In business, either we are super machines or we all end up losing clients. And even super machines may fail, simply because their client isn’t one.
The reason actually won’t make things better but I does matter a lot.
There’s nothing worse than losing a client and not having idea why. And why? Well, basically if you don’t know where you made the mistake, you will never be able to avoid it in the future, and be assured that you will be in that same situation over and over again. Losing a client is always though and though things hurt us, both physically and financially. Therefore, what happened that day, can’t happen again for the same reasons.
In my professional experience I’ve lost clients and trust me, I can still remember perfectly how bad it felt in my first time.
Rage, despair, incomprehension, sadness, fear… All these feelings took my person that moment, that day, that week. Hell, even that month.
Actually, in business such as in love, the best way to forget a lost client is to find a new one. And till that moment you will never stop felling bad at yourself.
This article or whatever you want to call it may help you from feeling all those previous negative feelings but unfortunatelly will not stop you from losing clients. I can’t do that, no one can do that and it would be plain wrong to be able to do that.
Clients are supposed to be conquered, won and eventually lost. Although you might have clients since the very beginning of your professional path you will never know how the next day will be.Also, there are clients that from a certain point on simply should and/or must be lost. I call those the “fastidious piggies”, but we’ll come back to those in a while.
You know how it feels to win a new client? If you don’t, you should probably start concerning about your job.I have never met a boss who wasn’t eagerly passionate about new clients. It’s in their professional blood stream and therefore it’s unavoidable to be felt.If you want you boss happy you better start working on feeling new things, and getting new clients might be a good start.
Now, why do we lose clients? We lose clients because we have them. Because we where able to conquer that stranger’s trust and properly teach him to like how our way of doing things taste.
To that add things like pricing, pre and post sale service and quality and you have the core ingredients to an efficient and profitable connection.
Of course there can be quite more reasons to have clients, you just need to add them to equation. But remember, the more reasons you have to have a client, the more reasons you have to lose it. You can either fail at one of them or you can actually fail massively in all of them.That’s the million dollar question. And this is my 5 cents answer.
Let’s take a closer look to the previous reasons.
- Pricing – When you lose a client because he got proposed new and more profitable pricing conditions you should evaluate how your service is being provided. In my point of view, a good service is well paid. Therefore, if a client stops being willing to pay for it, means he stoped considering it a good service or worst, a necessary one.
Now, thi is that moment your brain start telling you the client simply got better conditions proposed by your competitors.
Sure, that can happen, but first off all, how can your competitor give a better service for a cheaper price? Is it the same? Is it your service that is too expensive? If the pricing is different, the final product will also be. You just can’t cook omelets without eggs and different sized eggs originate different sized omelets. It doesn’t matter what your brain might tell you, it will never be a good excuse.
A good service is a well paid one and no matter what your competitors do, it will never be possible to provide the same or better service for a cheaper price.
Keep in mind that i’m talking about a service, not a simple product.
- Pre and/or Post sale service – One of the most important things when you buy something is, undeniably, the warranty provided. If you buy a washing machine, you’ll notice that, the better it is, the more expensive will be (there, pricing again). However, no matter how much it costs, the warranty provided by law will be similar, or at least it should. It’s quite easy to find on the web several complaints about several top brand mistakes in matters of warranty. They provide the warranty but that doesn’t mean the it covers what went wrong with your product.
A good product might be great by several reasons but when one of those reasons is the service provided you can be assured that you have a true gem on your hands.
Now, good clients not always need quality products, but they’ll definitelly need quality services and that makes the overall product a good one.
Evaluate what you sell to your clients. Be sure you’re providing them with the adequate service and if you’re not sure, ask him. He will never be satisfied but then again, neither will you.
- Quality – Consider you have to sign a document in a private situation. I’m pretty sure you wont worry about the pen you’ll use, as long as it writes properly. Now, transfer that same signing act to public situation. Media coverage, important people, you name it. How would you feel by using a mere BIC pen? Doesn’t sound good, does it? But it is undeniable that BIC is one of the best pen to write. Low weight, reliable and cheap. What does it miss to be appropriate for that public situation? Exactly. Design, character, style and so much more. But, does it write? Sure it does.
A product might have different kinds of attributes in quality matters, but in the end high quality might not be equal to higher price. BIC is a great example, it’s cheap, but it writes. But now with the same feeling. That’s why you’ll never pay for BIC pen what you pay for a Mont Blanc one…and guess what, they both write.
Think about your product. Now think about your product plus the service it carries together. Is your final product better than your competitors? Is it worth to pay more? Is it better for your client?
There’s a thin line that separates all these reasons. In fact, I consider they’re all inwardly connected. So, when you lose a client, it will probably be because the final product just stopped being worthy of his money. Also, it can happen he simply stopped having money to pay for it, and that makes him a “fastidious piggie”. Someone who will probably never tell you he can’t afford your product. Instead he will create a bunch of negative reasons in wich you and/or your product are to be blamed for.
In any case, when you lose a client, keep in mind that the fault will always tilt to your side and the best way to overcome that is getting a new client as soon as possible. Better yet, don’t go to the office next day without a new one.
You’ll definitelly sleep better and your boss wont be so upset as it would be.