The Customer Experience Podcast
The Customer Experience Podcast

Episode 120 · 1 year ago

120. The ABC's of Creating Superfans w/ Brittany Hodak



You may have some.

You may have had some and lost them.

You may have fans — who would be superfans — if only you engaged them the right way.

Regardless, you always want more superfans.

But you have to work for them.

In this episode, I interview Brittany Hodak, speaker, writer, and co-founder of the Superfan Company, about what a superfan is and how to build a base of them.

Brittany and I chat about

- What a superfan is and how you create them

- The 5 steps of the SUPER system

- How Brittany got offers from four of the five sharks on Shark Tank

- The biggest threat to business (it gets no airtime)

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So I define a super fan as a customer who's experience with your product or brand is so great that they can't help but advocate on your behalf. The single most important thing you can do today is to create and deliver a better experience for your customers. Learn how sales, marketing and customer success experts create internal alignment, achieved desired outcomes and exceed customer expectations in a personal and human way. This is the customer experience podcast. Here's your host, Ethan, butte super fans. You may have some, you may have had some and lost them. You may have fans who would be super fans if only you engage them the right way. Regardless, you always want more super fans, but you have to work for them. Today's guest is a keynote speaker who teaches sales and marketing leaders to delight customers, multiply referrals, increase revenue and create, you guessed it, super fans. She Co founded, scaled and successfully exited the Super Fan Company, where she served clients like Walmart, Disney, Amazon, Luke Brian and Katie Perry. She was named Advertising Ages Top forty under forty list inks thirty under thirty list and billboards, thirty under thirty list. As a speaker. She's been invited by American Express. We Work Compassion International, Sony Music, the United Nations and many other businesses and organizations and, unlike the majority of our guests here on the PODCAST, I've actually had the privilege of spending time with her in person and seeing her present on stage at my last pre pandemic shutdown event in March two thousand and twenty. Brittany Hohodak, welcome to the customer experience mardcasting. Yes, March. That was what eighteen, nineteen years ago approximately. It's really great to be able to hang out with you like the way that event, when we were able to talk for like a couple of hours, which was a pleasure. It was a lot of fun, and then we both flew home and immediately went into lockdowns. So that was, I think, like the second week of March. Yeah, absolutely. And so, before we get going, this is a story I have not asked you about. You received offers from four of the five sharks on Shark tank. I don't know if I'm a super fan of shark tank, but I'm definitely a fan fan. Tell me a little bit about your shark take experience, like why'd you go and how did it go? Yeah, so, you know, it feels like forever ago. I think it was late two thousand and fourteen when we take the show in an airt in early two thousand and fifteen, and honestly we went because I was a fan of the show. I never thought I would be on the show. Never would have applied to be on the show. I just got a call one day from a casting producer who said, Hey, I read about you and I think like Forbes or something, he had seen a story about the company and thought we sounded fun and invited myself and my cofounder of my last company to be on the show. And it was it was cool, it was it was really exciting. Something that we thought about in great detail was how we wanted to, you know, appear on the show, how we were crafting our story, what we wanted it to be like for the audience that was going to see it. Something that we didn't think about it at a time was the fact that it was going to rerun in perpetuity forever and ever and ever and ever and ever and ever and ever all across the world. So the most interesting part of the shark tank experience has been even though it's like six years removed from when we taped it, it's like this little time capsule of exactly where that company was at that point in time. And when it reairs it's current to everybody seeing it for the first time, and just in the states. On CNBC at airs about like once every three weeks or so, and less CNBC is doing some sort of marathon, and then it's more frequently than that. And still, every single time it airs it's the craziest spike. Like I'll go from, you know, my baseline of like a few hundred people a week on my website to like one thousand eighteen hundred people one day on Burney hoodcom and I'm like, Oh, I guess it aired and I get all these in bound messages and the same thing, to a lesser extent, all over the world. So it's been a really neat experience for me to connect with business people in dozens and...

