Mastering the Art of Relationships
February - the month of the year dedicated to relationships. If you’re a part of agency life and work in Accounts, relationships aren’t something you think of once a year. They’re an everyday consideration. As the Director of Partnerships here at allwebcafe, a few questions I ask myself regularly are centered around relationships and how to make the most of them - both internally and with our clients.
I often consider...
- How can I communicate better with my internal team?
- How do I explain the reason behind our recommendations in a way that is most clear?
- How do I ensure my clients are happy while keeping the needs of our business in mind?
- How do I impress upon my team that they need to step up their productivity?
All of these factors have the power to greatly impact agency relationships. The old adage, “It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it” comes to mind here. You need to be mindful of the person’s personality you are speaking with. For example, some individuals are thick skinned so you can be direct and firm. Others need to be spoken to in a softer tone in order to get your point across.
Determining how to communicate with the many different personalities you interact with in this industry on a daily basis is a big part of an account manager’s job and it takes time to master. Not only do I need to ensure our client relationships are strong but that the talented people who produce the work that is required are equally satisfied and challenged. This is no small task, and it forces me to come up with new ways to overcome this regularly.
Here are a few tips that help keep everyone happy, on-task and productive.
- Take the time to learn about the person. Talk about what makes them happy. It could be a new idea, an upcoming vacation, a favorite food, book, a movie. Anything!
- Be gracious. Be sure to compliment someone on a job well done and express gratitude.
- Regularly educate yourself. Share blog articles and helpful information you think he or she may find interesting.
- Show empathy. It’s important to show empathy when dealing with any obstacles or issues that may arise.
- Patience. This might be the toughest one of all, but it’s also the most important when it comes to dealing with strong personalities on a daily basis.
Being responsible for allwebcafe’s client relationships and projects can, at times, be an overwhelming task - something that most account supervisors and executives probably understand well. There are many challenges to keeping myself even-keeled so that I can ensure our client’s success, as well as our own success.
For now, I’ll continue to master my skills while doing what I love. I’m fortunate to work with a talented group of strategists, designers and developers who make it fun and exciting to come to work every day.
From buyer persona development to content marketing, we work hard to help clients build out their own customer relationships. The key to doing this successfully often starts with those buyer personas. Just as an account manager must craft the way we speak to different clients or internal professionals, marketing efforts must be geared toward buyer personas in a way that speaks to each persona in the right way.
How do you develop client and customer relationships? What tips would you offer?