Do you build a relationship with clients by giving "Client Love" each week?

Last updated by Andrew Waltos [SSW] 29 days ago.See history

Being a good coder is not enough. There are multiple factors that can affect whether a project proceeds in a positive or a negative way. One factor that can have a significant impact on a project is the relationship between the developer and the client. This relationship is especially important if you want to be asked back to do more work.

A good practice is to set aside a little time each week to reconnect with a client, thats called giving 'client love' (aka Customer Love).

While the rule primarily focuses on clients, its principles are universally applicable to any type of contact. Whether they are past colleagues, university friends, suppliers, or other professional contacts, the same approach of showing interest and maintaining connections can be beneficial across all networks.

Keyboard Heart
Figure: Show clients that you're more than just an awesome developer

When reaching out to clients, it's crucial to foster genuine relationships rather than appearing transactional. We believe in building connections that feel natural and not driven by sales motives.

Showing "Client Love"

There are many ways to show "Client Love", the best way is to call them, a conversation (on Teams) or email is also ok, but this is different for every client.

Here are some things a developer can do and/or say:

  • Give them a call if you've got a cool idea worth discussing
  • Call the client and invite them to User Groups where the topic is related to their project
  • Send an IM saying I was just thinking about your project and I think this might be a good idea? {{ IDEA }}
  • Send an IM with a link to a web article that would interest them or thats relevant to their project
  • Show interest in their industry (this will also help you to understand and fix their business problems) e.g.
    I know we spoke about VSA, and as you know I am a fan. What do you think about this infographic? {{ LINK }}
  • Send them a "happy birthday" message along with something else (e.g. Happy Birthday, how are users finding that new order form?)

For existing clients only

  • Buy the client their favorite coffee (remember without asking by writing it in their contact)
  • Talk and listen about non-work related things. Find out topics that they are interested in and why. Here are some examples:

    • How was your weekend?
    • What are you doing this weekend?
    • General talking about their family (remember the names by writing it in their contact)
    • General talking about their hobbies

The tasks don't have to cost anything. Free tasks are more thoughtful and show the client you are thinking about them.

Some of these are also relevant to previous clients. Great consultants try to maintain a friendly relationship with previous clients by touching base. This will keep you in the back of the clients mind, and they will think of you next time they need some work done.

Extra reading: For some, the above comes naturally. For everyone else, read the book How to Win Friends and Influence People written by Dale Carnegie. It is an easy read, the principles are easy to implement and will enhance all the relationships in your life.

Account managers need to make sure their developers are giving "Client Love" to customers and help them get better at it.

Documenting the conversation

Like any valuable conversation, its important you send an as per our conversation email. If you are calling the client its beneficial to draft this first (maybe get it checked by someone else) and use it as a guide for the conversation.

Figure: Good example – Conversation is documented and the client is triggered to take action

Tip: Track the email so it appears in reports 📈

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