Last weekend I had a computer crisis that I resolved via Apple's online chat support. I typed my question and hit "Send." Immediately a thought bubble appeared on the chat screen. I love the thought bubble. It tells me:
Just like me, clients (and all people for that matter) want to know you care about them, even when they are not paying you to do that. Chances are they know you are smart and competent or they wouldn't be your client. But they need to be reminded often that you have their best interests at heart.
In person, you sometimes do that without being aware of it, by your body language, words and shout outs as you pass them in the hall. But when you are communicating remotely, by email, chat, etc., if you don't tell them you are thinking about them, how will they know?
Here are few ideas:
- When you think about a client, send her an email and let her know. Example: "Yesterday at our firm lunch, several of my colleagues asked about you. It made me think how much I appreciate you as a friend and client."
- When a client sends an email request and you don't know the answer, send a quick reply back...."Let me give this some thought." As your thinking and research progresses, keep him updated. I often do this with requests that are sent to a group with the idea that not all will have a response, such as requests for referrals or recommendations.
- When you come across a new idea, article, or concept, ask which client might be interested, send her the information and tell her why you thought it would be helpful to her and her company.