I am travelling home from Argentina writing this blog. We're planning to live in Argentina for a year next year (with me flying back to Australia each three months for Thought Leaders Business School immersions). Why are we spending a year in Argentina? Well, that's a story for another blog.
Anyway, I've spent a week doing a bit of a reccy (that's Australian slang for a reconnaissance), aiming to find a school for the girls, a neighbourhood to live in, somewhere to learn Spanish, and so on. I created a shortlist of possible schools, and emailed them saying I'd like to visit.
Two girls in a private school for a year makes me a potential $10k - $20k client. Not sheep stations, but nothing to sneeze at, especially given the current state of the Argentine Peso.
Yet almost universally they were hard to buy from. I didn't have much time, so there was one school I just dropped in on. No, they couldn't see me without an appointment. No, I couldn't make an appointment now, I had to email them in order to do that and wait for their response. At another school, yes, I could make a time to come in, but first I needed to fill in the (cumbersome) application form on their (archaic) website (for both girls ... including my profession, date of birth, passport number, address etc on both forms). And at yet another, if you would like to continue with the process we'll need two letters of recommendation from the school’s alumni or staff ... given you're in Australia letters from your employer and from the girls’ current school should suffice.
Amazon on the other hand is famous for being easy to buy from. They own the patent for one-click technology and the trademark for "1-click". We might not love everything about Amazon, but there is possibly something to learn from their relentless pursuit of streamlining their purchasing process.
Clearly we’re not Amazon, but it’s useful to channel a little of that intent, and become easier to buy.
While that might not be one click for us, at least aim for it be one meeting, no proposal, and no-one else needing to sign off. (The exception to this rule is if the price tag is $50k or more ... but even where it is, make it easier to buy.)
It also means being easy to refer. Can I explain what you do in one sentence that a 12-year old would understand? If not, I can't refer you.