If you are constantly hustling for new clients/customers or employees, the answer is probably not that strong. I rate myself 6/10. Most of my work comes to me via repeat business or referrals (thank you!) but not all of it. I still hustle a fair amount.

The brand orbit concept (developed by Mark Bonchek and introduced to me by my client and friend, James Woodyatt) makes the case that (and I’m simplifying here) instead of pushing information and content (like this LinkedIn post – ha!) out to potential stakeholders if your brand orbit is strong you will draw them into you.

Building a strong brand orbit means doing great work and offering a great experience in working with and for you.

We see brands do this well in developing a loyal customer base. Nike, Apple, and Mercedes Benz comes to mind.

I’ve seen this happen first hand with talent acquisition as well.

A few years ago, I was talking to the then HR Director for Atlassian who told me that the company (which few had heard of back then) was getting scores of unsolicited applications per day – based on their reputation.

His goal was to beat Google (who was receiving over 100 per day) at that time.

This begs the question, what is a great experience?

When we think of customer and/or employee experience we typically think of the big things. But I’d like to advocate that it’s the small things that really matter.

For instance, we have recently moved to an acreage property and we are building a shed to house our cars and my partner, David Toyne‘s toys.

After extensive research, we contracted a shed building company primarily because our initial experience was so good. The rep was the only one of the 4 companies that we spoke to that insisted on looking at the site. The company insisted on either a kit only (i.e. they would deliver the steel and it would be up to us to lay the pad and the concrete slab and erect the shed) or a full service contract (where they do it all).

They were by far the most expensive option, but we chose them because we felt we’d get the best quality product and, based on our initial interaction, the best service.

But once the contract was signed our experience changed. We don’t have any issue with the quality of what they have done so far, but their communication has been terrible.

This week the concrete slab was laid and we couldn’t be happier with their work.

BUT the owner of the company was onsite to help the concreters because they couldn’t find enough workers…and he didn’t even bother to come over to say hi.

Despite our earlier experience and the quality of their work we would be very hesitant to recommend them…meaning we are not in their brand orbit anymore.

I’m actively working to increase my client experience now that I’m aware of this concept.

What is your brand orbit? How can you improve it to acquire more customers/clients/employees with less work?

I’d love to hear your thoughts.

#leadership #culture #futureofwork