...dozens of different countries who are, you know, all about creating superfans. It's really cool. So it was obviously the Super Fan Company. What was it that they were particularly excited about? So I was running a marketing and packing packaging agency at the time. So when I launched that company at the end of two thousand and ten, my first client was Walmart, and my pitch to Walmart was, I think we can do a better job of engaging fans when it comes to entertainment releases. So can I work with you to create really exciting collectibles that sort of merchify music releases or video game releases or movie releases? And I was so fortunate that Walmart immediately saw the vision, immediately bought it and said, Yep, we'll give you a vendor number, will help make introductions for you. You just go create great stuff. So I was creating these fan engagement packages for, you know, sometimes hundreds of thousands of fans for some of the biggest entertainers and entertainment properties on the planet. So that the shark, you know, offer was this idea of buy and be a part of this packaging company which, by the time we were on the show I've been in business for like four years. So I had expanded beyond Walmart. We are still doing several million dollars a year of business allmart, but every time we worked with an artist or a team or a studio. They said, you know, it's going to be a couple years before I've got another thing that I want to do a retail can you help me with my fan club? Can you help me with my tour? Can you help me with this new season that we're about to launch? Can you help this open a stadium? So by that time the business had diversified beyond retail to be serving customers at, you know, all of these different points of interaction. Love it. I love the way that your clients were bringing you in deeper and expanding beyond retail. I can see how would have been attractive we go really deep on that, but we won't. will go to customer experience. When I see customer experience to you, Brittany, what does that mean? To you me? Customer experience means how can, and we delight every single customer to this extent that they never want to work with anybody else? How can we become their go to partner that they can't wait to tell all of their friends about this amazing experience they just had? We the same way. Every artist should hope that somebody hears them for the first time and says, I can't wait to tell everyone about this amazing new artist I discovered. That's how I think every brand should approach customer experience. Make it so great that people can't wait to tell other people because they want everyone else to know that they were in on an early I love that goal, this idea of being remarkable, I mean like in the in the most literal sense, like worth talking about right, which implies, of course, memorable, but not just memorable. I'm going to act on that thought. I'm actually going to tell other people proactively about it really good, at the risk of asking the obvious, but also knowing that there's some interesting nuance here. What is a Super Fan to you? So I define a super fan as a customer who's experience with your product or brand is so great that they can't help but advocate on your behalf. They want to go out and tell other people. They are the customers who create more customers for you. I love it, the customer who creates more customers. I've heard that a couple of times in various forms on the show, this idea that customers are the new marketers, and I really like the way that you've just gone all in on it and seen it in so many different ways over the years. I think you've already kind of tied together customer experiences and super fantasy or any nuance across maybe product types or industries in terms of super fandom. Do you see it like? Do you see that dynamic behave differently in different environments or is working? Almost any company in almost any industry create super fans in a similar way. So almost any company and almost any industry can and should create superfans, and what that Super Fan profile looks like is going to vary a little bit from industry to industry and Company to company, and that's because the metrics that one company uses to define what matters to them is going to be different from one...

...another company is doing so. Actually have a five part formula, of which is when I talk and teach about a lot, because it's pretty applicable front to different industries, and we can go into that if you like. But really the key is customization. Like if there was a secret to CX that worked across the board, everybody would do it right. Like if it was that easy, every fast food restaurant would be chick FIL A and every hotel chain would be there. It's like. It's not that easy. It sounds simple, but you've got to infuse the DNA of your company into everything that you do. You've got to connect your unique story with the stories of the people who count on you for your product or service. And when you can do that, that intersection where your story and your customer story overlap, that's for super fandom is created. It's really good. I like that you called out the idea that has to be this is when you when I hear DNA, here's what I hear. I hear it has to be true and it has to be true inside. That way it can be expressed to the outside, felt outside and kind of fed back in. So like this DNA piece is so true, and both of your examples are great. To have a couple other like we are two or three other companies you like to mention in the context of Super Fandom so listeners can like get all dialed in on it. So you know, the idea of creating super fans is if you become so important to your customer for any reason that they can imagine ever working with anybody else. That's a super fan. And it doesn't have to be a big, sexy industry. It doesn't have to be a well known company. I like to tell the story of my exterminator, Scott. I am one hundred percent a super fan of my exterminator Scott and his company because I hate, hate, hate, Brown and clothes spiders more than anything in the world and I was terrified by the idea of leaving New York, where I lived in New York City for eleven years before I moved to Tennessee. And I was terrified about moving to Tennessee because when I grew up in Oklahoma, we had brown close fighters in my house and I was so freaked out by them because they're horrible, like, if you don't know what a brown and clothes spider is, do not Google it. It's like the stuff of nightmares. And I was so afraid to move back to a state that had brown and clue fighters. And so my my my exterminator Scott is like an integral part of me feeling comfortable and safe in my home and I like I text him all the time. It's my husband makes fun of me, like any bug thing at all of be like, let me just have Scott, one of my son like a couple of years ago Oh, my son was a year old and we found a tick on him and I freaked out and I was taking a picture and texting it and my husband was like, Oh, good, are you texting the punters and and I was like no, I'm tending, I'm texted. But Boys, Scott T exiting Scott to ask you know how freaked I should be. But that's and and all of my friends who've moved to the area. I've of course recommended bell mean exterminating. I'm like, you got to work with this company. So it does like sometimes I think people think, oh, because I'm in a BEDB company or because I'm doing something that's not particularly exciting, nobody would ever be a super fan of my company. But it's not about the product or service you deliver. It's about the security, the feeling, the experience of that product or service and how you're going above and beyond to make sure that your customer feels appreciated, they know that you know you're not just another number, you're not just another Po like that customer is an integral part of everything that your company strives to do for the world. So that's that's what Cex to me, is all about. And that's what creating superfans should be about. I love it. And so, just as a segue into kind of where I want to go next, obviously Scott knows that you're a super fan. You communicate with them consistently. I'm going to go out on a limb and say he has heard your name from people. You've referred to him, so he knows that you that he is valuable to you and that you have a great relationship and that for no reason would you ever go anywhere else to make sure that you and your family are safe and that you can sleep peacefully knowing that these nightmares don't come into real life. I know exactly what you're talking about, by the way, and I would never google it. I just get freaked out thinking about googling it. But you know, for people who maybe haven't identified their...

