There is danger in making assumptions and it could be costing your business thousands. This is because it’s very likely your colleagues and clients don’t actually know what you think they should know about you.
This article was inspired by conversations with three different professionals – a financial adviser, an accountant and a lawyer – who had all missed out on consulting fees and new client referrals simply because those closest to them (clients, co-workers and peers) didn’t know key facts about them.
The accountant told us that one of his oldest clients had engaged a different accountant to prepare a business plan for them.
The client was asked why and if they were unhappy with the quality of the service they’d received over the years. The client said they were very happy but just hadn’t realised services outside of tax strategy were available.
The accountant was flabbergasted. How could the client NOT know what they did? They’d worked together for years!
The financial adviser was just as dumbfounded by the regretful apologies of should-have-been-clients who’d tell him they’d just engaged someone else. These lost clients explained they hadn’t realised he was ‘still around’ and of course they’d have much preferred to engage his services, if only they’d known.
Making up the trifecta, the lawyer told us that until we instigated a short-burst email marketing program for her, close professionals from her trusted network admitted they hadn’t known she had a specialisation let alone understood the extent of her knowledge. Again, the discussion was one of regret as referral clients had been sent elsewhere.
Professionals often wrongly assume that those closest to them know what they do and how they do it.
If you’ve ever heard your spouse try to explain what you do at a barbeque, you’ll know exactly what we mean.
The simple solution is to proactively communicate with your clients and prospects.
Use email and social media to demonstrate your skills and specialisations as well as your good character. Take an interest in what’s important to your clients and write about it so they know you can help them solve problems and achieve goals that are important to them.
Never assume your clients understand what you do, and more to the point, what you can do for them.
As you’ve read here, even if you know your clients well, it’s good practice to every now and then re-introduce yourself, explain what you do and why it’s important.
This is as easy as distributing your professional profile to your clients, prospective clients, peers and associates (especially those who are most likely to refer clients to you). But before you do, make sure it’s been updated. Everyone grows and develops new skills and insights and these details need to be included in your professional profile.
All it takes is a few simple actions to communicate with those closest to you to prevent ever having to hear the words… “I didn’t realise – unfortunately, I’ve just engaged someone else.”
If you’re not sure how to explain what to do, who you do it for, how you do it and why it’s important to your clients PLEASE give us a call, we’d love to help.
For more information about Bold! Marketing Communication and our Do-Able Marketing model which is underpinned by our 7-Step Do-It-For-Me Marketing framework please contact us.