Happy Client, Happy LifeOct 17, 2021
When we are starting our business, there will always be a stage wherein, we just get whoever is paying for our services. Someone calls, books, buys or we get a referral, is just like music to our ears and we kind of just want to grab them all! Well of course, we have invested so much of our time, efforts and money and the first thing that we actually want to do is to have a return on our investment, right? And this is just the truth in most businesses.
But you what? The more you value your service and what you do, the more you understand how it is so important to be able to deliver your services correctly, and to the right customers--your dream clients! And not just to deliver, but also to be able to really make sure that your clients are happy. Because if they are happy, you are happy! Who’s with me??
In Savvy Chic Design, how do I make my clients happy? I couldn’t say that I’m so perfect but I’m thankful that God has given me my dream clients and I know how to make them happy! Curious? Don’t worry! Of course, I’ll be sharing my secrets with you!
Know if you’re a right fit
So first thing is that you want to make sure that you are a right fit. Are you able to provide what your client is looking for? What are the things that you can, and cannot do? Also it is important to know if the client project is what interests you in. And consider as well if the client himself is also a right fit for you and your business. The right fit for me are those people who really understand the value that I give out. I always mention that I am very upfront when it comes to my pricing as this is my first gear to know if the client values my work and what I can offer. I never do any hidden charges with pricing and what you see is what you get. Now, there are some cases when we need to add an extra scoop as the project calls. When that happens, I always see to it to give the client a quick heads up so he/she is fully aware of why there were some extra charges on the billing! (We don’t want surprises like that!) If the client believes in my capabilities, there are no questions asked. Now I want you to think the same. What is the right fit for you? It could be identified by your pricing too, by your target market, by convenience through location, and many more.
Show your true self!
Another key thing is that when we hop on a call, we kind of gauge as well if we are in the right fit. Because I always think and I always respect the process of discovery. I know that I am not everyone’s cup of tea, but I know I am someone’s shot of vodka (A famous line by Nadia Melton) right? So I want to make sure that from the very beginning, they see my personality and they will enjoy it! This is also the reason why I use Zoom for my discovery calls, and not just phone calls (I hate phone discovery calls unless it is needed). Because I want them to see who I really am, and how I engage with them. If they have questions, they see how I do it. Because during this call, I am not just interviewing my client but they are also interviewing me and getting to know the person whom they will trust their business with. So I really want them to have that freedom to get to know me better. In short, I just want to show that, this is me, your Savvy Chic, Joanna! And I’ve got nothing to hide!
Make sure all things are clear!
Listening very carefully to your client is very important and this is what I needed to practice more because at times the voice in my own head takes the best of me. There are times that we cannot avoid encountering language barriers, I mean I do speak English well but English is not my First language (For those of you who don’t know I am originally from the Philippines) and at times I may interpret things differently? In some cases, there are things that whatever I do, (no matter how loud my speaker is) I still cannot understand what my client is saying. So in order for me to make sure that I understood my client correctly, I actually use Loom video to do explanations, or I create presentations to show where we are at, because through these visuals, I am able to converse and communicate everything more clearly. Also, using video and audio is really a big help in relating and expressing my thoughts and ideas more, rather than through written content. So expect Savvy Chic Design clients to have that more experience on me attaching more videos, presentations and visuals on how things work and how I understand what they need and want. And I truly believe that that is so much better. Sounds a bit more work and effort, but hey, it’s better to be clear than sorry!
Know their communication preference
What is convenient with you may not be the one that works for them. Do they like meeting in person? Or do they prefer to have everything in writing such as e-mails? Or maybe they are so busy and want some faster methods like calling and texting? Communication preferences vary for each client. It is very important to know which works better for them and make sure to be able to adapt and be flexible with it. And always remember that it is okay not to reply right away but be sure to keep them updated from time to time. Make them feel your presence and that you are just there! Oh, and one friendly advice, if you get upset with their message, don’t reply right away! You might just not be on your own self at the moment and we don’t want to do some steps which we will regret in the future. Make sure to calm down first and don’t forget to breathe in and breathe out!
Bear in mind that making your clients happy does not mean that you have to give it all out! You still have to set boundaries! These boundaries are so important when you are working with your client. Because when you set clear boundaries for your business as well, it also creates boundaries for your client. Be very clear to identify which are your responsibilities, and your client’s too. And don’t forget to put them in writing. Trust me, you’ll never know how happy your clients will be to know that you have boundaries too as these will also help them understand how they can actually coordinate things with you, how, when and where. And not anytime, anywhere, or in any way--unlimited!
Create a timeline and stick to it!
One of the other things that really works for me to make sure my clients are happy is that I create a timeline. This actually connects with setting boundaries which I have also mentioned earlier. Creating a timeline helps all things and processes work very efficiently. But remember to not just write and stick to the board and never look at it again! Make sure to always have it in front of you to always remind you that you have to stick on it! This way, you can be more upfront when you need this one or you don’t need this one, and you’ll know that it will always work so much better with meeting your deadline too. Time management is the key! And when you create one, see to it that it is something that you are able to meet. Do not procrastinate! I repeat, do not procrastinate!
Having happy clients is not an easy thing to do. It takes a lot of effort which also includes a good client management process and business tools that will surely help you provide your services smoothly.
Again, a happy client does not not need a happy freelancer or service provider. It also does not mean that you just have to say yes to all! A happy client has an understanding of what it is, what is your process, your boundaries, who they are working with, in order to rightfully deliver to their business needs. Make your clients happy, get more referrals, and everyone is happy! Which leads to the bottomline, happy client, happy life!
If you have any questions about my Savvy tips, I’d really love to hear from you in the comments below!
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