...super fans, like what, where would you encourage people to start? Like what I would like to explore to kind of high level is how do I find them, if they exist or if they're kind of on the cusp? How can I activate them? Like what are some practical things I can do related to these ideas? Because you know, these all the all the examples you've shared in the stories you've shared and go okay, cool, Yep, definitely get it. I like this idea, but how do I go at it a little bit? Yeah, so I'm going to give a really easy piece of advice to remember. It's an acronym. The acronym is Super, super, conceptive, set system and if you want to create super fans, it's not good enough to be great, you've got to be super. So that's easy to remember. Right. The very first step is start. This is the s part s stands. First, start with your story, and so many people are like yeah, I want super fans. And then when I say to them, okay, what is it that you're the best in the world at, they're like, I don't know. I'm like, well, if you can't tell me why you're the best, how in the world is a customer ever going to be able to tell me? You've got to know what it is that sets you apart, you as a salesperson or marketer, you as a brand. What is it that makes you so special that you deserve to have super fans? What are you doing for your customers so that Stef One? And when I say start with your story, I don't mean like, you know, word vomit your story immediately to everybody. You mean I mean you've got to know, you've got to understand at your core, what is that DNA, what is it that you do? Because a well crafted story is your superpower, right. I mean, people talk about storytelling and marketing all the time now, but that's because it's so important, because your story is your brand and without that you're just another commodity, and commodities typically don't have super fans. Right. It's the people who do a good job setting themselves apart to become that category of one. So the first step is start with your story, figure out what it is that makes you the very best in the world at what you do, figure out how you're going to communicate that superpower to other people, step or in. Super doesn't necessarily mean, or probably doesn't mean at all, products, features, benefits, faster, more, better, right, it's this, it's it's a story that's easy to repeat, potentially your elements of it that has some kind of an emotional component, and that's what makes it powerful. Doesn't makes it powerful. And when you say more and better, more and better or not bad, but what are you doing? To make your customers lives better. What more are you doing for your customers than your competitors? It's not more and better about your product or yourself. It's more and better about your customers and the experience. Are providing good, good, okay, you are with the story. Yeah, and then step number two is understand your customers story. And obviously you know it's it's sort of like how zoomed in or out do you want to go when you talk about your customer? Like when you zoom out, obviously you've got to know. You know who is the persona that you're targeting? What type of customer do you want? But when you zoom all the way into each unique customer, it's so important to understand their story. It's so important to listen actively to say what can I be doing better? What do you like about my product or service? How am I making your life better already? But what can I do to get even better and to constantly be iterating and improving and figuring out how you're doing a better job? And when you do that, that takes you to step number three, which stands for personalize and connect. I said earlier, Super Fandom is created in the intersection of your story and every customer story. You've got to show your customers how you matter in their lives. You've got to show them how you're making their lives better, and when you do that, they're not going to be looking for other solutions. And one thing can I like? Can I talk about something that is a pet peeve of mind for just a second? Yes, please. I feel like when people think about connecting, they're like, oh, I need to put what I do in the context of what my customers understand, and somewhere along the line, I don't know who did this the first time, and maybe it was okay fifteen years ago.

