Having advocates for your company, services, and people is extremely powerful. Positive Word-of-Mouth (WOM) is an effective and least cost way to create new business for your professional services company.
Winning Work in a Digital World research results indicates that word-of-mouth or personal relationships were the second source of new business enquiries for companies, after referral networks.
Creating positive WOM will add your company ahead of your competition, and it’s not that hard to do.
While this remains true, in reality there are likely to be a lot of companies just like yours, against whom you’re competing. So how can you raise your offering to be exceptional enough to create positive WOM and develop new business?
Here are simple solutions to add a little value to your clients, enhance satisfaction, and get them talking about you:
Actively look for solutions to help your clients with their business
Whatever expert services your company provides, you have enough knowledge of your clients’ processes, and people, and the opportunity to provide advice, recommendations and guidance to them. The key is to be helpful, and not forceful or overly critical.
Understand that your client’s time is valuable.
Make doing business with you as possible.
Some ideas to get you started:
• organize – and respect – your client’s preferred time and way (mobile, office number, email) to be communicated.
• give key clients your contact number for direct and out-of-office access
• reply to client emails immediately, or at most within the same business day
• reduce touch points by asking for information in one attempt, where possible
• help your clients get organised by giving useful checklists for key dates
• Tell your clients on how to work more effectively with you – for example, provide clients with a service consent, and new client welcome pack.
Ask your clients who they want to get in front of
Your client’s targets may be people you have existing connections with, and can offer introductions to. For no financial cost, you can do your clients a favour and get in their good books. Conveniently, this also opens the door for you to ask for the same in return.
Stay in touch
After a client meeting, use a reminder for the next meet so you have a prompt to touch base. You don’t need to connect face-to-face – consider emailing your client an interesting and proper article or resource (something they will appreciate or remark). Make your “touch bases” no longer than 3 to 4 months apart, so that even if you don’t have an active project on the go, you don’t forget to maintain the contact.
Keep them satisfied
Send out carefully crafted client satisfaction examined, during and after a major project. Don’t be afraid of negative feedback – consider it an opportunity to enhance your business.
Being exceptional is not as hard as it might sound. You don’t have to be the best company, just invest a bit of time in looking for opportunities to add value and increase your clients’ satisfaction.