Every business’s right to exist lies in the problems it solves. You have to be valuable to your target markets. Before you can deliver value, there are steps you have to go through.
Paul Lange, founder of “The Hedonist Entrepreneur Initiative” says that businesses could learn from online dating. Through his direct experiences with dating apps, and indirectly through the experiences of his wife, Lange says that “the principles of attracting a compatible match on Tinder are the same as attracting the ideal client for your business.”
He adds “Who we are personally is who we are professionally. You can’t separate the two. What’s really stupid is that a lot of people try to be someone else in business. They forget the basics of human interaction”.
Although there is no magic formula for success, Lange suggests there are three fundamental steps every business can take, as a minimum, to attract more ideal clients and waste less time, money and resources on prospects that will never convert. These are:
1. Be open, honest and transparent about who you are, what you believe and who you are interested in
You want to be attractive to your ideal client. With the exception of referrals, unless the prospect is attracted to your lead-magnet, you’re clueless that they’re interested in you. In Tinder terminology they have to swipe right on your profile. For anything beyond a one night stand or hook-up they want more than a slick one-line profile, an appealing exterior and a cute smile before they show interest.
2. Take a real interest in your prospects and clients
No one wants to date a person who talks mostly about themselves. If you want the first date, let alone getting to first base, ask more questions than you make statements. Don’t rush to provide advice. Instead listen to (or read) what other person is saying, not just what you think they are saying as you filter out everything except that which you want to hear.
3. Always act with integrity; be impeccable with your word
There is a difference between doing what you said you would do and making excuses because you did what you would like to make believe you said you would do. The difference is integrity.
On Tinder you’ll impress the hell out of matches by being your word and honouring promises even when force majeure has you breaking your promise initially. In business lack of integrity makes you impotent and causes you to burn through leads, destroy client relationships and waste time, money and resources.
The best results on Tinder are achieved by being specific about what you are into, and by showing more depth about who you are and what you believe. You’ll definitely narrow the field and get less matches but you’ll also save a hell of a lot of time sifting through profiles that don’t match, and endless chats with people that have zero chance of going beyond a drink, if that.
When a prospect swipes right on your marketing they’re expressing interest in getting to know you and what you offer. What they want at this point is communication and interaction. They don’t want to jump into bed immediately. “The reality is that most businesses are walking around trying to have sex with complete strangers, rather than understanding there is a ‘courting’ period to go through first. You need to get to know one another” says Lange.
In business, every client has a cost. A cost of acquisition and a cost of continually re-creating the connection. Lange says that in his businesses CRM stands for ‘Customer Recreation Management’.
He goes on to say, “to reduce customer attrition you need to engage and re-create the connection with every interaction and communication. Start by showing who you are, why the prospect should give a damn about the fact you exist, and how you might be the one to help them feel good. Prospects that will never become a client rob your business and your current and potential clients of resources that could better be utilised elsewhere.”
When you cast your net wide on Tinder you attract a lot of people who will never be a good fit and often don’t even communicate, and sometimes you end up ‘spamming’ them with messages, pathetically trying to engage.
Narrow the field of your marketing and prospects are more inclined to swipe right. They’re also more likely to engage in meaningful conversations once they do. More importantly people who will never be a client exclude themselves automatically. That frees up your resources to focus on hot prospects.
After prospects engage, you need to take a genuine interest in them if you want to nurture them down the logical path to ultimately get ‘into bed’ with your company. In both business and personal dating you’re always selling the next step. You’re re-creating the connection and elevating the relationship. Lange says, “in business the next step after the initial interest is that you want to get to know them and understand their business needs. If you don’t engage and instead ‘ghost’ them you’ll lose trust and almost any chance of closing the deal.”
The last thing you must do, is do what you say. If you make a promise do it. If, for any reason, you can’t keep your promise, you can still honour your word and make it right. In business as in dating, nothing will send you to the sin-bin faster than low integrity. There are too many other options. Prospects don’t need to suffer a company that doesn’t honour, and hold themselves accountable to, their word.