I hate more than anything when people price their product in coffee, like if you have your customer for the price of those two law tage you get every day or for the cost of your coffee, you could have stopped doing that, like, do not at first of all, the way your customers spend their money is absolutely none of your business. Second of all, you should never be positioning yourself to based solely on how little you cost, because now what you've done in your customers mind is said, you know, you're worth two dollars a day or you're worth three dollars a day or whatever it is. But like that's just such a terrible idea and you've seen it all the time. You see it in sales copy, you see in a marketing copy, you see it and funnily sequences people are like, Oh, you know, you just give up that coffee day. Like, don't tell me what to give up. Send of Your Business Anyway. Total aside and a little bit on my soapbox, because I see like every day somebody is trying to sell me something that's, you know, for the cost of two coffees a day or for the price of that avocado toast or for less than your netflix subscription, and it's like, get out of my wallet, this is none of your business. Totally. I appreciate that. That's good. Yeah. So, so connecting your story with your customer story, finding out what it is that you can do to make their lives so much better that they would never look for a competitor, they never want to work with anybody else, which leads to step for, which is e, which is exceed expectations. So setting expectations and exceeding them at every point along the way, and then step number five, to finish, out the acronym is are. That stands for a repeat. So that's all about the automation and what you're doing predictably every single time. It's really interesting. I don't know that enough is I'm just thinking about my own interactions as a customer. I don't know how many places is actively or companies or even product types or segments actively manage expectations on the way in, but I think it's such a big deal. You know, our disappointment or our excitement is so specifically a function of expectation. And when we leave it to the customer, of course we may ex start to expect the best that we get be applied in almost every aspect of our lives, even if not every product or service engage with can deliver. For me, like Amazon, like Oh, they told me it is coming in two days, but it showed up like eighteen hours after I ordered it. This is fantastic. You know, not everyone can do that. But absent managing expectations, I think it's I get to decide and I'm bound to be disappointed because I expect the best. Yeah, and you know, I think if two thousand and twenty has shown us anything, it's that there are curveballs, like they are going to be things beyond the scope of our control, but it's so important to communicate with your customers where you stand. One company that shockingly has not done a great job, at least for me personally, managing expectations this year is the Disney store, which is really uncommon because Disney is, you know, usually at the front of the class for everything on CX. But Shop Disneycom has had just crushing delays because of Covid and I think three different times I've ordered from them this year out of necessity because I have a three year old and sometimes there's so few can only get from the Disney Start and each time the little notice at the top has been it's you, your order will be delayed. It's going to take about two weeks or maybe longer, and that's the language and it's like that's when you've got a three year old who's waiting on the spider man toy they're buying with their birthday money. Two weeks or maybe longer is not like a great window. And I think the longest, the longest order that fulfilment time from Disney this year was twenty six days. It took twenty six days from when I placed my order to win the ordership, and it no time during that twenty six window was there like a Domino's pizza tracker experience where somebody reached out and said, hey, you're still a line, we haven't forgot about it, you know, we're just not to your order yet. It's just I didn't hear anything for almost four weeks and then it was hey, this is shipping, and...

