May 5, 2020

Dirty Dancing

I want to tell you a story. In 2004 I was Co-Founder of a business called Dirty Dancing which was an Australian company which owned the global rights to the brand and story of Dirty Dancing. Dirty Dancing was a low-budget 1987 movie which went on to become one of the most successful movies and soundtracks in film history. My Co-Founders and I acquired the rights from Lionsgate Films in Hollywood and made it into a musical. The musical has played in over 20 Cities to more than 15 million people.

I’ve been mentoring and coaching CEO’s and entrepreneurs for 10 years and a lot of them ask me what the secret was, how did we turn Dirty Dancing into a $1 billion business. The answer is simple – it was a great story and people loved the show! It made them feel good. Everyone came out of the show with a smile on their face.We just ran that around a sound commercial model.

Yes of course we are in a difficult period in the world right now. But those of us in business need to be working out how to come out stronger. Yes, the engineering of your business or organisation is important to profitability (the specific business model, the team you choose and how you execute). But I want to remind you that the key to sales is in how your product makes people feel. A powerful way to think when you run a business is “how does my product or service make people feel” – that’s what all of us are really buying!

Think about if for a minute: Netflix is selling enjoyment, Amazon is selling the feeling of relief that comes from convenience and banks sell the feeling of the dream of owning your own home.

A wise person once advised me: “We all do what makes our soul dance”.

I reckon that philosophical adage applies all of our companies too – so test it out next time you consume – are you buying something that makes you feel unhappy? I seriously doubt you will!
Try it out on your business or at work – check in with what feeling you are really selling – rev it up a few notches and watch the results!