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Episode 60. The #1 Way to Keep Clients Happy

 

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When your clients are happy, they continue to work with you. If you don’t want to have to be selling your services all the time, having happy clients who continue to work with you month after month and year after year, should be part of that strategy.

Happy clients can help you grow your business without you having to do a lot of work. Happy clients refer you to their friends, family and network — and that means that you land more clients without having to do much work, which allows you to grow your business. Happy clients are also a lot more likely to leave positive reviews — whether that’s on your website, Facebook or Google, those reviews matter and happy clients are the way to make it happen. 

Now many of you might think that the best way to keep your clients happy is to get them great results; and listen, results are really important, but they’re only a small part of what makes clients happy. Here’s how you can keep your clients happy so you can grow your business:

 

Even if you get your clients great results or you sell a super cool product, the entire client and customer experience matters.


Follow the number one rule: always under promise and over deliver

Now you’ve probably heard this saying before, but it’s one of the most important things that you need to understand and act on as a service provider.

Let me give you an example: for Christmas, two of the items we purchased were a bath tub tray (I love taking baths now!), and a Peloton bike.

We ordered the Peloton bike in October, knowing that the average wait time right now is about eight to ten weeks. When we ordered it, we were told it would be delivered on December 21st. I wasn’t thrilled about waiting two months to get it, but at least we knew we would have it right before Christmas and the New Year.

As you might have guessed, the Peloton didn’t show up on December 21st. There was zero communication from Peloton or the delivery service that it wasn’t coming or had to be rescheduled for delivery. I — the customer — had to reach out to the company to find out what was going on.

It was then rescheduled for December 26th…and it didn’t show up again. I reached out, and this time our delivery was rescheduled for January 7th. Two days before, I reached out to confirm that the bike would be delivered, and was told it would arrive on time. 

Well, it happened again. January 7th came and went and there was still no bike. This time when I contacted them to find out what was going on, I was told that my bike was now rescheduled to be delivered in March, three months after the original date of delivery and six months after the bike was ordered. 

Oh, and they still cannot guarantee that my bike is going to be delivered in March.

Now let’s talk about my bathtub tray example.

My husband Sam ordered a bathtub tray for me around Thanksgiving. When he ordered it, he knew it wasn’t going to be here by Christmas. The company estimated a delivery date of January 31st, so although it wouldn’t be here by Christmas, he still ordered it because it was a specific design I wanted that could prop up my book while I was in the tub and hold a glass of wine — some very important things, right?

On Christmas, Sam told me that the tray was ordered, but it wouldn’t be here until the end of January. I was still excited to get the tray and didn’t mind waiting because I know that the supply chain can be really unpredictable during the holidays, especially for small businesses.

And then guess what? The tray arrived the first week of January, three weeks earlier than expected. 

Now can you guess which purchase I’m a lot happier with and which company I would buy from again? Which company I would recommend to a friend and which company I would write a raving review for?

Peloton promised over and over and still has yet to deliver. The tray company under promised, saying that it wouldn’t arrive till January 31st and over delivered with the tray showing up three weeks early. 

Now here’s the thing: even if you get your clients great results or you sell a super cool product, the entire client and customer experience matters. So let’s dive into the three ways you can implement and actually follow the under promise and over deliver method in your business.

 

You need to set clear boundaries — boundaries aren’t going to upset your clients. If anything, those boundaries are going to make them happier because now they have the right expectations.

 

#1: Clearly communicate your availability

You need to clearly communicate your operating hours to your clients. On top of that, you need to share your typical response time and how to communicate with you in case of an emergency. 

If you find yourself getting emails, slack messages, texts or phone calls at all hours of the day, seven days a week from your clients, then most likely it’s because you haven’t clearly communicated and set the right expectations of when you are available.

The best time to do this is when you first start working with a client. You can still have that conversation even if you’ve worked with a client for months or even years, but establishing those boundaries and having those clear expectations are really going to help your clients be happy.

For example, if a client emails you at 8pm and you respond 15 minutes later, now they have the expectation that if they email you at night, they will get a response.

You need to clearly communicate your operating hours (for example, Monday-Friday from 8am-5pm), and typical response time. If there’s an emergency outside of your operating hours, you need to clearly state how you would like your clients to contact you. Now, if a client emails you at 8pm at night, they’re not going to expect an email response right away. 

You need to set clear boundaries — boundaries aren’t going to upset your clients. If anything, those boundaries are going to make them happier because now they have the right expectations.

 

#2: Manage your deadlines

I come from the agency world where everything is urgent and needs to be done ASAP. Unfortunately, because of that, there’s this mentality from the corporate world that everything is urgent and needs to be done right away. Once we start working for ourselves, we feel like we have to continue that and get everything done as quickly as possible. 

But typically, that’s an internal pressure that we are put on ourselves, not a pressure that is being put on from our clients. If a client asks you when you can have something done, that doesn’t mean they need it done now. They’re truly just wondering how long it will take.

So the next time your client asks for something, instead of saying you can have it done for them tomorrow, tell them you’ll have it done by the end of the week. You can even over deliver by sending it to them on Thursday, instead of Friday. If you tell me that you’re going to get it to me tomorrow and it doesn’t happen, I’m going to be upset — but if you tell me you’re going to have it to me by the end of the week, and you give it to me on Thursday, I’m going to be a really happy client. 

 

You need to manage expectations of results from the beginning. It’s always better to under promise and over deliver.

 

#3: Manage result expectations from the beginning

Do not promise your clients a home run — that is an exception, not the norm.

When I start working with a client, I never promise that I’m going to be able to 10 times their return on their investment. In fact, I set the expectation from the beginning, before we even start running ads, that they shouldn’t expect to see a positive ROI from their ads until month two or three.

Now, there are definitely times when we turn on ads and see immediate positive results; but more often than not, if a client hasn’t been running ads, or it’s a new funnel or a new offer, it takes time to figure out what’s going to work.

By setting that expectation from the beginning — that it’s going to take time to learn what’s working, what’s not, and it’s also going to take time for Facebook to have data to learn from — my clients are going to be okay with the fact that the first month they spent $1,000 on ads, but only made $750 back.

The reason why they’re okay with that is because I set the expectation from the beginning, I didn’t promise a home run the very first day that we started the campaign. Now, I 100% believe in Facebook ads, and they have exponentially grown my business, but it also takes time and more investment.

That’s the thing that you have to remember: you need to manage expectations of results from the beginning because again, it’s always better to under promise and over deliver.

 

The Bottom Line

Keeping your clients happy is really important, and results are just a small piece of it. You need to remember the entire client and customer experience is what’s going to make them happy.

If there’s one thing that you work on this year to grow your business and retain your clients, it’s setting the right expectations, managing your deadlines, and clearly communicating your operating hours so your clients have a better expectation on what they can expect from you. That way you can over deliver and keep them really happy.

Learn from the lessons that I’ve learned being the client and under promise and over deliver! If this episode was helpful, make sure to tag me on Instagram and leave a review if you’re feeling generous!

 


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Konchar-Anna-26 (1)

hi, i'm Anna!

I went from $200,000 in student loan debt to running a multi-million dollar online business in less than 5 years. Along the way, I realized Mondays can be great, stress doesn’t equal success, and you’re capable of more than you think. Now, I have the privilege of helping other ambitious individuals realize their potential and build their dream business and life.

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