5 Ways to Get Better ClientsFebruary 22, 2010
1. Know who a “Better Client” is.
Identify the best possible client for your business success. I think of them as partners with whom I can collaborate on important areas where we can have real and dramatic impact. My ideal client sees me as a partner, not a minion. We value each other’s company, time, and contribution. And, of course, they can write a check that is appropriate compensation for the value I provide.
2. Read Your Client’s News Sources, and Write for Them.
Find out where your clients like to get information, which periodicals or websites. Read them yourself. Put together articles and call the editor to propose a contribution. When you write a paper, emulate the style. In addition to submitting them to publications, send your articles, think-pieces, and white papers directly to your clients.
3. Reach Out with Tools Clients can Use.
Provide seminars, assessments, think-pieces, frameworks, checklists, forms, and anything else that can make your clients’ lives easier. I send books from Amazon when I know it would make a positive impact. Take an active interest in finding ways to make their jobs easier. If they are people you admire and enjoy, sharing the experience of learning together is a real treat, easily worth the $15-40 investment in an occasional book!
4. Broker Knowledge Among Clients and Potential Clients.
I will often take two clients out to lunch when I know that they have valuable information to share with one another. I pick up the cost of the meal, and do VERY light facilitation, making sure that we dig into the good material early enough in our get-together that they can explore more deeply as the meal goes on and come away with real rewards.
5. Become Expert at Interpersonal Communication.
Sharpen your interpersonal and conversation skills. Become adept at being forthright, tactful, and gracious focusing on real worth, getting to substance, handling difficult topics, inspiring others with newsworthy and provocative perspectives. Learn when to use email and when not to. Pick up the forgotten art of coffees, phone calls, and letter-writing.