We all need clients to be in business. We depend on them for longevity and sustainability.
But, the question is: do you want clients or true believers?
What’s the difference, you ask?
A client is a patron of your business, but they may not necessarily refer you to others.
A true believer or supporter of your business is not *just* a client…
…it’s someone who believes in what you do, is willing to pay you for it and will shout their love for you from the roof tops.
In a lot of industries, but especially in service-based industries like ours, word of mouth referrals are THE best form of promotion.
And not just because they are free!
A word of mouth referral from a trusted source is more powerful than any amount of money you could spend on any advertisement.
That’s why true supporters are crucial for your business. They’ll spend their hard earned cash with you, and then they’ll encourage others to do the same.
So yes, clients are great, but true supporters are better!
But how do you convert clients into true believers or supporters of your business?
The first step is to create an offer your ideal client wants and/or needs.
Of course to do this you need to know exactly who your ideal client is (and what they need or want) before you spend time and money promoting your business.
Because word of mouth is free, that is ultimately what you should be aiming for, but until you get to that point, you want to keep your promotional expenses to a minimum – especially if you’re on a tight budget.
That’s why knowing exactly who your perfect client is, and where to find them, is so important. Once you know that, you can start connecting with them and building a relationship before you even meet.
Introduce yourself to potential clients via the content you put out on your blog, social media, and on your website.
The second step, and probably the most important aspect of any service-based business, is to provide exceptional customer service for your clients.
Set client expectations early, and then exceed them at every turn.
There is nothing that will set you apart from the competition more than the customer experience you provide – especially when the market is flooded with photographers all doing something similar and probably charging less.
Exceptional customer service is all about the little details, the personal touch.
Going above and beyond for your clients, and providing a personalized experience will make you memorable.
Take the time to call a potential client versus email.
Send a handwritten note to thank them for their business.
Let your clients know you care about them.
Remember that without our clients, we wouldn’t be in business, so always go the extra mile to thank them.
Photography is an emotional buy. Not only do we need to create a fabulous piece of art for our clients, we need to create a fabulous experience for them as well.
Make it all about your client.
Think of ways you can start putting your client first.
What little tweaks can you make to the way you do business that puts your client first and provides amazing customer service?
It’s the little touches that count.
And don’t forget…a happy client will talk about you to all their friends – so will an unhappy client!
Now I want to hear from you. What do you do to turn clients into true believers and lifelong supporters of your business?
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