Happy clients are often willing to recommend your business and generate new leads. They are also crucial for sustainably growing your company. Acquiring new customers can cost an organization up to 5 times more than retaining the current ones.
Since keeping clients pays off, businesses need to develop retention strategies to keep their clients happy.
At Unity Group, we believe in building relationships with clients. And we take pride in having developed a few long-lasting ones. Some of our clients have been with us for over a decade.
Learn about the factors that, in our opinion, help us achieve sustainable growth, while contributing to the success of our clients.
5 Ways Technology Partners Can Earn Loyal Clients
- Demonstrate agile expertise
- Be transparent and provide updates
- Prove your experience
- Allow others to speak to your expertise
- Know the importance of being human
1. Demonstrate Agile Expertise
Agile has been around for a couple of years and most of the technology companies market themselves as agile. Still, companies subcontracting IT services are often skeptical, as they know all too well that software developers only partially buy into Agile methodology. The concern they share is prevalent and valid.
Yet, agile software development is the only logical option in IT, especially when developing complex solutions.
At the core of Agile methodology is the ability to pivot to meet the changing requirements. Compared to Waterfall, there’s no meticulous planning of the entire process before the work begins – there's iterative work that should be followed by fast feedback and pivoting, if necessary.
There are also not rigid final deadlines, which could result in development team cutting corners just to meet them. Plus, the methodology has proven to yield gains in the shape of quality software and smart development delivers real value.
The major advantage of Agile is the capability to produce quality software that really meets its users’ needs. If done wisely, Agile can actually help you deploy one month ahead of time.
There are various factors that determine whether development companies effectively implement their methodology. One of the reasons might be their ill-conceived service mindset. In the effort to meet their clients’ expectations, they succumb to their client’s fear of not knowing exactly how the development process will progress.
The pitfall is that Waterfall project management seems to be more aligned with our intrinsic need of knowing what will happen. Even if the method often leads to developing software that is redundant, organizations still fall into this trap.
Overall, organizations should demonstrate Agile expertise.
2. Be Transparent and Provide Updates
There’s no better way to instigate trust and make your clients feel secure than being transparent with them. Especially when you work in time-and-material model, transparency is ultra-important.
It applies to both costs and having the real picture of where the project is at the moment. If your client agrees to compensate the actual time spent, make it possible for them to keep track of it.
There is a number of sound agile project management tools that facilitate continuous updates. We chose to rely on Jira and are big evangelists of the solution.
Always, at the kick-off of a project, every new client receives access to the tool. Our developers log there every minute spent working on the project. This gives the client full information on the progress we’re making and how fast the project is moving forward. The whole communication between developers happens in Jira as well, so that the clients have full knowledge, all the time.
3. Prove Your Experience
Convincing your clients to rely on your sound advice will be much easier if you can prove it. Do it – end of story. Showcase your work not only for the sake of higher sales figures, but for the sake of your future clients.
Seeing your portfolio of projects will make them feel they’re in safe hands and thus will have a positive impact on your cooperation. Prove you deserve having a say right before the project starts and you’ll be able to communicate your ideas more effectively when you actually get down to work.
4. Allow Others to Speak to Your Experience
There’s a very good reason why referral platforms such as The Manifest are the main source of inbound leads for a lot of companies.
Similarly, to the convincing portfolio of projects, references given by trusted brands work not only in your favor of your sales, they inspire trust and by doing so position you to be more effective and deliver results that delight your clients.
5. Know the Importance of Being Human
It may sound out of tune here. However, corporations have already come to realization that the multiplicity of procedures and task-oriented mindset, important as they are, pose a threat for staff happiness. The larger a corporation is, the greater risk it runs.
Being a subcontractor to a corporation, you contribute to the work satisfaction of your clients’ staff.
So, first of all, take care of your own team, as the way they feel about work will affect the relationships they build outside: Listen carefully, show understanding, provide guidance, be respectful, and have fun. Being nice to worth with pays off.
Earn Loyal Clients
There’s no one golden rule that will ensure your B2B clients happiness. It’s not a rocket science, either.
Buying into Agile, staying transparent, and showcasing your IT know-how is the minimum of what you should do. Even better, make a genuine connection with your staff, your clients, and the world.