Nowadays, the success of a company relies on more than just providing services to clients. As a matter of fact, building a strong relationship with clients is equally important as providing an exceptional service. The main reason is that relationships between agencies and clients are a foundation for trust, future collaboration and good reputation on both sides. Not only that, but establishing good relations with clients yields even more benefits to an agency that provides certain services.
For example, those benefits include mutual understanding, more efficiency, referrals and loyalty among other things. However, establishing a good relationship with clients is more difficult than it sounds. Agencies must treat clients like any other customer, thus providing them with a seamless experience, in order to guarantee their satisfaction. After all, the market is crowded and highly competitive and if agencies cannot meet the needs and expectations of their clients, they’ll lose the battle to their competitors. Therefore, here are a few tips on how to better manage client relationships.
Understand client needs
Each client is unique and has specific needs, demands and needs an agency must meet. That being said, some clients are more flexible and cooperative, while others are more strict and difficult to manage. That’s why it’s important to understand your clients well, in order to develop a specific approach on how to handle the relationship with them.
Every agency has a specific way it does things. Agencies can be more or less flexible, but they cannot do things that are out of their reach. It’s important to make that clear to clients to begin with, so that they don’t expect more than agencies can provide. That’s why it’s important to under promise and over deliver. If you exceed client expectations, they’ll be pleasantly surprised and it’s better than making promises you cannot keep.
Good communication is crucial for every agency-client relationship. If you communicate with clients on a regular basis, it helps avoid misunderstandings and inconveniences that may hurt your relationship. Many clients have a habit of changing their minds or deciding to alter something, while the project is already midway. This can cause a problem for agencies, especially if they find out too late that clients want something changed. To avoid such issues, regular communication is a must.
That way, clients have insight into the process of the project and agencies can make modifications on the spot should the need arises. Also, by communicating regularly with clients, agencies ensure everyone is on the same page. It improves the relationships by clearing out any confusion along the way. In essence, clients get what they need and agencies are able to deliver on time, which makes both sides happy.
Involve your clients
Today, agencies that provide services, such as web design, SEO, web development, digital marketing and others, rely heavily on their relationships with clients. These types of services require that both sides understand each other and that they both set clear goals and expectations. The best way to improve such relationships is that agencies involve their clients into the process itself. That way, clients can have insight into the progress so far, as well as understand how certain actions drive specific goals.
There are different types of software, such as a dependable SEO reporting tool for example, that can help involve clients and give them valuable insight. That way, your clients can be a part of the strategy and monitor the process regularly. Involving clients help builds trust, as they can familiarize themselves with what the agency does and why. Agencies can also make improvements or changes based on clients demand on the spot, whiteout risking costly delays and mistakes.
Clients hire agencies because they are unable to accomplish something on their own. Agencies must portray their professionalism and show clients that they have their best interests in mind. Sometimes, the best way to achieve that is to be straightforward and open with clients. Clients oftentimes lack the expertise in particular fields they hire agencies for. However, since they pay for the services, they want things done their way.
It’s up to agencies to show clients what is the best course of action and why. If you hesitate to portray your professional opinion and tell clients what they want to hear, it will just ruin the relationship you have with them. That also means you should avoid confrontation, and instead find a way to make your clients understand your point of view. Show them that you know what’s best for them and that you know the best way to achieve their goals. In return, they’ll respect the fact that you’re holding their best interest in mind and when the results are in, they’ll appreciate your initiative.
It’s no secret that managing client relationships can be a difficult task. Some clients are easygoing, while others are quite difficult. Nevertheless, agencies must strive towards establishing a good relationship with clients, in order ensure their satisfaction. The more satisfied and happy your clients are, the more successful your agency will be.
Author Bio: Emma is a digital marketer and blogger from Sydney. After getting a marketing degree she started working with Australian startups on business and marketing development. Emma writes for many relevant, industry related online publications and does a job of an Executive Editor at Bizzmark blog and a guest lecturer at Melbourne University. Interested in marketing, startups and latest business trends.