The Customer Experience Podcast
The Customer Experience Podcast

Episode · 5 months ago

207. The Upstream Model for More Referrals w/ Justin Stoddart

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

If you build it…they probably won’t come. 

So how do you make them? A key way to do that is by positioning yourself, and what you’ve built, differently. 

You’ve got to position yourself in a way that is unique and not easily duplicated. Make yourself the valuable commodity of the conversation and then, you have something of value that will bring people in. 

Hear our conversation with Justin Stoddart, Productivity Expert and Founder & CEO at Think Bigger:

  • Why the difference between doing and becoming is essential 
  • How to communicate with potential clients to quantify and demonstrate value
  • What it means to create an upstream business model 
  • Why solving problems not related to your business excels your business 

More information about Justin Stoddart and today’s topics:

Subscribe, listen, and rate/review the Customer Experience Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon, or Google Podcasts, and find more episodes on our blog.

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. If you've ever wondered how to stay ahead of the ever advancing technology that threatens to remove you from the sales process, if you've ever struggled to break through all the noise and competition to stand out in a meaningful way, or if you've ever worked to win business based on integrity, value and relationships, you're going to enjoy today's conversation about moving upstream. Our guest coaches and trains people to scale their referral businesses without relying on friends and clients. He's also the host of the think bigger podcast and the author of the Upstream Model Justin Stoddart. Welcome to the customer experience podcast, Ethan. Such a pleasure to be here, my friend. Thank you. Yeah, I'm really looking forward to the conversation. The themes that you think about teach on right on are things that I dwell on myself. I love your story and will get into it a bit, because you developed a lot of this trying to solve your own problems, which is a story I hear from a variety of entrepreneurs on a variety of different paths, and so I'm excited to get into that. But we're going to start Justin where we always do, which is customer experience. When I say that, what does it mean to you? You know, I love it. I think, I believe that the customer experience starts before you meet the customer. What I mean by that is people are are trained how to treat you based on where they find you. What I mean by that is when people find you, whether it be online or whether you prospect into them, they typically, for example, if you interrupt somebody's Day, they feel like it's okay for them to interrupt you, right, and so the client relationship starts off on those terms, whereas if you're referred in from someone that they have great respect for, the the kind of ethics that exist are that I'm going to treat you with the same respect that I have for the person that referred you. So I believe, again, that setting up in creating a proper frame for customer experience starts even before you ever meet the customer and and starts on how you decide to get introduced to that customer. I love it. Like underneath all of that is is this really important idea that we haven't talked about on this show enough, which is that you have this opportunity all of the time to establish what the relationship is going to be like before it exists at all. And so if you treat people transactionally, and you gave a couple good examples, but like, you know, if you and we're going to die, know I could already tell where to dive like into these themes. But you know, if you treat people transactionally and you're running a bunch of kind of like flashy, shallow ads, you know, that are kind of just attention grabbing, like that's kind of how you how I'm going to expect this relationship to go, that it's going to be this transactional thing, and if it's works for me, it works for me, versus, you know, getting a really warm introduction that's got some depth or weight to it, and then that's a different expectation to step into and fulfill, and so I the experience. It really is about expectations and I like the way that you talk about the entry point being the scene setter for all of it. I'm going to read you a line from your own book. I'm going to actually do that a couple of times during this conversation. Much of the demand for a better experience stems from the client experience found in other industries. I think it's a really good point, but I'd love for you to elaborate on it. So talk about some of the industries that you work into, that you've worked in in the past, that you serve today, and some industries besides those that you're learning things from and bringing...

