their birthday. You, you know, you should, if you can, you should. But the part that is really special is, is when you’re, when you do something, when no one else does, when it shows that you’re watching when maybe no one else is, when, when you’re going, man, I see you going through a tough time, or I see you having a huge win that, that you wanna celebrate. And, and maybe honestly, you don’t wanna celebrate it on social media because you don’t wanna look like you’re bragging or whatever, and going, but we see this, we wanna celebrate with you. It’s caring about people, right? The the best form of marketing, the best marketing strategy in the world is to care about the success of the people in your company and the success of your clients and the success of your prospects.
RV (10:36):
We’ve done things when we, we happen to be talking to a prospect who’s not even a customer, and we hear that their house gets hit by a tornado, or they lose a loved one or something. And you go, what can we do to just show them a little love? And I don’t know what the ROI is on it financially. We don’t measure that. We don’t track it, but we don’t have to because the, there’s, there’s, there’s always an r o i on service. There’s always an r o i on making, making people feel special. There’s always an ROI on making people feel seen and, and, and helping people feel heard and helping people feel important. There’s always an ROI on that. And it doesn’t have to be financial. It’s even if it’s the, the satisfaction and the meaning and the purpose that you get from your business and what you do and the way that you’re using your money.
RV (11:26):
Like, that’s really special. And, and do we do it a hundred percent of the time? No, we don’t. Like, we miss a lot of ’em. And sometimes we’re going too fast to pay attention, and, and sometimes we maybe just, maybe money is really tight and we can’t do it, or we can’t do it for everybody, right? But you, you try to choose the moments for the people that you go, man, this is someone who’s important to me, or I I want to be important to them, or I want them to be important to us. And I wanna build a relationship to go, this is beyond money, this is beyond transactions. It’s about, it’s about caring, and it’s about service. And, and the, the only part that’s secret of it is that you’re secretly watching, you’re secretly paying attention. You’re secretly going out of your way, pausing our own natural self-centeredness, just for a moment to open our eyes and be alert and awake to what are the big things going on in other people’s lives, and how can we mourn with them?
RV (12:21):
How can we celebrate with them? How can we cheer them on? How can we encourage them? How can we recognize them and just make them feel special and important? So it’s, it’s this hyper-specific response, this hyper tailored experience, and that has been life-changing for me. The, the relationships that we have furthered and developed and deepened from that, and just the meaning and the significance and the joy that the genuine authentic joy that you get from being able to do something for somebody. And this all could, could, you know, from a tactical standpoint, this all could be summarized from a line from Sean Connery and the movie Finding Forrester and Finding Forrester was not necessarily a great movie, but this is a great line. So even if it wasn’t a great movie, this is a great line. And Sean Connery is this older writer and he’s mentoring this young writer and he starts mentoring, kind of like in more than just writing.
RV (13:24):
And, and this guy’s like trying to catch the attention of a girl or, you know, to make her like him or whatever. He’s trying to like, you know, get her to like him or show, show her that she’s important to him. And Sean Connery says, the secret to a woman’s heart is an unexpected gift at an unexpected time. An unexpected gift at an unexpected time. That is what secret Service is all about. Not just to a woman’s heart, not just for earning romantic love, but for earning and developing and building all types of love, love with your employees, with your customers, with your spouse, with your kids. Unexpected gift at an unexpected time tailored to them, right? And the, the key is tailored to them, right? We have these wonderful, beautiful brand builders, group pens, these brand builders, group pens. They have our logo on ’em, sending these out or giving these to everyone who comes.
RV (14:17):
That’s good customer service. Like, okay, hey, thanks for the pen, man. It’s a cool pen, but it’s, it’s marketing, right? If it has my logo on it or our logo on it, if it has our company logo, it is, it’s marketing. That’s not service, that’s marketing. But if I send them something with their logo on it, or a picture of their family, or celebrating their win, or memorializing their achievement or something like that, that that’s not marketing. That’s, that’s friendship. That’s relationship. And so it’s, it’s simple, but it’s so powerful and profound, and most people don’t do it because we’re too busy and we feel like we don’t have the money or we can’t justify the roi. And I’m telling you, just do it. Just, just do it. And also, it doesn’t have to be big, right? You don’t have to send them to Disneyland, right?
