Do you have a deliverables system in place in your business?
Many online business owners are great on the front end when it comes to sales and marketing. But unfortunately, few are as good on the back end when it comes to taking good care of their customers, which is costing them repeat business and referrals.
Today on the Systems Made Simple™ podcast, learn how to do a better job of delivering what you’ve promised so you can create a fiercely loyal community of satisfied customers who can’t help but tell all their friends how awesome you really are. This is the best way to increase customer engagement.
BY THE TIME YOU FINISH LISTENING, YOU’LL DISCOVER:
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Hey, welcome back to the Systems Made Simple™ podcast. This is Episode 75, and over the past few weeks, we’ve been talking about the four systems that you need as an online business owner. This week, we're diving into system number three of four: which, here at The EffortLESS Life®, is something that we call a Deliverability System to increase customer engagement.
This has to do with how well you're taking care of your existing customers, how to earn repeat business from those customers, and how to deliver what you've promised to those customers so that they walk away happy and satisfied and tell all their friends. This is called a deliverables system.
Many people are great on the front end when it comes to sales and marketing. But unfortunately, few are as good on the back end, which is costing them repeat business and referrals. Worse, students leave them for their competition. So stick around, because creating a Deliverability System isn't something you're going to hear today's top marketing influencers talking about. But without it, you're going to leave a lot of money on the table, and all your marketing efforts will be a waste. That's all coming up next, so stay tuned to learn about customer engagement.
INTRO TRACK: Globally ranked among the top shows in business and education, we're known for one thing, helping overworked entrepreneurs like you learn how to run your business like a true visionary leader, because when you get the right systems support, and structure in place, you can spend more time in your zone of genius increasing your business customer engagement.. So if you're tired of listening to today's business influencers teach the same old worn out marketing strategies that aren't making you any money, it's time to take a look under the hood of your business and fix the engine itself. Because the truth is, you don't have to work as hard as you are right now to scale beyond six figures, and create the greater influence income and impact that you deserve. The secret to scaling starts on the back end of your business. This is the Systems Made Simple™ podcast.
Before we jump in today, I want to thank our featured listener this week, Karen, who says: “I have gotten some great insights from this show, including how to launch my own podcast. I ended up ranking within the first week with Courtney steps!” Karen, thank you so much for being a loyal listener, I'm so glad you're here. And for you listening, yes! That is something that we do here at The EffortLESS Life®: we have a program where we help online business owners who want to start a podcast, learn how to apply these same systems driven principles to launching a show of their own, establish their thought leadership, and get their message out into the world in a bigger way. So that's something you're ever curious about, hit us up on Instagram @theeffortlesslife.co and we'd be happy to share more details about that with you. We work with lots of podcasters, people who are launching podcasts for the first time as well as people who are relaunching their podcast because they want to boost that momentum and get more visibility in the marketplace. It all boils down to systems and strategies. If you've been listening for any length of time, then you should know by now that I am all about creating leverage. Every ounce of energy that you put into your business should create leverage for you for your family, it should help bring you closer to your vision, not just working for the sake of working yet. So many entrepreneurs out there are just working for the sake of working. And that actually doesn't get you results. We're very results driven here at The EffortLESS Life® and we want to help you achieve those same results.
The topic of today's episode, having a Deliverability System is going to help you achieve those results. Because in helping your students and your clients achieve results for themselves, you, by default, will achieve better results too. Because happy clients talk about what you do. Happy clients brag on you to their friends. Happy clients are excited to refer you, because you’ve helped them achieve something. Happy clients = high customer engagement.
Early in my business, I was so focused on generating sales and generating leads. I was always on to the next sale, onto the next student. I wasn't thinking a whole lot about what to do to keep my current students happy. It's sad to say, but it's true. I had a misconception at the time that money in my business came from new customers. But that is not true. First of all, money doesn't come from your students and clients. Money comes from source and I believe in God, the source of the universe. So based on my own belief system, I believe God is the source of my money. But at the time I didn't realize that.
So I chased the dollar. I focused on new blood, new leads, bigger email lists, more social media followers. I thought that I couldn't have a successful business without a huge massive social media following or thousands of people on my email list. Turns out that wasn't true. Because after a while in business, I started noticing a trend. When students had a great experience on the back end of whatever course or program they purchased, they would buy again. Sometimes they would buy again after that. I remember running our live Mastermind Retreat — one of my absolute favorite things to do in my business is run this event. It’s a three-day live retreat. People fly in from all over the world to be here for this event.
It's a very intimate event, you're in the room with me for three days, and we dive deep into your business and pick apart what's not working and help you put it back together. So you walk out of there with a clear plan that you can execute and get results. The students who attend this retreat get results. I could sit here all day and tell you some amazing stories of what results these students have created when they have that clarity and that clear plan to follow. But my point in sharing all of this is that at that retreat, students would have such an incredible experience that they’d want to continue working with us. The percentage of conversions of people who attended that retreat, had an incredible experience, and then chose to continue working with us was extremely high.
