Flip the Switch

117: What Drives Customers to Buy w/ Katelyn Bourgoin

Before the “driveway to driveway” customer journey begins, there’s the whole buying process.  What prompted the customer to consider your brand, product or service? What motivated them to complete the purchase?  

This week, we’re jumping into the psychology behind why people buy with Katelyn Bourgoin, CEO of Customer Camp.  Katelyn and David hit on the journey before the journey, the four key trigger events that lead to purchases and solutions companies have created by truly listening to their customers.


Show Notes

0:00    Introduction

2:30    The Golden Nugget – Review Mining

5:54    Customer Camp Background

8:55    Marketing Takeaways from an Old School Alarm

14:21  Building Trust with New Customers

17:54  Creating “Instagrammable” moments

20:33  The Trigger Events

28:47  Understanding Who Customers Are and What They Want

35:34  Targeting Customers on Jobs to be Done

45:13  The Biggest Misunderstanding – We Aren’t Rational


For more information on topics covered in this podcast:


Follow Katelyn on Twitter and subscribe to her newsletter

Clay Christensen | The Theory of Jobs to be Done

Other Flip the Switch podcasts referenced – 

Ep. 115: How the Savannah Bananas Create the ‘Greatest Show Possible’ w/ Jesse Cole

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Flip the Switch

116: The 5 Key Elements Impacting Powerful Customer Experiences w/ Elizabeth Dixon

To design a first-class customer experience, it starts with the mindset, the stories we’re telling ourselves internally and the framework for how we’re viewing the world and aligning it with what we want to create for people around us.

In this episode, David sits down with Elizabeth Dixon, entrepreneur and business leader at Elizabeth Dixon Speaks.  Elizabeth has worked for or alongside several customer-centric organizations, including her current role of Principal Lead of Strategy, Hospitality and Service Design at Chick-fil-A corporate.  Combining best practices and insights from her career, Elizabeth shares the 5 key elements of a great customer experience. 

From mindset, we discuss the differences between service and hospitality, customer clarity, defining what makes your organization unique and innovating to meet customer needs.


Show Notes

3:27    Applying Strategy and Design to CX

5:03    5 Key Elements of Great Customer Experience

6:52    Elizabeth’s Career Path through Chick-fil-A

7:53    The Difference Between Service and Hospitality

15:09  Choosing Your Mindset

22:15  Recovery Situations and Broken Processes

26:15  Disney and Ritz-Carlton’s Service Recovery systems

29:55  Create Your Culture

35:19  Know Your Customer

40:24  Define Your Differentiator

43:20  Pursue Innovation


For more info on the topics covered in this episode, check out:


Connect with Elizabeth on Instagram or LinkedIn

The Power of Customer Experience: 5 Elements to Make an Impact

A More Beautiful Question by Warren Berger

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Lessons from Leaders: How Jesse Cole and the Savannah Bananas Create the ‘Greatest Show Possible’

If you don’t know by now, we’re big fans of the Savannah Bananas.  

Inspired by Walt Disney and P.T. Barnum, Jesse Cole had a vision and has turned an independent collegiate summer baseball team into a global phenomenon. 

That vision is projected everywhere, from the ownership group (Fans First Entertainment) to the mission (“Fans First, Entertain Always”). The dancing players, Banana Nanas senior dance team and experiments like Dolce & Banana underwear have captured the attention of fans around the world, with  500K+ followers on Instagram and 2.7 million followers on TikTok.

This week, we welcome Jesse back to the podcast to discuss his newest book, Fans First: Change The Game, Break the Rules & Create an Unforgettable Experience. Jesse has 5 Es to building a Fans First organization, which he illustrates through dozens of stories about fans and from fans.

What Jesse understands above all else is, “The first fan is yourself.  You can’t create fans until you are a fan of what you do.”

Here’s how Jesse and his front office have become fans of the Savannah Bananas:

Eliminate Friction

What is it: From the start, Jesse strived to eliminate the macro friction of “baseball is boring.”  Fans are entertained from the second penguins guide them to park in the parking lot, through the player pre-game parade, promotions every half inning and a dance party with the players when they leave.  On a micro level, the Bananas attack the little things – ticket fees, convenience fees, shipping fees, buying concessions, standing in line.  Even the necessary pains, like paying invoices, they make it fun.  

How to approach it: Start with the things that drive you crazy as a fan – parking prices? Ticket fees? Concessions prices?  Make a list and just start tackling it one-by-one.

