3 Best Practices for Building Ideal Client Relationships

WOW Your Ideal Relationships to Build Strong Relational Currency

WOW-your-clients

Last month, in 3 Simple Tactics for Increasing Profit, I discussed focusing on your ideal clients as the first tactic for increasing profit. But how do you do that? You WOW them!

1. Who.
2. Organization.
3. What.

1. Who.

Envision a set of three concentric circles. These circles represent all the clients, team members, and partners that you have and will come in contact with. The outer circle represents that group of anyone interested in your service or products, but those who are likely beyond your scope of influence. The middle circle represents those people with whom you already have some sort of ongoing relationship, but may present a significant challenge to you in terms of time, attention, or cost. And, finally, at the center, this is your Inner Circle—the circle that includes your ideal clients, team members, and partners—the people with whom you have the most positive and profitable relationships.

Who is critical! It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking ALL people are in the Inner Circle, but it’s just not feasible. As the saying goes, “We can’t be all things to all people.”  That’s like saying anyone could marry anyone. People are unique and everyone is different, and they should be treated as unique and different.  A great marketer, leader, and value-add player learns to understand who represents the most Ideal Clients.

To fully realize who our Ideal Clients are, we use a process called “Targeting.”  Targeting simply means finding, understanding and delivering the highest value add to your Inner Circle. To do this we must STOP (Strategize to Optimize Performance), and take a look at who our Ideal Clients are, then create a systemic, measurable approach so we can duplicate the process to drive ongoing value.

To target your Ideal Inner Circle in the best way possible, pay attention to these 3 crucial factors:

1. Demographic Values. These values are easily defined and measured, like age, geography and income.

2. Psychographic Values. While less easily defined than demographic values, psychographic values are measurable nonetheless. For example, does the person value your advice? Are they family-oriented? How coachable are they?

3. Scoring. Once you’ve defined the modalities for Demographics and Psychographics, the client can be scored.

2. Organization.

Once you’ve identified those ideal clients, the next step is bringing Organization to your Inner Circle.  Most of us can get caught up in the tyranny of the urgent, and spend our time reacting instead of responding. Without the proper processes in place, this will continue to be the case, and you will always feel like you just can’t get ahead. If you don’t have an organizational process in place to repeat High Value to your Inner Circle, you’ll quickly get back to feeling overwhelmed, missing the target. This is the vicious cycle that reinforces the Tyranny of the Urgent!

Setting up a system to drive consistent value to your Inner Circle will ensure you don’t drop the ball. This system must consider the client’s value, and the manner in which services are supplied to them. By ranking these individuals, and creating systems to support them, you’ll be able to respond more effectively to those clients (a proactive process in which you stay intentional) rather than simply react to them (a reactive process in which you leave your most important relationships at risk). We call this “Building Relational Currency,” and it’s about making intentional deposits into your most important relationships. This is especially important when you are growing your business; if you don’t have this organization in place, you may be building a business that’s a house of cards with no strong foundation. You may find yourself rebuilding, and rebuilding, and rebuilding, like a revolving door. It’s like the nursery rhyme of the three little pigs; you can build your house of straw, sticks or bricks. For me… I prefer to build from bricks because my house of straw and sticks didn’t work so well when the storms showed up.

3. What.

What is important to the individuals in your Inner Circle? We often think that what’s important to us is also important to our Ideal Clients. This may be true. Then again, it may not. Relationships with Ideal Clients aren’t something you just have… they’re something in which you must invest. By getting to know what’s important to your Ideal Clients, you will be able to deliver more strongly on both business and personal levels. This, in turn, strengthens the relationship with both the client and the person. It’s knowing What that will help you create more personalized and engaging experiences, while at the same time becoming a more trusted and highly-valued asset to your Ideal Clients.


 

With these best practices, you’ll be on your way to WOW’ing your Ideal Clients, increasing retention, and creating those favorable introductions, taking your business to another level.

For a copy of our “Ideal Client Worksheet,” just use the request form below and we’ll email you one!





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