Clients are the bread and butter of your business. They are the ones you want to please by providing them with excellent service. This is what they expect and, frankly, what they deserve. This makes sense, right? The client hires you to provide the best service, and your job is to leave them so impressed by the results they think of no one else for future needs. Therefore, you must remember that the client is essentially your boss, and they can always find someone else to provide them with this service. No one is irreplaceable, including you, but with a few key principles you can elevate yourself to a point of being the preferred provider of the service.
Know What They Need Before They Do
Before most people go in for an interview, they research their potential employer. Then they bring ideas to the interview which will better their chances of success. This shows interest in working for this employer and also shows the value this person would bring. This same concept can be used in business. In an effort to always provide the best service and keep your client happy, work on anticipating their needs and always be one step ahead. Research the company, discover what they have done in the past, and look beyond the here and now to see how you can have an impact on the future. Even if your client doesn’t acknowledge your efforts, they will not go unnoticed. This is one of the best ways to land and maintain your clients.
Communication: A Two-Way Street
As always, communication is of the utmost importance. Be sure to keep your client informed about the progress you are making, or any setbacks you are experiencing. Do this through regular meetings, phone calls, and emails. Once you give them a status update, listen to their needs and concerns. That’s right, I said, “Listen.” The more you let them know you are there for them, the better they will feel about you. This in turn will keep them from looking for your replacement.
Keep it Old School
Yes, I know the world runs on a keyboard, but keep a notebook and pen on you at all times. Use it to take detailed notes at every meeting. At the end of the day, go over your notes and make a plan of action for the next day. In addition to taking task-related notes, keep a list of any personal information that you can gather, e.g. birthdays, anniversaries, special occasions, etc., and enter it into your calendar. There is no better way to impress your client, then recognizing them personally.
Remember that all clients are unique and should be treated that way. Every client will have their own set of needs and will prioritize them differently, so take the time to get to know each and every one of your clients. Listen to them all with the same amount of attention and provide them all with the same amount of detail. Make every client feel like they are your only one and watch how your business grows.