Cultivating a seamless client process is key to growing a thriving online business. Before I jump into actionable steps to elevate the client experience it is important to understand why the client process even matters.
Number one – Your clients matter. The people and/or businesses you serve should be your primary motivation to do what you do. When your clients are happy, they will share their positive experiences working with you. Their colleagues and friends will trust their opinion, thus encouraging them to inquire with or buy from you. Happy clients = more referrals.
Secondly, fostering an impressive and memorable client experience will make your life easier. Yep, you read that right. Utilize client and project management systems to help organize, stay on task, and automate your workflows.
Identify and Assess your Ideal Client
Identifying and assessing your ideal client is not only imperative for successful brand design, but also a noteworthy client experience. Before you personalize your experience, you must have a deep understanding of who your clients are and what motivates them. This will allow you to custom-tailor a system and process both of you connect with.
For example, do they enjoy a done-for-you hands-off approach, or do they prefer a more collaborative process? Answering questions like these will help you decide on specific systems, timelines, and touchpoints to use during your processes.
Now that we have addressed what motivates your clients and yourself, let’s jump into a few tangible, actionable steps to elevate your client experience!
Utilize a Client Management System
First, what is a client management system? This is a tool that organizes inquiries, offers a place to schedule meetings, sends proposals, contracts, and invoices, and assists in overall client communication.
The client management system I use to manage my clients is Honeybook. Every single person that contacts me, goes through this platform.
Take it a step further and automate your CRM. Rather than manually replying to emails and setting up meetings, you can automate your system to save you loads of time and energy. For example, when someone inquires on my website, I have a series of steps that are automatically triggered to onboard potential clients.
Previously, I received an inquiry, replied, and scheduled a discovery call all while I had been asleep. The next morning when I saunter into my office, I already have my schedule of meetings ready to go without lifting a finger. This allows me to spend my time wisely preparing for the call rather than going back and forth over email to get a meeting set up. It’s like having a built-in assistant!
Set up a Project Management System
Simply put, a project management system is an online platform that organizes projects. Every detail from my projects is housed within Asana. From general communication to links, project prep tools, and timelines, I simply could not function without this all-in-one tool!
Before getting this system, I used email to communicate throughout projects – what a mess! This was not ideal for me or my client.
My priority will always be to foster a peaceful, fun, and seamless process no matter what type of project. When a client is onboarded into our private Asana board, I include a step-by-step tutorial on how to use the platform. This includes a video walk-through and space to ask any and all questions. In my experience, every single client that has used Asana has thoroughly enjoyed it, even if they had never used it before!
Other recommended project management systems include ClickUp, Monday, Airtable, and Notion.
Create an Off-Boarding Process
Your offboarding process is the cherry on top of a memorable client experience. Your clients should feel cared for from the start to the very end of their time working with you. Below are a few ways to wrap up your projects with a beautiful bow!
Gather Client Feedback
The best way to improve your client process is to hear from those who have gone through it. While the project is fresh on their mind, send your clients a feedback form. I recommend sending a feedback form within a month of working together. Keep it short and sweet. The longer the form, the less likely they are to submit it.
Incorporate Client Gifts
Gifts are a fun and easy way to express your gratitude! There are many options for client gifts. Depending on your industry and clients will determine the type of gift you give.
My go-to client gifts are custom gold foil journals I make at home. I cut out client logos and brand marks with my Cricut Explore Air 2 on heat transfer vinyl. Next, I heat-press them onto a hard-back linen journal I purchased from Amazon. I package it all up with a beautiful ballpoint pen and a handwritten note. Watch more on that here.
Some other examples of client gifts include an assorted tea box, homegrown flowers, or a beautiful candle. The most important aspect to consider when gifting clients is to keep them in mind. Don’t just give something for the heck of it. Always be intentional with how the receiver will resonate with your gift!
Personally, my goal as a designer is to provide something that not only celebrates their beautiful new custom brand but is also practical and usable.
Gain Solid Reviews
Reviews are a fantastic and instrumental way to attract more ideal clients. When potential clients or customers read about the positive experience of a previous entrepreneur, they are much more likely to purchase from you! Ask promoting questions in your client feedback form that will prompt them to give actionable and measurable improvements from working with you!
Let’s wrap things up
To conclude, make yourself aware of your clients and speak directly to them by identifying their why. Set up and automate your client and project management systems to cultivate a strong process. Establish a solid offboarding process to help your clients feel precious and cared for. Every detail matters. The time you put in to elevate your client experience will level up your business more than you know!
Once you institute a seamless client experience, your business will skyrocket!