...then when it when it showed up, only like half the stuff that we had ordered was there. I'm guessing because of the you know they had. They run out of the you know, because fulfilment was so behind. So it's so important to manage your customers expectations. They don't expect you to be perfect, but they do expect you to communicate and let them know what is and isn't beyond the scope of your control and what you are or aren't doing about those factors. Really good expectations story and a great reference along the way, by the way, that that Domino's pizza tracker. So I do not personally enjoy dominos pizza, but my son does, loves it, and I'll never forget. This is years ago now, but the first time we placed an online order to go pick up you know, a few blocks away, the clarity of exact actually what's going on, and I don't know if the names they put on the screen or the actual names of the people working at that particular location, I would assume they are. Why? Why Reference Steve Off? Steve isn't working at this place, or Jeff or Tina or whatever. But it was just so clear in terms of expectation management and as soon as, you know, got to stage three, we know it was time to jump in the car and head over there because it would be straight out of the oven when we arrived. And it's just such a good example of managing expectations and that transparency of kind of what's going on. So this two weeks or maybe longer, is like I have no idea why and so and you see that. I mean I don't know if it's a pet peeve of mind, but I see this like covid could cause delays or is causing delays, like even today, months and months and months later, like if it was, you know, in that initial ninety or even hundred and eighty day window where everyone's trying to figure out how are we going to, you know, adjust our operations to fit this situation? I feel a little bit better about it, but I think absent any level of detail or transparency about how covid is affecting this flow. Like I just Leet Beg so many questions right. Yeah, it's I mean, if we look at it on a bigger level, I think you know, everyone is experiencing that, even from our government. Right, like I it's feel as feels like that's the story of two thousand and twenty. is like the year without a plan or the year with constantly changing plans because nobody knew what was going to happen tomorrow. But for your customer, is like that's like you said, that's not enough, especially at the point where we're at now. I can just be like it's probably going to be delays, you may or may not get this, we may or may not be open tomorrow, like it's just it's infuriating and a time where you should be working harder than ever to make your customers experience better in their lives easier, because everyone has so much going on right now that even one little thing being easier than anticipated could turn somebody's day around. Right now. You can make customers for life by making things just a little bit easier than somebody anticipates in a way that we've never experienced in any point in history. Right now. Such a good reference point there. I think we so often think about the experiences that were creating and delivering in our own context or relative to competitors. But this idea of stepping out and saying everything is a little bit more uncertain than it was at this time eighteen months ago, and so if I can provide a little bit more certainty or a little bit more surprise or exceed expectations a little bit, it's going to count for more than it would in an, I'm air quoting, like normal environment. So I want to do something funny. You've already gone through supe are super. I want to do one more of these because you did a great year in this is still in the middle of it as we're recording this, still in the middle of this great video series, the ABC's of creating super fans, and I would love for you to take five of them and I would love for you to do for everyone listening. Brittany's last name is Hodakhoda K H is, for happiness. Tell us about h yes, ages for happiness, and I am a huge believer that no matter what you do, no matter what your industry is, it pays off to be in the happy happiness business. Try to make your customers happy every single time. Every interaction that you...

