Life is a Relationship Business

by | Sep 21, 2012 | Marketing | 4 comments

I’ve been having a lot of coffee lately. Not because I need a caffeine fix, but as a vehicle to meet with other people. The “let’s meet for coffee” kind of coffee. Which for me, it’s not even coffee at all. It’s Chai Tea. But that’s another story…

Over the course of all of these coffee meetings, it’s become increasingly apparent that marketing and growing a business is all about relationships. You could be the very best widget maker in the world, but if you have no one to sell those widgets to, all of your skill means nothing.

As we discuss in the What’s Your Avocado? concept,  every person, every product and every business has something about them that’s special. That unique element is what we call your Avocado. What if you take this concept to heart and go into every meeting with the goal of finding one unique or special thing about the person sitting across from you? Find out if they love golf, or salmon fishing, or crocheting handbags, or live for babysitting their grandchildren. Find out that one buzz, that one sparkle that lives in everyone. And then build from there. Discover something wonderful about every person you meet. How captivating would every day be for you if you did just that one thing?

In terms of marketing, people do business with people they like. Sales is a relationship business. That is an absolute truth. I’ve seen clients pay vendors inordinate amounts of money for products they could have purchased cheaper from someone down the road, but because they liked that person they were willing to pay a bit more just to maintain the friendship. If this is true, if you develop a relationship with a person and they can, in any way, do business with you, you’re golden. You’ve created a mutually beneficial relationship. And if not, you just made a new friend. Either way, you’ve scored.

Life itself is a relationship business.

Short of living as a hermit in a cave somewhere in India, it’s nearly impossible to go through life without interacting with others. If we can make those interactions actually mean something, how much better would life be? So, I challenge you to connect with strangers today. Look a cashier in the eye and say “thank you.” Ask a personal question of a colleague and really care about the response. Conduct a business meeting with the goal of yes, selling something, but also making a deeper connection.

We all have something about us that’s special. Look for it in the people around you. You’ll be surprised by what you see.


  1. Andrea Carroll

    So true…people have always done business with those they know, like, and trust. Each one of us are “special” in some way. Just look and you will find it.

  2. John Marshall

    Another great article. So well written. The name of your company is brilliant and you’ll do ‘brilliantly’ well, helping clients’ discover and uncover their ‘Avocado’.

  3. Christian

    Great points here and I’m a big fan of coffee meetings as well. I have that gold Starbucks card and get lots and lots of freebies from it which is a nice side bene. Anyway, we all have a special talent in life or something that makes us tick which is our real gift in life. Sharing that gift is what it’s all about. Great blog & point of view!

    • Stacie Zinn Roberts

      Hi Christian,
      So glad you like the blog! My whole goal with What’s Your Avocado? is to help others recognize and discover that they do have something about them that’s special, something they were meant to do. Earnest conversations over coffee can be illuminating and certainly one way to move along the path.I am a Starbucks fan, too!