7 ways to breathe fire back into your client relationships

You might not have vowed ’til death do you part, but that’s no excuse for not working to keep the bonds between your agency and its clients burning strong.

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But what if the relationship has gotten a little humdrum? Worse, you’re taking each other for granted (which may be fine for the client, but it obviously spells danger for any agency or consultant.)

In honor of Valentine’s Day, here are some practical ways to refresh your mutual attraction and spice up the client relationship.

Shake things up. Continuity is a beautiful thing, but don’t get into a rut. Consider swapping out a staff member, or just inviting fresh eyes onto your latest program or idea. New blood can serve two goals; it injects different thinking into your programs and offers new opportunities to staff.

Listen. Like a longstanding couple, we can sometimes stop hearing what a client’s really saying—or, in some cases, what they aren’t communicating. Internal pressures, corporate shifts, personal issues—all can influence an ongoing partnership. If you sense a change in the relationship, schedule a check-in meeting.

Start over. Just for a day. One of my favorite strategies is to throw everything out (mentally) and pretend to be pitching the business for the first time. Invite the client to participate. Sometimes it helps to forget what you think you know.

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