Saturday, May 7, 2011

Renewing Your Past Clients

Robert Middleton’s Blog is a good read.

On April 26th he blogged about "Renewing Your Past Clients".

Ho-hum so far – a good post, a read, move on to the next blog . . .

And then this caught my eye:-

5. To make all of this work, you need a solid foundation which includes the following elements: a) A favorable past experience with that client b) (etc.)

If you’ve been in business longer than a year, you will have at least one client-bad-memory. A project that went wrong; a terrible mis-understanding; a falling-out.

How can you recover from that? Especially when the last experience, the most recent-memory is a bitter one.

Robert Middleton makes this point “When you contact them, you are not a stranger to them”.

I went back and reread “A favorable past experience …”

Now . . .

A favorable past experience” is different from “the last experience”, and so this morning I made a list of all the clients for whom I feel inhibitions.

In one column, face the facts, “Why do I feel awkward?”; not a matter of “Who was at fault?”, but just “What event or incident marked the watershed in our relationships?”.

In the second column I tried to remember the very best thing that had happened and that could/would be remembered by my contact.

My reasoning is this:

When I call them, I will be aware that their first unspoken thought might be that negative incident. So BEFORE I call them, I too have that incident to hand.

But what they don’t know is that within 3 seconds of the start of the conversation I will have steered them away from that negative thought to a very positive memory.

It’s an ambush, I guess, and it should work!

Thanks Robert!

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