How to Manage Client Relationships

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Keeping up with good client relationships is key to a successful business.
Keeping up with good client relationships is key to a successful business. (Image: business colleagues preparing for business meeting image by Vladimir Melnik from Fotolia.com)

Keeping up with good client relationships is key to a successful business. Should your client relationships suffer, it is all too easy for a client to pick up and do business elsewhere. Following a few basic rules can help your business stay on track. Consider these steps for maintaining good relations the next time you reach out to your clients.

Things You'll Need

  • Phone
  • Email
  • Calendar
  • Client notes

Maintain regular communication with your client. If you have not heard from you client in some time, pick up the phone and give him a call. Assume responsibility for maintaining regular communications, even if it is simply for the purpose of touching base.

Keep your promises. If you tell a client you will be calling on a certain day, make sure you follow up on that day. Calling three days after the day you promised sends the message that you can not be trusted.

Develop a routine for interacting with you clients. Use the same modes of communication consistently so that your clients know how they will be hearing from you. If you send out mailers, attempt to do this at an anticipated time of the year. If you make appointments, make an effort to meet at the same time of the month or year regularly. The more predictable you are, the more reliable you will be perceived to be.

Take note of the personal details your client shares with you. Pay attention when your client shares information about his family, hobbies or interests. The next time you interact with your client, make it a priority to ask him how his family is doing or how his recent hobby is developing. Remembering to relate to your client on a human level will help you to build trust.

Manage you client’s expectations by reiterating your plans at the end of every meeting or conversation. Disclose what the next step is and when your client can expect to hear back from you. If there will be another meeting in your future, schedule it at the close of your current meeting.

Adjust your communication style to fit the needs of your client. If your client needs a softer touch, make sure you are doing what you can to accommodate. If your client prefers email communications, then put down the phone and correspond via email. Remaining flexible is a necessary component of customer relations.

Get involved with your client’s business. If there is networking event that might benefit your client, invite them to attend with you. If you know of someone your client might benefit from meeting, introduce them to one another. If your client holds a regular community event, make sure you attend or become an event sponsor. Getting involved with your client’s business fosters loyalty as well as future business.

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