Five ways to boost the client experience

Customers are at the heart of every business in good times and bad. Now more than ever, it's important to focus on the differentiating factors that will delight your customers and keep them for years to come.

Building trust is an essential part of doing business – until our clients trust us, we have very little leverage or leeway in the relationship.

We are more of an order-taker and less likely able to add value.

Once there is trust, you can build on the relationship and start to add tangible value.

This enables more sophisticated conversations around wealth creation, as our clients trust what we are telling them, rather than wondering if we are just trying to sell to them.

Here are my top five tips to help you improve the client experience:

To do this, you need to:
a. Know your market
b. Be active and promote that market; visit local businesses, attend events and support local charities
c. Let people know about your market and community through your chosen channels
d. Be consistent in your engagement, participation and contribution.

If you’re not sure how to start, check out those in the industry doing it well. Stu Benson and Holly Komorowski come to mind as leaders in this space.

If we don’t understand a client’s needs or expectations, how can we improve their experience?

The easiest way to find out is to ask them.

What are they trying to achieve through property, are they happy for you to help them achieve those goals, and what do they like most (and least) about the experience they have had working with you?

If we don’t ask for this feedback, more often than not, we won’t get it. But someone else will!

Once we understand their property goals, we can help them achieve them.

This is where we make good headway moving from an administrator to a trusted advisor.

In a competitive market, one of the most powerful ways to show your prospective clients how confident you are in delivering an outstanding service to them is to guarantee your offering.

You might promise an email response within eight hours and if that isn’t delivered, you’ll pay them for the hassle.

Or, you could guarantee securing them a tenant within two weeks and if you fail to do so, you’ll waive their letting fee.

Guarantees can be powerful as the client feels like it’s a win for them.

But a word of warning: know your market inside out as it can be a costly exercise if you get it wrong.

In a world of marketing automation, systems and processes, sometimes the most powerful way to cut through the noise and show you care, is by doing something personalised they don’t anticipate.

It could be a handwritten thank you note, supporting a fundraiser they might be hosting, or a small gift for an occasion such as an engagement, wedding, birth or bereavement.

This one is straight-forward, but when we get busy, we don’t always leverage the opportunity.

Every time you talk to or email a client, you can add value by educating them.

This improves the experience they have working with you and will also help you set yourself apart from many of your competitors.

At the end of an email, why not pop in a link to an article that might interest them, or an update on new legislation or interest rates.

If you come across a property that meets their criteria for their next purchase – share this with them.

It takes an extra minute of your time but your client’s experience becomes far more meaningful

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Hannah Gill

Hannah Gill is the Director of The Property Collective, REIACT President and one half of Gill & Hooper