Working with different clients from a diverse set of backgrounds, interests and personalities, there are times we are tempted to put preference for one over the other. While I make sure I treat every client fairly, regardless of how they behave, there are things that help us take the extra step.
When I was at the agency, I was sometimes told to provide extra attention to bigger clients. Although I think it’s unfair — signing smaller contracts do not mean some clients are relegated to second priority projects — the reality is bigger clients help us take a breathe of relief knowing that there’s something that keeps us busy for a while. But happiness at work can’t be bought with money, so bigger clients don’t automatically translate as favorite clients.
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Clients who are more open to sharing information about their business makes us feel we are part of their team, rather than mere consultant where sharing of information is restricted despite signing a ten-page non-disclosure agreement. By sharing analytics data, sales figures and other valuable metrics, we will be able to discover better strategies, identify opportunities and provide more accurate recommendations that wouldn’t be possible if clients keep off meaningful information from consultants’ reach.
It is important to note that as consultants, we also deserve some attention from client in its on-going marketing practices. If I am involved in an SEO project, I can simply confine myself to SEO guidelines as stated in the project contract. But that would be selfish on my part. SEO is a spoke in the marketing wheel that, when managed efficiently, delivers optimal results.
It is good to work with a client who has realistic expectations. But such expectation comes only when consultants educate them properly and did not offer outrageous promises during business development. As paying clients, they deserve good results. But good results are also produced when both clients and consultants are aware of the opportunities and take advantage of them.