So I got to thinking, if I could just do a better job of delivering to the students that I have, and then have subsequent programs for them to move into, how much more money could I be making? Turns out, a lot more. The problem was, I didn't have the bandwidth to be doing all the front end marketing, and running Facebook ads and showing up on Instagram every day and doing sales calls and hopping on podcast interviews and trying to grow the brand, while at the same time trying to manage all of the backend deliverables. I did a decent job of marketing when I was marketing. And I did a great job of delivering what I was delivering because I love delivering. I love teaching, in case you can't tell that about me. I love engaging with students like you. I love getting to know people and making you feel special and facilitating your transformation. But when I tried to do both, it was more than I could handle. Because to do both? Well, quite honestly, it's more than anyone can handle and lowers customer engagement.
So what happens is most entrepreneurs who find themselves in this situation, sacrifice deliverability in favor of sales and marketing. So their students therefore have a great front-end experience, but a poor back-end one. I have been in way too many programs myself where this has been the case, chances are you've experienced this too. I've been enrolled in programs ranging anywhere from 2k to 20k. So it wasn't about how much I paid for the program that made a difference. It was all about how it was sold to me. But then my subsequent experience on the back end didn’t align.
So what did make the difference? And how could we do a better job of providing high level, white-glove, first-class experience for our students inside of our programs? How could I increase customer engagement? So that they would actually enjoy the experience and want to continue working with us and tell their friends and purchase from us again and again. These were the questions we started asking ourselves here at The EffortLESS Life®.
In fact, we even hired a customer experience architect, someone dedicated exclusively to architecting and improving our customer experience inside of our programs, everything from increasing program completion rates, to re-engaging students who have fallen off track to celebrating student wins along the way and recognizing them for the action that they're taking.
Keith Cunningham has a great book out there called The Road Less Stupid. I love this book. The dude is so straightforward, and gives very practical advice for running a business. In that book, he says,
The growth you want is never going to be achieved by a slogan of great customer service. People don't want that. People want success. People want results. So figure out what specifically that looks like for you based on your niche and what results you can help someone achieve and give it to them.
And he goes on to say the core of any business strategy is the promise made to the customer of how the business will deliver. And guess what? The customer has the only vote on whether that promise was delivered or not.
So the questions you need to be asking yourself are: How do I know that this promise that I am making to my people is being successfully delivered? Why do people buy from me in the first place? What kind of value do they expect? What do they hope for? What is the promise of our brand? Am I delivering that to them? What has to happen? to cause a customer to come back and buy from me? What causes them to buy from me in the first place? What is the deliverables system?
And then separately, what causes them to keep coming back? What changes do I need to make to my business? How can I improve customer engagement? To ensure that we stay relevant among our customers? What are we doing to ensure that customers will come back for more? What could we do that we're not currently doing to cause customers to want a second helping of what we're serving? Is my business an accurate reflection of my real customer engagement? Are my customers getting all of the deliverables I promised? It's really simple.
But most people do not take the time to slow down and think about these things and build a business centered around their answers to questions like these. And when you fail to do this, you're missing out on business, you're missing out on revenue, and you're leaving money on the table.
So to help your students achieve success inside of your programs or with whatever it is that you offer, the way you achieve that is with what we call a Deliverability System.
Largely speaking, this is what happens on the back end, once someone gives you their money. From the moment they enroll to the moment they complete your program: what are you doing to ensure a great experience for them so that they tell all their friends, and come back for more? And rave about you and their experience? What is your customer engagement?
Are you over promising and under delivering? Because that's a recipe for disaster. Or this is a really common one that we see a lot: are you over delivering, and undercharging? That's a recipe for going out of business.
What’s so unfortunate is that our culture today, especially in the online business space, is that there are so many experts and influencers out there teaching you marketing and sales, teaching you everything you need to know about customer acquisition, how to acquire a new customer. But teaching very, very little about customer retention, which is how to keep the customers you have, longer. How to improve customer engagement.
Most people make the mistake of thinking I'll set up a monthly membership. That'll help me create more recurring revenue. That'll help me keep people longer. But it's not true! Because if people do not have a good experience, people will leave the membership and stop paying you. It might take two months, might take 10.
But if you are not doing everything you can to enhance their experience along the way, and give them a reason to stay, it's inevitable that they will. You don't need me to tell you what will happen if you continue focusing all your time and attention on the front end of your business generating leads and sales and not taking the time to enhance the experience on the back end.
I chuckle at this. People ask me all the time: How can you say business can be effortless? You have to work harder than the rest if you want to succeed. People push back on me on that. And it's all right. It's all good. It breaks my heart to hear it. But notice how I never said that effort-less means work-less. It simply means that every bit of work you do has a clear intention, that it creates leverage, and that it serves your greater vision.