...have throughout your day is either going to be a net negative and net positive or a net neutral for the person you're engaging with. It's going to make them feel better, worse, or it's going to be like a nothing burger that they forget a few seconds later, emotionally speaking. So do the extent that you can make as many of those interactions, whether it's over email, text, DM phone, in real life, if we ever get to do that again, whatever it is, you can make that person happier than they were when when that exchange started. You're going to create superfans really good in that big that big nothing burger is probably the most dangerous, because people who are unhappy will often bring it to your attention or should be a parent at some level, and you can turn that around the game, do a straight one hundred and eighty on that. But it's that big silent board, unengaged, not happy, not unhappy group. That is the group that is probably most likely to be disloyal, to shop around and not become super fanatical. Oh H, I would say is on that real quick pace. The biggest threat to business, which gets like no airtime, no publicity. I feel like people should be talking about this so much. The biggest threat to every business is apathy. It snapping people who you know are angry. It's not the people who have lower awareness, it's the people who are like men and then they move on and try something else because you didn't deliver something that was a memorable enough. Yeah, if they express their anger, at least they care and it gives you something to react to and improve and again pull the one hundred and eighty. Okay, the O of creating super fans. I don't know this one is yet. Right stands for obsession. You should be obsessed with creating amazing customer experiences, because if you are not, your competitors will be awesome. D D stands for data, more important than ever before. There is no excuse, like if you aren't tracking enough metrics about customer happiness, it's because you're not trying harden. It is so, so easy to get both qualitative and quantitative data from your customers and from we were target audiences, that there's no excuse for not tracking and acting on data on and exceedingly regular basis, like no amount. Even if your company of one, you should be tracking things and constantly iterating based on your data. Yeah, and in your as you ran through super I think it was p four personalize you. You made me think about, you know, connecting with the individual but then also connecting with groups. And there are tools that you can use and most of the most companies have some version of these things in place already. But to the individual person, I don't think enough people just pick up the phone and reach out to people or, you know, send a truly personal message and reach out to engage over the phone or over zoom call or whatever, for over a bomb on video. Come on for about the best way to personalize and connector right it really is. It's a really good way for people to know that you're actually just reaching out to those people and I found that, by the way, that's for me personally. That's been a huge benefit over the years as I've built personal relationships with hundreds of our customers. Is the benefit of asynchronous right where I can, you know, reach out to five people between seven thirty and forty five in the morning and then you know, a couple of them will get back to me same day, a couple of the next day, a couple of the next week. But you know, you get all this rich feedback but in the convenience of an asynchronous communication. But getting on a live call, whether it's a phone call or video call, is also like it's so simple that I think so many people overlook it and instead we're looking to data wrangle stuff when there's already some easy quantitative and in this case qualitative feedback that we can get in react to. So H is happiness? Always Obsession? Da's data a it's appreciation. Tell us about appreciation. Appreciation, it's you know, feeling appreciated is such an important part of having a great customer experience. Having your employees feel appreciated by you is probably even more important because, you know, I've consulted with... many companies and what I've seen time and time and time again is it is not possible for employees to provide a better level of cust more service than they feel from leadership. It just does not happen or if it does, it's very short term and totally unsustainable because people will burn out, they will leave. So treating your team well, making sure that they know that they are appreciated and then, you know, passing that same spirit along to your customers. Get an appreciation doesn't just have to be thank you. There's so many ways to express our appreciation. Attention, noticing, perhaps noticing and giving alert to someone that you noticed something that they did. Of course that might be wrapped in a thank you, but this yeah, there's so many things you can do here and I love the bridge that you built there with employee experience and customer experience. The two are absolutely inseparable. And cash. I forget who said it was on a recent episode that I record. It was like I've never met a really excited customer who didn't also have really excited employees that help make them customers like it's just it's that that transfer of emotion is really difficult to do any other way. So starting internally is where it's at. K What is K okay, since we're keep in touch all it almost said for kindness now as a hard one, because I feel like, especially in two thousand and twenty, the world can use a little bit more kindness. But I ultimately went with keep in touch because I feel like one mistake that so many marketers make is they think they should reach out to their customers every time they want to talk to their customers instead of reaching out when they have value to add to their customers, when there's something important that they have to say to the customers who want or need to hear it at the right time to add value to the customers. So I always say you should keep in touch with your customers exactly as often as you can provide real value to them and not a single time more. Yeah, and then it is also at some level of sign of appreciation. One of the quotes I like to include, sometimes, depending on what I'm talking about and who I'm talking to or with, is William James Father, popularly known as the father of American psychology. Is the deepest principle of human nature as a craving to be appreciated. In this is again just I want to be seen, I want to be heard, I want to be understood, and keeping in touch is another way to show some level of appreciation, like I care enough about you that I want to stay in front of you and I have something for you, etcetera, etc. Yeah, and it you're so right, and and when done correctly, it is a showing of appreciation versus. We've all gone that friend who, like only ever shows up when they need something. Right, they're like, Hey, I was just thinking about you, Caro, twenty bucks or whatever like. Don't be the business version of that. Don't be the company that only reaches out when you want or need something. Be there to like add value to their lives in a real way and show them that you appreciate them by validating the fact that you know you want to make their lives better. So good in proactive and and frankly, it just I mean going back to the head Xcx ex connection, I think when, when a company operates that way, you can be more proud of your work. You know, instead of just reaching out to ask, ask, ask, like take, take, take that you lead with the give, generally speaking, and and the rest just kind of falls out from there. A hundred percent. And and it's obvious the companies who have that dedication to the EXCX. You see it. You see it in you know, the Roi. You see it and the amount of retention and referrals, and you know, those are the things that are so important and those principles can work for every single company, every single person watching or listening to this right now, no matter what industry you're and if you if you take the time to figure out how to how to make your customers lives better at scale, you are going to be in business for a very long time. It's fantastic. When did this...

