Class Introduction


Rethink What You Sell and Who You Serve


Lesson Info

Class Introduction

I'm Tara-Nicholle Nelson. I am here to talk to you today about the transformational consumer and how to use those frameworks to reach and engage your customers, ideally by getting clear yourself first (laughs) on how you help your customers get healthier, wealthier, and wiser, and then by letting them know that. And so, the session that we're going into right now is all about how to rethink what you actually sell. What is your product and who you serve. I'm going to make a bunch of bold assertions about how you should do those things, based on my experience in what I've seen work. You'll know about what your journey as an entrepreneur, a marketer, a designer, whatever it is that you do, as someone who's responsible for selling a product, you'll know what the landscape of your own journey of transformation ahead of you is going to look like as you seek to reach and engage these customers. Regardless of what role you play in the company, regardless of what level you are in the company. T...

here are a series of components of your business that you have to think about through a different lens, in order to use these frameworks, to engage people, and get lifelong customer loyalty. So, we'll go through what they are. We'll spend most of our time today in this session, talking about what you sell and what you don't sell and how you may have been thinking about that wrong. And, I'll give you a specific tool called the story spine, which you can use to start to reposition your business and your brand as a transformational business and brand in your own mind, which is sort of the prerequisite to doing it in anyone else's mind. We'll talk about who your customer is and is not, although we'll get much deeper into that in the next session. And I'll start on-ramping you into the process of becoming an expert on their transformational journey. If you'd like to connect with me or follow me on social media during this session, here are the relevant handles. (laughs) and, as I offered before and will offer again, there are a number of bonus materials including a template and a blank fillable customer journey map that I will walk us through in the next session, available to you at First let's do a little bit of a review. What we were talking about is the set of frameworks that arise out of thinking about your customers through the lens of the behavior changes they wanna make for the healthier, wealthier, and wiser. I'm submitting (laughs) for your consideration that there is a massive ingrowing segment of people who like at all of life this way. So they certainly will look at your product, and your brand, and your content this way through the lens of can this help me be healthier? Can it help me be wiser? And can it help me be wealthier? These people are not a small little urban coastal niche. It is 50% of American consumers, they spend over four trillion dollars a year, specifically in around their en devours to be healthier, wealthier, and wiser. And, something I bring up in the book is that, these are not just health purchases per say, or wealth purchases per say, sometimes many products can be seen through the lens of transformation and many product decisions between one brand and another are made on the basis of a transformational intension. For example, soap. Transformational consumers in particular have an increasing interest in the healthfulness of the things that they put on their bodies, which a generation ago, was not as big of a deal. But now, there's been a lot of research and a lot of publicity in the media about how we actually intake a vast percentage of the things that we rub on our skin. While you wouldn't necessarily think of soap as a consumer category that's a transformational category, the fact is many people choose the soap they buy, or choose to buy one or the other, through the lens of like, that one's less toxic, or that one's got food grade ingredients in it. I choose that way, 'cause I get out of the shower and my dogs immediately commence to licking my knees. (laughs) They're gonna eat whatever's on my body, I'd like to be something that's not gonna make them sick. One thing I like to use this soap example to point out is that this is not exclusively an American or Western construct anymore. Proctor and Gamble and Unilever actually have done huge marketing and almost marketing education campaigns around hand washing in countries where hand washing is not a cultural norm. Countries we might call the developing world. Many people in those places are choosing to buy soap for their families just because they now know it keeps their families healthier. So that's still a different way in which a transformational consumer decision or transformational purchase decision looks in a place that's not necessarily, people aren't necessarily spending thousands of dollars on gym memberships, but they're still making choices based on what makes them and their families stay healthy. Alright, and that is a huge percentage of US consumers spending is either directed specifically to try to get healthier, wealthier, wiser, or people on making decision between brands and products on that basis. These are just the defining characteristics of transformational consumers. I'll just skim them by way of review. These people set goals that are focused on getting healthier, wealthier, and wiser what I call joyful prosperity. They're constantly trying to change their own behavior to that end and setting goals around changing their own behavior to that end. They have an extreme growth mindset, just meaning they feel that they can change almost anything about their lives if they can master their own behavior. They do have a bias towards action, meaning when there's something in their life that they're unhappy with, they're very likely to be in-action, trying to do something about it. Whether, the action is the right action to take or not, they're trying. And, towards that and because it is actually hard to change their own behavior, they're constantly on a search to find products, and content, and services that can help. One of the frameworks that comes out of the transformational consumer framework is this idea of creating a customer journey map that's not specific to your customers, your existing paying customer's experience with your brand or products now, but is specific to understanding the real world journey your people take. The people that you seek to serve. The people who have the problem that you exist to solve, take to reach their transformational goals. Let's see, the next session is totally dedicated to helping create this kind of customer journey map of your own, and we'll capture a bunch of the experiences people have at every stage. Which, allows you to see the unmet needs that they have at various stages so that you can meet them. I also wanna make sure we remember why we're even having this conversation in the first place, which is this guy, this expression on this guy's face is everything. (laughs) I love it. The disengagement struggle is really really real. It is just really hard to break through the marketing, and social media, and digital noise for people right now. In fact, my sweetheart said to me the other day, you know, I'm just tired of people tryin' to sell me stuff. I just feel like someone's always tryin' to sell me stuff. And that, is sort of the dilemma that we're here to solve for, because many businesses are facing. They're publishing more content, they're putting more marketing and advertising out there and it's just really hard to get heard. People are not picking it up. And I believe that there is another way. (laughs) I've seen it, I've participated in it. But, to participate in it, you kinda have to decide that instead of buying customers and advertising on it's own, for the sake of it, mattering the most, that engagement matters the most because if you earn the high love and respect of your customers, you get these sorts of results in your business. Including, ultimately a higher lifetime value per customer.

Class Description

Whether you’re in packaged goods, apparel, food or digital, your dirty little secret is that your customers are most likely disengaged. So what can you do? Buy new customers? Sure, but you can’t buy their engagement. There’s no amount of advertising trickery that can make people return to your site over and over again, use your app every day, make repeat purchases or spread the word about your product.

But take heart! There are businesses out there that have come up with a new, insight-driven path beyond the tired old story of begging customers for a few seconds of their valuable attention. Brands like REI, Slack and Airbnb have figured out how to engage in lifelong, two-way love affairs with their customers, while the rest of the marketplace struggles.

In this course, you’ll learn how to become one of those companies by:

  • Shifting your R&D, product development, digital and content marketing focus from the product you sell to the people you serve.
  • Understanding what your customers want and need and where to reach and engage them.
  • Conducting competitive analysis that sparks innovation, avoids “me-too” product development, bulletproofs your business from disruption by upstarts and optimizes for employee engagement.
  • Selling a transformation rather than a product.
  • Realizing that your competition isn’t other companies, but rather obstacles on your customers’ journeys.
  • Focusing on your customers and their problems.