Marketing Mistake 77: Changed Referral Based Marketing Strategy and Lost the Business

Naked Marketing Podcast with Guest, Robert White

Robert White, owner and founder of Extraordinary People, has been an entrepreneur since he was 12 and has made his fortune helping other entrepreneurs find and maintain their customers. As a trusted executive coach, Robert has always emphasized the importance of finding your purpose and building a company from there. Little did Robert know that he would need this same philosophy many years afterward.

After Robert semi-retired, he happily gave the leadership position to a trusted colleague and mentee. However, three months into the new leadership, he was informed that there was a change in his business’ focus. Instead of focusing on his customers and marketing through word-of-mouth exclusively, Robert’s company announced a new focus on revenue. Suddenly, there was an “income target” and this created a subtle shift in how the business operated.

Unfortunately, this shift was felt by Robert’s existing clients who felt that they weren’t receiving the same attention as before. These clients stopped doing business with Robert’s company and Robert lost millions of dollars over the next few years.

He ends by saying that company culture is always, always telegraphed to the clients, who can feel when the focus is no longer on them, but just on making money.

Robert’s Top Suggestions On How To Avoid Makings Mistakes

  • Always Align Your Marketing Strategy to Your Company Culture. Your company culture always telegraphs your messaging to your customers. If you’ve built a reputation for being a service-oriented company and then suddenly shift it, your customers will notice a difference, even when you don’t announce it. It is so important that your marketing strategy always aligns with the company culture you’ve already established.
  • Find Work/Life Balance. When Robert was semi-retired, he disengaged from his company to spend more time with his family. While he enjoyed every moment of being around his partner and children more, he also was no longer fully aware of everything happening with his company. This was when the company culture changed and the focus shifted from being customer-focused to revenue-focused.
  • Nurture Your Relationship with Your Customers. At the end of the day, your customers should always be your priority. While you should focus on profit, earning money should never be your end-goal. It is better to go into business to help other people – money will naturally come in when you help others.

Connect with Robert White



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About Your Host: Chala Dincoy

Chala Dincoy is the CEO and Founder of The Repositioning Expert (division of Coachtactics), www.repositioner.com. She’s a Marketing Strategist who helps B2B service providers reposition their marketing message to successfully sell to corporate clients.

In her former life, Chala was an award winning marketer at companies such as Pepsi, Pizza Hut, Frito Lay, Diageo, Playtex and BIC Inc for 18 years. Now she’s a successful entrepreneur, and the author of 4 books including Gentle Marketing: A Gentle Way to Attract Loads of Clients. Chala’s also an expert featured on major television networks such as ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, as well as a frequent speaker at Nasdaq, Harvard Club of Boston and International Business Conferences.


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About Chala

Chala Dincoy is a Marketing Strategist who helps B2B service providers reposition their marketing message to successfully sell to corporate clients