At the core of every successful project is a satisfied client.
Project management is a service industry, and the primary goal is quality output.
"The sole reason we are in business is to make life less difficult for our clients." Matthew Odgers
In creative/digital agency, project management can get incredibly complicated because there are various clients from different industries. Diverse work can be a challenge for a project management organization.
Utilizing Client management tools, you can easily overcome potential issues and create a transparent workflow environment for your clients.
Before you start client onboarding, there are a few things you need to get in line.
Client management culture of your agency you need to acknowledge:
- Constant communication
To perfect your relationship with clients and to improve a final output, here are some pain points you need to have in mind before you acquire new clients.
1. Educate about a client's niche
To fully engage with client expectations, we need to observe a client's niche deeply. Educate your team about a client's niche, research competition to create a reference point for a project assessment, workflow, and execution.
In client onboarding, we already need to have a strategic plan on how to improve the client's business and present a reliable solution.
The collaboration will be easily achievable because there will not be a stumbling point in communication.
The intent is to be on the same page. Understanding a niche, we create trust and make our client comfortable seeking advice or pointing to a potential issue.
2. Productivity time tracking
Once you achieved collaborative communication with your client, there is a specific deadline to execute the project.
Considering a client expectation and your team productivity level, you must create an optimal workflow, carefully creating a task timeline, a specific deadline, and a predict a resource consumption.
Productivity time tracking can give you valuable metrics to create a risk estimation of how long and how many resources your team spends on a specific task or project overall.
Advanced project management software can give you much more than just a time tracking tool. There are unique processes that are not recognized by average productivity time tracking tools, such as:
- Niche Research
- Team communication
- Client meetings
These processes are not a waste of time. They are an integral part of project workflow, and you shouldn't align them as unproductive.
Every aspect that involves resource consumption project creation, team and client communication, task delegation, distribution, and finally, project execution is a part of productivity time tracking.
3. Transparent tasks and team discussions
To improve client management, you need to involve a client in team discussions. That way, you create a transparent workflow, and the client can easily monitor the work process. It is a great way to fill the gap in communication.
Team communication with a client requires to:
- Share progress
- Share documentation
- Be responsive
- Get feedback
Sharing crucial processes will improve your workflow, increase clarity, and transform client communication.
4. Client messages responsiveness
As we said before, client satisfaction is our primary goal. To realize that we need to acknowledge every concern our client has.
If the client asks something, no matter how unimportant the question seems to be, answer it. Because if you don't, it could negatively affect workflow.
Always take time for a client query, create a system that will consolidate all client's expectations.
Client messages responsiveness need to include:
- Manage expectations
- Monitor all channels
- Align your schedule
Keep in mind that the clients don't want just a fast response; they want you to be interested in discussion and look forward to solving a potential problem.
5. Workspace organization
Creative/Digital agency needs to have a unique system to sort all of the advertisement material. Cloud-based project management tools have created advanced features that help you to upload, edit, and overview all generated content.
To manage all storing assets, you need to create easily shareable folders forming a set of rules that will simplify the client oversees in project processes, such as:
- Storage rules
- Sharing rules
- Asset management rules
It may sound like an unnecessary job to do. Still, when you create a workspace organization ground rules, you will simplify a client overview and always be up to date in client collaboration.
6. Flexible workflow
There are no simple projects. Project is a complex process that includes the collaboration of team members, stakeholders, and clients.
And much more.
Things that can severely damage your workflow:
- Unexpected tasks
- Strict deadlines
- Delivery problems
- Communication issues
Keep in mind that project management as accurate it needs to be on the other hand, it must be extremely flexible.
But how to incorporate those two extremes?
The answer is improvisation.
But to keep things straight, improvisation is not something you should use daily, but it needs to be an ace in the sleeve.
And when you can't improvise - go with plan B.
7. Plan B
It is not the most obvious thing to do if you want to perfect client management. But keep in mind that creative digital marketing is a dynamic process, and to be up to date, you need to have a plan B.
Client communication can be overwhelmed sometimes, and to keep your client satisfied, you need to have a broad perspective from which some processes can get a better view.
Having plan B and being flexible can get you in advantage and prepared for some significant changes in the workflow or sudden problems than can occur.
As a Creative/Digital agency, you will acquire very demanding clients.
To keep up with their ideas and requests, you should strongly consider using some of advanced project management tools that will significantly help you to overview a project, easily communicate with team members along with clients.
Client management is fast evolving and to keep up with the industry demands, you need to incorporate automatization processes if you want to perfect a client communication and collaboration.
What is your main problem in communication with clients?
Please leave a comment!
Author: Aleksandar Radosevic
Tech copywriter & creative storyteller. Content writer at Nifty, leading project management software tool. Combining creative and data-driven content to optimize digital content performance and user experience.