...occur to you, super fandom in general, like, where were you in your life? When did it click for you? Did the term Super Fan just pop up to you, or did you like catch it in passing your like that's it, like how did all of like how did we, how did you and I get here today talking about Super Fans? Brittain here? Okay, so this is really funny. I mean I always was obsessed with music. I always wanted to work in the music industry, but my my official entry into the world of Super Fandom was when I was sixteen years old. I went two good jobs shadow at a radio station in my hometown for like a school assignment. I was like a sophomore, I think, in high school. Hey, and I said, I really want to work here. Is there anything I can do and the promotions manager said, well, you look like you're about the right size to be a mascot. Do you want to see if you've fit in our mascot suit? And I was like yes, I would love to be your mascot. So I get mascot steing the be okay, Kay, LOO's a lot like mighty mouse. My husband is like, I'm surprised you guys didn't get like a copyright infringement's use suit, because definitely look like binding mouse. But sting the bee was the mascot for the for be ninety eight, the state our radio station in Fortsmouth, Arkansas, and so my maiden name was Britney Jones and I just happen to have a good fortune that this was happening along the same time that the movie bridget Jones diary was being made into a movie. And the station manager said we've got a Brittany Jones. What can we do? And you know, spoof that Bridget Jones thing and call it Britney Jones diary. And in my infinite wisdom, is a sixteen year old, I said, well, what if I go hang out with all of the artist and just write about it? You're always talking about driving traffic to the radio station website. What if I just, you know, hang out with all the rocksters when they come to town? I don't will be like, you know what happened when Brittany went bowling with blank on wound and eighty two or whatever, and the manager was like, yeah, that's great, yes, we'll set that up, we'll talk to all the label or ups and make it happen. Just make a list of the shows you want to go to, and I was like, are you kidding, like for Real, like, did that just become my job as a sixteen year old? So I was. I was literally getting paid to hang out with rock stars and Brag about it on the Internet when I was sixteen and seventeen years old, which completely ruined any chance of me ever having like a real job right like at that point, once it sort of opens your eyes as the teenager that there are there are these ways to make money. So anyway, so I started working really closely with, you know, all these these different people in the entertainment industry, because by doing that I was working with publicists, managers and labels and I became really obsessed with why some of these amazing bands that I was seeing play at festivals early on in their careers turned into huge superstars and others didn't. I was like, what is it? What is the thing that makes some bands take off and become the biggest acts in the world and others sort of fade away? And I started studying it. I started trying to, you know, find correlations and look for it. Was At the song? Was it the tour? Was it the the the AD support? And when I found and, as I you know, continued on. I graduated from college, went to go work at a label, the thing that I could always draw your rectline to was the connection to the fans the artist, like all other things equal, the artists that are going to be the most successful, the ones that are going to have incredible careers, are the ones that prioritize their fans, making those connections becoming part of their stories, part of their lives, and every single huge started day. You can draw a direct line back to their fan engagement, and so I became really obsessed with that. I went to Grad School, I studied marketing, I was studying retail at the time and trying to figure out again, like what, what is? What is the correlation here how to brands become the go to for their customers and and it's the exact same thing. Customer engagement is the same in any you know, corporate environment as it is in the entertainment world. It's taking the time to create those connections. So that's when I became obsessed with superfandom, I guess, when I was sixteen years old, and then through the years it expanded to to me looking at what some people would say aren't as fun or exciting industries, but to me it's even more exciting because that's when their real challenges are. Like it's easy to have somebody become a super fan in an...

