Joey Coleman (@thejoeycoleman) is a customer experience designer, an award-winning speaker, creator of First 100 Days methodology, and author of the upcoming Never Lose a Customer Again: Turn Any Sale into Lifelong Loyalty in 100 Days.

“We’re not paying attention to maintaining the relationships that we claim are important to us.” -Joey Coleman

What We Discuss with Joey Coleman:

  • Why everyone has customers — even if we don’t own a business.
  • Why the first hundred days of a customer life cycle are the most important — and if you can get the experience right within this time frame, you’ve got a customer for life.
  • The eight phases of a customer journey and how they apply to business and personal relationships.
  • The experience mindset — why it’s important and how we can develop it.
  • Why Joey’s only gotten three tickets in spite of being pulled over by the police 81 times.
  • And much more…

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It doesn’t matter if you own a business or not: everyone’s got customers. And research shows that the first hundred days of a customer life cycle are the most important — if you can get the experience right within this time frame, you’ve got a customer for life.

Customer experience designer, award-winning speaker, creator of First 100 Days methodology, and author of the upcoming Never Lose a Customer Again: Turn Any Sale into Lifelong Loyalty in 100 Days Joey Coleman joins us to explain how he creates experiences for customers over the tired upsell in his personal as well as his professional life. Listen, learn, and enjoy!

Please Scroll down for Full Show Notes and Featured Resources!

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More About This Show

As a recognized customer experience designer, it makes sense at first glance why companies like Hyatt Hotels, Zappos, Whirlpool, and Deloitte might seek Joey Coleman’s expertise for customer retention and fanaticism. But why might an organization like NASA have need of his services? Because just as James Altucher has said that “everyone has 11 bosses,” Joey believes it’s just as true that “everyone has customers.”

“NASA has their customers,” he says. “They have not only the people they serve, but they have the people on the Hill that are voting whether their budget gets approved or not. They have the President who is signing off on whether or not the budget gets approved.”

By getting the general population excited about NASA’s history and its goals for the future — like setting up a program for teaching disadvantaged kids about science, math, and space — visible support for NASA is generated, ensuring funding continues and that there will always be aspiring astronauts and scientists hoping to work for NASA in generations to come.

So Joey excels at drumming up excitement for companies and brands by tailoring the experience for its customers — which can mean anything from consumers to advocates to coworkers to bosses to investors. As a former attorney, Joey believes his job has always been about understanding human nature: why people do what they do, and what we can do to make them do the things we want them to do.

You Don’t Have to Own a Business to Have Customers

No matter where you are, in any organization, you have customers.

“If you’re…the IT person, guess what? Your customers are more internal than external,” says Joey. “Your coworkers are your customers. Your boss is your customer. These are the people you’re serving, and if you come at it from a point of view of ‘I’m here to serve; I’m here to create a remarkable experience for you,’ not only will you be more successful in the day to day tasks and operations you have to do, but the research shows that your career will skyrocket — because we like to do business with people we like.

“We like to promote people who we like. We like to give new job opportunities to people that work for us that we like. And so if you’re able to give that level of reputation or experience when interacting with you, it opens up a whole host of opportunities for both your career advancement and your personal advancement.”

The Crucial First 100 Days

Joey says that the first hundred days of a customer life cycle are the most important — and if you can get the experience right within this time frame, you’ve got a customer for life. Not just someone who will reliably support your business on a personal level, but who will spread the gospel of how well you satisfy their needs on to others in similar need.

“What the research shows is that the typical business is going to lose somewhere between 20 and 70 percent of their new customers before they reach the 100 day anniversary,” says Joey. “So this time period, right at the beginning of the relationship, is the most important time period in the entire relationship. It’s where the first impressions are made. It’s where the first moments of truth — the first experiences — are had, and the foundation that you lay early on in the relationship determines whether or not you’re building on something that is solid and strong and firm or whether you’re building on something that is shifty and shaky and kind of wobbly.”

If you can make it to day 101, research further suggests that that relationship will continue for at least the next five years.

Joey sums it up: “If you care what happens at the beginning, customers will stay around longer.”

The Difference Between Experience and Upsell

The mistake most companies make in retaining new customers is that they aren’t focused on nurturing an experience to make those customers feel welcome or part of something special; they’re focused on upselling.

“I think that’s the difference between focusing on an onboarding system that’s designed to make a new customer and new relationship feel welcomed, feel special, feel unique and interesting as opposed to, ‘Great, let me just run you through the process here so that you’ll buy some more stuff from us later,'” says Joey.

