Gratitude As A Business Strategy

    Did you know that gratitude can be used as a way to grow your business? When you consider that the definition of gratitude is: a positive emotion that acknowledges a benefit that one has received or will receive – and in business, even if your clients are paying you a fee, they are still probably grateful for the service you perform. The reason for their gratitude is that, without you performing that service, they will have to search for someone else to do it for them and the service you provide likely helps them concentrate on their core competencies.

    Here are some actions you can take to express gratitude toward your clients:

    • Saying thank you goes a long way. These two words benefit you both in and outside of business dealings. Thank them for their business. Thank them for referrals. A “thank you” is a true customer-building tool.
    • Be willing to take the extra step. There are times you feel you can’t offer anything more, but if you’re willing to go the extra mile, your willingness to serve will be remembered.
    • Positivity counts. In any situation, you should look for the positive. There are times this is difficult but if you’re calm in the face of an angry customer you can easily diffuse the situation.

    How do you practice gratitude with your clients?

    Customer Service Always Counts

    Do you provide great customer service? On a scale of 1 to 10, honestly rate yourself and the service you provide your customers. Stop again and rate your customer service to your clients based on how long they’ve been with you – does the customer service you provide diminish over time?

    Do you think that your clients will speak up if they feel they were slighted? Chances are they won’t. They will simply go to another service provider and you will lose the client and you probably won’t even know why. It could all boil down to customer service – or lack of it.

    How can you treat every customer with the care and consideration you did when they first signed on? Here are a few tips:

    • Check in with them on a regular basis. Why not pick up the phone and call them every other week – or every week? Make the time to touch base and gauge their happiness with your service.
    • Send them email newsletters so that your company stays front of mind.
    • Drop postcards in the mail when you have an anniversary sale or offer a coupon or discount simply as a way to thank them for their loyalty.
    • Send them a card on the anniversary of when they became your customer and include a free gift or a discount for a month for the service fee they pay.
    • If they are local, drop by and see them in person.

    Keeping clients is much more cost effective than seeking out and nurturing new clients. What are your strategies for providing the best customer service that you can?

    End Cash Flow Concerns

    It’s hard to concentrate on doing your best and taking care of your clients if you’re losing sleep at night worrying about money. While money is crucial to daily living and while it’s likely you do have bills to pay, there are some simple steps you can take to alleviate the worry and allow your mind to relax and free itself to focus on taking care of clients.

    Here are my three rules for alleviating money worries:

    1. Make certain you have a true grasp on how much money you need on a weekly or monthly basis. Additionally, you need to know exactly how much money you are bringing in. Having these figures will help you get a true picture of your finances.
    2. Be consistent in marketing your business. Be consistent in serving your clients. Be consistent in following up and following through with clients. Don’t take current clients for granted — they are your bread and butter. Check in with them consistently, even if it’s just to say “hello.”
    3. Plan your marketing three to six months (or more) in advance. Marketing takes time and effort and you likely can’t put together a marketing plan on Monday and hope to see results on Friday.

    What are your best tips and advice on taking money worries out of your daily business equation?

    Can You Be Too ‘Perfect’?

    Have you ever been faced with a project that, for some reason, you just can’t seem to get yourself to move forward on? Have you ever considered the fact that it might be perfection that’s holding you back? In some cases, that is true. Some individuals get so caught up in the idea that everything they’re going to put forth and introduce to the public has to be perfect.

    In reality, there is no perfect. If you put your best into everything that you do, and you call upon trusted mentors and advisors for input, the product you offer and the service you provide will be as perfect as you can make it. There are three ways  you can help propel your projects forward and let go of the perfection procrastination:

    1. Focus on the final outcome and how your clients and potential clients will benefit from what you have to offer.
    2. Practice lends itself to your personal perfection. The product or service you’re offering is valuable in the market because only you possess your particular brand of expertise.
    3. Be open to mistakes. Everyone makes them. Be big enough to own up to them. If you have a typo on a press release or in a blog post, thank the person that points it out and fix it. You’re only human!