5 STEPS SO THAT CLIENTS REMEMBER YOU!

Clients will forget you. The moment you leave, there’s a vacuum. And another partner or firm will rush in.

 

And if you let that happen, you may not make a comeback.

 

Staying in touch is hard. I struggled myself. Somehow, other partners seemed to have a magic bullet, though.

 

So, did they, really? Well, …

 

One of the biggest challenges in consulting, in any professional firm? It‘s the ongoing lead generation by staying top-of-mind of clients.

 

Many of us fail to do it. Boy, I was guilty myself!

 

Unfortunately, delivering professional services can quickly become transactional.

 

The risk of professional services becoming transactional

 

You pitch, you show up to do the work, you do what you promised to do – maybe a bit more – and you leave.

 

And you move on to the next client, repeating the process.

 

Nothing wrong with it, right? Yep, right, if that’s your firm’s strategy, if that’s the business you’re in, and if your setup is in tune with it. If not, listen up!

 

Clients will forget you. The moment you leave, there’s a vacuum. And another partner or firm will rush in.

 

And you may not make a comeback.

 

Staying in touch is hard. I struggled myself. Somehow, other partners seemed to have a magic bullet.

 

So, did they really?

 

No, of course not!

 

What old clients really like

 

But my colleagues realized something early on: Old clients and contacts like to be talked to – regularly. They like to be asked how things are, what they are up to.

 

They like to hear how others in their industry are doing and whether you’ve got any ideas that may make them look good.

 

I still remember visiting an old colleague years ago.

 

He had become an SBU president at a large chemical firm.

 

We talked about the usual stuff when all of a sudden he said,

 

“You know, Max, the only firm regularly checking in and showing up here is [big firm]. Not even our old friends do it.

 

I’d have thought it’s easy for them. Apparently not.”

 

If I ever had any doubts, he convinced me that clients like to exchange ideas. Surprise!

 

Because, in real life, they have little opportunity to reflect on what’s going on for them.

 

So, let’s stay in touch! Here’s how to do it.

 

So, what can you do about it? Five steps, really:

 

  1. Prepare a list of old contacts. Go back in time, check your Outlook contacts, start with 50,100+ if you can.
  2. Set a target for the number of weekly calls. How many? Start with 5 a week – 10 if your list is 100 contacts
  3. Call the first contact on your list, invest 15 minutes.
  4. Move the contact you’ve just called to the back of your list. Then call the next one.
  5. Track how many contacts you’ve called each week. And, on Friday, around noon, if you haven’t reached your goal, don’t leave work before you have.

 

This process doesn’t require any heavy setup. Use the contact manager you’ve got, use an Excel sheet – it doesn’t matter.

 

It will help you, though, reaching each of your contacts quarterly, which sounds about right to me.

 

And if you already do it, I applaud you. Because you know it’s not about a magic bullet. It’s about personal discipline.

 

If you keep at it, it will pay huge dividends in the years to come!

 

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