Love is in the air, and we want that love to extend to our professional work. As a solo pro, you want to do good work with good clients that value you. However, the way to every client’s heart may differ. In this post, inspired by this month of love, we look at three client types along with a few tips on how to win their affections.
Basic Bob. This client does not need flowers or over the top gestures. Good work that produces the desired results is all it takes to get their heart palpitating. Bob is practical, so eliminate the fluff and keep it straightforward. Speak in plain language when discussing your plans and communicating results. There is no need to over complicate reports with charts, graphs and lots of information. Bob will love you if you share the most important information clearly and succinctly. This is a great solid client who will be devoted when they know that they can count on you to do what you were hired to do. However, don’t take Bob for granted, a little romance even when not acknowledged goes a long way. A bouquet of great service, or a small present of fixing a problem shows Bob that you care.
The hopeless romantic. This client may sign off emails with hugs and kisses and send you emojis and hearts in text messages. They are the passionate client that is not afraid to show emotions – good or bad. They can be a dream to deal with as their personable and appreciative. But it can also be tricky to understand if you’ve missed the mark or they’re unhappy. So be careful to not allow their personality to let you rest in a comfort zone on or coast along. Emote away with them, but set metrics and track your progress. Check in on objectives – is this what you expected? Are there changes you would like to see? You will get plenty of gold stars but that does not guarantee a long term commitment. To keep the fires burning, stay on track with what is promised and what was accomplished. Document and report in writing. It’s also a good idea to broaden the relationship by forming bonds with multiple people in the organization.
The don’t make a fuss client.This client is affable and easygoing. But beware as the seemingly low-key client can actually be high maintenance. This is the client that tells you not to make a fuss but is miffed when you don’t. To preserve this relationship, do all the things you would normally do, even if the client says it is not needed. For example, if the client says, “I don’t need a written report, it’s fine if we talk.” Do the written report and present it by saying, “I know you said you did not need the written report but I thought it would be helpful to document the past month in case you wanted to refer back to anything.” With this client type, you may be lulled into complacency, believing things are going well and get blindsided by a list of grievances.Like the hopeless romantic don’t allow their outward demeanor to fool you. It is important to maintain a high standard of excellence and track the things that you have agreed that you will do. Take care to ensure that you consistently show how your efforts are impacting the business. It is possible to win this client’s heart by taking the lead and not allowing them to dictate the level of romance.
Doing great work comes naturally to most Solo PR Pros but it is equally important to learn how to make that work resonate with different client types. When we can effectively speak our client's language it is a win-win for everyone.
How do you win the hearts of your clients? Share with us in the comments or on social media using #solopr.