Introducing Flywheel (Part 1): What is it and how does it work?
Business owners might be familiar with the classic funnel model but in this day and age, customers are no longer considered an outcome but rather a driving force in top businesses. Read on to find out why!
May 4, 2021

To create a successful business, your customers should be at the centre of your business. You not only acquire them to generate sales, but you need them to help expand your business too!

Ask any thriving business owners—they would most likely agree that customers play a huge part in a company’s growth. And harnessing the power of customers’ loyalty and word-of-mouth is a key way of expanding your business. But how can we do this?

Introducing the Flywheel model

Image Source: Hubspot

The Flywheel model was conceptualised by Jim Collins, based on the mechanical flywheel created by James Watt. Collins unpacks how the mechanical device relates to business in his book “Good to Great” where he reveals that with customer experience at the forefront of every part of your business, your customers can become the driving force of your business’s growth. To understand the Flywheel model, we first need to understand what a flywheel is and how it works.

“By building a great customer experience, your customers are much more likely to become loyal to your business.”

How does it work?

A flywheel is a large, heavy wheel with counterweights around the outside of the wheel. It takes a lot of effort to start moving the wheel but once it starts moving, the counterweights slowly help the wheel build up momentum, making it easier to turn. These turns will then build up momentum to the point where the wheel will start spinning by itself. And applying the same amount of force to the wheel will add more momentum to help it turn faster and faster.

The Flywheel model applies the same theory to businesses where the wheel is centred around customers and the forces you use to ‘push the wheel’ are the ways you choose to enhance customer experience. By building a great customer experience, your customers are much more likely to become loyal to your business, repeat sales and introduce referrals to help your business grow.

These efforts you put into creating a great customer experience may not feel like it is making a big difference at the start, but you have only just started to move the wheel. With every turn you make (every effort invested into prioritising customer experience), the closer you are to breakthrough—where the wheel starts spinning by itself and you start reaping the benefits from your efforts.

How to include Flywheel in your business

To start using the Flywheel method, you need to understand how each part of the wheel works. The wheel is made up of 3 parts: attract, engage and delight. All 3 parts are focused on different areas of a customer’s journey but all with the intent of providing the best customer experience.

Here is a walkthrough of how each part works:

  • Attract

It all starts with attracting or earning attention from your prospects and customers. This can be done by producing useful content for them. Educational content makes it easier for prospects and customers to learn about your business. Some methods to attract customers include producing interesting articles or posting intriguing visuals on social media and your website. These tactics draw customers in organically. Other methods also include using specific keywords that potential customers might search for (SEO) or targeting specific demographics through paid advertising to get them aware and interested in your business.

  • Engage

The sales process is something that draws scrutiny every time we broach this topic. Although there are many schools of thought, from the challenger method to the three-act pitching framework—the one constant is engagement. Managing, or rather micromanaging the customer experience at this stage is absolutely critical.

Understanding the customer at a human level will help us create highly personalised propositions that create the need to buy (from the client’s side)—not the pressure to sell (from the sales side).

  • Delight

And finally, delighting your customers. This is where you need to help, support and empower your customers by ensuring their success. This means being able to achieve their desired outcome from using your product or service. Some ways you can implement this is through great customer service, loyalty programs, customer feedback surveys and being contactable through multiple platforms like chat, email and phone calls. These methods help achieve customer success as they assist your customers to resolve any issues they might have and get an insight on where you have done well or how you can improve.

Great customer success then helps your business succeed as your customers will be more satisfied with the business and become more likely to continue using the service and recommend your business to others, adding to the force on the Flywheel.

Remember that this Flywheel model only works by continuously building up your momentum in all areas, which means a steady, consistent effort to enhance your customers’ experience. But how do we kick it off and get our Flywheel spinning? Stay tuned for the next part where we dive into what makes the Flywheel spin and what could slow it down.

Still a little wonky about how your business could benefit from the Flywheel model? Schedule a 15-minute call with our Lead Marketing Consultant today to find out more.

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