...into these, into these other industries that you are active in. I love it. So I was a forward developer, home builder, all right. So I dealt with luxury custom clients and there's a certain level of care and responsiveness and concern that that you have to deal when you're dealing with somebody's largest investment and really something that they're paying a lot of money for and they're putting their character into their personality, their lifestyle. It just if you if you can't do that, if you can't customize your experience for them, then you're not going to last long in that industry. Right. That's me that I learned. I think part of the thing that I had to study is other industries that do a really good job of creating a process around, because you still have to have a profitable business, but around the client. You know the client concerns. So you look at places like Nordstrum's, right where you walk. In fact, we just held up in person event here in Portland a few weeks ago in a luxury custom. I should say luxury custom, but a luxury agent was telling the story of he used to work at myern frank when he was a kid and the experience that he had working there was very different than when he walks into a macy's now when you can't find anybody. Everything's got a cradle on one rack. Right. They've just had to try and compete in this age where so many people shop online. You walk into a Nordstrom store and it's very different. There's music playing, somebody walks almost a personal shop ring shopping experience. And he said not all, not everyone's looking for that, but there are clients that are still looking for that and I think anytime you want to remain at the center of a transaction and you want to remain well paid and you want clients to not just be willing to wait for you to call them back before jump into the next provider, but also be willing to pay for you, that you have to think through that kind of client. What is it that they expect? Because if you just mimic the kind of experience you get from a fast food restaurant, that kind of person is not going to be attracted to want to work with you. They expect something different. So you have to deliver something different. Yeah, and also implied in that is this. You know, there are a variety of ways to go to market. There are fasterod restaurants and they're fine dining restaurants and everything in between, and I think that the problems arise when there's a discrepancy between those two. You think you're doing x, but you're actually delivering you know x, you know, and you're perhaps priced the wrong way as well. And so I think as long as those things a line, they can work, but it's at misalignment and or looking at your competitors to figure out what you should be doing. I mean that's always a mistake as well. It can be for sure, and I think again, one of the things that I think we get wrong in service based professions is we misread that everybody wants only convenience. Right, when I am buying shoes online, which is an example I talked about in the book, like I'm okay looking at them online and making a buying decision knowing that I can send them back. Now when I'm buying a home, right, that's that's going to be an investment much larger than something that I can just return or worst case, right, I eat the hundred twenty bucks because I got it wrong. But I actually want some of some advice, right, I want some advisorship. None. That doesn't mean that I'm still not going to look online and and for my initial opinions of what I want advice on online, but it shouldn't end there. Right, I'm actually willing to pay a premium of some one can deliver more than a premium level of value. So I think whether both in the way we present ourselves in the delivery of our services, we have to always be able to show the client that there is a return on on a premium price based on what they could get from something that's, you know, far from premium, and we have to be delivering on that right, not just charging that, but actually delivering on that, showing people and giving people more value than, you know, far beyond what their pain so good. We're going to actually get into a couple of those things very specifically,...

...but before we go a lot farther and before we even really define the upstream model, I'd love for you to talk about, you know, when and why you create it, kind of like how it developed, like set the scene, define the problem, like what's what was going on in the world around you and your clients and your competitors that demanded a different approach. I was in my mid S. I've been working for a high end custom home builder and had become very proficient building homes. I assumed that it would be just as easy for me to go get new clients as my former employed employer had made it appear. I branched out of my own, had purchased a book, a business and left thing and I say this is going to be as easy as he made it look, and I quickly realized it wasn't. That there was another business that I had not yet learned, which is how do I go get the clients right? I knew once I had the client, I could offer world class service and those luxury custom clients would be very pleased with the way that I treated them versus my competition. What I what I misjudged and and underestimated, was how good I had to be at attracting those clients to me, which I think is any business right. We can have world class service if we don't have clients to apply them on. It doesn't matter. We have to actually get business. So here I am in my mid S and I oh, well, I guess people are going to come to me. I guess I've got to go to them. I reached out to a coaching organization. They began to coach me and they taught me what probably every sales coach ever teaches right, which is it's a numbers game. You just simply need to sort through the numbers. Okay, so build a big database and I'll start to sort through the numbers. Though, challenge was I was twenty five and I was looking for referrals to million dollar clients, and so this sorting process was going slower than I had anticipated and I also now, looking back, I didn't recognize the opportunity cost of playing the numbers game, that if ten percent of my database is converting into a client, or refrain me to a client, which is actual numbers for real estate agents right now, for a sphere, right their sphere, their their clients, their friends, ten percent, ninety percent of those conversations aren't going to produce in a given year. So there's an opportunity cost there. So here I was, my mid twenties, trying to get this figured out and I realize that this is moving way too slow. I'm showing all the out on the projects delivering this high level service. I need to start filling the pipeline and this concept of building a big database and just sorting through it is taken me away from the very reason why I got in the business, which was to have time, discussiony time and money with family, and so I felt a little bit stuck. I knew I had to do something and I realized that, wait a minute, I'm spending a lot of time with people that can't help me. What if I got laser focus on people that could help me? And I looked up stream, so to speak, and saw in the market place somebody who's current clients all were going to need me next. Okay, so I was a home builder at the time and an architectural designer. Every one of his clients is going to need to build it. You have floor plans designed for the very reason of building a home, not to hang them on the wall or to have them look pretty like. You do that for that reason. So I knew that he he was a golden goose, if you will, right, he had all the clients that I wanted. So I decided I was going to approach one particular architect and begin to get referrals from him. And then when I showed up at the door, that's exactly what he felt as I was there to get something from him. Right. And so that's where most people, when we're looking at what I now call the upstream model, which is you identify somebody in the market place whose current clients are going to need you next. Right there, the very work of this professional is uncovering the fact that those clients are going to be in need of you next. That's the definition of an upstream partner, not just a good client or something that like. You know that refers you once or twice a year. That's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about someone who, in the course of every day, they're talking with their clients and so they have the propensity to refer you all the time. Right. That's what's unique about an upstream partner. So I don't know if you want me to go into kind of like what I did wrong and then how I eventually figured it out, but but yeah, please seem is it who...