So many people work just to work because they think it's the work that will bring success. But that's foolish, that's wrong. It's about taking a look at what you are doing and asking yourself: Is the way I'm working actually working? We realized that we needed to do a better job in this area. It wasn't that we weren't delivering what we promised — we were doing that. But it was that we could have a better system in place for doing that. So thanks to the help of our customer experience architect, Lynnae, she is incredible. She's come in and helped us on the back end so much in terms of enhancing our delivatibility of our programs. What we have worked on is creating a deliverability system that's program-specific, meaning that it is simple, it is a similar structure, it is a similar system that can be used across our programs with a few tweaks.
You recall back from a couple of episodes ago, a system is an overall map of where you're headed. A process is the step by step directions to get there. So the system is the same across all of our programs. The process or the steps themselves are more nuanced, depending on the program. So I'm going to share with you what our Deliverability System is and how it impacts customer engagement, it is very simple. Every business needs a deliverables system.
First, we have a new student onboarding process. This is so critical. You know, you often hear of onboarding processes, and we talked about this back in our episodes on hiring. You think of an onboarding process in terms of hiring new team members, getting them trained, getting them onboarded.
Why wouldn't you do this with your students, too? The onboarding process is a period of time where you have the opportunity to set the expectations of your students, to help them hit the ground running, to help them get into action, and to start seeing results. You hear a lot of people who teach about courses and program creation and all of that, say, give them a quick win within the first however many hours or weeks or whatever. That's all good and fine. That's part of this. But then what happens is most course creators stop there. They check the “quick win” box and then students are left on their own to fend for themselves and make it through the rest of the program after that.So you need a new student onboarding process. A period of time, where you have checkpoints set up for every student.
Now, this could look a myriad of different ways. And I don't want to confuse you by giving you a whole bunch of examples of how this could look, because it's going to be really nuanced per business
I will share that in our programs, what we do is we send a welcome email, and in some of our programs, they even get a welcome call with one of our staff members to check in and meet them and say, hi! What are your goals inside of this program? We want to help them feel connected, that they are not just another student or another number, but that we know who they are. We know their name, we know their goals, we know what they are looking to do inside of this program. And we are taking notes because we're here to help them do that.
So they get a welcome series, email and/or call, and then they have different checkpoints along the way. So this might be us checking in with them in the Facebook group tagging them calling them out. This might be us sending them emails at certain points, or it might be certain assessments that they're taking inside of that program. Like I said, there's a number of different ways that can look.
But all of this makes up the onboarding period, because what you are doing during this critical time is reinforcing your students' decision to join your program. Reinforcing that they are in the right place, and that they made the right decision. It's taking away any buyer's remorse, any chance of them wanting to just jump out and refund within those first critical few days and increasing customer engagement. And it is helping reassure them that they are in the right place, and that you are the right person to take them where they want to go, and that they can achieve success inside of your program.
This is so crucial. So then, after that onboarding period, depending on the length of the program, we have a midway check-in point. This is also important because a lot of students will get started, and then drop off at a certain point. If you’ve got an online course, chances are you know what I’m talking about. If you've ever taken a look at your metrics, on the back end of your programs, you might start to even notice trends. How far do they get? Do they get 20% into the program and then start slacking off? Do they get 30% in? Do they make it halfway through? How does this impact customer engagement?
You can time your midway check in point around kind of the average length of time that someone will be really engaged and then start to drop off. Time that midway check in and make it personal and say, hey, thinking of you, how's it going? We wanted to let you know that we've noticed your progress, and we want to help you keep going. How can we support you? What is it that you need most from us right now?
How would you feel if you were in some big influencers program and they reached out to you to check in on you? Hey, we just wanted to touch base. We've seen your hard work in this program. We understand that life gets in the way and we just want to make sure that we're doing everything we can to support you to keep going. How can we help you do that? Oh gosh, how would that make you feel?
So that's the midway check-in. Then finally, we have an endpoint check in, a completion check in. We celebrate with them! When they've completed the program or when they have done the thing that they got in the program to do, for example, in our EffortLESS Podcasting Formula™ program when they launch their podcast, we celebrate with them. They might get a gift. They might get a note in the mail from us, they get a shout out on social media. We do whatever we can to celebrate and honor their progress, that's our intention. Have we done a great job of this in the past? No. Could we be better? How could we increase customer engagement? Absolutely.
That is what we are working on right now behind the scenes in our company, to put into place so that current students and future students get recognized, get acknowledged for their hard work, and get celebrated whenever they accomplish something. Because in the online space, usually it's you and your laptop, working from home, maybe your kitchen table, maybe it's an office, maybe it's your bedroom. You're not in an office where if you achieve something really big, everyone's high-fiving or maybe popping a bottle of champagne at the end of the day and toasting saying, you achieved this milestone, you’re awesome. It's you with your laptop, and you're like, Okay, great. I did it. Did anybody even notice?