Entertain Always

What is it: In sports, we talk about the “driveway to driveway” experience, but the Savannah Bananas look at the 7 stages.  The first stage is the first impression fans have – navigating your website, what’s on your social media, the messaging in your confirmation emails.  The team sends videos to celebrate ticket sales and sends you a driving playlist to psyche you up for the game.  The last stage is the last impression – which is not pulling out of the parking lot.  It’s how you communicate with them after the game. Hint: It’s not an email with a postgame survey.  

How to approach it: Think about the different stages of your fan experience.  Take it one stage at a time.  Start with one item that you could “plus up” that will have an impact on the fan experience.  

Experiment Constantly

What is it: The Savannah Bananas are not afraid to try anything. They put their rivals’ logos on toilet paper in their restrooms.  They sell Dolce & Banana underwear.  Every game has 5 – 10 experiments.  With every experiment, they measure how the fans are responding to it, what are they doing, what’s working, what’s not and they learn faster.  What’s critical is how they learn.  They don’t learn by surveys, they learn by observation.  2 years ago, they took a picture of the grandstand every 30 minutes to track fans’ behavior, which led to the 2-hour Banana Ball game.  Every single night, a Savannah Bananas staff member goes undercover.  They park with the fans, walk in with them, eat with them, stand in line with them and report on their experience that night.

How to approach it: What’s the worst parking location, the worst seat, the worst food section in your venues? Go experience that for yourself. Become an undercover fan and figure out the friction points, the frustration points and the Fans First moments. Tackle the friction points one-by-one. Fix one concessions stand at a time, improve one gate flow at a time.  Take it step-by-step.

Engage Deeply

What is it: With such an emphasis on personalized experiences, it’s easy to become overwhelmed or stuck on how to deliver a unique, heartfelt experience for everyone.  Start by doing the unscalable – call a fan and thank them for a purchase, send a fan who is battling an illness a motivational video. From there, try and find ways to make it scalable.  One of Jesse’s other favorite references is from Darren Ross who runs the Magic Castle Hotel – “Listen carefully, respond creatively.”

How to approach it: The Bananas believe in the mindset of Andy Stanley, “Do for one, what you wish you could do for many.” Make one phone call / email / text to a fan per day to thank them for a purchase.  If fans comment on social media that they are coming to the game for a special occasion – first visit, birthday, anniversary – find a way to make that memorable for them. 

Empower Action

What is it: The Savannah Bananas staff are all empowered to create Fans First moments.  If you follow Jesse on LinkedIn, he continuously shares these stories, from his nightly walks on plussing the experience with his Director of Entertainment to one of his ticket staff noticing drain covers could use a Bananas face lift. If you are clear with the vision, then trust your staff to execute it.  If they go overboard with it, that’s great. It’s better to push them and rein it back from there.

How to approach it: We emphasize this all the time, lead with purpose over task.  Define your vision and how your staff can contribute to the execution of it.  Allow them to create experiences for your fans that align with your vision.  

Jesse often cites one of Walt Disney’s quotes, “Money doesn’t excite me. Ideas excite me.”  

For even more ideas than we could possibly share in one email, check out the full conversation and purchase Fans First for your summer beach read, book club or team idea generation session.

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Flip the Switch

115: How the Savannah Bananas Create the ‘Greatest Show Possible’ w/ Jesse Cole

Our only three-peat on the show, we welcome back Jesse Cole, owner of the Savannah Bananas.  In previous episodes, David and Jesse have jammed and brainstormed, but in this show, we unpack the Bananas’ 5-E-Framework that has propelled their Fans First model into a global phenomenon.  What the Bananas lack in detailed processes and metrics, they make up for in intentionality, in-depth knowledge of their product and fans and the impression they leave through every step of the in-person and virtual experience.  


Show Notes

4:04    Fans First: The Savannah Bananas Story

5:08    Capturing the World’s Attention

10:47  Balancing Attention and Intention

12:49  The 5 E Framework 

13:16  Eliminate Friction – What Hurts the Most

20:01  Make the Small Bets

21:52  Entertain Always – How You View Things is How You Do Things

23:43  The Last Impression

29:34  Experiment Constantly

33:11  Collecting Data and Feedback

35:48  Undercover Fans

38:11  Engage Deeply

45:19  Empowering Action

49:23  “The First Fan is Yourself”


Want more from Jesse Cole and the Savannah Bananas?