...needed business and the traditional ways were not working for me. Right, yeah, and I would just offer really quickly and I would love to get those elements that everyone listening has an upstream partner, right, like here we're talking about custom home building and architects and but but I hope that that you can hear for yourself what is upstream from me. Who are those people? What conversations should I should my name or my company name be in on a very, very regular basis? And then how do I integrate myself into their business in a meaningful way? I love it, but exactly that's everybody here could be deciding. Okay, I'm going to go prospect and play the numbers game, right, which I would encourage you that, even if you can make the numbers work, just like you, you teach so masterfully, even about there's there's an opportunity costs with digital pollution. Right, there's an opportunity cost when you're having conversations with people that either don't want to talk to you or don't need your services. So how do you realign and really come into alignments where you're having conversations with people who need you right? And it sounds like an ultruistic, like unreal world, but it doesn't have to be it. You don't. This isn't some fairytale world where you were you only talk to people that need you. It just depends upon you again realigning the conversations to be where these people are at right. And how do you find that? Well, again, if you if you were to look at what you do for a living, whether it's real estate, whether it's building, whether it's building widgets, whatever it is, some other professional right now has a relationship with that client they're serving in need that precedes the need that you solve. So you can reverse engineering say, okay, who already has a relationship with this person? Once you identify that upstream partner, right, you you walk up stream, right, which is exactly what I had to do and me with architect. Now, once you've identified that person, now the process can really begin. And sometimes people get stuck on that. They're like, well, I don't know who would be a good upstream partner. Right. Well, I would always encourage you going even backwards, for there's to say who are the clients that I really love to serve? Who are the ones that I don't have to fake it and be like, I'm going to put a smile on my face. No, but I actually genuinely like you. I genuinely likes. I genuinely like solving your problem. Right. The whole promise of this podcast, right, is it's creating a great customer experience and it's hard to fake that for too long. You need to actually genuinely love giving that experience. Is One way to do it really well is actually find people who you love to serve, you love solving those problems. Right. So I think even before you say oh, that person would be a good upstream partner, it's like, yeah, but do I like the clients that they're referring to me? The answers no, then go find somebody else. Go find somebody else who can get you to the client you actually like. Right. Once you identify who that upstream partner is, then the process needs to look different than how I approached my first architect, right. Yeah, so let's pick back up on that. so you approached him. He could tell that you were to look like hey, man, I he bis chess, which which was essentially mean it. It wasn't a blanket numbers game scenario, but you were still kind of treating him. But the way I read it, in the way I hear it here in the conversation, a little bit like he was a number, like he was a not as respectful as as I'm sure you ironed out. So when I walked in the door of the architect, I was coming in with a stack of my business cards and a brochure because I was there to solve his problems. Right. You see the irony in this, right, like I was there to solve the problem that he needed a builder to refer to. Know he didn't. Let's be honest, he did not need another builder to bid on his projects, that he had plenty of those. So in all honestly, I was not there to solve his problem. I was there to solve my problem and I wanted to hire him without pay to be my salesperson. Right. And that's oftentimes how...

