As a social media manager your job depends on making your clients happy. Whether you’re self-employed and have a few businesses you work with, or you’re part of a bigger marketing agency, your job is the same: you need to deliver results that matter.
Here’s a quick list of common reasons why your client might decide to end your working relationship and what you can do to prevent that from happening.
Lack of Communication
The key to any relationship is communication. If your client doesn’t hear from you and doesn’t feel like they are a part of the process, you’ll be a really easy cut to make from their marketing budget.
You need to see yourself as a part of their business. Make regular visits a priority and keep your client up to date with what’s going on in a short and simple way. There are plenty of tools to help communicate better with clients. Find the one that works for you. Pair this with a fifteen minute phone call every week and it will make a huge difference. Be committed to their success and they’ll be committed to you.
Being organized helps create that feeling of zen and instils confidence. When things are unorganized, it’s hard for the client to keep track of what’s going on and that makes you look unprofessional. It also makes your ability to do your job less efficient, which slows down the growth of your business.
Putting in place a centralization of assets, a simple taxonomy and a clean stage planning process are great initial steps towards becoming more efficient in any aspect of life. Success is equal parts mindset and technology. Make this a priority and find a tools to help you support a system that works for you, but don’t let it become any more complex than it needs to be.
Whenever a client tells you they’re just too busy, what they are really saying is that you’re not a priority. Oftentimes that means that you haven’t done a good job of communicating your value to their business and you’re asking too much of their time.
Keep the list of things you need them to do for you at a minimum. Try to find a tool that can make their job a five minute task instead of an hour. Remember, they hired you to do work for them, not the other way around.
Trouble Understanding ROI
Whether you’re working with someone who’s afraid of technology or someone who doesn’t have the time to do it themselves, the bottom line is their bottom line. You need to be able to communicate how the value you provide to their company aligns with their business goals.
Establish what matters to them. Show them how you’ve used social media to turn an angry customer into a fan and a fan into an advocate. Give them examples of inquiries that have come in via social media and how you were able to help that person (even if you had to call the business to get the proper answer). Find the numbers that matter to them and give them what they want in a simple and clean package.
Lack of Industry Knowledge
This is a big one. There’s significantly more value in being the master of your craft versus a jack-of-all-trades. Whenever you have prospective clients from an unfamiliar industry ask for your help, just keep in mind that a big hurdle you might face is lack of knowledge about their business or competitors, as well as what works or doesn’t in their space.
Be judicious in taking on new clients that lay outside of your core focus. However, your expertise is in representing their business online, they know everything else. Agree on a process early on to help you close the gap. This may include collaborative software or a given communication tool. The important thing is that there is a plan in place to help you gain the information you need as soon as possible. Think of your industry knowledge as a glass ceiling to the value you can provide to your clients.
In whatever you do, it’s important to see challenges as opportunities. Remember that social media management is a team sport and the team is only as good as its coach. Make it easy and transparent to understand what you do and how you can help.