In any successful business, there is always a great deal of time and money spent on marketing. Now this is definitely a necessity of business and important to its continued growth. Just as important, however, is the work you do with your current clients. Too many in business today make the mistake of devoting all their time and energy to landing new clients and neglect to see the real potential in the ones they already have. They have forgotten that these clients need to be nurtured as well, and given the same time and attention (if not more) they put into their efforts to land new ones. These clients not only continue to send you work, which pays the bills, but they often refer you to others as well. Can you see the importance of treating them well?
Your current clients can add to your business success in a number of other ways too. Just a couple of examples would be their ability to send you referrals or offer testimonials, both of which are great ways to get more clients. Let’s break it down and show you the value your current clients bring to the plate.
Top ways to engage with your current clients for more business success:
Testimonials – Potential clients want to know you have what it takes to handle their business, and often times nothing can tell them better than to hear it from those who have worked with you in the past. That’s why getting testimonials and posting them on your website is so important.
Asking for a testimonial might seem difficult at first. But what you’ll soon discover is that most clients are happy to oblige and usually pleased to be able to give back and help you in return for your excellent service.
With testimonials, like everything in business, you want to do it right. You should have a page on your website dedicated to testimonials. Proudly display them (and remember keywords count on that page as well). Now take it a step further and see if your clients would be willing to give you an audio or video testimonial as well. Audios and Videos are great because it allows prospects to hear and see your client’s energy and excitement in working with you.
Referrals – Your clients can be your best referral system, often without even knowing it. When others see the fabulous work you have done for them, they are curious to find out who helped them accomplish it, and that’s when the referrals start. Plus, many times clients just love to share their best kept secret–you.
Some of your clients might even have a client of their own who has been looking for someone with your skills and were unaware that you were available. That’s why it is so important to let your clients know you appreciate referrals, and actually tell them you’re available for new business. It’s also good to provide a monetary incentive; for instance, a discount on future work, a small gift card, or even some monetary amount such as a percentage of work the first few months – like a referral fee!
Client Appreciation – It is so much more than simply always completing tasks on time (which by the way is an absolute). You also want to make your clients feel like they are the most important part of your business. This can be done in a number of ways. First, think of what else you can do for them. Always be on the lookout for ways to improve their business. Little things make a big difference. If you see software you think would benefit them, let them know. If you see a PR opportunity that is perfect for them, pass it on. Even things such as catching a typo on their website or marketing piece can make a big difference in letting them know you care.
And don’t forget those personal touches. Remembering their birthdays, anniversaries, family events, etc., shows not only that you care, but that they are more to you than just a paycheck. When you think about it, don’t you feel amazing when someone sends you a congratulatory email or a birthday wish? Your clients feel the same way.
But perhaps the most important factor to keep in mind is to never take your clients for granted, especially your long-term ones. You never want them to feel that the website you are designing for a new client is more important than the work you do every month for them, no matter how small the task may be.
Having satisfied clients is truly one of the most effective and low-cost marketing strategies you can have in your business. Take the time to treat them well. Ask for referrals and testimonials, and continue to always do your best and you’ll be rewarded with a good client base teeming with loyal clients you love working with.