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Have a Formula - And Make it Work

Be charismatic plus positively unusual - and break new ground.
Nobody notices convention as much as being startlingly different. I recall Dell Computer's' just on time practise to optimise and minimise the holding of inventory. Running alongside this Dell philosophy was the even more important culture of tailor making concisely to each customer's unique and varied requirements. This can be difficult to deliver in the food business, but again, why not?  Charisma can exude from the service, product or  the people that are the face of the business.  Being positively unusual does have a definite shelf life, when being new gradually is accepted as the expected norm - and then an engaging stirrer asks why not and how not, all over again.  I have taken Dell for granted, but now I am captivated by the young chap from Canberra who has a magic glove that interacts effectively with so much of the Internet and modern electronics - with just a natural wave of the hand.

Build up a sizable number of interested people, especially potential customers.
Social media has been utilised effectively as both the channel and vehicle in the past decade to allow businesses to go forth and multiply returns, impact and growth.  The eternal concept and practise underlying all this have been basically word of mouth.  But be aware and beware - social media tools and means can have a two edge impact. Getting numbers of potential customers can be ideal, but then work on the relationships as if every one of them is unique as well as accumulative. Once you open the proverbial gate, work hard on logistics, personalisation, diversity and more engagement.   Be ready to handle bumps, blocks and threats. Also be ready for options, opportunities and occasions!

Keep up the passion, persistence and pleasure.
When I reflect on my own personal top five iconic brands, such businesses manage to persistently balance delivery of both positive consistency and customer excitement.  The leading mobile phone companies seem to literally arouse in each of us an expectation of some innovation in user interface ability every year - and yet at the same time make improvements in reliable features from the past. Or may be not so much anymore. Whether we run a small business, or am just a cog in  huge complex machine, we owe it to ourselves - always - to keep our true selves motivated.  If we sincerely believe in our product or service, every one of us have to take initiative and imagination to continue our interest.  As a customer, do I still believe in the magic and conviction from the main products I use of my top five iconic brands - FIFA World Cup, Singapore Airlines, my favourite local barrista, Langham Hotels and the TLC channel?  On reflection, each of these aforementioned brands have so far provided me with consistency, reliability, feel good experiences and ability to over come issues.

The three Ps indicated above just have one single aim - to make me as a customer want to return to savour and not be disappointed.

Always ask why not and what can be.
The Samsung CEO has had the boldness to destroy huge batches of manufactured equipment when he realised that they were not up to scratch when compared with the leading competition.  Up starts have been able to change the market parameters and not accept the status quo.  I get most suspicious when the parties I deal with strongly stand behind a veil of unquestionable tradition and locked in practice.   I love businesses and parties that find different ways of engaging with the individual.  I am amazed with entities and their people who come up with innovative ways of not just doing things , but in resolving problems and in offering hope.

Scan read through any written piece on the most impressive people and you will find what makes them tick.  Many of such personalities rise to the occasion when confronted with challenges  but at the same time they already have this innate driver within themselves of why not and what can be.  Our grandparents asked us to explore the less trodden path, adventurers have to so call climb the proverbial mountain because it is there and cyberspace and interactive electronics will further  revolutionise the world as we know it.  There are businesses that charge high wealth individuals to do the very things that used to be an individual pleasure - walk the dog or go shopping - but this is only an indication of opportunities emerging in societies with a lack of personal time, an increasing recognition of niche wants and a demand for more meaningful personal interaction.  In a nutshell, these successful entities and people are never long in a comfort zone.

Listen to your core audience, deliver your primary service and offer your difference.
German retailer Aldi came in to the Australian supermarket space already dominated strongly by both Coles and Woolworths.  What Aldi perhaps significantly discerned from the very start, being the relative new kid on the block in the new territory, was that there are so many Moms and Pops out there who love using supermarkets and at the same time look for value priced items to buy.  So Aldi focused on their target market real early and already had the business model and structure to seriously serve them in Europe. There was no confusion in this aim, it is consistently developed and delivered in the several years they have been operating in Australia and Aldi's differentials are more felt today by their core customers.   Aldi added alcohol products, a more than symbolic act that echoes their already expanding range of produce and products and they still labelled their new range at the same value price.  Needless to say, expectations  raised must be fully met and be a reality to customers as ever no matter how big a business gets.

Make your business a habit - for  as many people as possible.
I always admire how certain businesses can prosper when they gently intertwine their product and service, in the mind of their customers, with the routine, lifestyle and regime of individuals.   Customers want to drop by because they perceive the business as a place they see as a one stop, or because they enjoy the benefits that money alone cannot buy ( it is akin to a pub where every body seems to know your name).  It can be part of their therapy or health routine, it is near their work place or it is where they can catch up with mates without making too much fuss.

Amazon offers a virtual market place to navigate, check out and select in a most painless way at any time that suits individuals with relative privacy, no physical transport required and at your own desired pace.  Moving between different screens, a potential customer can interact in cyberspace with friends, obtain updates in various spheres of interest and have no pressure to buy.   Think of cafes or  restaurants that offer weekend or daily habits to be fulfilled, for example yum cha, cycling group hubs, commuter drop-bys and gym enthusiast watering holes.  Walk on in!

Make it simple and effective.
Facebook runs on the premise that each customer wants to instantaneously share information, experiences and sentiments. And it makes it so easy to do so.  Think of instant messaging from parties as varied as Twitter, WeChat and Naver Line.  Organise menus with food and drink combinations that are effectively simple for your customers to decide and efficient for your staff to deliver. Websites must be clearly navigable.  The bottom line for businesses is to bring home the bacon and make it effective to monitor costs and revenues, without owners having to walk through mist and mystery to know how much they are making and what they own. If I want to just feel like going to the gym, I get to do so, on my own terms and without the hassle of time of night or day.


Macky Blaise said…
NIce blog.. I learn to make a formula and apply it.. Making it work is hard but its wonderful
Kin Yuen said…
Well put, Macky!

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