A few weeks ago someone said to me that I should start a Book Club. I chuckled a little and kind of brushed the statement away. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that I already am doing a book club. Sort of. You see, this Bookworm series has been my version of a book club. A place where I can share with you the latest books that I am reading, get feedback and receive recommendations on books I should read. This series has been one of my favorite things to write about this past year. So I thought a change in name would be appropriate to better represent what I hope this series can become. Welcome, The Bookworm Club. To kick things off, I thought I'd share my reaction to reading Lovemarks, The Future Beyond Brands by Kevin Roberts. Last night I finished the book and was so proud of myself that I posted a picture on Facebook late last night. Immediately I started getting questions if the book was good and worth the read. Let me just say this. If you are a business owner: YOU MUST OWN THIS BOOK. I'm sure many of you have heard other people raving about this book too. This first time I heard about it was at Justin and Mary's WPPI talk in 2010. But like most of you I held off on purchasing the book, and it wasn't until this summer that I found the time to dive in.
The book managed to live up to it's hype, filling every page with information, graphics and images to the point of brain overload. Kevin tackles SO many different areas of business that having a notebook and a pen handy while you read is necessary. Kevin also dives into the mind of the consumer and gives your practical tips at the end of each chapter of how to apply all that you just read. A great tool for me, as at the end of each chapter I found myself completely inspired but also completely overwhelmed.
The are several things that were huge take aways for me. First, thinking and responding like a customer can better help me understand and serve those customers. Giving them a great experience is not just about presentation, but also in the way that you interact and work through problems together with a client. And while presentation is important, the relationship that you've built with that customer or client is going to be what keeps them coming back later.
“Look through the eyes of the shopper. The closer you get to her experience, the richer and smarter your responses.” Lovemarks, Kevin Roberts.
Become a shopper to your own business. What areas work, what areas need tweaking? Are you excelling in giving your customer and clients the best possible experience, from presentation to communication to your responses? If not, pick one area and start small. Make the adjusts that need to be made to give your clients the best.
Ahh, but that brings us to my second take away. Taking risks. Giving clients an exceptional experience takes an element of risk. Maybe it means changing the way you've done things for years. Maybe it means implementing something you've never done before. Same is safe, same is known. Change is risky. Change is unknown. If I were being completely honest, I hate change and so the thought of taking risks, risks with outcomes unknown, is petrifying. But this quote below I think sums up WHY we must push ourselves, to risk for the benefit of our businesses, our clients and for ourselves!
“Go to the edge. Everyone at the center thinks the same way. That’s why they ended up there in the first place. The edge is unsettled and risky. Perfect to shake up conventions and formulas and come up with new ideas.” Lovemarks, Kevin Robert
Lovemarks, offers a huge amount of inspiration and thought provoking information about how to develop your business into the kind of businesses that are loved. Respected. Impactful. I think we all want our businesses to look like that. Let's make it happen.
**One lucky commenter will receive a copy of Lovemarks all for their own. To enter to win, just leave a comment below. The winner will be announced on Friday. Happy reading everyone!**