Fans First: Change The Game, Break the Rules & Create an Unforgettable Experience
Find Your Yellow Tux: How to Be Successful By Standing Out

Connect with Jesse: Twitter | LinkedIn

FindYourYellowTux.com |  Business Done Differently Podcast

Follow the Savannah Bananas: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | TikTok | YouTube

Check out Jesse’s other appearances on Flip the Switch:

Episode 14: Fans First

Episode 44: A Culture of Experimentation and Innovation

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Flip the Switch

114: Creating a More Captivating Customer Service Training w/ David Millay and Katie Rudy

Customer service training shouldn’t be something you have to do, but something you get to do, to empower the event staffs that serve your fans and represent your brand.  

In this episode, David Millay and Katie Rudy break down the the key components, resources and best practices to running a more captivating training.

We cover: 

  • In-person vs. virtual formats
  • Training mindsets 
  • Inspirational vs. instructional content 
  • Who should be invited and ideal activities for different sized-groups 


Inspired to transform your training?  Get started with this event staff service training toolkit, chock full of the components to include, event checklists and email templates.  

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Flip the Switch

113: The Building Blocks of LEGO’s Content & Fandom Strategy w/ James Gregson

Similar to the passion fans have for Disney, young kids and adults alike have deep emotional connections with LEGO.  In this week’s episode, James Gregson, creative director for LEGO Group’s internal creative agency, breaks down the content strategies that elicits that fandom and helps “inspire the builders of tomorrow.”    

The conversation covers the product partnerships and user-generated content that LEGO utilizes to strengthen relationships and bring new fans into the ecosystem and the creative process James’ team employs to build campaigns.


Show Notes

2:34    From Social Strategy to Full Content Strategy

5:37    Creating Impactful Content

8:20    Designing Content for Niche Audiences

10:07  Using Content to Attract New Fans

16:02  Defining Success in Campaigns

20:05  Campaigns with Unexpected Results

24:30  Encouraging Play within Adults

28:07  Crowdsourcing New Product Ideas

33:17  Creator and Influencer Partnerships

37:50  LEGO’s Brainstorming Process

45:18  Parting Advice


For more on topics covered in this episode:

View LEGO Content on Twitter | Instagram | YouTube | LEGO Ideas

LEGO Fans’ Product Ideas 

LEGO Collaborations: Target | Adidas All-Star

Carolina Panthers’ 2022 Schedule Release

Episode 105: Storytelling and Personifying a Brand Voice w/ Amie Kiehn 

Connect with James on Twitter and LinkedIn

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Flip the Switch

112: How to Become Customer-Centric vs. Customer-Focused w/ Annette Franz

The terms “customer-focused” and “customer-centric” are often used interchangeably, but there are distinct differences from how an organization is culturally structured to how they serve their customers.

In this week’s episode, Annette Franz joins David Millay to discuss her latest book, “Built to Win: Designing a Customer-Centric Culture that Drives Value for Your Business” and the 10 principles to become a more customer-centric organization.


Show Notes

2:20     Customer-Focused vs. Customer-Centric Organizations

4:37 Where Customer-Focused Organizations Fall Short

8:05     Making the Flip to Being Customer-Centric

13:35   The 10 Principles of Customer-Centric Organizations

22:12   Emphasizing Principle 1: Culture is the foundation (core values + behaviors)

27:06 Emphasizing Principle 2: Leadership commitment and alignment are critical to success

31:46   Emphasizing Principle 3: Employee experience – employees must be put more first

35:15 The Importance of Servant Leadership

40:57   Aligning Product Offerings with Customer Wants – What Problem Are You Solving?

45:33   Customer Acquisition vs. Customer Retention and NPS


For more on the topics we covered in today’s episode:

Check out Annette’s books – 

Customer Understanding: Three Ways to Put the “Customer” in Customer Experience (and at the Heart of Your Business)

Built to Win: Designing a Customer-Centric Culture that Drives Value for Your Business

From Built to Win – 10 Principles That Ensure Customer-Centricity

  1. Culture is the foundation (core values + behaviors)
  2. Leadership commitment and alignment are critical to success.
  3. Employee experience: employees must be put more first
  4. People come before products. 
  5. People come before profits.
  6. People come before metrics. 
  7. Customer understanding is the cornerstone.  
  8. Governance bridges organizational gaps. 
  9. Outside-in thinking and doing vs. inside-out thinking and doing are core.
  10. The Platinum Rule over the Golden Rule.  Dr. Tony Alessandra’s Platinum Rule Concept – Treat others the way they want to be treated.

