The Essentials for Establishing a Healthy Client Relationship

Clients give an agency vitality and meaning. They grow with their agency, work through trials with their agency and ideally become friends with their agency. Getting to know the client’s goals, communication preferences and the details of their business is crucial in maintaining a healthy client-to-agency relationship and for the growth of both parties.

Discovery Meeting

Call it what you want, but the initial “get to know you” meeting is key. Bring a detailed agenda to establish major items such as the point-of-contact, budget, project goals, login information, brand assets and scope of work. Pay close attention to your agenda. It is easy to forget key questions in the excitement of signing a new client.

The First Deliverable

The first deliverable is the first tangible reality of your creative presented to the client. This sets the tone for the remainder of the relationship and opens the door for collaboration through revisions. Practice open communication with the client to properly set their expectations. Meet all deadlines and deliver creative in person if possible. If an in-person meeting is out of the question, aim for a video call or a phone call. You and your team want the chance to establish excitement, explain the direction and answer questions about the creative right away.

Open Communication

Time between the initial discovery meeting to the final deliverable can feel like forever to the client. Although you are working on multiple projects and are staying busy, they have one project on their minds: theirs. Touch base with the client at least once or twice a week with updates on the project, expected deadlines and to ask follow-up questions. Be open with the client. If you have run into a hiccup and will need more time, tell them right away and keep them in the loop. They will appreciate your transparency. During the discovery meeting, you should have asked their communication preference, so be sure to reference that as it is unique to each client.

The Follow-Up

Congrats! You’ve completed a major project and it was sent to the client. Now what? Keep in touch with the client. Discuss how you can improve as an agency, their final thoughts on the project and future growth with their business. One-off projects can be fun, but a retainer client is great for both businesses. Be proud of the project you’ve completed and get ready for the next one!

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