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Episode 65

Are You Creating Enemies?

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About this episode

Hello, lovely listeners! Welcome to this week’s episode of the Treat Your Business podcast. I’m Katie Bell, your host for today. Thanks for joining me on your commute, during clinic breaks, or wherever you are, for some bite-sized, juicy insights to elevate your business.

In this episode, we dive into the critical topic of bringing the retention point closer. Katie shares valuable insights on why waiting for the retention point to kick in later can lead to dropouts and decreased follow-up rates. The key? Bringing that retention point into the client’s journey much sooner, fostering longer-term relationships, and boosting clinic revenue.

Key Takeaways:

  1. Inspire clients to improve themselves, bridging the gap from where they are to where they want to be.
  2. Provide clarity on the pathway to improvement, keeping advice clear and actionable.
  3. Take the first step with clients, guiding them towards their goals.
  4. Reveal your unique personality to create a genuine connection.


This podcast is sponsored by the team at HMDG


  • 0:00-Introduction and Purpose
  • 2:12-Exploring the Retention Point
  • 3:12-Key to Retention: Post-Joining Experience
  • 3:55-Economics and Stability
  • 4:52-Lifers vs. Quitters
  • 6:01-The Netflix Principle
  • 7:12-Importance of the Retention Point
  • 11:12-Enemies: Overwhelm and Confusion
  • 17:53-Strategies to Reduce Churn Rates


Are you creating enemies?

[00:00:00] Katie Bell: Welcome to this week’s episode of the Treat Your Business podcast. My name is Katie Bell and I’m going to be your host for today. Thank you for joining me, usually on your way to work, on your way to clinic, listening to these bite sized episodes of juicy, juicy stuff that you can implement in your business.

[00:00:16] Katie Bell: If you’ve been listening to the last few episodes, we’ve been talking lots about sharing the love. What this means is about how you can increase your revenue. In your clinic, how you can make more money, but by doing less marketing. Who does not want that? So if you haven’t listened to the last two episodes, go and do that first, because these kind of go in a bit of an order and they will make a lot more sense to you.

[00:00:37] Katie Bell: But this week, we’re going to be talking about bringing our retention point a lot sooner. Now the retention point for Us in our clinics is about if you’ve got a patient that is on a new patient assessment and they’re going to either just come for pay as you go, not ideal, but if that is what you’re working with right now, we want to [00:01:00] not wait for that retention point to kick in at session five, six, seven, because you tend to find that’s when you’re getting loads of dropouts and you’re not seeing that high.

[00:01:10] Katie Bell: Follow up rate from you or your team because the retention point’s taking too long to happen, or maybe that you have them on a Pilates membership or a monthly massage subscription. A retention point is not saying we’re going to wait three months for you to be really sure that this is what you want.

[00:01:29] Katie Bell: It’s about bringing that point way sooner into their journey so that you have people that are going to stay with you longer. You are going to get better results and ultimately is going to increase the revenue in your clinic. So the key to retention is what happens after your new person joins. Now that might just be that they come into a six treatment session program with you or it might be if you haven’t got packages yet [00:02:00] in your business, then it might be that they are just going to.

[00:02:03] Katie Bell: They’re going to be a member of your business because they’re going to see you weekly to get their back problem solved. Handling your new member, your new client correctly can increase your new member lifetime value by three to ten times. This completely changes the economics and stability in your clinic.

[00:02:24] Katie Bell: So with a higher lifetime value, you can invest more in the front end, in that traditional marketing focus to get more new clients through the door. This increased marketing spend then gives you bigger reach and greater visibility. Visibility is currency in your business. So you’re able to grow faster.

[00:02:43] Katie Bell: You’ll be able to reach people that you never thought you were going to be able to reach. And you also get more people sharing the love. More people referring to you and saying great things about your business. These changes can triple, [00:03:00] quadruple, I don’t even know what the word is for five. Is it quintuple?

[00:03:03] Katie Bell: Nah, I don’t know. You know what I mean. Five times. Five times your revenue by not just driving more and more patients through the door, but working with what you’ve got. People who like you, know you and trust you already. are more likely to buy more from you. They’re more likely to re engage and want to work with you again.

