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5 Tips for Building Your Dream Client List

Acquiring A-list clients is often the ultimate goal for professionals. These clients not only provide fulfilling work but also possess an understanding of the value you bring to their financial affairs. Working with them can generate substantial revenue, enabling you to build both your firm and the life you’ve always dreamed of.

However, distinguishing between genuine A-listers and those merely pretending to be can be quite challenging. It may require enduring significant hardships before realising that a new client does not meet your expectations.

This isn’t just wishful thinking; poor client selection can result in chasing after unpaid invoices and wasting valuable time seeking information. Such client-related issues can greatly impact your firm’s income.

Therefore, it is crucial to carefully choose your clients to ensure a successful and prosperous professional journey.

Moreover, you will have to face the uncomfortable situation of informing a client that you no longer wish to work with them. While this may not be a significant issue for some, for others, it can be quite socially distressing.

To avoid such circumstances, we recommend implementing a system for vetting new clients. Just as you would carefully evaluate potential team members, external partners, or outsourcing companies, clients should receive the same level of scrutiny. However, very few firms consider this screening process when it comes to clients.

Let us explore some key points that you should consider when determining whether or not to engage with a new client.

1. Where do they come from?

Receiving referrals from your esteemed A-list clients provides a valuable advantage. Birds of a feather flock together, so it is highly likely that A-listers will refer other potential A-list clients more frequently than any other source.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, exercise caution when considering potential clients referred by your existing D-list clientele. Given your intent to distance yourself from D-listers, it is unlikely that you will come across many worthwhile clients within this pool.

Somewhere in between lie the potential clients who discover your services through your website, seminars, or other marketing efforts. Upon initial contact, these individuals can fall into both the A-lister and D-lister categories simultaneously until further investigation is conducted.

2. Do they understand the value that you offer?

If the prospect continuously emphasises price, it is likely that they may not be an ideal match for your services. Their fixation on cost indicates a lack of understanding regarding the value you provide in assisting them with their business or personal finances. It’s important to note that your role is not that of a compliance firm solely focused on processing transactions. Sadly, individuals with this mindset often fail to recognize the significant benefits you bring to their financial well-being and will always perceive any transaction as exploitation.

3. Do they have a clear idea about your process?

It is essential to ensure that the person who referred you has properly explained your workflow. If not, take the time to explain it yourself. The purpose of this explanation is to emphasise that due dates are non-negotiable – you require the client’s complete information by a specific date in order to effectively add value to their financial situation.

Clients who consistently disrupt your schedule can result in financial loss for your business. Additionally, failure to promptly provide necessary information may lead to penalties for the client. Therefore, it is crucial that they fully comprehend the importance of meeting deadlines before you decide to work with them.

Furthermore, clarify that scheduled face-to-face meetings will be held with each client on either a yearly or monthly basis. These meetings serve as an opportunity for clients to have a clear understanding of their financial figures and also enable them to share any new ideas or plans they may have, such as raising prices, expanding operations, or increasing marketing efforts.

In addition, these regularly scheduled meetings reaffirm your commitment to working diligently on behalf of your clients and continuously striving for improvement in their financial outcomes. This consistent effort and dedication often lead to satisfied clients referring new business opportunities your way

4. Packaging

You’re going to want to set a minimum level of work that you’re willing to do for a client. If they want less than that then you’d be happy to recommend them to another firm. Sure, this other firm doesn’t have your own firm’s track record, but they’ll get the job done.

This is where service packages can be your friend. You can set a package with the minimum number of services that you offer to a particular kind of client (say a new business owner package, or a personal finances package). If they’re not interested, or they want you to break up the package, then you have an indication that you’re not going to be making enough money off of them to make it worth your time.

Packages also work as automatic up-sellers. Yes, the starter package looks good, but the next package up the tier has Services D, E, and F for only a little bit more and they sure seem like the kinds of services that would really help a new business owner get some extra bang from their business bucks.

If services D, E, and F don’t put much more of a strain on your workload, then you’re now bringing in extra income from the client with minimal extra work on your end.

5. Do you like them?

Determine your tolerance level for difficult clients. Every situation is different, so it’s important to understand when a client’s behaviour becomes too unpleasant for you to handle, even if they meet all other criteria. The objective of this system is to shift your mindset. Rather than being interviewed by clients, you should view yourself as the one conducting interviews to assess whether potential clients are deserving of the value you offer to your esteemed existing clientele.

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