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Want a Secret Retention Play? How to 'Offboard' Your Customers
Episode 2666th September 2022 • Course Building Secrets® Podcast • Tara Bryan
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Hey, everybody, it's Tara, Bryan, and you are listening to

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the course building secrets podcast. Whether you're a coach

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or a CEO, the success of your team and clients is based on

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your ability to deliver a consistent experience and guide

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them on the fastest path to results. This podcast will give

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you practical real life tips that you can use today to build

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your online experiences that get results and create raving fans.

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Why? So you can monetize your expertise and serve more people

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without adding more time or team to your business? If you're

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looking to uncover your million dollar framework, package it and

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use it to scale you're in the right place. Let's dive in. Hey,

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hey, everybody, welcome to the course living secrets podcast.

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So happy that you're here today. And welcome to another week,

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welcome to September. If you're listening live, then welcome to

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September, it's fun, a fun day, most of the kids are going back

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to school. So those of us who have children are getting our

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lives back and having a little bit of quiet time, ability to

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reflect and get a little bit more planning maybe in our day

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than we had prior to this moment. Today, I want to talk

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about onboarding. So we talk a lot about onboarding when we

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talk about the customer experience. So what happens from

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the time that they purchase to the time that you start working

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with them is that you want to be really intentional about helping

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them decide like, well, I made the right choice, I am in the

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right place, this is where I belong. And you get them

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oriented, you get them organized, you help them

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understand like, where all the things are, right? If you're

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doing a course in person, or you're working with somebody

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live, you're going to help them like here are the logistics,

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here's how to find the bathroom, here's how the day is going to

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go. All of those things are normal things that we do when

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people come to us, either in a training environment or in a

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client environment is that we kind of give them a lay of the

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land. I think that most of the time that's intuitive to people.

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Although I will say that when you move online, a lot of times

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people forget that, right? They forget Oh, well, normally, I

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would walk them through how it's gonna work and what the

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expectations were and where to find the exits and all the all

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the things that they need to know about before something

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starts. When people move their programs online, for some

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reason, they sort of forget that right. And so it's a, it's an

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essential component to starting the relationship. Alright, so

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we've talked about that, in the past, what we haven't talked

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about is off boarding. So let me just explain what that is.

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Because it's also just as important. So your goal in

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acquiring a customer is to be able to help them fulfill on

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whatever the problem or result is that they're looking for.

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Right? That's why they're hiring you is that they trust that you

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are the one who can take them from where they are to where

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they want to go. But there are times when people need to go a

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different direction, or you know, something has come up in

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their life, and they need to pivot and do something

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different. So they may need to exit the relationship that they

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mean may need to exit your program, in one way, shape, or

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form. And especially if you're doing a continuity program, this

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is common, right? There's other things that come up, people feel

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that they are either getting their needs met or need to get

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their needs met differently. So you have to have a process for

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onboarding your clients, either clients who are leaving sort of

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in the middle, or you know, at a time that you wouldn't

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necessarily, you know, naturally end the relationship, or once

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the relationship is over, right, once your program is over, once

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they've achieved their results, how are you helping them, you

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know, determine and know what the next steps are? Right? So

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offboarding is super important. So let me just tackle both of

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those because they're a little bit different. So the first one

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is when somebody leaves when you're not expecting it, how do

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you maintain a professional sort of exit strategy and keep the

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door open for the future? Because here's the reality is

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most of the time people aren't leaving, because they don't like

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you, or they don't like the program, or it's not meeting

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some sort of need that they have, right. Most of the time.

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There's a different decision that's driving that not all the

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time, but most of the time. And so if you just cut off the

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relationship, you disconnect their access. You tell them you

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know, thanks so much. Bye bye. You're severing that

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relationship. You're not keeping the door open for working with

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them in the future. Right and so they're ending the relationship

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but like, there's no reason that you also have to cut off and the

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relationship. So how do you ask board.

