How to amaze your clients so they keep coming back
Streamlining your business is all the rage right now in the entrepreneur world (or maybe since it’s something that I’ve been focused on these past few weeks, my brain thinks everyone else is talking about it too).
Everyone is finding new and improved ways to nail down their processes, systems, and services to create and unique and comprehensive client experience.
All of that sounds great, and it is, but the number one benefit that I get from streamlining is not having to do much thinking. I don’t want to have answer the same questions over and over or write the same emails.
We all know about streamlining our social media, through services like Tailwind and CoSchedule, but making your client experience as automatic and as organized as it can be won’t dehumanize it or your business, it’ll give you a few minutes of peace back into your life (and it’ll show your clients how organized you are!).
Here are few ways that you can streamline, automate, or take the thinking out of the client side of your business:
We all know about canned emails so I won’t go too deep into them, but definitely take some time to create them for every step in your process and make them as thorough, but concise, as you need them to be. In addition to emails to create for the clients that you want to work with, make some canned ones for when you want to turn down a project, the project gets off track, and for payment reminders.
Another way to take some thinking out of your client process, is to automate the follow up process. For example, after a client is done working with you (say right after you hand over the finished product) you manually put their email address into a sequence of emails. In this sequence you can set up emails asking for testimonials, offering additional services, etc at a time interval that you want. This keeps you from having to manually send out this email.
Client homework can be anything that you need your clients to do so you can do the best job on their project that you can. This can mean getting content together, going through some questionnaires that you created to get valuable information you need, etc. You can tailor this to any service and it gives your client a way to collaborate and have a voice early on.
The best thing about this client homework is that you can create it once, and leave it be. Every client goes through it, and you get the exact information you need in a neat format that works best for you.
No matter what type of service based business that you are, you can definitely benefit from giving your client an introduction packet. You should use this packet to answer any questions that potential clients have asked you about your services or that ones that past clients have asked in the past. This is an easy way for you to set their expectations from the beginning and stops you from having to answer the same questions over and over again.
Typical pages in a intro packet are: what each package includes, rough timelines, what to expect, your office/working hours, the best way to communicate, the next steps to get the project going, FAQ, etc.
A Project Management System
Getting some sort of project management system set-up can help keep you and your client on the right track. You can use it as a way for them to submit feedback, see the project progressing, and use it as a way to communicate outside of email. That’s probably my favorite way to use my preferred project management system, Asana. I can’t stand long email chains and I don’t want valuable information or feedback to get caught up in a bunch of emails and possibly get lost.
A Client Management System
To keep track of contracts, invoices, etc etc, using a client management system, other than a random folder on your desktop, will keep everything running smoothly and keep you from pulling your hair out.
The great thing about some client management systems (they’re also called CRMs) is that they may have something called a client portal. Client portals are like little accounts that you create for your clients that keeps all of their invoices, contracts, etc. in them. Dubsado (my preferred CRM) has the ability to house emails and replies in the client portals. As long as you send out emails from your Dubsado account (they look just like they would if you send them from your regular email account) Dubsado will keep track of them in your account as well as in your client’s portal.