By Gayle Carpenter, Sparkloop
During the last few months of businesses finding their way through the pandemic, Sparkloop has not furloughed its staff. Instead the team is strengthening its client relationships, forging ahead and looking at new ways they can support their clients, staff and their business through this time of uncertainty. The only constant is change and they have risen to that with their usual creative grit.
Despite the gravity of this situation, there has never been a better time to connect with your clients, as this connection will work as a positive for both parties.
You are not alone
Don’t ignore what is going on. It is important to make your customers realise from the outset that they are not alone, and you are all in this together. Trying to carry on as normal just won’t work; the way you work together needs to be adapted but you need to drive this and give them the confidence that they can continue to work with you and turn this into a positive.
Impress them with your virtual accessibility
Take the lead when it comes to communication and prove to them that you are just as capable and effective working from home as you are from the office. Set them up with the right channels of communication and try to maintain ‘face-to-face’ meetings via platforms such as Zoom or Teams so that you can carry on almost as normal. Impress them with your virtual set up and competence and help them with theirs if they are struggling.
Act as Consultant and confidant
Use this time to not only continue with their ongoing work but act as a consultant to suggest other avenues for their business as well as sharpening their current offering. Are they promoting their brand as effectively as they can? Does it need a facelift? Does their website need an overhaul? Do they need to adjust their message to communicate sensitively and positively through the lockdown period?
Share tips and insights
Go over a above your usual service and work with them to make these improvements. Send them a tick list of how they could be adapting their usual practice to suit the current situation and let them have this advice on the house. They don’t need you to put pressure on them or sell to them; they need someone they can trust and rely on.
Don’t try and profit from COVID-19
Get the balance right with the way you work with your clients as you need them to see that you are genuinely interested in helping them through difficult times rather than trying to profit from them to keep your own business afloat. Go all out for the clients who are sticking with you and show them how much their business means to you. It works as a mutual agreement and will serve to strengthen relationships moving forwards.