Keeping clients happy during the busy season takes both good systems and the right company culture and training.
Right now with strong consumer confidence, it is hard to stay on top of everything. But now it matters more than ever.
As soon as there is a slow down, the companies that give the best client service will continue to prosper.
Advice from experience:
As both a landscape business consultant (I have consulted over 300+ landscape firms) and as someone who has run many client focus groups, and as a landscape consumer myself, I can tell you first hand what your clients want.
Nine Must-Do’s to Keep Your Clients Raving Fans
- Responsiveness. Above all else clients want their texts and calls returned, and quick turn around on issues on their property. Clients have been trained by Amazon to get immediate response.
- Acknowledgement. When mistakes happen, your clients want you to own up to them, and fix them. In fact, if you do this well, your clients will love you even more so afterward. But if you play the blame game, then you lose their respect.
- Big bills. Don’t send your clients nit-picky small bills. It feels like nickel and dime’ing. Find a way to send larger bills, and ironically your clients will be happier.
- Follow up dates. When you leave a meeting and say you will get right back to your clients. Set a date, so your client can jot that down on the schedule and not have to wonder what is going on. This helps your team do a better job as well.
- Proactive ideas. Many of your clients want new ideas to keep things fresh and prevent future problems from happening.
- Leadership. It’s fine to ask a client what they want, but your clients often wants you to tell them what they need and what is best. Be prepared to have an opinion and give guidance, while leaving room for your client’s wishes.
- Stay in touch and educate. Don’t make your client call a competitor because they didn’t know that your firm did the kind of work they need. Keep marketing your services and keep offering solutions.
- Don’t assume. Never assume your client wants to save money and buy the cheapest solution. Never assume you know what is priority on your clients property. Talk to them, engage them, and then offer them options (just not too many.)
- Details matter. It’s the small things (punch lists, delayed warranty fixes, nagging problems, construction details, etc) that snow ball into larger dissatisfaction. Take care of the little things, and your clients will become raving fans, telling everyone how great your company is!
It’s fine to ask a client what they want, but your clients often wants you to tell them what they need and what is best. Be prepared to have an opinion and give guidance, while leaving room for your client’s wishes. Click To Tweet
Your Challenge – Keep Your Clients Happy In Busy Times, And They Will Stay Loyal And Propel Your Growth!
I read the following statistic that sums up your challenge (in Colleen Francis’ new book, Right On The Money.)
“Engaged and satisfied customers buy 50% more frequently, spend 200% more each year, and are five times more likely to display brand loyalty.
Ensuring your clients are “very, very satisfied” means they will spend more profitably with you this year, and years to come.
P.S. To see how Drost Landscape (Michigan) has been able to grow and earn profits with this mantra, join us for our Summer Growth Summit.