[tweetmeme]Keeping clients happy is a job in itself; happy clients are repeat clients and the key to a successful business.

You can be the greatest designer in town, but without a little knowledge on keeping your clients smiling, you can fail. Put the client’s needs first, focus on your client’s success.

These 20 simple tips will keep your clients smiling

1. Be a good listener

Sounds obvious, but freelancers might not understand the client’s request and start working on the project without understanding what the client said.

2. Offer To Buy Them A Coffee

When at a meeting with your client, offer to buy them a coffee (or similar). In most cases, they’ll probably refuse and offer to buy you one. It’s about courtesy.


3. Ask what the client wants.

When starting with a new client, ask for samples of what he/she likes. If the client can’t provide samples ask for details, formatting requirements, etc.

4. Discuss the Ideas

Discuss the client ideas and try to repeat some of their ideas in their initial brief/speech to keep them happy, and to make sure they know you were listening to them.

5. Product Knowledge

Know your client’s products at least as well as your client does

6. Don’t make promises you can’t keep

You’re better off exceeding expectations than disappointing a client by eagerly promising something you can’t do.

7. Progress Report

Keep Your Client Up-To-Date

8. Keep Clients Informed

About themselves and about their competitors

9. Proofread

10.Promptness

Response is everything

11.Communicate

If a project runs into problems, let your client know as soon as possible that so alternative plans can be made if necessary.

12.Call Reports

keep a record of all client contact sessions

13. NEVER, EVER, LIE!

14. Admit Mistakes –Take the blame
.

How a person handles mistakes can make a big difference between success and screw up

15.Send Completed Projects In Several Ways

There’s nothing better than receiving a finished file in various different ways. Don’t just send the files via email – be creative, for example you can make an specific part in your website for clients so they can se the work in progress.

16.Thank your clients.

Send a handwritten note, a small gift like a mug, think of your client

17.Remembrances

Birthdays, anniversaries, promotions, etc.

18.Ask for feedback.

Ask one yes/no question and one open-ended question: “Are you happy with the work you’re getting from me?” and “What can I do to better serve you?” it’s a great way to let know the client you care.

19.Loyalty

20. Help your client

Refer to Good Companies, Offer to set up accounts for them for a small price, refer them to companies that you trust and know are good.

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Javier Cantero

Javier Cantero