...when we I did to fined up stream partner. And why most people don't ever get this model to actually work is because they put on the hat and the brain of like this person already loves me, they want to support me, of course, right, and I'm going to go in and have them solve my problem. It doesn't work that way. Right. We're dealing with other business professionals who already have plenty of concerns building their own business. They're not going to desert that to help you build yours. That's not going to work. And so my first approach I was wise enough to say, Hey, this upstream concept, I think is to work for me, but I was ignorant enough to think that that approach would work. So I walked in, began my pitch of my dog and pony show and quickly I could read his body language to be like this really isn't going to work. Sure enough, didn't get any referrals from Ken. I tried a different approach, and this is this is where I started to unlock like hey, this can work. is rather than showing up and having to sell myself to the architect, I needed to already be sold. He needs to already know me be excited to meet with me because of the way that I was introduced. So once you can master that of getting a key introduction. So what I did is I went to an interior designer who loved me. We'd work together. She was a big Fan of mine and I knew that she knew jared, the architectural designer who I wanted to be in business with, and I said, Nicole, I need your help. I really would love to be in business with jared. I know if I show up as a stranger, as a solicitor, I'll be treated as such, rightfully, so will you introduce me and, by the way, can I tell you how to introduce me so that I stand out from other builders? She agreed, she was my fan. My first meeting with jared was very different than my meeting with Ken. It lasted longer because he already knew me. I can now step in at a fide and the most important thing is I didn't have to talk about myself, because as soon as we start selling ourselves, people start unselling right from us. And so because I was able to do that, I was able to show up, not as a vendor, definitely not as a solicitor, but as a peer. And once you can be in a conversation as a peer, now know there's there's opportunity to really progress this relationship because you're they're not presenting. Your there listening and getting them to present to you. Your uncovering. The whole goal of that meeting is to get them to identify what's missing in their business. Once you can identify what's missing in their business, now mission accomplished. You can leave that meeting and go to work, based on who you know and what you know, to add value to their business. Now you're now you're different. Right, you were different in the moment that you were introduced. You were a lot different when you showed up and didn't talk about yourself. Now you're totally different because you're adding unsolicited value to help solve a problem that you identified really mattered to them. Right, and that would you take on a problem that isn't related to I think I already know the answer, but I want this to be very clear. Are you solving, identifying and solving problems that aren't related at all to Your Business. It's a great question. Sometimes we get stuck in the thought of like, well, I'm a home builder, I build homes. I guess the problems I have to solve are related to home building. If you think that way, you're thinking like your competition. Right, if they've taken the step beyond being a solicitor, they're still thinking too small. The goal is really to say what's the biggest problem that I could possibly solve? It might have nothing to do with what you do for a living and even it might even be better that it's not, because now you've really set yourself apart. So which ared identified that his weakness was marketing. Right, he had a great business, but nobody, like not enough people, knew who he was. So I went to work in my network to identify some marketing specialists that would help him get on the map. Right, had nothing to do with building homes. Now, could I have added value around around building? Sure, and I'm not seeing that that would have been a bad idea. But what I uncovered and what made me unique is it I'm now stepping in almost as a business consultants to help him grow, not as just another vendor who's built a...

