In a recent radio interview Bob, a “Cruise Specialist”, highlighted a couple of important lessons applicable in any business.
Cruises come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Big boats, small ones. Long cruises across the 7 seas to short hops.
The key is to match the person to the cruise, which is where the specialist comes in.
As in any sales role, Bob finds out about you, what you’re looking for in a holiday and what your budget is.
You may be a young single who wants a party boat.
Or married with young kids where the mother is anxious about keeping the kids (and hubby) entertained. Or you’re more mature, widowed or retired.
Each one of these is a different market segment or niche.
Get the match right and you’ll have a fabulous time, be hooked and the cruise company’s got a client for life.
Get it wrong and you’ll likely hate the experience and vow never to come back. And would probably tell all your friends about it, putting them off too.
Cruises aren’t cheap.
The operators understand the importance of educating you about cruising, matching you up with the right product and doing everything in their power to get you coming back again and again.
They understand the value of keeping a client for life.
Friends of ours are a classic example of this – they love it and go on a long cruise every year. And they’re not alone in this.
The same concepts hold true no matter what business you’re in.
There are only three ways to grow a business.
Get more clients. Upsell at the point of purchase and keep them coming back for more.
Most businesses focus on the first. Getting more people in the door. But this is by far the most expensive way to get a client.
Remember, it takes 8 to 15 plus touches before someone knows you, likes you and trusts you enough to buy. Which all adds up to lots of marketing dollars and selling time before the first sale is made.
So your profit margin on the first sale suffers as a result.
But if you can “upgrade” the sale, this immediately adds to the bottom line. McDonalds and the classic “Would you like fries with that” is the seminal example.
The holy grail though is understanding “lifetime value”.
Lifetime value is the amount your clients spend with you over their lifetime.
These sales are by far the most profitable as you have negligible extra marketing and acquisition costs as your clients already know you, like you, trust that you will deliver value so keep coming back for more.
Finally, Bob illustrates another very important concept. The niche within the niche.
Travel is a very broad industry. Cruises are a small subset niche. And there are subsets within the cruises.
By specialising Bob becomes the trusted advisor who attracts clients interested in a specific type of holiday. He then educates them as to what’s available and matches them up with the right product.
Clients trust him and he eliminates the competition (generalist travel agents of which there are a dime a dozen).
The same concept applies in your business.
You can be the generalist and find it difficult to differentiate yourself from your competition or the specialist advisor who can write your own ticket.
And finally, whether you’re a generalist who wants to specialise but don’t know how to hone your message or a specialist who needs more clients, we can help.
Our specialist marketing and sales coaching will enable you to take your business to a new level of profitability by attracting better quality, long term clients.
Call us on 0414-913-334 to discuss getting started.