If you are: a) wondering how to attract new customers and/or b) trying to get your existing clients to keep coming back to you – then read on.
The key factor for getting more repeat business, regardless of which of the above two scenarios you are in, is building rapport and trust. True, it takes time and it sure doesn’t happen overnight – but then, if you’re really devoted to your business and wish to make it more successful, you WILL find the time for each small step in the process of building rapport with your clients. Devoting time and effort to gaining your clients’ trust is rewarding in many ways – you get more repeat business from previous clients, higher level of credibility and authority within the industry, and potential new clients – through word-of-mouth marketing. After all, a happy client is bound to tell friends about the good service they got from you. The tricky part here is the well-known fact that a happy customer tells 2-3 people, but an unhappy one will tell 10 or more. Therefore, once you’ve gained it, it is absolutely vital that you maintain trust .
The importance of trust is so huge it can even beat price resistance – the top reason for companies losing/ not getting any business nowadays. What I mean is – if you manage to get a client to trust you, and maintain that trust, the client will keep coming back to you even if your prices are not the lowest ones on the market. They’d prefer to come back to someone they trust, rather than pay less to a new supplier, but risk to compromise the quality of the final product.
The following checklist is a good way to start the journey of building rapport with your clients.
√ Always listen carefully to anything your client has to say – listening gives you the opportunity to not only find out all about their current needs, but also info on potential additional services they might need.
√ Make them feel comfortable – they need to know you have their best interests at heart. It is absolutely imperative that you show your clients how important they are to you and that their needs are your number one priority.
√ Express willingness to help with any additional requests – even if these are not part of your usual services portfolio. Going the extra mile for your clients can’t go unnoticed.
√ Be passionate about wanting to help your client – showing creativity and resourcefulness in problem-solving/ finding solutions for your client is a clear way to show them you’re not just going about your usual work day, but you really are putting your heart into this.
√ Lighten up your talk – forget the strictly formal, pattern-like behaviour . Humour is a very powerful tool when it comes to building rapport with complete strangers, so use it anytime you can.
√ Keep in touch – even if you don’t have a current translation order from the client in question, it won’t hurt to drop a quick email to say hello, and send some useful info in – e.g. current promotional rates/discounts you may have, etc. Remind them of yourself regularly, but do NOT waste their time.
√ Follow up after a delivered translation – people like to be asked their opinion, especially on something they’ve paid for. Always take the time to follow up – it’s crucial.
Be consistent with all the above and results will stun you.
In a nutshell, it all boils down to the indisputable fact that people buy from people they like. So take the time to get people to like & trust you – it can be a time-consuming process indeed, but it will pay off in the long run – guaranteed!