[00:03:22] Katie Bell: Those members of yours, those clients of yours who love what you deliver, they’re like a walking billboard. They can’t get enough. They tell everyone they know about you and they buy everything that you offer. These are what we call lifers. Okay. They, and then you’ve got the quitters. Now the quitters.

[00:03:40] Katie Bell: are the ones that stop opening your email that you send each month. They’re the ones that sometimes ask for a refund on your program or your package. They are the ones that don’t really do what you say they need to be doing to get the results that they want. We are By implementing the things that we’ve done in [00:04:00] episode two ago and last week’s and this week’s, you’re going to be able to create more of those lifers and then actually just repel more of those quitters before they cost you loads of time, loads of energy and loads of money on wasted fulfillment.

[00:04:14] Katie Bell: So the retention point is the moment when your clients become so emotionally invested in what you deliver they are in. They are, they then become the lifers. So I want you to think about Netflix and Netflix published some data It was a few years back when I was reading this when I was, I think I was creating some training actually for my team many years ago, and Netflix produced this data and it was showing a chart that the chart represented the series in minutes.

[00:04:49] Katie Bell: So you had some series that were really long, some series that were shorter. It represented how long the series were in minutes, and then they had like cubes and it showed you what episode. [00:05:00] represented the hooked episode. And the hooked episode, in Netflix terms, is when 70 percent of the viewers will then go on to complete the entire series.

[00:05:12] Katie Bell: And, for me I like, I don’t know whether I sit outside of these stats because my husband goes mad because we can watch one episode and I’m instantly halfway through no, not gonna watch this. This is not for me. And so I’m quite quickly, I’m in or I’m out, where quite a lot of my friends can be like, no, you need to give it two or three and then you’re hooked.

[00:05:34] Katie Bell: I’m like, ruff, that’s too long for me. I need to be in straight away, otherwise my time is too precious. What it showed is that generally people’s hooked episode was like episode two or episode three within the whole series. And when you got to that was when 70 percent of those people would then stick with the series until the end.

[00:05:55] Katie Bell: So this brings up a really important question, doesn’t it? At what point does [00:06:00] your new client, your new subscriber, the person on your membership model become hooked?

[00:06:06] Katie Bell: Your lifers become so emotionally invested when they’ve reached that retention point and because we’re reaching it sooner, they’re in way sooner, their lifetime value increases. This is the point where 70 to 80 percent of them then are like, and I’m good. This is where I need to be. This is what’s going to solve my problem.

[00:06:24] Katie Bell: I’m less likely to cancel. I’m less likely to quit. I’m less likely to ask for a refund. I’m less likely to not do my exercises. But because we don’t place enough importance on this, because we’re, I know, we’ve all got a million things to do, and because we don’t train our teams on this, we have lots of people that disengage really quickly within the first few days or few weeks.

[00:06:45] Katie Bell: This is when we see follow up rates are below five. This is when we see poor conversion rates from new patient to follow ups. Armed with the Netflix principle,

[00:06:59] Katie Bell: what [00:07:00] Netflix went on to do is then get their writers and their producers to move their hooked episode sooner. earlier in the series. And there’s loads of detailed analysis with it on this data that I read about what elements get viewers hooked. So they said something one well developed main character versus several characters in the program a fast driving plot, whether there’s a lot happens, mysteries.

[00:07:27] Katie Bell: So it gets you hooked in and you’re then like, oh god, you know when you have that, Oh, let’s just watch another episode. Let’s just, oh, it’s 10 to watch another one. And then you start talking about it to your friends and you post it on your social media and you tweet about it. This is the same as your retention point.

[00:07:43] Katie Bell: It’s getting your people to the retention point faster. That is the secret to slashing your churn rate in your business. So how do we do that? Moving your people to a retention point earlier is about some key [00:08:00] things. It’s about inspiring them to improve themselves. That’s what our job is. It’s about saying, where are you now and where do you want to be?

[00:08:09] Katie Bell: And it’s about giving them clarity over the pathway to improvement. It’s about creating that massive gap and saying this is where you are now and this is where you want to be. But can you see that? There’s a massive gap between A and B. And if you were going to, if you knew what you were doing, if you knew how to solve this, you would already be at B.