...better mousetrap. Right. So the last step, right, once you've now not just audition for the part, but you've won the part of being a part of their business. Now the next step is where all the magic happens and it's where you add value to their clients. Okay, so step for was you add value to them their business, and now they like you. Right, they want to have they see a path that where they're at and where they want to be at is going to be faster if you're accompanying them. Right, if you're there too. So the last step is, what is a need that that their clients have that I could offer to this upstream partner, and the reason for that is because, one now your leverage point for them. You're helping to elevate their client experience and it's no mystery that now you're getting early access to their clients. Right, as soon as you can, I identify something that they need, that their clients need. Now you're no longer relying upon that fashional to refer you because they like you and you took him to lunch and they want to help you. Now World Kay without as well, but that just takes a lot of time and it's very inconsistent because they have to remember that they like you and have to remember the to refer you and they're doing it for you, not for them, which human nature is. That's going to be inconsistent. But if you can say no, that upstream partner is doing it because it's good for them and for their clients, get ready. I hope you have some referral systems like bill, some infrastructure and plays, because you might start to get introduced to a lot of their clients right which is exactly what you want and that's how you scale again, a referral relationship based business. Love it. I'm going to recap really briefly, just kind of going through some of my own notes from the book. I mean, we've seen the problem, or you've talked through the problem of, you know, warm lead in sorting through that on a numbers basis and how time consuming and how few people are actually going to be probably in the market in any given time, the cold, the cold challenge and creating digital pollution, etc. So this idea of going up stream to people who are already working with your client that you would be a natural next step for or similar and a couple quotes around that the further upstream I went, the less crowded it was. Love that. So immediately you shake a lot of the competition. And then too, and you already demonstrated this over the last three to five minutes, as a service industry professional, it doesn't take much to stand out in the eyes of upstream referral partners, because those people are coming as vendors, but you've already carved this path of vendor to peer and then, essentially to like it, an informal business partner where you're deeply integrated in generating value not just for them but also for their clients, which makes you at some point indispensable. I want to read you another quote and turn it into a question. The upstream model teaches you how to get more referrals from fewer relationships, while teaching you not just how to do but how to become. Talk to me a little bit. I've heard this language a little bit before, but I've never gone into it and we certainly haven't had this conversation on the show in two hundred plus episodes. Talk about the difference between doing and becoming. Begets again, if the goal is to stand out if the goal is to enter into a client's life unique to where, again, they're willing to wait for you and pay for you, which creates creed income and it creates a great quality of life. Right, you're not having to be an on call doctor, running and jumping because that clients going to go somewhere else. Right. Your your anti coome commoditized. You are unique. In order to get there, you've got a position yourself differently. You've got a position yourself in such a way that people can't easily duplicate what you've done. And so a key way to do that right is to be willing to do things that other people are willing to do, and sometimes that...

...things like, well, that's a total distraction for my business. It's not if you're doing it for the right person. Right, if you're doing it for just people in your database and you're going above and beyond to help build their business when it has no relationship to creating a return your business, I agree, that's a great way to probably get yourself in trouble. Right, but if you can identify, going back to who are the right people that I should be doing this for, and then really spending the time to add unique value to them. You really set yourself apart right and and you have the ability at that point to to be able to invest in ways that your competition is not willing to invest. Not if I answer the question. Yeah, that's good. And again, it's not about liking you as much as it is about needing you when you when you do it. Well, I'm going to read another quote. You already kind of talked about value a little bit, but I really want to just like hammer this in a little bit and get a little bit more context from you on it. Another quote. Value is defined is the difference between what you are, sorry, between what you, as a professional, give versus what you charge. The greater your value, the more likely you are to be invited to remain at the center of the transaction. Walk through this a little bit for us. I mean, I think that the basic principle is pretty straightforward, but there's obviously nuance in there. Yeah, I'm going to actually one portion of the question that I forgot to answer, the last one, the difference between do and become, and then I'll answer the second one as well. Yeah, please. It's common and this is probably where I didn't close the loop. It's common for people to be able to do right. It's uncommon for people to become because becoming this harder. It's easy to say, Oh, I'll go do this, I'll oh, I learned this tactic, I'll go do this tactic. It takes something more and something that's not easy to duplicate or replicate. So how do you? How do you do that? When you do enough, you become and when you focus on becoming, you you you become faster. Right. So I think that may be kind of close a loop on the yeah, good. Remind me of the next question. You ask value. It's the between what you give versus what you charge and of course, the greater the value, the more welcome you'll be in more rooms for longer parts of time of it. So get it. And this definition, I don't. I don't. I can't take credit for it. Came from the book the Givers Gain Right, which is value is defined as what you charge, or no, sorry, the value that you bring what you charge. In the word, there needs to be a Delta there. If you're simply receiving the same amount of value and let's say currency, that you are giving, if that's break even, right, you want there to be an Roi on the investment that people make. In fact, if you can have in your clients mind this shift to go from you're no longer an expense but you're an investment, now of a sudden you are again able to play in a league that others aren't able to play in, and price becomes irrelevant. Right when you have investment, it's true investment. If it's a good investment, you want to put more money in that, not less. You're not trying to minimize you want to minimize expenses and increase investments. So how do you do that? Will you have to, number one, be good at actually identifying, like, what is the return that they're going to get by using your services? And a lot of times agents do this or professionals do this, they just aren't good at telling the story afterward of how they did it right. But if you could actually say, okay, I charge you a full fee or I I charge of you know, X Y Z amount for this product and here's the benefit that you get from it, and you can quantify, not just from an emotional standpoint but from a dollars and sense standpoint, that here's the return, that price becomes irrelevant for the right customer, right they recognize that, hey, this is this is the professional because if this is an investment, not an expense. Yeah, and I think you did a great job in the book of going through, and I guess we'll talk about it for a minute here, communicating that Roi Think, and and...

