8 Tips for Long-Lasting Client Relationshipsby Leslie S. Professional Content Writer
Surely you have seen many business-offers promising discounts, special offers, benefits, exchange schemes, or special rates to loyal customers. Why do established businesses do it? It is a way for them to communicate their appreciation to their clients. Doing so helps them to increase their profits.
They aim to retain existing customers and entice new ones. Yes! Businesses know that long-term relationships are valuable. They invest big amounts to make them last longer. How about small businesses? Here are a few valuable tips for them to build lasting relationships with customers.
Research Your Customer
You need to know your customers thoroughly if you want to form long-lasting relationships with them. Invest in market research and get answers to the following questions.
· Who are my customers?
· What do they need?
· Why do they need it?
· Why would they hire you or buy from you?
· What do they intend to gain by doing so?
· What did they try before?
· Did it work for them?
· What are their short-term and long-term objectives?
· Which channels do they prefer to gather information and communication?
How do you communicate with your existing customers? Snail mail, landline phone, smartphone, SMS, MMS, or email? You should know the best way of communicating with your clients? Knowing it gives you an opportunity to communicate unhindered and without causing any inconvenience to your client. Streamlined and efficient communication is the basis of a trouble-free relationship.
Manage Client Expectation
When you are offering products or services to the client first-time, it is important to be transparent in what you offer and what they pay for it. It makes it easy to manage client expectations.
Be open about your rates and pricing, due dates for the different tasks and stages of a project, payment due dates, time to respond to client's emails, etc. Do it at the start.
Strive for Open Communication
Open communication leads to successful relationships with clients. Customers have questions, updates, suggestions, and needs. They should feel comfortable while discussing these with you.
Without it, your output and, ultimately the relationship will suffer. Make conscious efforts to improve it by brainstorming issues with your client, daily work updates using phone, email, Google Drive, etc.
Work on Creating Great Experience
You will be able to retain your clients and have a prolonged relationship with them only if you become a go-to resource for them. It will happen if you can surpass their expectations to seal their positive experience. To this end, you should think of
· Training them in how to maximize the use of your products or services
· Using your expertise to solve the other issues not covered by your project
· Going the extra mile and complete the project ahead of schedule
Be Friendly But Not Personal
Showing respect, kindness, and understanding helps you in coming out with your human side. It goes a long way towards building a stable relationship. Instead of treating your clients as a source of income, treat them like a person having needs, problems, and goals.
Adopt a friendly approach; however, remember that it is a professional relationship. Avoid being too personal. Don't be robotic in dealing with them; instead, bring some warmth and courtesy to the conversation. Whenever you can, greet them, wish them, and be polite. Make them wish that it will be fun to work with you again.
Ask for & Value Client Feedback
From time to time, meet them in person or call them to ask for their feedback. It will reveal what they think about your work. Then, go ahead and implement it. It will show that you value their judgment. And as a thorough professional, you respect it.
Own Up Your Mistake
When you start working for your client, it is like the meeting of two diverse cultures. In the beginning, you will find that it is hard to gain trust. However, show that you are committed and accept responsibility towards your actions.
If you make a mistake, accept it without any hesitation. It is human to err. Accept & apologies for it, and it will be easy for both of you to move on. You deny it, and it will sow mistrust between you. You can't build a long-lasting professional relationship based on mistrust.
Make It Easy For Them To Work With You
The clients hire you for your expertise. They also want to avoid inconvenience and stress. Now, make it easy for them to work with you and maximize their benefits.
Use technology to share plans, schedules, changes, and work progress with them. Use collaborative tools like Google Drive, G-Suit, etc. Streamline your invoicing and billing process by using accounting software.
Most people want to pay their dues as early as possible. So use online accounting software to prepare and send customized invoices to them. Don't send it by snail mail.
When you want to establish a long-term relationship with your client, every small thing matters. You need to look at them from different angles and give them your personal touch. Once clients start acknowledging it, you become an irreplaceable resource to them. Then, they also start making allowances so as to work with you. Now the relationship becomes two-sided.
Created on Sep 24th 2020 07:15. Viewed 136 times.