RV (15:05):
That’s not even secret service. Like, it, it’s, it’s just doing something that’s really relevant to them is going, oh, you know what? They really love yoga. I’m gonna send them some yoga socks, right? And, and it’s like, they get it and they go, this is so different than what it’s, it’s like you’re listening. It’s like you’re paying attention because you are, it means that you care. So show that you, you care and, and pay attention. That secret service the, my second customer service secret, that will grow your sales. And again, you know, I don’t mean to hype hyperbolize too much, the revenue part of this but it does, it does grow your revenue because it grows your reputation and reputation always pre precedes revenue. So how do we track this exactly? We don’t, nor do we want to, nor do we care about this, you know, tracking these things.
RV (15:51):
But if unexpected gift at unexpected time in a tailored way would be the first lesson. The second lesson is to anticipate the need you wanna provide, great customer service, anticipate the need. That is what great customer service is all about. Right? Good customer service is meeting the need, meeting the expectations, right? I check into the hotel and I expect to have a clean room. I expect it to be ready. I I expect it, you know, to have, you know, cool air and, you know, some, some number of amenities based on the price that I’m paying and the brand of the hotel chain, right? Those are expectations. Anticipating the need. Anticipating the need is somebody arrives late and you know that they’re, they probably missed their flight. And so maybe they don’t have their luggage, or they tell you, it’s been a rough day, I lost my luggage.
RV (16:42):
And you go, oh, you know what? Let me send you up some, let me send you up a toothbrush and some shaving cream and, and whatever. And you know, that’s anticipating the need. What you wanna learn to do with your prospects, with your customers, with your employees, your team members, with your spouse, with your kids, with anyone you’re trying to build a relationship with, is anticipate their need. By the way, this is everything we do at Brand Builders Group. Everything we do is about trying to anticipate the needs of our clients. So we’re going, okay, what do they need first? First of all, they, they need, they need education. They need to understand that, you know, there’s a, there is a framework and a structure for how to, how to build a sales page that converts the 15 piece of copywriting, right? So we gotta teach ’em that, but then we go, well, now what are they gonna need?
RV (17:29):
They’re gonna need help doing it. So we either need to introduce them to a vendor who can help get it done, or we gotta create a template for ’em. And so we go, let’s create templates that people can use, right? And then, and it’s like, okay, well now they have a template. Now what? Now they’re gonna need help building it into a page. So how, how do we, how do we create a template to actually convert the copy into, into an actual landing page? Boom, right? And so our whole company is in a constant evolution of going, anticipate the need, anticipate the need. What do they need next? How can we help our clients succeed faster? How can we help ’em succeed for less money? How, how can we help ’em create more impact? Like, what would shorten the learning curve? What would shorten the implementation cycle?
RV (18:09):
Anticipate the need. If you wanna earn the respect, the admiration of your boss, you wanna raise, anticipate the need, right? Look on their calendar, look on their cal. This is the easiest thing to do. If you have access to someone’s calendar, you go, what do they have coming up next week? And they’re not even thinking about it, right? Cuz their, their, their hair’s on fire, they’re thinking about today. And Oh my gosh, what am I doing right now? So you look at what do they have on their calendar next week? And then you go, what are all the things I could do for them to help set them up for success? Wh how much of the work could I do for them so that when they get there in an, and they find out in an unexpected fashion that so much of this is already done, anticipate.
RV (18:52):
That’s how you get promoted. I mean, straight up, that’s how you get promoted. That’s how you get raises. That’s how you become more valuable, right? You help other people succeed. That’s what value is. Value is derived from helping others succeed. So one of the easiest ways is to go, you know, you might not even have to learn anything. You might not even have to do anything different. You might just have to do it sooner. And in a more app, appropriate timing, right? A lot of this is about timing. And you go, okay, what do they have coming up? And how can I help them succeed even before they get there? Or so that when they get there, I’m delivering this information, this tool, this training, this knowledge, this resource, this, this relationship. So that it’s like, oh my gosh, you’ve already thought of this. You’ve already taken care of this.
