The importance of good communication with clients is key, and a big secret in the corporate world is that the lifeblood of any business is client relationship management (CRM). Sometimes keeping open lines of communication with clients can be tricky, however. As the winter holidays approach, it can be difficult at times to manage the needs of your company’s clientele when trying to relax over the break and get some much-needed time away from the office.
With the right steps, however, keeping in touch with clients doesn’t have to be a complicated part of your vacation. In fact, by taking a few easy inroads to client communication you can rest easy knowing that your accounts are being taken care of. Here are just a few tips for managing clientele as you take a deserved holiday break.
1. Leave a message for clients via email and phone
Sometimes letting clients know that you’ll get back to them as soon as you’re back from a vacation will assure them that their services will be fulfilled in a timely and professional manner. Most email accounts have automatic vacation responses for incoming messages and by leaving a short voicemail message mentioning when you’ll be available can let clients know you’re back on the job shortly.
2. Send a holiday card
Many companies will appreciate your business when they receive a card wishing them a happy holiday season. Letting clients know you care is a great way to express thanks for a good year working together and your hope for many more positive years to come. Remember that business is often mostly about treating others with civility and respect, and that such actions will serve you well in the long-term.
3. Provide incentives for staff who’ll work on a holiday
If clients are relying on you to provide a service even on major holidays, try providing strong incentives for employees who are willing to work those days. Higher pay or the promise of future paid vacation time are just two ideas that might win them over and make the extra time worth it. It will also help your clients if they’re working with tight deadlines that have to be met even when most people are spending time away from the office.
4. Provide a year-end newsletter
Sometimes the best way to let clients know you care is to show them how your team performed this year. It’s also important to make clients feel included in that success; after all, without clients, none of our businesses would succeed. In this way, a year-end newsletter with a nice design and warm wishes is a great way to include clients in your thoughts for the new year.
Remember also that a great way to run a business is to think long-term: Think of keeping clients for decades rather than months, and you’ll naturally start to work together in a more synergistic way by looking out for one another’s continuing success. When colleagues work as a team, everyone benefits.
For these reasons, understanding how client relationship management works and why it is so central to creating a successful business will serve you well in the long-term and set the standard for creating positive accounts in the future. As you treat clients well, you treat your reputation well, and reputation is often one of the keys to business success. So over the holidays, make sure that your client relationships are high on your list of priorities!