[00:08:28] Katie Bell: So this is the pathway that I want to take you on. It’s being really clear with your advice. So it’s inspiring them to improve themselves. It’s inspiring them to say, Whoa you do not need to be in that place. In Thrive, I say it all the time when I say, do you think that’s how it needs to be, that you don’t get enough clients through the door, that you get paid last?

[00:08:50] Katie Bell: Or that you don’t have a marketing strategy. Or that you feel overwhelmed that you’re writing your notes at 11pm at night, that you’re having to work weekends. That you’re completely, constantly frustrated with your team. Do you [00:09:00] think it needs to be like that? Because it doesn’t. And then my job is to inspire you to improve yourselves.

[00:09:06] Katie Bell: To be able to say it doesn’t have to be that way. This is where you are and this is where you want to be. There’s a big gap and I can take you on that journey. And I can get you to state B. And then it’s helping them take that first step. And the fourth key thing is revealing your unique personality. So it’s like, what makes you different?

[00:09:24] Katie Bell: What makes them want to work with you and your clinic and your service and your solution?

[00:09:30] Katie Bell: Now there’s two main mistakes that I see people make. Because we are all recovering people pleasers listening to this podcast. We often think we need to provide the world to justify what we charge. So I had a conversation with one of my team in our quarterly appraisals last week and One of the challenges, which we discovered, was that in their initial assessment, they were [00:10:00] literally assessing everything.

[00:10:02] Katie Bell: A patient always comes in, don’t they, and they say I’ve got this shoulder problem, but I’ve also got this knee problem, and actually, all of a sudden, you’re looking at my ankle as well. And actually, I’ve got this pain behind my head. And you think, oh, crickey, I’ve only got an hour, where am I going to start?

[00:10:13] Katie Bell: And so it’s about laying down the expectations and understanding what that client needs the most so that you don’t over deliver in that first session. Because when you over deliver, when you try and shoehorn more value all the time into your packages or your programs, because you think that’s what they need to be able to charge more money, You create enemy number one, and that is overwhelm.

[00:10:38] Katie Bell: When a client is overwhelmed, they do nothing. So when a customer comes in to see you, a client comes in to see you, and you give them like five different options of what they could do, they’re not going to do anything. They just need to be told, this is what I think you need. So we need to be careful.

[00:10:54] Katie Bell: Value is like water. Too much water is just as bad as too little.[00:11:00] Floods. Mudslides, tsunamis, are examples of the destruction that too much water creates. Drought, starvation, poverty is another one of too little water and the chaos it creates. So when we are delivering our services, we have to make sure that we’re not overwhelming them, we’re not delivering too much, we’re not trying to put too much value in there.

[00:11:28] Katie Bell: We had a wonderful Weekly Q& A with our Activate members yesterday, and I know this lady’s going to be listening to this podcast, so this is said with a huge amount of love. You know who you are. But she cares so much about her clients, so much about her clients, and she said, I just really wanted to have this thing in for them because I thought like it would create more value and it will be great for the midwives that are helping me out, and I would be able to pay them and I said, okay, what’s the attendance rate?

[00:11:56] Katie Bell: She’s there’s only one or two people attending each week on Zoom and it just [00:12:00] feels like nobody really wants it. And I was like, have your members, have your people specifically told you that’s what they want? Are you hearing it time and time again? Is it a problem that your current program was not solving?

[00:12:12] Katie Bell: She said, no. I said, so why have you done it? Oh, I don’t know. I just felt bad. I just felt like I needed to offer, be able to offer more and then I could maybe increase my price. No, that’s not how it works. Too much water is just as bad as too little water. We want to think about keeping things super clear and simple and creating that path for that improvement and that journey and then helping them take their first step.

[00:12:39] Katie Bell: The second biggest enemy that we see is confusion. So we have confusion and overwhelm. And when we have those two things, a client doesn’t take any action. If you feel confused about your programs, your packages, or your services, then you can, I can definitely reassure you that your clients are going to feel confused.

[00:12:58] Katie Bell: So when we have confusion, [00:13:00] when we have overwhelm, when we are trying to shoehorn loads of value in to justify our price and justify what we’re doing, we then see an increase in churn rates. We then see more people slipping away. So my question to you is what systems do you have in place right now, what processes do you have that scoop up this, that prevent this?

