Focusing your attention on the overall customer experience is the best way to improve the perception of your brand’s value.
We’re starting today with a riddle: What costs little to no monetary investment and yet can dramatically increase the value of your brand?
Answer: Customer Experience.
Why should you care about the value of your brand? Because the more valuable your brand is perceived, the more impact you can have on your community. And, if I’m being blunt, the more you can charge for your services.
No, it’s not about the money. However, if your business is scraping by, you won’t be around much longer to hear me out.
As a service based business, more often than not, you play a pretty pivotal role in your brand because you’re selling your expertise as a service. You’re providing a solution for your client in exchange for a monetary investment. And, there will come a point when you are maxed out on time and workload. Meaning, it’s physically impossible for you to take on any more clients.
So, you have one of two options. Either bring on help or raise your prices.
The first time this happened to me, bringing on someone wasn’t something that I wanted to do. So, my other option was to raise my prices. Except, I didn’t want to raise rates just because – that didn’t sit right with me. I wanted there to be a reason why I was charging more
I asked myself a simple question, “What additional value am I going to bring to the table?”
Yes, with each client my design abilities and knowledge improves, which is a valid reason for raising rates. But, there was another answer that kept popping up and it had nothing to do with my design work.
I realized that customer experience was a lot more important to me than any other investment I could make for my brand.
Which leads me to this: Serving your client to the best of your ability should be your number one goal, ALWAYS. And when that is the goal you’re constantly working towards, the only way to go is up. It doesn’t matter if you’re just starting out or if you’ve been working with clients for a few years – it’s time to get into the mindset of continuous improvement.
I’ve been looking back at the evolution of my own customer experience and there are a few key additions that have greatly improved my brand value and customer experience. Now, I’m not saying you need all the fancy stuff in order to charge more for your services or improve your brand’s value. The goal is to create a seamless process that provides an exceptional experience for your client. However you get to that point is up to you.
Loom is a great (and free!) tool that allows you to record your screen along with a talking head. I use it to record my screen and talk through logo concepts, website design reviews and potential client proposals.
Great for: Building a personal connection with your virtual clients.
Are you collecting feedback from your clients after (or during) you’re done working with them? This is the perfect opportunity to see where you can improve your process and customer experience!
Need some ideas? Here are a few questions that I ask each and every client I work with:
- Where was your business when you booked?
- How did you feel about the communication and touch points throughout the process? Did you feel supported?
- What was your favorite aspect of working together?
- Was there anything surprising from our time together that you weren’t expecting (positive or negative)?
- Is there anything you would have liked to see done differently?
Great for: Collecting feedback so that you can continuously improve your customer experience.
Dubsado is a business management tool* that allows you to schedule appointments, capture leads, send contracts and create project workflows. I use it to capture leads, send emails to clients and potential clients, schedule consultation calls and client calls, send invoices and contracts, send logo concepts, collecting website feedback… the list is pretty endless. I will say, Dubsado is something that nearly all of my clients comment on how great and user friendly it is to use.
Great for: Streamlining your workflows, managing clients and keeping all client-related documents in one place.
ClickUp is a beast of a project management tool.* I use it to manage and organize tasks/to-dos for my businesses as well as for each client project. I invite each client to a specific board that houses all our dates, deadlines and files. It’s a great communication assistant so that you and your clients are on the same page.
Great for: Collaborating with clients on a project so that you’re both on the same page in terms of dates, deadlines and next steps.
Now, remember that your client experience can always be improved. It’s not a destination that you ever arrive at. And, why would you want to? As a business owner, our goal is to serve our clients to the best of our ability. The more clients you serve, the more ability and knowledge you have. And that improved ability then gets transferred onto the next client. It a beautiful, repeating cycle.
All my best,
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