12 things to keep in mind when working with clients
A zaezhenny photo from cliparts.
Having worked as a designer for several years, I managed to be in the role of both a performer and a customer. Since I have the opportunity to communicate with clients directly, I highlighted a few points for myself that can increase their loyalty and tune into one wave. A satisfied client will recommend you to his acquaintances and partners or will contact you with new projects.
1. Respond promptly to customer requests
This does not mean that you need to answer a phone call or mail at 23:00, but a timely response to requests can magically increase loyalty to you. Recall, for example, your reaction when you make a request to the online store, and the manager-linker contacts you in two days. And wah effect, when after 5-10 minutes. Do you feel the difference?
2. Stick to deadlines
The client, in fact, has only two requirements for you: you must always do your job as expected and within the agreed time frame. I emphasize that it rarely raises the requirement that you jump over yourself, this initiative can only be on your part. The client needs a result, and if he is not there by 5:59 p.m. this Friday, all your suffering will be in one place.
3. Be honest
This item comes up from the previous one. When you, nevertheless, do not have time to do the work on time, you do not need to “freeze”, ignoring the customer’s calls. Checked, it is better to warn about the delay yourself and set new deadlines. Typically, customers are normal about this.
4. Keep the customer informed
You know that you are currently working on a client’s project, he doesn’t know this. Make more milestones during the implementation process and report regularly. If you are an advanced designer and work in some of the project management systems, then give the client guest access to the project and he will be able to track the progress.
5. Synchronize customer expectations with yours.
The designer should not only understand what is required of him, he must clearly and specifically agree with the client exactly what, and in what format, will be done. For example, the result of our work will be a set of page layouts in .psd format.
The golden rule with straziks is that everything that can be misunderstood will necessarily be misunderstood. An example from practice: a client orders a website design, and as a result, as it turned out, he took all the texts to the “design”, because they are also on the website, and this is another week of the copywriter's life.
6. Goals and objectives most important
What is the difference between artists and designers? And in the fact that we - designers - solve very specific tasks, and do not fulfill ourselves. Therefore, if a photo of a kitten on the main page helps to increase sales by 100,500 times, cram your “fairy” away.
7. Do not consider yourself smarter than customers
If you want to reach maximum mutual understanding, use the same terms as the client. After all, no one likes to feel dumb. And do not give the client links to articles such as " Playing with Fonts " for enlightenment.
8. Take a prepayment
It’s not always necessary to do work for money, but if you finally decided to earn money, take a prepayment. Because:
- it shows the client’s willingness to work with you and his solvency;
- it disciplines you. Taking the money in advance, you take the responsibility to do the work on time;
- there are projects that drag out for a couple of months through no fault of yours. Prepayment makes it possible not to sit on the beans while work is in progress.
9. Do not let money get to you
Very often, the client is a busy person, and in order to meet with you personally or to go to some rare branch of the bank, he needs to specially set aside time for this. And instead of getting paid on the same day, you can wait a few days until he has free time. Therefore, provide the client with as many payment options as possible: cash, money transfers, card accounts (of the most common banks), Yandex.Money, webmoney, etc.
10. Do not stoop to the level of bazaar women
Rarely, but still there are situations when a client in a sharp form communicates with you. Do not escalate the situation with the words "the fool himself", but try to understand the reasons for such a reaction. In extreme cases, a phrase like “if you continue further in the same tone, we end cooperation and leave the prepayment at home” should refresh a hot client.
11. Pleasantly surprise customers
When carrying out your work, try not only to do it efficiently, but also so that the client remains satisfied with the cooperation with you. Make free “ buns ” (for example, branded envelopes ) that will pleasantly surprise the client and set you apart from others.
12. An idea mailed is a dead idea.
If possible, then try to present everything live. Since no one understands your thoughts better than you, and the ability to quickly explain in words the rationality of certain decisions can save a lot of time and nerve.
Afraid of speaking to people? Sign up for acting classes and within two weeks your charisma and self-confidence will increase by 5-10 centimeters :)
This article is also available in Ukrainian translation .