RV (19:39):
I mean, hallelujah, thank you. Anticipate their needs. So you gotta be asking that of yourself, of all of your employees, right? And your team members and, and, and your customers and your prospects. Like what do they need next? What, what is the thing that they most need in order to take the next step? And like one of the things that we’re rolling out, if you’re a member, you know this or you’re gonna know this, we have spent the last few years building something called Instant Automation Toolkit. And Instant Automation Toolkit was about taking all of the strategy, right? We have 14 different two-day courses that make up the curriculum of Brand Builders Group, right? Like when someone, someone joins up for our entry level monthly membership, it’s like a couple hundred bucks a month. Like they get access to all 14 courses right away.
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I mean, we give away the farm for like very little money. So they get access to all the courses. But then we go, okay, well now how are they gonna implement? So we’ve been building these templates for years and years because we’re going, ah, what do they need next? They need help taking this strategy and applying it, and, and we can build tools. So the, the whole mantra is how much of the work can we do for them, right? That’s what we’re trying to do. How much of the work can we do for them? Now, ultimately, we’re a strategy firm and they, people gotta do their own work. And at some point, you know, you lead the horse to water, they gotta drink, they gotta do the behaviors. There’s certain things they have to do that we can’t do, but we’re going, how much of it can we do for them?
RV (21:08):
How far down the field can we advance the ball? How can we solve a bunch of the problems in advance for them that they don’t even know they’re gonna have yet? You know, for example, once they get clear on their uniqueness, then we help ’em create their content. And then they’re gonna go, oh, shoot, how do I get trademarks and how do I get copyrights? And we go, you know what? Let us introduce you to the legal firm that we use, that built templates so that you could get all of your copywriting, all of your templates, all of your contracts done for like a very low fee because we’ve already cur curated this relationship and we’ve created all these tools. And then they go work on their keynote and we go, Hey, now that you got your keynote, there’s a good chance you’re gonna need a slide deck for that.
RV (21:47):
Right? Here’s the template that we have that we put together based on what we use and your speaker kit, and we create all these tools and assets that they don’t even know they need yet until they get there. And by the time they get there, they go, oh my gosh, I, there’s so much I need and we wanna show up and go, here it is, boom, right here for you. Anticipate the need. It’s so simple, but it’s so profound. And if you do those two things right, unexpected gift, and well put that qualify in there, unexpected, customized gift at an unexpected time, unexpected gift at an unexpected time, and you anticipate the need, if you do those two things, you will be prov and you do it consistently. And especially if you can operationalize it through your organization and your practice, and your firm and your company and your life and your personal life, if you can find a way to operationalize those things, you will be delivering world-class service, world-class experience, you will be excelling, accelerating your reputation.
RV (22:51):
And you know, there’s, there’s, there’s there interviews at least three that come to the top of my mind that you should go back and listen to if you want more on this. So one is obviously the interview that I just did with Brittany Hodak creating super fans. The other is John de Julius. We’ve had him on the show and we’ve talked about this concept. The other, the other person who I would be remiss to not mention in this, in this conversation is John Ruland. He’s the author of a book called Giftology, another close friend, also a client of ours, somebody else that we’ve learned a lot from in this area. All three of those are podcasts that are available here. So share this episode with someone you know that wants to increase the customer, improve the customer experience inside of their company and then share, go, go back and listen to those other three and share those as well and keep coming back and let us know how we can make it better, right? Sometimes we can’t always anticipate the needs we’re trying to, but if you have ideas for how we can do that, please let us know always. And I hope we get a chance to talk to [email protected] slash podcast if you’re ready to get serious about implementing and operationalizing these principles along with all the other ones that we teach here on this show. So thanks for being here. We’ll catch you next time. Bye-Bye.