Most agencies will always focus on the beginning when meeting a client, the completion of a pitch and celebrating the new win.
But the relationship which is inevitable is the most important, more so then at the beginning. How you communicate and respond to your client shows what type of agency you really are. So how do you build a relationship in the right way? How do you go from “just friends” to “exclusive"?
- Getting to know their industry and company. It is paramount to understand your client’s company and industry. You don’t need to be an expert but this will help when talking in their language. This will then help you to cater your interactions and offerings accordingly.
- Treat others the way you want to be treated. This classic lesson seems like the simplest of tasks - yet it is often the one forgotten. When engaging in business with a customer, put yourselves in the person's shoes and provide the same level of service and respect that you would want.
- Honesty is the key. Stretching the truth about any product or service you offer can damage your reputation instantly. If you can be honest about anything you are unable to provide, your clients will most likely appreciate this and will provide the foundations of a strong, long lasting relationship.
- Remember your clients are people, not numbers. After the first conversation with your client, make an effort to remember something about the individual and not just their name. Small details can have a big impact on your long-lasting relationship.
Each connection is unique and different and should be treated as such. I believe in being yourself and taking a genuine interest in the professional relationship - the rest will take care of itself. By doing this, your clients will in turn start to trust you and therefore remain happy.
So avoid these common pitfalls and instead reap the rewards of a positive and mutually rewarding business relationship that you both can enjoy for years and years.