As a busy freelancer, going from job to job, it can be difficult to maintain ongoing client relations once the job is over.
I’m not fickle, just busy!
I know I have allowed past clients to just drift away despite having formed a great working relationship with them. I was too focused on the next client, and then I let that relationship slip because I was focused on the next. And on it goes…
All the marketing gurus tell us that it is easier to get repeat business than new business. So, this week I am looking at ways freelancers can maintain these relationships easily & cheaply.
The general rule of thumb is to use the personal touch to make our clients feel a bit special. But I think we need to be careful how we do this
It was my birthday recently, amongst the lovely well wishes from my friends and family. I also had numerous birthday greetings and offers from companies from which I have bought things in recent years. And I really didn’t like it.
Maybe it’s just me but not only do I know that they aren’t really wishing me a happy birthday I also resent them for using my special day to try and sell me something. And then I felt bad.
Especially if they were a small business because I understand how much time and effort it takes to write and design the email and to set up the email automation.
So yes, use the personal touch – but use it to the benefit of them, not you.
One way to remind your clients that you still exist whilst benefitting them is to support their work and business. Show them a bit of love on social media by liking, re-sharing or commenting on their post. Or providing a word-of-mouth recommendation. Just make sure they know to mention your name to your client.
These are free if a bit time consuming but the most important thing is that they will be greatly appreciated by your client.
Why it is so important?
It’s 5-25 times more expensive to acquire a new customer than retain a returning one. This is worth bearing in mind when you think about the cost of client relationships – whether that cost is in the form of money or your time.
If you believe it is worth spending some money then there are plenty of “Customer Relationship Management” platforms out there that can help you. These are great for freelancer client relations, each one offers different benefits and I’ll be exploring them in another post. Or maybe it’s as simple as subscribing to a service like “Bojorno” so you can send personalised videos to your clients.
It may not seem like it but in this situation, you have the upper hand over larger companies as you already have a one-on-one relationship with your clients. You know their likes and dislikes well
So, you are best placed to make a truly informed decision on how to improve your relationships with your past clients – with an eye to them becoming returning clients.