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How to lose a client in 10 ways

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At Robert Sharp & Associates we value superior customer service above all else. Of course, we care about providing our clients with stunning marketing materials and an impactful strategy, but we care more about building and maintaining relationships. Some of those relationships have lasted over 20 years due to the trust we have built.

As a marketing agency, building impactful, long-term relationships is extremely important for not only your success but your reputation. Without a stellar reputation from your clients, it will be hard to gain traction with new clients.

In this blog, RSA will give you the top don’ts of client relationships.

This is how to lose a client in 10 ways.

#1 Not communicating in a clear and timely manner

Clear, honest communication between a client and agency is one of the most important ways to build and maintain a healthy, long-lasting relationship. If you receive a phone call or an email from a client, make sure to respond as quickly as you can. Even if you don’t have time to address their issue immediately or don’t know the answer, let your client know you received their email and you are working on it. Failure to send a response can lead to your client wondering if you received their email, or feeling ignored. Without clear communication, things can slip through the cracks leading to misunderstanding and frustration.

#2 Only communicating when it’s time to send a bill

If the only time you communicate with a client is when it is time for them to pay you, they will likely feel used and unimportant. Checking up on your clients from time to time to see how they’re doing, how business is going, and if there is anything you can do for them, is a great way to make them feel important. That way when it is time to send a bill or check up on an invoice it isn’t the first time they’ve heard from you in months.

#3 Not abiding by the client’s timeline or budget

Before the start of any project, make sure you have a clear understanding of your client’s budget as well as their timeline. Sticking to these two things can ensure your client is satisfied with your work. If at any time the project begins to go out of scope, make sure you talk to your client. Let them know there may be changes in the budget or timeline before it’s too late. It’s always better to discuss things beforehand before waiting until the project deadline has passed or sending a client an invoice they aren’t expecting.

#4 Sending an invoice with no warning or details

If a client receives an invoice with no explanation and they aren’t sure what it’s for they may be frustrated and confused. Make sure to keep and prepare accurate time reports of what you’ve worked on and speak to the client beforehand about how much a particular project will cost. That way when they receive an invoice they are prepared for it and know what they are being billed for.

#5 Only talking about yourself

As business professionals, we often want to talk about our company’s accomplishments and achievements. However, a client doesn’t want to hear about you. They want to know what you can do for them. In client meetings, make sure to keep the attention focused on your client. It’s okay to talk about other projects if it is relevant but try to keep the attention away from yourself and on the client’s needs and wants.

#6 Looking unprofessional

The way you dress for a client meeting may vary from client to client. Some clients may wear a suit and tie while others show up in jeans. It is okay to dress a bit more casually if you have built a personal relationship with a client. However, as a general rule of thumb, it’s always important to dress for success. Dressing professionally shows you have confidence, makes a good first impression, and helps you gain a completive edge.

#7 Ignoring client feedback

While you may be the expert in your field, your client is the expert on their business. Taking into account their ideas and feedback will not only make them feel valued and appreciated but may help produce a greater outcome in the end. At the end of the day, it’s important to remember that what the client wants is the most important thing. Even if you like a different logo, design, or color scheme, they have the final say in all aspects of their project.

#8 Missing or showing up late to meetings

Everybody has a busy schedule and 100 different things they need to accomplish in a day. That’s why nothing is more frustrating than taking time to meet with someone and they show up late or don’t show at all. If you have a meeting scheduled with a client do your best to arrive 5-10 minutes early and be prepared with what you want to discuss. If for any reason you have to miss a meeting due to illness or other unforeseen circumstances, give your client a heads-up in advance so they can reschedule their day accordingly.

#9 Miss a project deadline

As we mentioned, one of the most valuable ways to build and maintain client relationships is clear and open communication. Giving your clients routine updates throughout the entire project will help them stay informed and up-to-date. This way, if there are any unforeseen circumstances that will delay your progress, you can let your client know ahead of time and plan accordingly. Failing to communicate when a project deadline has been missed makes you seem unorganized and irresponsible.

#10 Only focusing on getting a sale

To build and maintain positive client relationships, you have to make your client feel like they are your partner, not just a means for you to make money. If every time you talk with a client you are pitching them a new product or sale, they will begin to feel used and unappreciated. It is important to routinely check in on your clients to see how they are doing and ask if there is anything you can help them with. Additionally, offering them free advice or ideas from time to time is another great way to show a client that you care about their success and not just how much money they bring in.

Robert Sharp & Associates has built success over the years because we truly care and value each of our clients. Our clients understand that we are a part of their team and root for their success. Our attention to offering premium customer service is why we have built and maintained hundreds of positive client relationships. Some that have lasted nearly 20 years!

But don’t just take our word for it. Check out our website to read some client testimonials to learn why our clients love working with the team at RSA!


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