Joey often goes in the opposite direction of what his marketing team advises because he knows building trust with an audience is more important than collecting hundreds of fake email addresses in return for sharing content from his upcoming book Never Lose a Customer Again: Turn Any Sale into Lifelong Loyalty in 100 Days.

“I want to get us away from being skeptical that sharing our email means we’re going to be spammed and instead be in an environment where if there’s somebody that you feel is providing value, giving them your email or friending them or connecting with them on Facebook Messenger or giving them your phone number so they can text you is a good use of you sharing your private information because they’re going to respect it,” says Joey.

Paying Attention to Existing Relationships

“I think that if you are in a business and you don’t know how many relationships you’re losing, you are missing what has the potential to be the thing that kills your business,” Joey says. “I think it’s the biggest problem in business today; I think it’s the biggest problem in personal relationships today. We’re not paying attention to maintaining the relationships that we claim are important to us.”

Because there are a finite number of people on the planet interested in us and what we have to offer, not being attentive to customer retention means we run the risk of running out of customers. But if we nurture existing relationships and focus on keeping them around instead of constantly chasing new business, we’re better served and we’re able to better serve our real customers.

The Eight Phases of the Customer Journey

From beginning to end, Joey outlines the customer journey in these eight phases.

Assess: This is where the customer considers whether or not to do business with you. In a business setting, this would be the marketing and sales function — prospecting or filling the funnel — trying to convince people that you’re a good choice for them. In a personal context, this could be meeting someone for the first time and getting a feel for whether or not you should exchange numbers to possibly continue correspondence at some point in the future.

It could be an impulse to pick up a pack of chewing gum from the checkout aisle or a municipality shopping for an airport runway over the course of a few years.

Admit: Day one of the First 100 Days strategy. In a business context, this is where the customer admits they have a need you might be able to fulfill. In a personal context, this is where someone admits you’re interesting enough to continue corresponding with.

Affirm: In common parlance, this is buyer’s remorse. Research shows us that after making a purchase or starting a new relationship, the brain fills with dopamine. We’re excited and we see the possibilities of what’s to come. But when the dopamine recedes, the joy and euphoria dissipate and are replaced by fear, doubt, and uncertainty. What if things don’t work out the way you had hoped?

You need to address this process and put the customer at ease quickly or it will spin out of control and result in a relationship ruined.

Activate: The unboxing experience. This is where you have the opportunity to excite the customer with a unique, special experience. It’s like a first date that sets the foundation for a budding relationship.

Acclimate: This is where most relationships fall apart. In a business context, you may have sold a product millions of times, but for the customer, this is their first time interacting with you — so you need to hold their hand and show them what comes next. Just because you include directions doesn’t mean the customer is inclined to read them — it falls on you to ease them into using what you offer if you want to retain them.

Accomplish: This is when the customer achieves the goal they had when they decided to do business with you. Most businesses ignore this phase, assuming the job’s done when the sale is made. But consider how you’d feel as a customer if the business asked what you’re using the product or service for at the point of purchase and then followed up months later to find out if it had served its intended purpose. You’d be more inclined to make further purchases from there because you feel cared for.

Adopt: Beyond achieving their initial goal, this is the point when the customer has become loyal to you and your brand. They’re only going to do business with you for this purpose going forward. Example: Joey only gets his oil changed from one shop even though he’s moved an hour away.

Advocate: When somebody has become so enamored with your brand that they can’t wait to tell everyone else about you. “This is the holy grail,” says Joey. “This is where you get to spend less money on marketing and sales because you have so many new leads and opportunities coming in because you’ve created these raving fans.”

“Customers have the chance to go through these eight phases; our relationships have the chance to go through these eight phases; but every human being is going to have to stop and spend at least some amount of time in each one before they can transition to the next one,” Joey says.

Listen to this episode in its entirety to learn more about how we can tailor the customer experience along positive emotional associations rather than the unintentional negative, what Joey learned about customer service by working as a lawyer at the White House, why we should — and how we can — develop our own experience mindset, how we can evaluate our own experiences, how Joey has only gotten tickets for three out of the 81 times he’s been pulled over by the police, and lots more.

Joey’s book Never Lose a Customer Again: Turn Any Sale into Lifelong Loyalty in 100 Days is available for pre-order here. Make sure to follow the two-step process to order your copy of the book and get signed up to receive your Digital Implementation Pack Bonus!


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