Saturday, November 6, 2010

The Cost of Serving Not-So-Perfect Customers

by Julia D. Stege, MFA

The other day I had a melt down.

In hind-sight what happened was that my mind convinced me I had to do something for a client that didn't feel right in the moment with the hopes it would help me build my business.

Do you ever do that, overspend your time and energy trying to help someone who ultimately is not a match for you and your business?

If I dissect what happened into small pieces, I can easily see where my intuition was giving me warnings that I ignored in favor of what my mind was telling me about the potential boost for my business.  This client was full of promises that I heard time and again over a period of several weeks. But they never materialized because the client ultimately refused to take any of my advice.

That's a good sign this person is not a perfect customer right? But I didn't see it. (Or I chose not to see what was staring me in the face)

My business coach, Cynthia Riggs The Biz Diva, has pointed out to me on a number of occasions that I tend to go for the "Shiny Bright Object" which is usually an illusion.  So after giving me a bear hug and helping me wipe away a few tears , she asked me, "In what way is this person a match for your Ideal Client?"

Deer in headlights. The only thing I could think of was, "He has money." 

Now as someone who teaches the Attraction Plan and advises my customers to specify who is perfect for them, it's ironic that I didn't see it.  Unfortunately the cost of ignoring my intuition was rather dear.  I wasted about 10 hours that I could have used on other marketing and/or product development activities and the emotional cost was pretty high.  It feels bad to be disrespected that way.  Perfect customers just don't do that!

I cannot get back that 10 hours of my life, that's for sure. But I can move forward with new conviction to recognize and serve my perfect customers, and to refer the others to service providers who might be a better match for them.  I have taken the time to clarify the qualities, characteristics and attributese of my perfect customers again, and one of the qualities I'm emphasizing now is that my perfect customers really get me, they value my time and advice, and they make decisions quickly.

If you have noticed yourself serving some not-so-perfect customers or prospects lately, I suggest you get out your attraction plan or create a new one.

Make sure to enter the opposite qualities to the person who is not a fit.  It may take some effort, but after focusing on what you want for even a little while, you'll start feeling better, moving back toward your center, and attracting the customers who are a perfect match for you!


  1. This is your friend Christopher,

    Julia, I see you now in your Greatness and in the Grace of being the Magical Marketer Pilot that is at choice to make appropriate course corrections. Thanks for sharing your golden nugget experience.

  2. Hi Julia,
    I have had similar learning experiences with my needing $ fear based greedy voice overriding my intuitive warnings about a client intentions and motivations; I realized the value of the lesson is to practice honoring myself and my intuition in all situations and circumstances. All Blessings to you, Nova Cynthia