So, choosing the perfect client.
If you’re just starting out as an entrepreneur or business owner, the idea of handpicking your clients might seem like a far-off luxury, but the reality is that choosing who you work with in an intelligent way can save you time, money and a whole lot of hassle.
For many businesses, hitting this sweet spot comes with time and experience… but it doesn’t have to. In this article, I’m going to share a few tips on how you can put in place a strategy for your business that will make it easier to vet clients and avoid any unnecessary difficulties further down the line.
Good clients vs. bad clients
It might seem unfair to describe certain clients as “good” and others as “bad”, but it’s true that some customers will be better for you and your business than others. It’s important to figure out which clients suit your business best.
So what constitutes a “good” client?
Generally speaking, a good client is someone who’s more interested in sitting down and talking about the value that you can deliver for them rather than haggling on the price. In my experience, the people who are focused on the fee often turn out to be more trouble than they’re worth. Good clients, on the other hand, are excited and engaged when talking about the strategies you can put in place for them.
A good client will recognise that in order to provide top-quality service it’s important to work together and form a partnership. You need to have great communication to make sure that expectations are being met at every stage of your working relationship. A lot of this comes down to patience. You want your client to understand and accept that in order to achieve the best results you need to first build credibility and trust.
The Red Flags
When you’re in the preliminary chats with clients, be careful of anyone whose first question is about fees and money. The fact that they’re more interested in price than outcome is an immediate bad sign. Also, be wary of anyone who seems reluctant to sit down with you and discuss the strategy beforehand. If they’re not willing to align values before you start working together, then chances are they’ll create problems for you and your business later.
Values are one of the most important aspects of your business. They are its DNA. And the same goes for your clients. In order to have a successful working relationship, it’s vital that you and your client align your values so that you fully understand what to expect from each other before you begin. If it’s your business that’s providing the service, a lot of the responsibility falls at your door. Here are a few things to bear in mind to make sure that you and your client fully understand each other from the get-go:
To make sure a client knows exactly what to expect from you and your business, you’ve got to be crystal clear in communicating what your service or product is all about. First of all, you need to sort out your website and LinkedIn page. Ask yourself whether your business values are there in easy-to-understand language. Ask a friend to have a look too – sometimes you can be too close to the project and not be able to see the wood for the trees.
Secondly, discuss any necessary details with your client as soon as possible. If you’re offering bespoke services, you won’t be able to align values simply with an online description – you’ll need to discuss them face to face. Again, if a client’s unwilling to give you the time of day to talk about these things, it’s a sign that they’re probably not someone you want to be working with.
This article’s all about choosing the right client, which means you don’t have to accept anyone and everyone. As well as allowing clients to have a good look at you and your business values, you need to do some research on them. Go to their website, LinkedIn and social media pages to get a better idea of what their values are. This should give you a good idea of whether they’re a good match for you and your business, and exactly how you can align both your values to form the perfect partnership.
Trial and Error
Like I said above, for many businesses figuring out how to pick the right clients and turn away the bad ones does take time. Hopefully, if you adopt some of the tips from this article you’ll be able to cut a few corners and save time in the long run. However, because every business is unique and has different values, you may sometimes need to see for yourself which clients work for you and which don’t. This will come with time, but don’t forget to trust your instincts. In general, you’ll have a pretty good sense of when you’re clicking with a client and when you’re not. Learn from the bad clients. What was it about them that made them bad? Figure out how you can spot these traits in the future and you’re sure to save yourself a load of time.
Likewise, when you find a good client you’ll know it. You’ll enjoy working with them and, more often than not, your partnership will be stress-free. When you click, the client’s more likely to get something out of working with you too. This means they’ll come back to you again, talk you and your business up, and refer you on to others.
Figuring out what makes a good client and a bad client for your business works out best for everyone, and saves you time and sleepless nights as well!
You might also find some useful tips in our Founder Dr David Dugans book “Bullet Proof Business” check it our here or click on the image below.
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