This past September, WSP International celebrated 60 years of supplying promotional programs to retailers, consumer packaged goods clients and a host of others. Having been part of that accomplishment for more than half of those years, I wanted to share my thoughts on just some of the things that helped us get to 60 years.
If you are not passionate about the product or services that you offer, your clients are going to pick up on that immediately! So if you are not passionate about your business, try to find one that you can be passionate about.
Clients have to know that you are going to be there for them. Business doesn’t always run smoothly. But if your clients know that you are going to be there for them (and not just for one project, but for the long haul), problems can be solved and you will have a client that will stay with you indefinitely.
Don’t be afraid to offer new solutions. But when you do, make sure that you have drawn on as many successful tried and true solutions as you possibly can. In the promotional business there is an old adage: there are very few brand new promotions, just reworked ideas that are better executed for today’s market.
Presentations should be 80% preparation and 20% presentation. Know everything about your client that you can. Don’t make assumptions. Ask the right questions. Research, research, research.
Respect Your Client’s Time
In today’s world we just cannot expect to be able to have face to face meetings like we were able to 10 years ago. But we have a host of communication devices that we did not have 10 years ago, either. From teleconferences to web based meetings, to email to couriers. Use the ones that work best for your client. Help them fit you into their busy schedules.
Follow the Golden Rule
When you are in the client’s office, you are working for your company. When you are in your office, you are working for the client. It’s never easy. At your office, you will have many bouts of conflict, when your mind set is that you are working for your client. At the client’s office, it’s your responsibility to your company to be firm but fair.