The best way to make freelancing a secure way of income is to get long term clients. Making the clients happy is your ultimate key to get long term freelancing clients to stay. But ‘happiness’ is a vague term, so how can you keep your clients happy? That is precisely our point of discussion today.
I am going to guide you through some of the tips that I have implemented, which have shown exponential results and output when it comes to long-standing clients. Before you start expecting some unconventional ‘short-cut’ tips, I should warn you that these are the very basics of freelancing, but nuanced in a way to help you achieve success. Following these will help you to keep your freelance clients happy.
Although very basic, I will explain to you the tips with real-life examples, which will help you grasp what you expect and what you can achieve through consistent hard work.
Communication, Consistency, and Transparency are Key
All of your gigs and jobs start with the tap of a message. Your phone beeps, and voila, you have a client looking for you. What do you do? The first step is to reply, and your clients won’t be waiting very long for you, so make sure you are quick to respond.
From the first step to last, communication will be key. Even my next tips will somehow show you the nuances of communicating with your client. Excellent communication means being persuasive, smart, and knowing in which tone you should talk to your clients.
- Always be courteous and thank the client for considering your services. Furthermore, ask some questions which will show them that you are attentive and interested.
- It should be a no-brainer, but never offend your clients in any way. If you are concerned about specific weaknesses of your client’s business, then show him you know what you are talking about by using some technical terms. Then subtly show him that there is a weakness.
- This is the most important since we are emphasizing on long-term prospects. Show them you can offer more than the current scope of the project. Show your client how you can help their business grow. It will plant a seed on your client’s head that you are here for long-term business.
- Negotiation is a big part of communication. It helps to have excellent negotiation skills under your belt. Always remember not to push it too far. The most crucial factor here is that you have to be realistic when approaching your client to settle for a certain amount.
- The only way you are going to close your client with favorable terms is by gaining their trust. You might be confused as to how confidence can be achieved through communication, but this is exactly how you earn the trust of your client, through proper communication. If you can ensure proper communication from your end, it will carry the sense of faith into your client, and in return, you will be able to close that client in your own terms.
- When you sense that your client has become comfortable talking to you, be it via messaging or e-mail, you can start being a little friendly and lighthearted to give your client a more personalized feel. For example, a good indication of trust will be when your client feels comfortable sharing the details of their business with you. Right then, make a move to take the conversation to LinkedIn or E-mail, given you are using sites like Upwork or Fiverr.
- Now that you have closed the client, it is time to put in consistent efforts to increase your client’s trust in you and securing them in the long run. Whenever you have been assigned to do something, when you are done, ask for feedback. It will make your client understand that you care about what they want.
- No matter how well you do your work, or how much effort you put, there will always be problems. When a problem arises, you have to make an effort to address them as quickly as possible. By quickly resolving the issues, you will show true professionalism.
- The hardest part of the job is doing it every day, with consistent effort. There will be moments when you feel lazy, and you might conceal something from your client in that moment of weakness. So, always keep that in your mind that no matter what, you must be honest and transparent with your clients. Even if it means telling them something they don’t wanna hear.
- This is probably the most basic and, at the same time, the most critical piece of advice you will get, meeting deadlines. If you are wondering why I have been putting emphasis on consistency so much, this is why. If you do not meet the basic needs of your clients, then no matter how good your communication is, no matter how smart you are, it will not matter.
The long list of tips might seem a little too much, especially if you are just starting out. But trust me when I tell you that this is going to take you the heights of your success in no time. Remember, communication, consistency, transparency are the ultimate key.