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Business Development

You have identified the markets and clients you want to target for your services. You know that your firm is absolutely qualified to provide the services that your prospects need based upon the work your firm is already doing for other clients. What is the next step? Is it to develop a strategy to convince those prospects to give you the work? Your prospects can't see, feel, or touch the services that your firm provides and it is likely they will not be able to tell whether your deliverables are of better quality than the ones they are currently receiving. What they will be able to tell is how they will feel about working with your firm. Do they believe you will deliver on your promises? The ability to demonstrate to prospects that your firm has an established feedback plan in place strengthens your message that your firm will listen and successfully take care of their needs.

Remove uncertainty Increase credibility
BD remove uncertainty positive brand

Compared to products, services can leave prospects feeling uncertain about taking that next step. Your prospects know the quality of the service they are currenlty receiving. How do you help them move past the fear of the unknown to give your service a chance? Having a feedback process tells prospects that you will be communicating with them regularly and that your firm has an established process for adjusting your processes to match their delivery expectations.

 

When your competitors are speaking to clients and prospects, it is almost certain that none of them are saying that they don't care about their clients. The fact is, your competitors are telling prospects many of the same things you are. It's easy to make these statements, but having a feedback process adds credibility. You can show them how you take care of your clients. In a recent article for SMPS, Client Feedback Tool co-founder Ryan Suydam shares the experience of a client who used feedback to increase short-list interview rates by 50%.

   
Gaining referrals Strong differentiator
BD referrals Pencil different eraser

What actions is your firm currently using to take advantage of the power of referrals? Do you ask your clients for quotes or letters of recommendations when you are trying to win a job with a new prospect? When you use the Client Feedback Tool, you will receive ongoing feedback from your clients. In addition to letting you know you have met (or exceeded) their expectations, your clients typically add comments that make excellent testimonials for use in your proposals, on your website, and to share with your Twitter network. 

 

Before you can try and satisfy a client or prospect, you must be able to understand and satisfy the person you hope will hire you. Each person is a unique individual and they want different things from your firm. They want to know that you will not try and 'do their project exactly like all the others'. Feedback allows you to build stronger relationships with existing clients winning more work without a formal proposal process. It also demonstrates to prospects that your firm is different! Ask us about sending feedback requests to prospects even before the project selection.

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