What’s the Difference Between a Hair Stylist, a Dental Hygienist, a Lawn Service and a Tax Accountant?


There is no difference – they all sell products their clients will need again on a regular basis.

Think about it, just as you are about to say “good-bye” to your hair stylist or as you take beautifully groomed Fido from the dog groomer, you get the question, “Shall we make our next appointment now?”  I’ll bet that, as long as you are satisfied with the quality of the work and value, you say, “yes” and make that appointment.  After all, you know that both you and Fido will need to be groomed again soon, and so you opt for convenience instead of waiting for that fateful day when you look in the mirror, or at Fido, and determine that it’s time to get it done.

Most businesses sell products or services that are cyclical in their “need” curve.  In other words, the client has need of your product or service at regular intervals of time.  Examples are a lawn service (at obvious intervals), a tax accountant (at least annually, often monthly or quarterly), a house painter (five to ten years), furnace and air conditioner services (seasonally), and the dental hygienist (semi-annually or annually) etc.  

The customer / client / patient, once finished with the transaction, knows that they will be in need of this service in the future.  The vendor, once finished with the transaction, expects or hopes that the customer will remember to come back when they next need the service, but why hope that they come back when it is so easy to just ask, “Shall we make our next appointment now?”.  That is the best possible moment to pre-sell the next purchase… right then, when the customer is the very happiest with their purchase. 

Yet, satisfied customers, even if they are happy with the product they purchased, are lost every day because:

  • They don’t remember who provided that service last time.
  • A competitor is able to capture your customer by promoting aggressively.
  • It was more convenient for them to go elsewhere.
  • The vendor did not pre-sell the next sale.

Companies that have a method of pre-selling their program and an easy way of offering it to customers at the best possible moment are able to retain their customers longer and grow their businesses faster.  It might be as simple as, like the hair stylist, just asking for the next appointment.

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