March 3, 2006
How often should I communicate with my clients?
~ written by Tim W. Hrastar, Tim W. Hrastar Associates Rapport Marketing
Let's take one of the most common questions I hear: "How often should I communicate with my clients?" Every client's expectations are different. Some clients are higher maintenance than others and require more hand-holding, while others say, "don't call me, I'll call you." Sometimes you may think that your clients believe they are the only client you have and that you are working on their case exclusively, 24/7.
One of the first things you need to do is to clarify what their expectations are. You check expectations by asking them such questions as how often they would like to hear from you and by what means: in-person, telephone, email or letter. The best time to determine communication preferences is when you first start working with a client. But you can still do it even with long term clients. Just let them know that you want to improve how you serve them and would like to make sure your communication patterns meet their needs.
Clients want to know that you care about them. Let's say you are working on a matter for a client, and it's at an impasse - nothing is happening at the moment because you have no control over it; perhaps a document is in the courthouse waiting to be reviewed by a judge.
Remember, from a client's viewpoint, it may be a very important issue, and they are thinking about it a lot. From your viewpoint, you have put it out of your mind and are busy working on other client matters that have deadlines. To show your client you care, and are thinking about them, telephone them and let them know what the situation is, "the document is currently in the hands of a judge for review, and when it makes it past that hurdle the next steps will be..."
That thirty-second unexpected phone call will go a long way in easing their mind and putting you in a good light. This is an excellent way to solidify client relationships. This is a non-billable thirty-second phone call that will make you look like a hero to your client. Try it today!