...even just communicating the value. I mean, if you can communicate the Roi even better, but I think so many of us are just looking to keep people informed, you know, kind of what's going on versus, and I'll quote you to yourself again, reach out to a client at systematic and predetermined times during the transaction to communicate in a natural, human and genuine one way to let the client know two things, what just happened and what's coming next, and then, certainly afterward, reitering the value that was delivered in that process. Talk a little bit about communication strategies, things people do wrong, or maybe like a lesson you learned along the way about how better to communicate with people during and certainly after transactions, and I love it. Thank you for bringing this up and really reminding me what's well, what's in the book. I think that's why you and I felt such a close connection right away. It's like what most people do when they're communicating, not just with prospects, we can with customers. Is a little bit of pollution, right. It's this prepackage. Here you go. I know I'm supposed to communicate with you, so here it goes, whereas we're missing such an opportunity there, right, and and and kind of the point that you're quoting here is that, yes, you should have a process around this, because it's really difficult to do this without some sort of system of process in place. But when you're communicating, don't the the standard that you should minimum follow is exactly what you said, which is here's what, here's what just happened and here's what's happening next. People are great communicators. That's what they do. Now, taking that to the next level, it's where you can really begin to quantify and demonstrate your value would be to say here's what just happened and here's here's why we did this. The common approach would have been to do this, but let me tell you what would have happened to had we taken that common approach. Instead, we did this because this is going to create this return, right, so it's going deeper again. Kind of the basics are here's, here's what happened, here's what's happening next, which is even uncommon. But for you to say here's what happened and here's what's unique about what we did here and why and the return for you. Now of a sudden they recognize the value and you and the next step is the same thing, which is and here's what's here's what is going to happen next. And the common thing would be to do this, what you know, many of my industry would do, and I don't know if you go that route because you don't necessarily wanted down to the professionals, right, but I think at least in a common practice would be to do this. Here's what I have my clients to do. And here's why. Now, every time you communicate, you're not only reinforcing that you know what's going on, but you're reinforcing the fact that you're consciously taking them down a path that's more profitable and more beneficial for them. It's marketing to your existing clients which makes them want to market for you for a lifetime. Yeah, and it's interesting too. I just think about you know, my own life. Like, even stepping outside of all business related things in general, I can think about five or ten things, think about a name, five or ten things that are interesting to me because I just knew, I learned a little bit more about them. So, for example, my son is fascinated by roller coasters. He knows all the manufacturers, he knows all the riot elements, he knows, you know, week I can, I can personally now tell who made a lot of roller coasters, which manufacture based on the track and the way the track looks. They became a lot more interesting to me than just like, oh, it goes up, it goes down, it goes upside down, this one's purple, this one's read, this one's fast, this one's wild, you know, like the more you understand something, I think, the more interesting it becomes. And so just I even appreciate this from the idea of welcoming people into the thought process and the decisionmaking process and doing it through their own lens.