[00:13:26] Katie Bell: Do you pull reports? to see how many patients are left unscheduled and what do you do about those. Do you pull discharge reports? Then when people have been formally discharged that you have a re engagement process in place.

[00:13:43] Katie Bell: Do you have a policy within your clinic that there is only one of three actions that can ever happen? Number one, they are discharged. No formal, no further need for clinical clinical need for treatment. Number two, they get a follow up appointment booked in. And number three, they are 98 [00:14:00] percent of the way there.

[00:14:00] Katie Bell: You don’t want to completely discharge them just yet because you want them to go and run that marathon and see how they are. You’re going to book in a follow up phone call with them. So every client has an action rather than clients just being able to leave with no further follow up booked in. Do you have metrics and standards in your business?

[00:14:19] Katie Bell: that mean that you can measure this, that you are actively able to work with your team, measure the improvement and the results, and feed that back to them. So as a minimum, you should be delivering metrics on conversion rate, on occupancy rate, and on retention rate, and ideally customer satisfaction via a customer survey twice, once a year, however you want to do it in your business.

[00:14:44] Katie Bell: Do you pull a slipping away report? If our clients haven’t been to class for two weeks, we pull a report, we ring them. How are you? Are you okay? It’s just a courtesy check in. We’ve noticed you’ve not been to class for the last two weeks. Katie, baby’s come. Life’s just got in the way. Definitely gonna be there tomorrow.

[00:14:59] Katie Bell: [00:15:00] Thanks so much for your call. That is exceptional service. That enables your clients to get the results that they’re looking for. It also means When they are in the bar and they’re talking to a friend and they say, Oh God, I’ve been doing this Pilates class up at KB Physio Wellness. And the client goes, Oh, how was it?

[00:15:16] Katie Bell: And the client goes it’s good, but I’m not really seeing like my back’s not loads better. I’ve probably not been going as often as I should be. And but yeah, but it’s good. Yeah, it’s okay. Oh, that just makes me cringe. And that is our responsibility. Yes. Yes. We have to empower patients.

[00:15:36] Katie Bell: Yes. We have to put the responsibility on them. People need accountability. People need support, which is why coaching exists, which is why diet programs exist, which is why Weight Watchers exist, which is why PTs exist. People need accountability to get their results because you cannot rely on your willpower.

[00:15:55] Katie Bell: So you need to create structure in your business.[00:16:00] That you have accountability check ins, that you have ways of reconnecting with clients, that you don’t let them slip away. If they do, you’re straight on to them with that courtesy check in phone call. That you have a policy, a process in place that when a client rings to cancel, they’re either on a list that you ring to re book.

[00:16:18] Katie Bell: If they just go, Oh, I haven’t got my diary right now. I’m just in the car. Can I ring you back? Don’t just go, Yeah, sure. Put the phone down. That needs to go somewhere. That needs to be something that your team then needs to act upon the next day.

[00:16:30] Katie Bell: So thinking about the touch points and the ways that people might leave your business and what processes you can have in place is going to help reduce that churn rate.

[00:16:41] Katie Bell: Next week, I’m going to talk to you about things that you can do when you get a new member to improve your retention rate. All the like little nice welcome videos, the really important things that you need to do in the first four weeks of somebody joining your clinic or becoming a member or joining your Pilates [00:17:00] program to ensure that retention point is pulled sooner so that they are bought in to you and your services and they are emotionally involved.

[00:17:10] Katie Bell: Earlier, it will increase their lifetime value. It will reduce your churn rate. It will improve your team satisfaction because they’ll be able to do a better job and it will increase your revenue in your clinic. So make sure you tune back in next Wednesday when another episode drops and we are going to finish the month by sharing the love and I’m going to give you some really great ideas that you can implement in your clinic to get more referrals.

[00:17:40] Katie Bell: To get people sharing the love. to make sure that people are not slipping away and you’re not just burning through your cash. Don’t forget to leave a quick review if you just have one minute to spare and share the love this month for me to help more people benefit from listening to this podcast. [00:18:00] And also don’t forget that you can just ask TuneIn app to play the Treat Your Business podcast at any time and I will be in your ears.

[00:18:09] Katie Bell: Have a fabulous rest of your day. And I will look forward to being here again next week.

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