How to retain clients and encourage customer feedback.
Is the customer really always right? Of course not – wait, scratch that – our customers are always right. Okay, we admit, that would be impossible... almost as impossible as holding your clients to the fire when they neglect their role in your relationship.
The client/company relationship is an exchange of many things, and one of them is direct, honest feedback. Without it, you’re flying blind.
Asking for customer feedback
While there isn’t necessarily a one-size-fits-all approach to collecting feedback from your clients – some approaches work better than others. Here’s what to consider when asking for customer feedback.
- What should you ask? Obviously, many of your questions are going to depend on who your customers are, and how intimate your relationship is with them. In general, inquire into what things are working well, how things might go better from their perspective, or ways you might improve on your next project.
- Engaging your clients. For some relationships, privately answering a email or survey can promote a valuable level of candor. For others, this method might come across as too impersonal. Sometimes if you’ve been working closely with a client, directly asking in a phone call will harvest the best feedback.
- Online survey or hard copy? These days most of us are accustomed to online surveys, they’re convenient, and are all wrapped up with the final click. On the other hand, getting a questionnaire in the mail tends to stand out in sight and importance. The best option depends on your client. However, too many questions and it’s unlikely they’ll respond to either approach.
Taking charge while retaining your clients
While it’s important to remember your role in providing a service for your customers, sometimes you need to gently nudge them to get what you need. Here’s how to navigate this treacherous terrain without spilling any blood.
- Identify the real problem. This means digging beyond the obvious. For example, if the problem is that you’re not getting customer feedback, what’s causing it? Is your client too busy? Do they undervalue its significance? Are they comfortable presenting their complaints to you? Regardless of the situation, before you approach your client, do your best to immerse yourself in their potential motivations.
- Always be professional. Show up on time. Do what you say you’re going to do. Treat everyone with respect. Your behavior helps establish the tone for your relationship. Professionalism garners respect, and lifts many of the relationship damaging emotions from potentially difficult situations.
- Establish your expectations early. Communication is a principle pillar of any relationship. If you clearly illustrate everything you expect from your clients from the beginning, it’s much easier to bring it up when they fail to live up to them.
Developing a customer retention strategy
Effective client retention spans across every project and aspect of your business. Crewhu 2.0 offers a spectrum of easy-to-use tools to help you nurture a collaborative relationship with both your clients and employees.
From our 1-click survey to employee engagement tools we help keep companies healthy inside and out. Sign up for your free trial today!