The 4th and final part of our Creating a Client Experience series is here and it’s covering all things related to client offboarding.
If you’re just tuning in, you can catch up on each prior post here:
[NOTE: This series is best for online, service-based businesses.]
To summarize, you’ve now received the lead, secured them as a new client, gone through the initial onboarding, and fulfilled the work you promised. So you’re done, right?
Ehhh, not quite…
But trust me, this part can be really fun and rewarding!
There are a couple more steps to support your client and have all the work you did benefit your own business and marketing in return.
Follow up & final invoicing.
Before sending over that final invoice, follow up with the client one last time to see if there’s anything else they need.
Once you’re confident everything you quoted has been delivered and the client is satisfied, it’s time to send over the final invoice.
Granted, depending on your business, you may obtain final payment before servicing the client – which is pretty common for wedding professionals.
However, most other service-based businesses are likely to obtain an initial deposit, followed by the balance; or you could always offer a more broken up payment schedule.
Send a thank you card &/or gift.
With that out of the way, let your client know how much you appreciate their business by sending a thank you note &/or a gift.
The price of the gift is completely up to you and will vary based on the total cost of your services and any necessary expenses.
Some high-quality, low-maintenance options are offered by companies like BoxFox (our favorite!), Teak & Twine, Just Hit Send Gifts, Wine.com, among lots of others!
The downside to using a “gift box” type service, however, is that you don’t get to add a branded touch before it gets sent.
So another option would be ordering your own branded materials to send off to clients or you could even tailor the gift to something you learned about them while working together!
Request a testimonial.
Now that you’ve done everything you can to service the client to the best of your ability, it’s time to send over a review form or link to public review sites like Google, Facebook, or The Knot to obtain a testimonial.
The benefit to using your own form is that you can provide prompting questions that ultimately help you to obtain a stronger, more compelling review, rather than leaving it open-ended.
Additionally, in the event that the review is less than stellar, you can address any concerns without it negatively affecting you in an uncontrolled public forum.
Pro Tip: If you want to consolidate your number of email communications, you could send this request in conjunction with the final invoice.
Share and promote the work.
Before sharing client work to our own feed, I like to wait until the client has posted it to theirs – or at least ask. First and foremost, it’s theirs to celebrate and you never know what they might be waiting on before making the big announcement.
After the client announces their launch, share a post to your feed and your Story to promote the client and share your work.
If you’ve already obtained a testimonial from the client, it’s a great idea to include it at this time as well!
Be sure to give credit to any other creatives or companies who played a part in the project (designers, photographers, copywriters, strategists, etc.) and be clear about what work you did.
Pro Tip: I’m not a graphic designer, but I love using Canva to create on-brand graphics for sharing completed client projects across social media and then saving them to a dedicated “Client Love” highlight.
Update your Portfolio page.
You’re so close to done it’s time to break out the champagne – (I really wanted to write “champs” but I was afraid that wouldn’t translate)!
Next, update the Portfolio page on your website while it’s all still fresh. If you procrastinate this, it will feel like a much bigger, less exciting task later.
Include the testimonial, outline the type/extent of the work you did, and add at least 1 image that showcases it.
Pro Tip: If you actively email your audience, include your Portfolio update and client project in your next communication!
Archive the project &/or complete any remaining admin tasks.
LASTLY (and the cork pops…) archive the project in your CRM / project management system; proudly checking off that final task.
If you collaborated with an internal or external team, now’s a good time to review any wins + opportunities for next time, and share some mutual praise and appreciation.
BONUS: Follow-up and request referrals.
I’d argue that word of mouth is THE best marketing strategy. And the best way to encourage client referrals is to ASK for them.
So reach back out to your client a month or two later just to check in, see if you can assist with anything else, and ask if they know of anyone who could be in need of your services.
Make it personal by doing some research first and mentioning something they’ve shared or done lately to provide some encouragement.
You can also ask about any continued results they’re experiencing from the work you did for them.
This is one I could definitely be better about, but this added bit of client servicing goes a long way in maintaining relationships and making your job that much more enjoyable.
Look at that…YOU. MADE. IT!
Go sip that glass of bubbles, you deserve it.
I’d love to hear your feedback about this series, what you found helpful, where you have questions, or what you would add to it!
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