Michael T. Buell writes in the most recent issue of the SMPS Marketer that there is no substitute for personal engagement — that is actually seeing, conversing, and listening to your clients — and that needs to go along with superior performance, which goes beyond delivering the work on time and budget.
Buell, client development director with CCI Mechanical, Inc. In Salt Lake City, writes:
I talk with and listen to clients every single day. In my training workshops, those conversations are the foundations of all the information I share. What these hundreds of clients have told me more than anything is that personal engagement and performance are the only two things that really help gain and regain work with them.
Yes, I know we have to be financially competitive for sure. But to the best clients out there, value does not mean low bid. It means looking at which firm is bringing them the best team, approach and understanding of their goals and drivers.
Buell suggests some questions and insights you may gather in the personal interactions, but the key to all of them is they are client-focussed. This is all about listening, understanding, empathizing, and then using the insights you gain to bring truly exceptional value (performance) for your clients.
The impressive thing about Buell’s observations is that they do not require you to spend piles of money on marketing. In fact, you simply focus on truly giving the client that extra human attention and value and then you win repeat business that doesn’t require a massive amount of marketing “work”.
So, be engaged. Connect face-to-face. And then deliver performance that truly delivers amazing value. You’ll then certainly succeed at your marketing initiatives.