The state of a client-business relationship can make or break opportunities for both parties. Strong client communication is an important way for businesses to build those relationships. These are some of the ways businesses can get the most out of their client communication.
Developing a Plan
The first way to start to develop strong client communication is by creating a standardized plan to use across the company. This should include a deadline for responses to client-initiated communication so that their messages do not fall through the cracks. Management should consider which department in the company should handle the different aspects of communication with a point person for each client. Standardizing when to reach out to clients can prevent both redundant and neglectful communications. All employees need to have the training and a written copy of policies to unify client communications across the company.
With high competition in practically every industry, connecting with clients on a personal level can set companies apart. Set aside time on client calls to check in and develop a rapport with each client. Businesses can consider things like their customers’ mission and locations. Keeping notes of any personal details clients mention can help companies keep track. Instead of sending the same standard gift or welcome package to each client, send something that addresses their interests. Sending a handwritten note of appreciation after a major milestone can help the client feel a connection with the business and keep them happy.
Dealing With Problems
Having an effective client communication strategy is most important when clients and firms run into problems. Clients may disagree on a marketing strategy, want to try something risky, or complain about the business. In these situations, companies can identify both the primary issue and any underlying issues causing tension. For example, a client may want to change marketing strategies based on outdated information about the demographics of a market. Explaining both issues calmly and respectfully can help clients understand. Information positions the firm as the expert. Businesses should also be honest with clients when they make a mistake. A debrief can include a clear plan to undo any damage from a mistake, including personnel or system changes.
While many businesses may find it challenging to communicate with some of their clients, improving this area can be financially rewarding. Taking the time to prioritize customers can keep problems at bay and increase referrals.