Many things have already been written on the specific aspects of business relationship with your customers – but let’s focus here on aspects specific only the translation and localization industry. Keeping in mind today trends for smaller and quicker job requests from your customers it is impossible not to think about what influences good relationship between your translation agency and customers. You need to up your marketing efforts to attract new customers. You need to keep being attractive to them as much as to your established database and you need to be a magnet for talented, hard working translators – your vendors. They will make your customers happy and in a consequence your new clientele will keep you in their circle and enrich your existing portfolio.
Here are six tips to help you better nurture the relationships with your customers:
1. Work on your empathy
All your projects are unique – at least in the eyes of your customers. If you look at things from their perspective, to feel what they feel in order to satisfy their needs and build trust, that will help them to return and improve your business results. So listen, treat them how you would like to be treated if you were in their situation and empathise.
2. Build trust through transparency
The main common substance for all relations in any enterprise is trust. The same applies to successful relationship between translation agency and its customers, even more so since they do not understand the translated language and completely rely on the translation service provider. They trust that their requirements, settings, and target market are precisely understood and delivered. They trust that product they will receive will be exactly what they need.
Transparency is a way to build that trust – use technology that show to your customer
the progress of your work and involve him/her in the reviewing process.
3. Deliver what you promised
Global brands companies are well-experienced language services buyers and they will need suppliers that continue to prioritize innovation, drive, and scalability in their services provision. More companies will request “program-based not project-based” model which will offer more comprehensive, multilingual, and round-the-clock services to meet their’ demands. It means that you will need to set achievable expectations, in order to showcase integrity to the customer enterprise.
4. Stand your ground
Today it is not enough to be proficient in your area of expertise. Your competitive edge today comes from technology that will help you to be responsive, quick and flexible to all your customers, so they can feel taken care of. If you use a Translation Management System with an integrated CRM it will help you and your customer to quickly clarify and resolve project specific complaints and issues. Such integrated system contains project requirements, objectives, conditions, files as well as the history of the projects.
Also such a TMS will show you know who your VIP customers are ( those who generate most of your business) and you can treat them accordingly with more elastic conditions.
5. Ask them if they like what they see
Satisfaction surveys are key to guarantee high satisfaction in both customers and vendors. They are the statement of your care and readiness to respond to their expectations, to improve and deliver exceptional service.
6. Say “Hi” from your Ivory Tower
Staying in touch is so important and easy with todays technology. The choice is yours: phone call, texting a line, email, LinkedIn messages, invitations to an event through your blog or any other social network … the possibilities are almost unlimited. Your customers will appreciate the effort that you put in their on your part, although they will always wait for your Christmas, Hanukkah, Ramadan or New Year Greetings. You in return expect those corporate calendar and chocolates back, don’t you?