Build Client Base | Happily Ever After: How To Build Long-Term Client Relationships
Build Client Base | Building strong relationships in every area of life is a vital element of success. The relationships you’ve formed with different people in various areas of your life can serve as a foundation for building strong ties with your clients. Whatever type of product or service you are offering, it is an important consideration that you have lasting and trusted relationships with the people who provide you with work. Even if clients don’t return to you, they may end up recommending you to friends and family.
Forging solid business relationships can appear simple on the surface, but these ties require time, effort and planning. Developing and maintaining these relationships can sometimes feel overwhelming and even burdensome, but the rewards can be significant. If you want to know how to get more business out of your existing clients, here’s our list of top tips for outstanding client relationship management.
Treat Every Client As Your Most Important One | Build Client Base
Simply put, happy clients are more likely to make referrals. Provide all clients with your best service, regardless of whether they are a Fortune 500 company or a small business owner. When engaging in business with a client, put yourself in the client’s shoes and provide the same level of service and quality that you would want. Even if you’re having a bad-hair day, don’t allow yourself to appear to be distracted or look tired.
Respond Promptly | Build Client Base
Healthy relationships are based on communication. When a client emails you, acknowledge the receipt of the email as quickly as possible, even if you do not have the answer they are searching for. You will give them comfort by simply acknowledging the receipt of their request and by communicating that you’re on it. If they have a question, you shouldn’t wait hours before replying. If they have a complaint, it should be minutes before they have a personalized response. When you’re out of the office, make sure to update your auto-responders and set expectations about how often you’ll be able to check and return messages.
Go The Extra Mile | Build Client Base
Ideally, clients should see your business as a trusted source, which means that you are the first person they call when they start a new line of business or launch a new project, or if they need help. One of the best ways to do this is to grow a reputation of a skilled business owner who delivers exceptional results. Provide over the top and truly amazing customer support. It is a very simple maxim and is often overlooked.
Share Knowledge | Build Client Base
If your client doesn’t understand your area of expertise, they may feel ignorant about the details of the process and therefore disconnected from the development of the project. This is your chance to share information that will help the client understand what you do, which will build trust and confidence in the process. In sharing your wisdom you go beyond being simply a service provider and become a teacher. By doing this for free you will boost your client’s confidence, while at the same time leading to a wider scope of projects, extra work and extra pay.
Be Yourself | Build Client Base
In social media, friends and fans want to engage with real people, not with logos or nameless flacks. When building relationships with clients through social media, be as human as possible. All human relationships work best when both parties are open and honest, including the relationships with the people you communicate with through your work. If you mislead your clients about what you can provide then there will be disappointment all around, the relationship will fail and you will lose potential work. People can tell when you’re not being honest, so don’t do it. Your clients will stop trusting you if you seem fake.
While meaningful relationships, professional or otherwise, require a lot of time and effort to build, they often fall apart much more quickly. Relationship-building isn’t foolproof. Despite your best efforts, some clients will choose to abandon your company for a competitor. Take a relationship for granted, expect too much or appear uninterested, and the client’s loyalty will deteriorate in a hurry. If you leave things up to chance, chances are you and your client will both be disappointed.