My mortgage company made a mistake.
For some reason they did not have record of my windstorm insurance certificate on file and went out and bought windstorm insurance for me. As you can imagine, windstorm insurance is very important in South Florida where we’ve had some devastating hurricanes. It’s also very expensive, especially when the bank buys it and doesn’t really care about the cost.
But I didn’t call my mortgage company to get this problem fixed because I knew that would require interminable waits on the phone, frustrating conversations with lots of disinterested people, and the faxing – and refaxing – of a giant stack of documents.
Instead I simply scanned the form letter the bank sent me and emailed it to my insurance agent at Cabrera Benefits Group with a note: “Please take care of this.”
His response was short and sweet: “No worries, I’ll handle. No need for you to be involved. Have a great day.”
My insurance agent is my SPOC.
My wife is a very committed and talented nurse practitioner. When she’s not providing hospice care she works in a concierge medical practice where they take extremely good care of their patients. They do this by providing everything their patients need to stay as healthy as possible – from check-ups to exams to treatments and almost everything else. And when those patients need special diagnoses and treatments that her office does not provide they still handle their patients’ needs by referring them to the best specialists and then following up with the specialists’ offices to make sure their patients’ problems have been properly managed.
My wife’s officemates might not know it, but they are a SPOC too.
My friend Mike buys and leases all of his Mercedes-Benzes from Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables. And when I say “all of his Mercedes-Benzes” I mean a lot of very special cars because my friend Mike is an extremely successful serial entrepreneur and buys lots and lots of cars from the dealership. Mike tells me that the reason he does business with Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables is because they take care of everything he needs. He knows their prices are good, but more importantly he knows that whatever he requires will be be taken care of quickly and easily.
Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables is Mike’s SPOC.
In this day and age where all pricing and product information is just a click of the mouse away, you really have very few options to grow your business – you can lower your prices to where people will do business with you because you’re so cheap (not a particularly healthy way to run a company, BTW), you can offer something that no one else can sell (a specialty, a patent-protected process, an unbeatable location, special software or the competitive advantage of size or critical mass) or you can develop a brand that adds extreme value to your offerings (if you want help with this, please call us).
Or you can do what my insurance agent, my wife’s medical practice, and Coral Gables Mercedes-Benz have all done. Become a SPOC and eliminate the need for your customers to ever call your competition.
SPOC is a simple acronym that stands for Single Point Of Contact. By doing everything so competently and so comprehensively for their clients and customers, SPOCs create a powerful vacuum that leaves no room for competition to sidle in.
I have no need to talk to the other insurance agents who constantly court me because I know that not only are my family and assets well covered but also I don’t have to lift a finger to make sure that everything runs smoothly. Ralph Cabrera, my SPOC is so committed to building this bond of trust that he even fixes problems he didn’t cause, such as the mistake my mortgage company made. And he knows he doesn’t need to impress me with how much work was required on his part – all he needs to say is, “No worries, I’ll handle. No need for you to be involved. Have a great day” for me to be satisfied.
Attaining SPOC status is not easy and it’s not for the lazy or faint-of-heart. But it is a very profitable and sustainable way to run your business. And in this day and age of constant change and upheaval, that’s a very powerful position to own.