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So there are a couple of different ways to do that,

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right? One is to, you know, send a message in whatever way you

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like to video or email or some other way, where it just says,

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Hey, you know, sounds like, you know, you need to go a different

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direction, no problem, here is kind of your next steps, right,

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we're going to, you know, cut off your access, we're going to

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stop the billing, we're going to do all the things. And, you

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know, we'd love to be able to check in after a certain period

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of time to see how you're doing, does that work for you, blah,

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blah, blah, right. So you want to plant the seeds and, and just

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save a soft, thank you and goodbye, while maintaining a

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professional attitude. And, you know, really being able to keep

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the door open for the future, you know, happy to welcome you

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back whenever you're ready. doors are always open those

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kinds of messages. It's a soft landing for somebody so they

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feel comfortable, they maybe have some feelings about, you

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know, ending, or, you know, the relationship or what's going to

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happen in the future. And it gives them a soft landing so

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they can continue forward, they know that the door is open, that

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they can come back, or be involved with things that you're

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doing without feeling like they're severing the

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relationship. Okay, so that's off boarding when you're not

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expecting it. And you can automate that, right doesn't

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have to be something that you have to reach and be like, Oh my

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gosh, like, you're quitting, I feel terrible. I need you to

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stay on. I'm losing money, like whatever, right? Like, it

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doesn't have to be an emotional you know, message, right? It's

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just literally, uh, thanks so much. It's, you know, we'd love

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to have you stay, but certainly understand life circumstances

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come up. Here's some, you know, here's sort of the next steps,

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here's what's going to happen over the next, you know, 30

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days, right, you have access until this point, and then it

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will cut off and blah, blah, blah, all those things. And, you

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know, like, I would literally be intentional about what does that

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look like. And then, you know, here, here, we're gonna follow

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up over time, which is also automated. And then, you know,

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we'd love to keep the door open, have you come back, when it

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suits you when it's something that that you know, that you're

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ready for at that time, super soft landing, nice place to not

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only have them leave feeling confident and comfortable that

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they can come back. But if somebody else was asking you

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about the program, it may not be the right fit for them right

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now. But they would then keep referring that business back to

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you, because they had such a great experience. And they were

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able to do what they needed to do to move on without kind of

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that sort of strange, you know, breakup, if you will. Okay, so

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that's an unexpected, then the the second part of this is how

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do you off board clients when they're finished with your

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relationship that you have, right? So you have a 90 day

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implementation program, it ends up that 90 days, they're not

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paying you anymore? Does that mean that you're severing the

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cord? And you're done? And you've never talked to them?

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Again? Know, right, you want to continue that relationship? What

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does that look like? It really depends on your business model,

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right, you may determine that you want to work with them for

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90 days, and then over time, they come back for another 90

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day sprint, or, you know, there's sort of a plan for when

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they're going to need you again, as time goes on. What you want

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to do is map that out and plan for it ahead of time. So you're

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planting seeds throughout that first iteration or first

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relationship that you have for them to say, and here's what

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happens after,

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here's, you know, when we're doing this after the 90 days, as

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this continues past 90 days, or you're going to need another

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session, every quarter, or every, you know, twice a year or

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once a year or whatever you're teeing up that relationship and

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continuing that relationship within the first, you know,

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sprint that you're doing or program that you're doing, or

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whatever it is that you're doing, right. And so they know

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what to expect, on you know, the last day, that's the very first

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thing is make sure that you've kind of mapped that out ahead of

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time. And if you haven't, do it, do it throughout the process. So

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you understand, like, what do they need after what's the next

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step for them? Because they're on a journey. Most of the time

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when people are learning something or they're taking a

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course or they're taking a program and they want to get to

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a result. What that does is it they get the result and then it

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opens up the next challenge the next question that they're gonna

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have, and so your job is to be able to be there for them. I'm

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at that time, so you can help them through the next challenge.

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And then, you know, as they're growing and, and continuing

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forward, that's how you create a sustainable business as you

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have, you know, the various steps along the journey. And

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you're able to help them through that. Now, I do know some people

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who just want to do that the one transaction, and then they're

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done. And that's, you know, that's what they do. They just

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keep selling that one transaction to more and more

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people. And that's totally fine. But just know that what are you

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going to do on the back end of that, when they're finished?

