Client value. Two little words, but do you really know what they mean?
When most people think of their clients and the value they bring to their businesses, they think about how much those clients pay them each month. They think solely in monetary terms. Yes, how much your clients and customers pay you each month is very relative to their value, but that’s not the full value they bring.
Think about it!
No matter what your business … remember your customers and clients are the only reason you continue to be in business.
Bingo! That’s it. That’s your client value, and the core value they bring to our business. Our clients ARE our business, and no matter how fabulous we think we are, we simply wouldn’t have businesses if we didn’t have clients.
To take it a little farther; of course the income our clients bring to our businesses is important. That’s how we pay our business expenses; and unless we are lying to ourselves, the main reason we’re in business to begin with. But above and beyond the money that hits our checking account when we charge their credit cards or cash their checks, they can add even more value to our businesses when they refer others to us because they think we’re so awesome.
Now that you understand the true value of your clients and customers, take a good look at how you treat them and whether or not they hold the priority in your business they should. I’ve seen far too many new business owners hold so tightly to their rules and regulations that they are doing a disservice to their clients.
Here are a few examples:
- You get a client email at 5 pm as you’re walking out the door. Instead of shooting off a quick “I’m walking out the door right now, but will get back with you first thing in the morning” response, you wait until the next day.
- You have a 24-48 hour turnaround policy in place, and one of your clients emails you with a quick project that really needs attention now. Your response is to stick to your standard turnaround policy and say no can do unless they pay you a premium.
- You don’t work weekends, but one of your clients has a really important deadline for a project that would require you to work a couple of hours on Saturday; but again … you reinforce your, “sorry, we don’t work weekends,” policy.
Do you get the drift? These may be great boundaries and policies to help you maintain control of your business and still be able to enjoy your life, but at what cost do you enforce them?Always remember your customers and clients are the only reason you continue to be in business.
I’m not saying you need to change your policies or set major precedents, but I am encouraging you to remember these clients and customers ARE the only reason you are in business. If you have a client who continually pushes your boundaries, maybe it’s time to have a quick chat with them. But if it’s only a once in a while thing, why not show your commitment to them as a client and take a few extra minutes before heading out the door, or block off a few hours on a Saturday to help them out. Remember, their success is your success, and as I mentioned in in a previous post, it costs a lot less to maintain current clients than it does to get new ones.
What are your business policies/boundaries … are they unbendable or flexible based on the specific needs of your clients? Do you enforce your policies and boundaries in a way that is best for both your business and your clients, or are you a stickler based solely on principal or on client value? If you don’t know the answer to this, maybe it’s time you took a look and figured it out!
In business since 1991, Terry Green is the founder/CEO/President of BizEase Support Solutions, an American-based, online marketing support company comprised of a team of talented professionals from around North America. BizEase excels at providing speakers and business coaches worldwide with seamless online marketing solutions, from setting up shopping carts and editing video, to writing blog posts and managing Social Media and PR campaigns. BizEase clients (who span five continents) take great joy in allowing the BizEase team to take care of the details so they can get back to doing what they do best! Click here to get our weekly tips ezine delivered to your inbox every other Friday, with tips on plugins, apps, and tools to make you more productive today!