08 Feb The Value of Your ‘FOREVER’ Client Business Relationship
In the world of web design, or business in general, we often focus on the actual “sale” or “product” rather than the integrity of the relationships made. The cool thing about work, or simply LIFE, is that interpersonal communication is a part of most everything. From simply making a purchase at your local grocery store, inquiring with a bank teller about your 401K, or dining at the new French bistro, you SHOULD and are EXPECTED to know how to properly communicate with others.
Oddly enough, solid communication is present at the CORE of most successful businesses, regardless of the industry! Further, a truly awesome product is only going to take you as far as your business-to-client relationships. In essence, the highest quality customer service can often assuage the likes of a mediocre business, simply because people value being treated like GOD! Who doesn’t? But, seriously, the power of amazing client relationships can make the difference between “getting by” and becoming an empire in your field.
So, let’s break down the importance and steps toward locking down that “FOREVER” client. For the sake of providing a clear explanation, we will showcase these steps in regard to web design:::::
1- AVOID CONFUSION:
It might seem blatant and almost condescending to direct you in avoiding confusion; however, maintaining a constantly informed business-to-client relationship is hard. The secret to avoiding confusion throughout the entirety of the process is making sure you never have ANY to begin with.
*Communicate what you will DO for the client:
Prior to every web design build and online marketing campaign, OTV communicates what will occur throughout the service. This stage is particularly critical because you solidify and agree on the final product before you begin implementing work incorrectly. Making sure that you and the client have a firm understanding of what he/she wants, what you will DO, and when you will do it is paramount to client happiness.
If you’re offering an ongoing service to clients, as we in the web design industry do, it is imperative to check in, even when you’re not done completing the service (especially when you’re not done completing the service!!).
Leaving your client in solitary confinement, until you’re “done” with your portion of the service, is a surefire way to attract errors and a severely IRATE client.
By checking in, you not only show the client that you’re constantly working on their service, but further avoiding unnecessary confusion and errors.
*Address “roadblocks” immediately:
Surely, roadblocks occur even when you DO check in with the client. That’s just a part of life. Maybe the client doesn’t like the homepage design. Or, perhaps, they wish to include more links on the main navigation. Whatever the problem, addressing it immediately eradicates anger, frustration, and an irreversible error.
2- LEAVE YOUR AWESOME IMPRESSION:
Producing high-quality work goes without saying. You must also make sure to leave your mark beyond the work. Just as your business possessed the stellar first impression that got you the deal altogether, now you need to enforce your lasting impression.
*Thank YOUs are Always Awesome:
So, your client has a snazzy new website, courtesy of your awesome company. Don’t just send them on their merry way! Send a personalized message thanking them for working with you, how much you appreciate and value them as customers, and how you hope to continue the great relationship.
The world could certainly use a few more “thank you’s!” And your client will be beaming on account of your kind gesture.
*Share Your Experience:
Think of this step as a “pay it forward” gesture. You’ve just completed a website for another business and they’re more than likely trying to get the word out. Offering to share or feature this website on your Facebook page and highlight the experience would be a huge source of exposure for the client. Aside from helping spread awareness for your client’s business, you’d also be spreading awareness for yourself! Cool!
*Refer Potential Business:
Take the previous step just a little further. Since you’re a service company, you might consider recalling some of your other clients and referring potentially compatible clients to another client. You wouldn’t have to look too far and you’d be providing a legitimate lead after already providing seamless work.
3- MAKE IT ONGOING:
The nature of service, typically, is that it ends when the product is delivered. While you might have completed the actual work, it is always a lucrative action to follow-up with clients, especially since web design often demands tweaks or brief tutorials for the clients.
Taking the initiative to schedule these meetings shows that you’re interested in your client’s future and maintaining contact with them.
*Word of Mouth Client Referrals:
The fact that you’re keeping past and present clients close leaves an incredible amount of room for word of mouth referrals. The best referral is TRULY one that comes from someone else’s previously trusted experience.
You might even consider asking your clients to send their friends, or ask if they know anyone who might need your services. Since they’re super stoked about the website design you built for them, they’ll more than likely be happy to consider other companies at the very least.
*Maintain Product Consistency:
One of the best ways, if not THE best way, to preserve the “FOREVER” client is to make sure your product is consistent. Remember, your customer service is directly-related to your product. As a website design company, your relations with your clients are critical. Showcasing an always seamless product, coupled with pristine customer service, your business builds a solid reputation. At our Long Island, New York web design company, we value the forever client; because they provide us with authentic referrals and lasting relationships.
Maintaining your consistency by always checking in with all clients, producing the highest quality work every time, and looking for ways to help your clients in ways that transcend the services, you will be regarded as a top DOG in your niche. Give back to your clients and you will, in turn, be giving back to yourself. And, best of all, you will build “FOREVER” clients.