So at some level the communication you're advocating for, of course let's people, reminds people that you are working for them period. Hey, I'm doing stuff, things are happening, I know what it is you know, and it keeps them a step ahead. Communicating the value and the thought process in the approach kind of welcomes them into it a little bit and, you know, some people might probably want to go deeper than that and other people will just appreciate it for what it is, which, Oh, this dudes an expert. He knows what he's talking about. I don't know what he's talking about, but he knows what he's talking about and it seems to be benefiting me. So so much good advice there. Video. You use video in a variety of ways. You said hundreds of videos from bombomb. All, this is not a bombomb advertisement. Use Video and social a lot. Just talk about where video fits in with communication, with the upstream model, like what was the Yaha moment for you and kind of what our where's some misstop oportunities that people are overlooking? I think it a couple different ways that I use video right one is that I'm speaking to the masses and I think that there's an important branding component there. I had this a high there's a couple hours away from where we live there's a plate place called great wolfladge. We mean some you know what that is like water slide bonanza, right. Kids just love it. And this was early in my days where I decided to do it like a like I said, daily live video, like on facebook, when facebook live was pretty early on. Said I'm just going to do one of these day. I had a mentor told me that if you do like, the first one hundred videos that you do are not for your audience, there for you to figure out what you want to talk about. I took them up on that and I just start doing live videos. Some of them were goods, one were awful, right, but it was just like I got started. And what was interesting to me is I went away turn off the phone. I'm not always great at that, but at that particular time I did. Okay, and I can. I go to my phone. There were all these comments of people who were talking about what I had said and I thought I was with my family, but my face and my voice and my ideas were in front of my ideal clients. I thought that's really powerful, right, this leverage point of typically we've talked about this, this concept in our world of maybe can we actually clone sheep? What about clone humans? Is this possible? Right? And although that that gets into a whole different conversation. The reality of like video gives us the ability to some degree, to be in front of our customers when we're not necessarily in front of our customers, which is super powerful. That's where one from a video. That I believe is is very important people to get to get to know you right now. It's one thing to have people get to know you, it's another thing for them to feel like you know them right and that's the other part of video that I love. What bombm does right. I'm a little user of the product for that reason is it allows me to to speak directly to somebody. We've all heard the adage that people don't care how much you know till they know how much you care. It's interesting how much, when I send a personal video to somebody, how much that influences their desire to want to watch my public videos. Right. So, if you're speaking a lot and a lot of people are listening, maybe because you're only speaking to the masses, which is a good start. But if you really want to take it to another level is show people that they, as a individual, single human being, used their name talk about something specific to them. They feels very antibox right, the anti like commodity. Right, it feels very personal, very unique, and watch what happens. Right, you might decide that I don't necessarily need the masses, I just need it, which is very consistent with the upstream model, right is it? I don't necessarily need to have like thousands and tens of thousands of relationships, I just need a few of the right relationships and they'll bring me into the relationship with of the people that I need to be in business with. And yet I I don't have all day to do that, right will video gives you a very powerful way to very quickly send something very personal. So I think both have an important role. That I've had to choose one over the other, it would be the personal videos, because that, at the end of the day, we're relationship based businesses. Is What helps us to rise above some of the threats that are coming out as yeah, and I specially think that's true if someone has gone through the exercises that you have to identify who are these key people that I can be of significant value to and who can provide...

...significant value to my business in like a sincere, mutually beneficial way, where it's not just, you know, doing favors, but actually building businesses together. Really Powerful, but for win wind down too much. I would love to know. I mean this was this occurred to me as we were talking. There's so many elements of what you're doing that are like I need to think bigger. So like two questions for you here that that is your brand. For folks who are just listening and are not at bombabcom slash podcast looking at video clips, there's a TV like a think bigger off Justin's shoulder here. So two questions that are partly related. One, when did you realize that you had a model that you could kind of codify right and teach, and when did you start branding around thinking bigger? You know the as far as having something to teach, I'd used it in the businesses. In fact, not knowingly, but looking back, my mom had used the principles of the upstream model and building a business. She had a business that offered staffing for in store food demos. So when you walk through Costco, for example, when you get little food samples, she's staffed not in Costco but at other retailers. Thousands of those every weekend. Thousands of sweet little blue haired ladies are out passing out food samples. She hired those people, train them. And how did she how did she scale that? She had a couple key relationships, a couple retailers that she went exclusive with. And I didn't realize till after I'd written the book. I'm like, wait a minute, mom gets credit for all of this, of course, all forever, all right, not just for me, but for the idea. And then and I'd realize that I had that's how I got about surviving, you know, the building industry when I was too young to be building a million dollar homes. And then I just taken that those principles forward as there has to be somebody out there that can help me more than the average consumer, and how to add such value to them that they want me involved with them and their customers. Right. So, once I began to teach it to the real estate industry and see at work, I was like, there's a lot of agents out there that are that are struggling. Right. They want to be by referral, but they're they're choosing to go cold market something because their referrals tap out before their goals. How do I help them scale refral. So I wanted to reach a larger audience and feel like there's an opportunity for me to do so. So I don't know, as I actually before that, which probably that makes sense, I started a podcasts right and for me the time it was it was a creative way to add value to upstream partners, to bring them in front of an audience and have them share their ideas and selfishly, to learn from them. Right, to be able to build a network with really bright people like even and in the process of being around just really bright people that I was always asking them what they do to a big thinker, what do they continue to expand their possibilities, which is kind of the keynote question at the end of my interviews. Began to rub off on me and I realized like, okay, I need to think bigger than just serving this this local market. I need to be able to really expand to a larger market. So I think definitely the thing bigger cause me to think differently and bigger about how I could take these ideas and share them with a large audience. Love it really well done. I appreciate and enjoyed the book. wrote my Amazon Review. Also feel like think bigger is the thing. I think so many people are looking for best practices, but that's just going to make I mean, it could help you in the moment, for sure. I mean I know I've relied on Best Practices and guides that people have written and published over time to kind of take on something that I wasn't that familiar with, but you can't rely on that exclusively. It does take bigger thinking, original thinking, clarity focus to move essentially upstream where it's less noisy and easier to stand out and more permanent. Really well done for anyone listening...