...arena environment where it's an amazing rock show. It's tougher when you're, you know, selling tax services online like those like if you can do that, that's when you know you're a rock star. Absolutely. And the other thing too, is that you know we may never be. I mean you talked about some of the industries not being particularly sexy, you know, like a a rock star or a touring band situation would be. But at some level you can maybe even have more impact on their lives, like in a more immediate way. I mean there's there's something like emotional and uplifting and like when music is so tied to so many memories and all these other things. So we may never reach that level, but we can affect people's lives every single day in meaningful ways and in ways that they can remember and talk about. If you are listening to this episode and you're here at this stage of the conversation, you're obviously enjoying it, you're obviously into it. Here are two other episodes that I know you will enjoy. One is episode sixty three with David Muirman Scott, who's the offer author of US several best seller is, including fan accuracy, which we called that conversation Episode Sixty Three with David Merriman Scott. We call that creating fans through human connection and like you, Brittany, his story is very based in music. His Band of choice is, grateful, dead, but he we talked a bit about it and he writes about it in his book and that relationship there. And then episode fifty five with Chef Hiken, who is a customer service and customer experience expert. We call that creating an amazing experience by being slightly better than average and you and I were in a lot of those themes here in this conversation to with, especially or on expectation management and just being a little bit better all of the time. Like this, can this blend of consistency, like I'm consistently a little bit better than expectations and I'm consistently a little bit better than alternatives, is going to make me amazing and perhaps turn me into a super fan. So, Brittany, before I let you go and thank you for super thank you for Kodak and thank you for all your time and your stories. Has Been Really Fun. I would love to know if there's someone that you'd like to thank or mention for the positive impact that she or he has had on your life or your career. And you've already mentioned a couple brands and companies, but maybe give me one more that you really appreciate for the experience that they deliver for you as a customer. You know, one brand that I want to give us out out to is Walmart with their new service, Walmart plus, and I don't know, have you had and have you had the chance to try out Walmart plus yet? I have not. It's, you know, it's so funny. I feel like every headline you read about Walmart is like Walmart versus Amazon. Who's going to win the war? Right, like that's such a tired trope of like, you know, saying that these two are constantly competing, and it's like, well, I know who's going to win. The customer like literally all of the customers are the one. But yeah, on both sides of the equation. Every time one innovates to keep up with the other. But Walmart lunch launched their Walmart plus service earlier this year, which let you get groceries delivered. They lets you get stuff from Walmartcom for free shipping with no minimum like there's all these products, you know, all these little benefits. But the really cool thing about it is shopping in store contactless. So you can use your Walmart APP, you can go into the store, you just skin everything in your cart and then on the way out, somebody scans your phone and spot checks like two items. Such a great experience. I know a lot of retailers are trying to do the contactless experience because of covid and just because of convenient but I didn't have tested out six or seven of them. For Sure Walmart is the most seamless. It's the best. They did such a great job delivering that experience between your phone in the car. There's no at least the Times I've used it, they haven't had any of the annoyances that you run into sometimes with the other people trying to do it. So I can't imagine ever going back to even like self checkout. Now, if self checkouts the only option, I'm like, AH, how annoying. So Walmart plus definitely on the innovation side. And in terms of who I want to think, I wouldn't think my husband, Jeff. He is amazing. He is worked in sales for a...

...couple of decades and and first of all he's just like a way better person than me. He's like way nicer than me. He creates super fans everywhere he goes, including me. I met him, was like, how do I trick that guy into falling in love with me and marrying me? But he is such an amazing such an amazing salesperson and advocate for making sure that everything you do improves the people, the lives of the people around you. So shout out to hubs really well watches this. I'm not going to tell him. Awesome, maybe I'll send it to him. I'll just cut, I'll turn that out and send it straight to him and it will make his day. I can't do be like hey, you should watch your wife in this podcast and don't say anything and we'll just see if you watch this to the end. Okay, I'll follow your lead on that. That's good. How we've got to all the kids, right. How can someone follow up with you like, obviously Brittany Hod accom. Where else would you send people what else you're working on? If people like this idea of super fandom and they enjoyed their time with you here, how would how can they continue it? Brittany hardcom is a great destination to that's I should just stop the sentence there. That sounds funny. Yeah, it's a great destination if you're looking to find me, because everything is there. You can sign up for my newsletter. I send it every other week. It's got all kinds of tips and tricks and the latest from companies that are doing a great job of of CX and sales and marketing. And I'm just at Britney HODAC on on all the socials. So whatever your preferred one is, or if you want to send me a note. I'm Brittany and Britney Hod accom. Awesome. I will include some of those things. As if you were a regular or listener, you know that we write all these up with short format, dropping some video clips put the full audio in at bombombcom slash podcast. I also link some of this stuff up, and I will also add that Brittany Ho neckcom is a great destination because there are tons of cool resources. So if you liked the super framework, there's just like more free stuff, like things that will be kind of fun, engaging, provocative and help you start thinking about how to turn your fans into super fans. Brittany, this has been Super Fun. Thank you for joining me. Thank you even I appreciate it. Clear Communication, Human Connection, higher conversion, these are just some of the benefits of adding video to the messages you're sending every day. It's easy to do with just a little guidance. So pick up the official book. Rehumanize Your Business. How personal videos accelerate sales and improve customer experience. Learn more in order today at Bombombcom Book. That's bomb bombcom book. Thanks for listening to the customer experience podcast. Remember the single most important thing you can do today is to create and deliver a better experience for your customers. Continue Learning the latest strategies and tactics by subscribing right now in your favorite podcast player, or visit Bombombcom podcast.

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