One of the most important aspects of ensuring client satisfaction is making sure the content you create for them effectively achieves noticeable results. In addition to growing a customer base, engaging quality content helps build a client’s brand and gives them an opportunity to stand apart from the competition. If you expect to really come through for your clients, it’s essential to make communication a priority.
You have to tap into your clients’ true expectations and make sure that the whole team is always on the same page, or you may just risk the longevity of your working relationships. Here’s how you can create a communication process to work from that will help you maximize client satisfaction and achieve your business goals:
Send Out Questionnaires
A great way to keep communication wide open is to send out small questionnaires to your clients when you send them completed projects. You don’t have to send one out with each project completion, but shoot for doing it two or three times a month so your clients have ample opportunity to reach out with questions, concerns, suggestions and compliments.
Ask your clients for feedback about things like word usage, formatting, presentation, topic choices and voice implementation. After a while, you should start to see some patterns with your clients which will help you to avoid content creation techniques that they aren’t crazy about as time goes on.
Pay Attention to Undertones
When having a conversation with clients on the phone or in person, it’s important to pay close attention to their undertones to make sure you aren’t missing an underlying message. For example, if your client agrees with your content plan by simply nodding or humming in agreement instead of confirming with the word "yes," they may be a bit uncomfortable with some or all of your plan.
To gain some insight, you can probe a little by offering a couple of alternatives or asking for suggestions. When an alternative suggestion is offered by your client even if they’re telling you that your progress is satisfactory, chances are that they’ll be a lot happier if you implement their suggestions – even if it means a bit more work for your team.
Always Clarify Details
When clients send you details about an upcoming project, it’s always a good idea to recap those details in your own words and send the recap back as confirmation that you understand the project. This will give your clients an opportunity to make clarifications based on your feedback if something it misinterpreted.
This technique can be used to clarify questions that come up in the middle of a project. Once your questions are answered, shoot a quick recap of the conversation back to your client to confirm your understanding and to create a document trail or written record of any changes that have been agreed upon.
Keep Basic Records
To ensure that you don’t have to make clients repeat their preferences and other details that have already been previously established, keep a basic record for each client that outlines the important stuff as it comes up, such as color schemes that should be used when including visual aids, subheading preferences, voice/tone and language requirements,and research needs, just to name a few.
It’s also helpful to notate passing comments in these records, like when a client mentions that they prefer the word “peruse” over “check out” in their content or when a client’s planned work droughts are expected. Before you know it you’ll understand your clients as if they’re your personal friends.
By using these steps to create your own custom communication process, you should find that you get better content results for your clients, thanks to the benefit of more direction and the need for less guesswork.