So it's taking the time to notice. To notice the progress our students are making, then we have an offboarding period. What's next for them? We invite them to the next thing. This should dovetail with your sales funnel and with your overall ascension model. Where are you leading them? What's the next step for them? Making your students feel valued and heard is the key to customer engagement.
So when you're delivering what you promise, and when you open up a back channel of communication with each and every student and have these checkpoints along the way to help monitor their progress, and ultimately, to empower them to keep taking action, and to do what they said they wanted to do in the first place by enrolling in your program. So it's not one and done. It’s not, Yay, I launched and we got 50 new students. Now onto the next thing!
Instead it's, OH MY GOSH we just enrolled 50 new students or five new students or 25 new students, now how can we provide next level support and service and care for them? How can we increase customer engagement?
It is about what you're doing for those students, it is next level service and care. And building out this area of your business is so critical. It's not flashy, no one sees it. In fact, if you're not a student inside of our business, you won't even know this aspect of our business exists. Marketing is flashy, sales is flashy, social media and brand bells and whistles are flashy. But having a Deliverability System with actual deliverables, and making sure you're doing everything in your power to earn the repeat business of your customers, is where the money is.
We had a student recently, who we had launched a new back end membership to one of our programs. We were so excited to get this going, but it just didn't take in the way that we had hoped it would. So she’d signed up and we sent her an email. We said, you know, we're really sorry that this didn't work out, we were really looking forward to kicking this new program off. But we would love to have you the next time we launch, which will likely be in a few months, when we expect the timing to be better for most of the students who will have reached the milestone needed for this offer to make sense. We gave her a few options: we could refund you, or you can stay and save your spot and we’ll circle back in a few months once we get it going, and in the meantime here are some bonuses for you if you go that route. She emailed us back and was so gracious, and she said, Well, I found who I want to work with. So I'm not going anywhere. Let me know when you launch it again, I will be here. I'm excited. And just thank you for all you've done for me, we know I know who I want to learn from. It felt so good to receive a message like that. At the same time, what it did for me was affirm that what we're doing on the back end in terms of our deliverability, we're on the right track improving customer engagement.
In business, anytime you build out something new, you're not sure how it's going to work or if it’s going to land. Like I said, even though we've always done a great job of delivering what we've promised, there were pieces missing to that puzzle. There were ways that we could enhance the experience of people, not just me showing up on a zoom call teaching them what I had promised to teach them. How can we go the extra mile and really give them what we call it here internally, the “Disney level experience”. If you've ever been to Disney, you know they do things differently. You've likely had an experience of that.
So look, a deliverables system. We've been talking about that here on the show a lot lately. And we have a program here called the Visionary Leader Incubator™, where we teach you how to get all of these systems in place in your business and more. We literally walk you through the process step by step because visionary leaders surround themselves with four things: the right systems, the right support and the right structure to their business, and the right accountability. That's a big one.
So we’ve opened up applications for that program right now for a limited time. And these applications are by invite only. And I'm inviting you right now, if you want to get insider access to this application and find out more about this program, and what it would be like to work together with me and a very close hands on setting over the course of a full year to get these systems up and running in your business in less time than it would take you to figure out how to do it on your own.
If you’d like more information about how to set up a deliverables system and how to increase customer engagement, send us an email, hello -at- theeffortlesslife.co. And our customer experience architect Lynnae, who you heard me mentioned a moment ago, will get in touch with you with a link to that application so you can find out more about the program and apply to find out if it’s a right fit for where you are in your business.
This program is only for people who are serious, not only about learning how to put the systems in place in your business to scale beyond six figures, but for people like you who are ready to fully step into their role as a visionary leader of their company, and get out of all the back end behind the scenes work, and step forth and lead their company and their team to greatness as a visionary leader and increase customer engagement. So email us and we’ll hook you up there.
And if you're on Instagram, come find me there @theeffortlesslife.co. That's where I hang out.
I've been doing reels lately that call out the truths of entrepreneurship and the misconceptions in this online business industry, while how to increase customer engagement. Plus, I share quick tips on how to simplify your workflows to get you spending more of your time in your zone of genius. And I would love to connect with you there, so come follow me @theeffortlesslife.co
Now in the weeks ahead, we’re going to continue diving into each of these systems including developing a deliverables system. First we talked about your Visibility System, then your Sales System, and this week was your Deliverability System. Next week, we’re going to close out this series with the final back-end system that you need: your Operations System. What is that, and why do I need one Courtney? Well, coming up next, I will dive into all of that and more right here on the Systems Made Simple™ podcast. Until then, go live your EffortLESS Life®.