Every digital agency depends on developing and maintaining relationships with clients.
Good agencies know their clients even better than they know themselves; everything from their favourite sports team and lunch spot, right down to their deepest desires and the thoughts that keep them up at night.
You could easily guess though that on the mind of almost every client is their accounts and balance sheet. The more you can do to manage those thoughts and decrease their worry the better—this is where successful account management comes in.
We’re going to share five tips we use here at Elementary Digital that will help you ensure you’re giving your clients the attention they need.
- Fit Around Their Needs
Lack of time is a common enemy to the digital agency—particularly the account manager. But few things are as important as keeping your current clients happy. Whether you’re busy working on expanding your business’s reach or securing a promotion, there’s no excuse for spending a little time here and there on their needs. From the client’s increased satisfaction with your service will come a whole host of knock on benefits, for instance not having to find as many new ones!
- Be Honest and Upfront
We’ve all heard the saying ‘under promise and over deliver’, but how many of us actually employ it? Many companies tend to avoid acknowledging their weaknesses and thus buckle after missing deadlines or not living up to preset expectations. No company is perfect, and realising that and accepting weakness or shortcomings goes a long way in building trust with your clients.
- Communicate to Avoid Backlash
Unless you’re dealing with the owner, the client will need to report to their superiors just like you likely have to. Don’t leave anything to chance; enquire about whether your client’s higher ups have been made aware of alterations and be sure to keep your own company managers in the loop. Even if there is nothing significant to report, a reminder that all is going well can do wonders for your image.
- Review and Adjust
Account management is an ongoing job that requires constant and careful evaluation of the details. This is particularly important in long-term partnerships, as it’s your role to uphold meeting clients needs and adjust to changing expectations. Here it’s best to be 150% certain than 99%; eradicate any uncertainty by getting explicit reassurance from clients.
- Keep on Top of Admin
Updating forecasts or internal WIP’s, invoicing clients and creating PO’s; such dull and mundane tasks can easily be pushed to one side and forgotten about. However, incorporate these little tasks into your daily schedule and they’ll bring with them some hidden benefits. Whether it’s being reminded of how much has been spent on a project, or finding inspiration for future campaigns, having these bits of information on hand and easily accessible can help you break down lengthy admin tasks and keep you one step ahead of the game.
Account management is a forgotten art which when mastered can have a big impact on client relationships, as well as client acquisition. Keep the above pointers in mind and your agency will soon be not just keeping afloat, but flowing along nicely.
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