Image by Vanessa Pike-Russell (Licence)
…your clients?The thing is, that we, the people of the marketing and advertising industry, sometimes have this omnipotent symptom where we think that we [should] know everything about advertising and marketing, and our visions should dominate the relationship with our customer. This affects our ability to hear what the customer may have to say.
This way of thinking may lead to this: Sometimes, when our client tells us coherently what she needs, it makes us feel bad. We feel we’re a failure, we feel “You don’t know anything about marketing, stop trying to tell me how I should do my job”. Baaad mistake.
What I mean here isn’t the same what I wrote in the post about open mindedness in using social media as a marketing tool. What I’m trying to say is, that sometimes, often, your client knows the way of the game in her field much better than you – it is a cold fact.
She lives and breathes her business all the time; you are just visiting there once in a while, helping to better market her awesome and outstanding product. Do you want your visit to be cocky or truly a client oriented experience? – Client oriented here does not mean the same as crawling in her feet and acting like an amoeba and submitting in every caprice.
You are professional when you get the client speaking about her wishes and needs, and pick up the useful information and knowledge from that.
Naturally same rules won’t apply in every situation. The statement about the client coming with a good pallet of needs is something that happens now and then. We all probably know the opposite type who doesn’t know a bit what he wants and in addition to this it’s awfully difficult to get any ideas through.
Getting through this is, again, a matter of your professional abilities of trying to get him out of his shell and guiding him to the finish line. The important things here are respect, open minded atmosphere and really, a truly customer oriented approach.
When you go and see the advertising business websites, almost all of them are telling they come with a “customer oriented approach”. I wonder how true that is? It should always be true, you shouldn’t even have to advertise this as an agency strength.
Of course it isn’t always as dandy and easy as written here, but what else can you do? You choose how you react in potentially difficult situations – do you whine or deal with them?
If you have to say “Piss off, I’m through with you.” you have lost the game, and most likely the expected revenue. And during these trying times, that isn’t the way you want it to go, is it?