...who is enjoyed their time with Justin here as I have. I've got two more that I think you'll enjoy. Episode One hundred and seventy with Josh Elige, who's also a very interesting entrepreneur. We called that one three steps to sales success, authority, generosity and platform. We'd actually talked about authority, generosity and platform a little bit. I mean your podcast mentioned at the end there Justin is that's a platform that you make available will to other people and it's a key step to your sales success as as it is for Josh. So Josh on one hundred and seventy, then, a little bit more recently, one hundred and eighty two, with Andy Paul, who wrote a book called sell without selling out, and so we call that when the four pillars of selling without selling out. And so if you liked what Justin had to offer here on how to sell without commission breath and hard pressure tactics and treating people like numbers and, in a way, even dehumanizing yourself, you'll also like some of the themes we talked through on one hundred and eighty two with Andy. So, before I let you go, Justin, I'd always love to give people both of these opportunities. The first is to think or mention someone who's had a positive impact on your life, for your career, and yes, it is okay to double down on your mom on this one if you want to, or give you someone else. And then to give a not or a shout out to a company, your brand that really delivers a great experience for you as a customer. This wasn't stayed. So my my brand. I'll start with that, but I will say that the bombomb brand. I know you didn't pay me to say this, you're not even asking me to say this, but I will say that the concept of how do I communicate with people on a personal basis yet it's scale right in a way that allows is is powerful right. So I have to give Kudos to what you guys have built. It's it's been transformative and I think if people aren't familiar with it, they need to take a look at it, and that's completely unsolicit. That's just generally how I feel and having had conversation with you and several other executive from the company, I know the heart of it, the heart of why you do it, which is is is beautiful, so really tick and the digital pollution and allow people to better connect. So and to the person, I'll have to say my wife on this one. We are are the proud parents of six children and she allows me, along leash, which I probably belong on one along lease, to be able to go pursue my passion, which I know it's not all would be totally in favor with with with six kids at home, but she's a superhero. At minimum. I love it a death awesome. How can someone connect with you, learn about the upstream model, check out think bigger as a podcast or any the other work that you're doing. Yeah, I love it even thanks for that opportunity. My website Justin stoddartcom. There's links to PODCASTS, etc. I think you want to connect with me personally, probably on instagram. Just send me a direct message on Instagram, just say Ethan and I'll know how we met. About that and I would love to strike up a conversation to see how I can help you. A lot of times people are like, I love the concept, I don't know how to do it. Can you help and I'd love to continue the conversation so I can help. Awesome, sounds good. Appreciate you good job on the upstream model and just taking all the stuff that you've learned, organizing it and then making it available to other people. I know that it's changing changing businesses. I greatly enjoyed it. It was very provocative for me. I don't work in the space. I mean we serve a lot of people in the spaces that you're in, but I immediately recognize that the model was really an interesting approach, or at least a provocative exercise for anyone in any business. So I really appreciate it. As we've learned time and again here on the podcast, the essence of customer experience and of employee experiences. How we make people feel, but so much of the experience relies on digital communication, on faceless, typed out text. To connect and communicate more effectively with the people who matter most to your success,...

...add some video emails and video messages to the mix. Save time, add clarity, convey sincerity, be seen, heard and understood and make other people feel seen, heard and understood. Try saying thank you, good job or congratulations with the video. Try answering a question with a video. Try introducing yourself with a video. Try It free at Bombombcom. 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. Slash podcast.

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