As I have watched highly successful people in other industries, one thing is always consistent, they read. This is one thing I had neglected as I grew “Ears”. But I am back to reading; and two books that have changed my business are Creating Magic by Lee Cockerell and Referral of A Lifetime by Tim Templeton.
Creating Magic is about the strategies that have made Disney the company they are today; but it can be carried across to any business. So much so, my business mastermind group in the Northeast was given it to read this quarter by our mentor. The things I have taken away from the book most are how everyone who works on your team is your brand whether it is just you and one virtual assistant or an office full of people. Give these people purpose; make them feel appreciated and important. There are some very clever ways to do this. My favorite thing to do is write notes to their kids thanking them for the long hours their mom sometimes has to work for Ears. I bring little things back from my travels for the kids as they are part of the team as well. Their moms love this and so do the kids. It is another way to bring a sense of family to our little office. Our team is very collaborative despite our size. It is just three support staff and my husband and myself. We have working lunches where we talk about what is new and good. Then we talk about what needs to be worked on. We have seen a huge transformations in ideas generated from team members from this.
The Referral of a Lifetime has completely changed our marketing. I never believed in the “Spray and Pray” marketing plan; but we did throw some stuff out there really not knowing what would happen. Now we cultivate those ideas we know will really spread virally. This book breaks it down, step by step, on how to build a business with this plan. Our marketing is so much smarter now. We know who to take care of, we have a plan on a calendar and we have seen huge rewards. I just sent out gift baskets from a company that is owned by one of my clients to those who have referred multiple clients to us and those who have booked multiple times with us. We almost instantly started getting referrals from some of those clients we sent them to.
We are up 63% percent this year over last year and the office is running smoother than ever, I think I will keep reading and gaining more ideas. I am currently reading Delivering Happiness, the story behind Zappo’s. I would love to know what you are reading.
Amy Sinclair is the owner of a fee-free Disney-only agency called Ears of Experience. Ears of Experience builds custom Disney experiences for their clients with an emphasis on personalization. The agency even has Disney kid experts “on staff” to work with the children of clients. To contact Amy by email — firstname.lastname@example.org or visit her site at www.themouseexperts.com.