Let’s say an entrepreneur takes note of the revenue you’re generating and wants to take a shot at stealing it away from you. How might that entrepreneur go about taking your clients?
Here are some ideas:
- Brand the business with a memorable name. No more Watkins, Singer, Jones, and Smith. Come up with something memorable and catchy with nice looking graphics. Associate a sound like they do for NBC or Intel.
- Advertise on television, radio, print and hit all the online places like Google, Bing, LinkedIn, etc.
- Sponsor monthly educational dinners for other professionals who might refer. Include educational credit for them and buy them a nice meal.
- Develop a sales team of professionals able to add value and engage in a consultative process.
- Provide fee structures that meet your clients’ needs and expectations. Develop a co-branded credit card.
- Build an amazing website with tons of information (think WebMD) with text, video, graphics, audio, calculators, tools, etc.
- Include a forum on the site where experts would answer questions for visitors.
- Sponsor local events like the symphony, road races, and school events.
- Automate the process for the client. Make everything available online and empower clients to do as much or as little of the work as they like using the online tools.
- Provide every important document for free.
- Connect people with providers they might need who are ancillary to the main service. Bring those providers in-house.
- Provide something for everyone: books at the low end, consulting at the high end, and variations of service levels in the middle.
- Provide a team available 24/7 to answer questions and take emergency action. Clients get instantaneous answers to their questions from informed representatives.
- Give the client a detailed plan outlining how the matter will proceed.
- Build a beautiful physical facility for clients who wish to come to an office.
- Provide a money-back guarantee.
- Monitor your clients’ satisfaction frequently and act upon the first sign of distress.
- Offer to meet your clients online, in their home, at your office, or at their office.
- Schedule and hold meetings immediately.
- Give every professional in the firm instant access to detailed information about the client.
- Develop a detailed project plan for the client, keep it up-to-date, make it available online, and require the team to follow it closely.
- Set affordable fees so that clients consistently believe that they got a bargain.
- Make payment plans available.
- Determine expectations at the outset and exceed them.
- Find a way for clients to help clients for those so inclined, driving down costs and increasing social interaction.
- Go national and expand the brand, achieving economies of scale. He might even go international.
- Roll out a new offering once or twice a year and bring something new to clients that exceeds their expectations.
- Lower prices continuously, increase services, and shock clients with something new and better.
- Bring together various services under one roof so clients wouldn’t need to go elsewhere.
- Build a reputation for amazing service by delivering more than expected, on time, every time, and taking every phone call on the first ring.
If you had it to do all over again, how would you do it differently? How would you attack the existing providers by delivering something no one else is delivering? Is it too late for you to do something different now?
Food for thought: Someone out there is thinking about your revenue right now.