Clients as Partners in Development
In the last post – “Land Your Whale!” – I spoke about being realistic, being transparent, and giving the client ownership. Today I want to expand on point three. What I did not mention in that post is that our first client (the Whale) actually paid for for the development of the first product we took to market. You would be surprised at how many companies are willing to do this.
Once you have a thorough understanding of their pain points, and you know that a budget exists for such a project, you should:
- Give them the opportunity to provide pre-launch input.
- Identify a small internal team of users and get them to commit early.
- Provide price concessions for full payment during the development stage.
Even following the above steps, clients will need to be reassured that you’re not going to take their money and run. You can relieve their anxiety by simply doing the following:
- Guarantee that the project will be completed by an agreed upon deadline in writing.
- Offer money back guarantees or refunds.
- Frequently communicate with the client and provide status updates.
- Maintain a professional relationship with the client.
By treating your clients as true partners, you develop a product/service that truly meets their needs and ensures a strong and productive relationship going forward, in whatever form that relationship takes.
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- Great Clients Are Those You Understand, and to Understand, You Must Listen
- The “First Few” – Initial Clients that Help You Set a Price