3 Tips for Developing Relationships at Your Professional Services Firm

old photo film rollsBusiness is all about relationships — a concept that has been hammered home for decades. Rock solid client relationships lead to increased deal sizes, stronger client loyalty, and an increase in referrals, making relationship development an essential component to both sales and marketing. But not every firm makes client relationships a top priority or executes an effective strategy.

After working with finance, legal, and other professional services firms, we’ve seen firms struggle to master the art of developing client relationships. Too often we see self-promotional campaigns, generalized communications, and other campaign missteps.

To really engage with your clients and see an improved relationship, you need to do more than generic mass emails and standard service offerings. Below, we share three tips to help you engage with your firm’s clients and create more lasting relationships.

1. Refine Your Mailing List

One of the most common marketing tactics is to send out a mass email campaign to all of your clients. But without proper management of your firm’s mailing list, you may have invalid emails, wrong first names, or insufficient data to personalize your email to clients. And with personalized emails driving up to six times higher transaction rates, it’s important that your mailing list is well maintained and fully fleshed out.

Make sure your list is well maintained without adding extra hours onto an your business development team’s work week with CRM data automation. Through data automation, you can rest assured that your client data is accurate and up to date. Plus, you can sync your enhanced client data within your CRM with your email service provider to send out personalized client emails that are designed to engage through every stage of the buyer journey.

2. Know Your Clients and Their Plans

Throughout the year, a lot of your clients will be off of work to visit family, go on a business trip, or just escape on vacation. So while you might be preparing to launch a campaign, are you sure your target clients are even listening? If they’re like most people during their time away from home, they will likely be disconnecting from the outside world and responsibilities. This makes getting through to them a bit of an experiment.

When meeting with clients, it’s always a good idea to ask them if they have any exciting plans coming up. This gives you good material to follow up with once they return should they have a vacation scheduled. You can also block this time off in your calendar to ensure you don’t make disturb their time away. Make sure to also log this information into your CRM so any member of your business development or sales team can easily recall important client information like their kids’ names, location, interests, and more. This makes it easy for anyone in your firm to send personalized messages that get answered.

Another way to boost your client responses and start a dialogue is to power your CRM with relationship intelligence automation that monitors client activity and determines the best time to reach out. You’ll also receive notifications or alerts letting you know when it’s safe to send messages and the time of day that is most likely to receive a response.

3. Master the Art of Giving

Branded promotional products are a sales and marketing tactic that can strengthen relationships as it allows you to give gifts to your clients. But with firms sending care packages, gift cards, and other products to their clients, how can you make your firm’s gift different and more memorable? The trick is to give them something personal, valuable, and relevant.

Give your clients a gift they will appreciate by making it more personal and customized than a gift you could give to everyone. A food basket, care package, or a branded pen could be given to all of your clients, but that doesn’t mean they will remember who gave it to them. Instead, offer to make a donation to their favorite charity in their name. This is both a personal and meaningful thing to do, making it the perfect gift that shows clients you really care about them.

More Ways to Build Up Client Relationships

If there’s one takeaway for your professional services firm in the advice above, it’s that good marketing is both personal and meaningful. But there are other ways your firm can improve your client relationships. Check out these seven ways to create happy clients with CRM technology.