I’m successful today because I didn’t want to work. Maybe I better explain a little better… I didn’t want to work in a job. I was a teenager and I’d just gotten a job at a laundromat. Yuck. After having spent a whole summer with horses, mopping floors, smelling chemicals and dealing with people was the last thing I wanted to do. Not that the smell of a horse is so great to most, but to a horse-lover, it’s the best perfume. I thought about these creatures all the time. My parents said I was passionate, but you could just as easily have said I was obsessed.
When I was first trying to make my escape, I had to conjure up some way to actually make money with horses, rather than have them eat money. I encountered a lot of “you can’t do that”. Or “the only way to make money is to teach lessons”, I knew from experience, I didn’t want to teach little kids who were being dragged there by their parents.
Luckily, I live in a big tourist and convention town, San Antonio. I decided to create a dancing horse show and sell it to meeting planners. But first, I had to “spin” this thing into the Greatest Show Ever. Even if it wasn’t. At least not at first.
Here are 3 ways I created the Greatest Experience ever and how you can, too:
Just Do It!: Look, I know it takes guts to proclaim you’ve got the Greatest Experience Ever. But, no matter what your business is, you can (and should) do it. In today’s marketplace, customers and clients have come to expect less and less so it’s actually easier to create a better, memorable customer experience.
Be careful when sharing with those who are in your same industry about what you’re going to do. Most won’t understand what you’re trying to accomplish and they will try to dissuade you. They may even laugh at you. My own brother, who is also a horse lover, thought I was nuts for trying to create my Dancing Stallion Horse Show. He also thought it was too much work. A few years later I hired him to perform while I took home the big bucks.
Later, I did something that required even more guts. I took singing lessons and began singing on horseback in my show. It was a huge hit and I was able to raise my prices significantly! But, it required a giant dose of getting over my fears and having faith I wouldn’t ruin the show. My high school chorus teacher actually asked me to not be in the chorus, you know…
Find Out What Wows: Don’t guess what will turn interacting with your business into a wonderful experience for your customers and clients. You’re not a mind reader. And you’re probably afflicted with the “curse of knowledge” about your business. You know “too much” about your business and not enough about what will create the Greatest Experience Ever for your clients.
For example, there’s one move, the piaffer, that’s really hard to get a horse to do well. Basically, it’s where your horse is marching in place. He has to do it right.
In the beginning, I thought the audiences and meeting planners would be blown away by seeing us perform this move. I was wrong. They clapped politely when we had a horse doing the piaffer. But they clapped wildly when one of the other riders would hand me a flower while we were galloping together. Something that was so easy to do and required little talent.
I was wrong about what they appreciated most. By closely watching their reactions and talking to audiences after each performance, I found out what wowed them most and what created the Greatest Experience Ever for them. I added more of the stuff they wanted, rather than what I thought they wanted. You may be able to wow customers and clients more inexpensively and easily than you think.
Sell Your Stories: I’m sure you’ve heard the marketing saying “Facts tell, stories sell”. When I began telling stories about the horses, I turned a fun event into a much more meaningful experience.
I told audiences how I created the show because of my passion for these animals. I told them stories about each horse. Many audience members would cry when I told the story of the orphan horse I raised and then revealed to them that he was the horse I was riding.
You may think that telling some of your stories is “not appropriate” in business, but it’s a wonderful way to create a connection with customers and clients and keep them connected to your business, and keep them coming back to invest more with you.
Turning my horse show into the Greatest Experience Ever allowed me to keep raising my prices for my horse show, to places I never dreamed I could charge when I was first beginning. It’s not that hard to add some things that can turn your business transactions into an experience people won’t soon forget. It just takes some guts, some keen observation and some creative story telling.
Maritza Parra Maritza Parra trains and coaches entrepreneurs to use the principles of self-empowerment combined with easy and powerful tools of the Internet to create financial freedom and abundance. After being featured on “Oprah & Friends: The Soul Series” Maritza became an expert at creating products quickly via TeleSeminars, eBooks, Video and other Easy Product Creation Strategies. Known as the Product Creation Queen, Maritza now teaches her students how to create products from their gifts, knowledge and talents. One of her gifts is the ability to show you how to quickly get your ideas out of your head and into your bank account. Maritza teaches from her private membership sites and at the Hacienda, her Retreat Center in San Antonio, TX. www.MaritzaParra.com