All of our #Tipat2 business development tips from May 2019
07 Jun 2019
Every working day at 2pm we share a practical and proven business development tip via, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. To make it as easy as possible to follow and collect the tips we tag them all with #Tipat2 but in case you’ve missed any (or all of them!) here are all of May’s tips in one go …
Never be too busy for a client and always make clients believe they’re your only client when you’re talking to them - there is a direct correlation between repeat purchase/referrals and providing genuine client service!
Different clients have different budget cycles/payment preferences. Offer alternative billing methods or flex your usual practices to fit in better with your clients - it’ll strengthen your relationship long-term (and may even help increase referrals).
The more common contacts you and your clients share, the closer your working relationships will become. If the opportunity arises be prepared to make new introductions you think might be useful to your clients.
Try and be a little more scientific. Take a look at your billings; who gives you the most work most often (clients and referrers)? This is the short list you need to invest the majority of your BD time and effort into.
Never blag a meeting! Always be fully prepared. Clients need to be sure you have a firm handle on their situation and what they need to manage that situation and they certainly don’t want to be paying for any extra time so you can get up to speed in front of them.
Never rise to the bait! If a client/competitor/prospect/journalist is deliberately pushing you, stay composed and, if necessary, ask for a drinks or toilet break to break the tension and allow you to take a breath.
Make sure your clients know how to get hold of you without jumping through hoops (or 20 questions at reception). Accessibility is absolutely key to a successful and productive working relationship.
When you’re having a coffee ask your client (or contact) what added value really is. All too often what firms provide is more ‘added’ and less ‘value’ so while it takes time and effort, it’ll never create the desired results.
Take a note of how your clients like to communicate and then make sure you communicate that way. WhatsApp might not be your preference but if it’s the way your client prefers your willingness to flex will be looked on favourably.
As partners you have a responsibility to mentor your associates/managers/assistants. Remember to take them along to meetings (social and formal) so they can see how you manage, progress and follow up on those meetings first hand.
Forget articles and start producing FAQs. Think about the last tricky question a client asked you, anonymise it and sketch out the answer in about 200 words – bingo, you have an FAQ ready for publication!
Tenders take a great deal of time so the first thing to ask yourself has to be “do you stand a realistic chance of winning?” Do you have the requisite experience? Can you provide all the added value extras? If you can’t tick off 90% politely refuse.
When you’re writing content, concentrate on what can be explained, understood and has practical value for your readers (and if you can’t explain your point in about20 words, forget it. Your readers won’t understand it!)
People like to know you’re in the corner so if you haven’t heard from a client or referrer for a while, call to ask if they’re OK and if there’s anything you could help with. People will be genuinely flattered you’ve thought of them.
You can have an All Star LinkedIn profile and all the connections in the world but if you don’t keep it up to date, it will soon drop out of view rendering it all but useless BD-wise.
Add icons to all your content (Twitter and LinkedIn obviously but also YouTube, Facebook or Instagram if they suit your market) to make further engagement and interaction as easy as possible for your readers so you maximise your reach.
If you are podcasting and you don’t like your first take, just do it over. The beauty of digital recording is it’s free so if you don’t like it, do it again or do certain bits again and edit them in.
If you’ve got a new idea for a product or package, ask your most important clients for feedback. People like to give an opinion … especially if it means they’ll a better service and greater value for money the next time they instruct you.
If you’re about to be interviewed by a journo think about the points you want to get across and the real life examples you’ll use to underline them. Anecdotes strike a chord with readers and underline your suitability for similar work in future.
And always remember whichever piece of the BD puzzle you or your solicitors, accountants, patent or trade mark attorneys, barristers or architects need help with – networking, presenting, writing, client development, client research or freshening up your content or marketing material – we’re here to help. Please email us today to arrange your first free ‘coffee’ consultation.