It’s not too tricky to avoid losing your client to the competition. These three tips should help you have a long, healthy working relationship.
So your clever sales presentation picked up that amazing new client and now you’re on top of the world. Just don’t forget that sealing the deal with a client is not the end of the dance-now, you have to keep that client. Fortunately, with a little clever thinking and careful consideration, it’s not too tricky to avoid losing your client to the competition. These three tips should set you well on your way to a long, healthy working relationship:
Known in some circles as ‘Attunement’, whether or not you’re establishing and maintaining a connection with your client above and beyond a sterilized exchange of assets can make or break a business relationship. The details of how you can and should go about this will vary based on the details of your business: perhaps you make clients feel very comfortable in face-to-face meetings; maybe you offer customer service that can’t be beat.
If you’re wondering how you are doing on this front, here’s a scenario for you: Imagine that a competitor just arrived on the scene who can offer your client a better product or service, or the same product or service at a better price.
Can you imagine this situation NOT resulting you losing your client – or is the new option a no-brainer for them? The best businesses can keep clients even when they aren’t the absolute best option at a glance.
Of course, you don’t want to allow a situation to develop where client affection alone keeps them with you. Relying on intangibles alone is a quick road to losing your client – after all, that connection with the client relies upon the assumption that you have a good thing going.
That means keeping an eye on the competition so you know what they can offer that you cannot. If you have a good relationship with the client, you can ask for an honest evaluation of how you stack up with the competition and get a good idea of the areas you need to shore up to avoid losing your client in the future.
Just watching the competition and copying what they do won’t always be enough to keep you from losing your client. What if a market upheaval topples your competitors and you in one fell swoop-you might not have time to pick up the pieces and secure your relationship with your client. Always being a step behind will hurt your reputation, and eventually savvy clients will notice and move on.
Losing your client isn’t the only risk with complacency, of course: you’ll lose out on fresh opportunities as well. Something like SWOT Analysis–regular evaluations of your Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats–should be part of your business for a myriad of reasons.
All three of these tips tie together into one thing: Awareness. Awareness of your client, awareness of your market, and awareness of yourself keep you from losing your client. Paying attention past the initial sale will keep your business running steady. Fire-and-forget will always end with losing your client to one factor or another. The choice is clear.
Claire has 4+ years of experience in sales and recruitment. As a Director of Client Services, her main objective is to connect great people to great companies by building strong relationships with both top clients and candidates in the sales industry. She specializes in sales roles of all seniority levels for both enterprise and start-up clients North American wide. When Claire isn't networking with top talent, she enjoys being outdoors, traveling and spending time with friends & family.