Everybody Matters by Bob Chapman

Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari 


Connect with Annette on Twitter or LinkedIn

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Flip the Switch

111: Driving Deeper Engagement Through Digital Activations (Part Two) w/ Nick Lawson

Nick Lawson, Co-Founder and CEO of SQWAD rejoins the podcast to discuss the current state of the digital space, sponsorship activations and fan engagement.  With much to cover, we split this conversation into two episodes.  Listen to the first episode here.

In part two, we jump back into the conversation with David Millay and Nick discussing the problems with sponsorship and the deep dive that SQWAD has done to solve them.  This episode features strategies and tactics to help organizations and sponsors develop successful campaigns that meet the four steps of awareness, engagement, action and retargeting.  

Show Notes

0:00   Introduction

2:00   The Problems with Sponsorship

6:34   Best Practices in Sponsorship Retargeting

16:02  Cracking YouTube for Views

21:33  Building Fans Through YouTube Highlights

24:36  Engaging Sponsors in NFTs

30:24  Repurposing Stadiums into Digital Playgrounds

34:16  Connecting with Fans Outside of the Stands

37:34  Augmented Reality vs. Virtual Reality


For more info on the topics covered in this episode:

Nick’s Other Flip the Switch Appearances –
Episode 17: Sponsorship that Engages, Not Distracts

Episode 110: Driving Deeper Engagement Through Digital Activations (Part One) w/ Nick Lawson

Episode 27: Merging Physical & Digital Worlds w/ Javier Martinez Garcia

SQWAD | Twitter | LinkedIn

Reimagined Football Challenge

Dunkin’ Coffee Race 

Connect with Nick on Twitter or LinkedIn

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Flip the Switch

110: Driving Deeper Engagement Through Digital Activations (Part One) w/ Nick Lawson

Nick Lawson, Co-Founder and CEO of SQWAD, joined David Millay on Flip the Switch on March 1, 2020 to discuss the role of digital activations in sports sponsorship.  Just two weeks after, that episode became a playbook, as sports leagues and teams turned to digital and virtual platforms to engage brands and fans throughout the pandemic.  

Two years later, we invited Nick back to discuss the current state of the digital space, sponsorship activations and fan engagement.  With much to cover, we split this conversation into two episodes.


Show Notes

0:00   Introduction

4:30   “Reimagine Football” Challenge Win

7:09   SQWAD’s FanTile Activation Tool

14:47 The Context of Sponsorship – Goodwill vs. Efficiency

22:42  In-Venue Promotions and the Overall Fan Experience

28:47  Ads and Sponsorship That Resonates

41:03   Identifying the Sponsors’ Goals


For more info on the topics covered in this episode:

Nick’s First Appearance – Episode 17: Sponsorship that Engages, Not Distracts 

SQWAD | Twitter | LinkedIn

Reimagined Football Challenge

Dunkin’ Coffee Race 

Connect with Nick on Twitter or LinkedIn

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Flip the Switch

109: Aligning Strategy, Culture and Leadership w/ Len Perna

In today’s episode, David is joined by Len Perna, Chairman and CEO of TurnkeyZRG.  Having managed more than 1,400 executive searches, from coaches to middle management to executive leaders, Len shares how his talent advisory firm aligns clients on strategy and cultural fit with the current marketplace, the key attributes they look for in leaders and the “Moneyball” methodology they use to evaluate candidates.


Show Notes

2:54   Evolution of TurnkeyZRG

5:02   Solving People Problems

6:55   Integrating a New Leader in the Culture 

9:14   Identifying Candidates to Fit Future Cultures

10:36  The Key Leadership Attribute: Self-Awareness

16:23  Importance of Role Clarity

20:42  Hiring Internal vs. External Candidates

23:31  Evolving Leadership Skill Sets

27:09  Executive Search Interview Structure

32:40  A Placement That Didn’t Work

36:23  Making Calculated Out-of-the-Box Hires

40:48  Building the Future Front Office / Athletic Department

44:39  Capturing TurnkeyZRG’s Attention During Searches

48:00  Len’s Parting Advice


For more on topics covered during this episode:



Brimstone Consulting 

Walking the Talk 6 Archetypes of Culture

Connect with Len via email 

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