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What does that look like? Is it a graduation? Is it a handoff to

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someone else? Is it you know, that they have all the tools

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that they need to move forward? What is the end game? And how do

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you want to end that relationship? Because let's be

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honest, it's a relationship, right, it's an opportunity for

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you to have a customer for life, to have a customer that comes

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back to you over and over again. Or if you don't want that, it's

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an opportunity for you to be able to hand them off to someone

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else, maybe who gives you a kickback to that or whatever

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else. So, so think through that long term strategy, but

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offboarding in that case, means you're helping them determine

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what the next step is, or you're helping them celebrate the

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success that they had in that part of the program. And then

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then, you know, teaming up when they need you, maybe they only

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need you once a year, maybe they only need you when they're doing

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a new launch or a new part of the process. And and then you

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invite them to come back. Maybe you just want to celebrate their

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success along the path, where, you know, you're working with

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them for 90 days. And then six months later, you follow up with

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them just to see how things are going and where they are, you

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know, in their their progress. Maybe you want to do a

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continuity program on the back end, where you pop them into

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something that's a longer term, build and relationship, there

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are a lot of different ways to do that. Have it fit within your

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business model. But know that like, nobody wants an abrupt

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stop. Regardless, if they're stopping in the middle, they're

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stopping at the end, right? Like, what's the thing that

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you're going to do to either end the relationship with a soft

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landing, or help them continue along the path. So they continue

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to purchase from you, which is really where you get the most of

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your long term revenue, right is in repeat, business and

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referrals. And really looking at that lifetime value of a

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customer. That's really where you start building a sustainable

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business.

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But either way, you know if it if it's somebody that you want

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to work with them four times a year, if you want to work with

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them once a year, then how are you putting things into place

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that helps to continue and build that relationship. And so that

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is my secret and and tip for you today, is really think about

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that onboarding process as much as you think about onboarding,

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right? As much as you think about getting the customer? How

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what are you doing at the end of the transactional element, or

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the end of the first sort of relationship point with a

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customer because it does matter? It does shape how they're going

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to refer other people to you, it does shape what decisions

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they're going to make in the future. Because if you're the

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right person, for them to come back to six months later, and

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you haven't provided a an open door, soft landing for them in

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terms of exiting, then they're not going to come back, they're

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going to go find somebody else, right? So how do you determine

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how do you continue to, to build that relationship, and I'm going

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to tell you doing an exit and then continuing to send nurture

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emails. Without that soft landing is not going to work for

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you, right, they're going to unsubscribe, they're not going

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to read your messages, and they're not going to keep going

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it has to be some type of specific message to them on the

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back end that that helps them feel supported through whatever

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decision they're making. If it's, you know, the decision to

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work with you or decision to not work with you. makes a huge

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difference. Right? Think about just as a quick illustration,

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before I jump off is think about, like, if you're returning

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something to a store, and they make a big stink about you

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returning something to the store. It maybe it doesn't fit,

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maybe there's something wrong with it. Maybe you've bought it

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for your kid and they don't want it anymore, right? Like if they

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make a huge stink around that. Are you going to come back and

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buy something? No, because you're like, Oh, that was a

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terrible process. Right? Like, oh, that made me feel gross. I

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don't want to go back to that place because As they made a big

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deal about, you know, my returning this one thing I was

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actually returning it like, for me I go to target, right I

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return something at Target. If they were to give me a big stink

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about returning something at Target. Here's the other side of

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that is I'm returning something and then I'm going right back

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into the store and probably spending three times more than

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that return I just did. But if they make a big stink at that

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return, I'm going to walk out of the store, I am not going to go

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into the store and buy all the things that I need, I'll go

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somewhere else. So think about that. Because it's no different

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than that experience that you're creating for somebody and

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especially if it's a higher ticket option. You really want

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to help them feel supported. You have no idea why they're making

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the decision that they're making. Don't make it personal.

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Have a way to onboard them. Alright, there you go. That is