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Business Unplugged™
This blog features Carol Roth's tough love on business and entrepreneurship, as well as insights from Carol's community of contributors.

Leveraging Your Customers

Written By: Carol Roth | No Comments

Continuing my lessons from Maui series (I’m truly not trying to make you jealous, I swear), I want to give you an anecdote about turning your audience and offering into even more revenue.

When I was in Maui, I stayed at the glorious Four Seasons Wailea resort, which was amazing (I have yet to find a Four Seasons that isn’t great, but this one was particularly fabulous, for obvious reasons).  One of the hallmarks of the resort is their poolside arrangements.  As you can imagine, visitors to Hawaii want to relax and enjoy the pool and beach, so as part of their accommodations, the Four Seasons has an elaborate set-up of chaise lounges and cabanas surrounding their several pools and also facing out towards the ocean.

Every day, the pool and ocean lounges are packed with their guests.  This gives the Four Seasons a very captive audience and they do a fabulous job leveraging that in a way that provides value to the guests and creates a substantial profit center for the hotel.

While there are some complimentary offerings poolside, like sun tan lotion, books on loan and even a lady who comes by with treats and amenities each hour (ranging from chilled cucumbers for your eyes to fun ice pops), there is a full menu of poolside offerings that the guest can pay for.  This ranges from healthy to alcohol-fueled drinks to a full-menu that can be delivered to your chair by the staff from about 10 am to 6 pm.  You can also enhance your experience with pool-side spa services, like getting a foot, shoulder or scalp massage while you lounge in your chair.  You can even get a pimped out luxury cabana with wi-fi, big screen televisions and more.  You can get pretty much whatever you want- and probably some things that you never thought of- for an additional (and fairly hefty) fee.

So, the Four Seasons has taken their basic offering and found a way to turn it into a huge cash cow for them, by upgrading offerings and making them available to their guests in a win-win situation for the hotel and the guest.

Think about what else you can offer to your customers, particularly when they are already captive and using your business, that creates extra profit for you and more value for your customer.

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Carol Roth is a national media personality, ‘recovering’ investment banker, investor, speaker and author of the New York Times bestselling book, The Entrepreneur Equation. She is a judge on the Mark Burnett (Shark Tank, The Voice, Survivor, The Apprentice) produced technology competition series, America's Greatest Makers, airing on TBS and Host of Microsoft's Office Small Business Academy show. Previously, Carol was the host and co-producer of The Noon Show, a current events talk show on WGN Radio, one of the top stations in the country, and a contributor to CNBC, as well as a frequent guest on Fox News, CNN, Fox Business and other stations. Carol's multimedia commentary covers business and the economy, current events, politics and pop culture topics. Carol has helped her clients complete more than $2 billion in capital raising and M&A transactions. She is a Top 100 Small Business Influencer (2011-2015) and has her own action figure. Twitter: @CarolJSRoth