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3 Simple Steps For A Brilliant Client Onboarding Process
This week's 5 Minute Marketing Tip is about “client onboarding”: the critical first communications and interactions with new clients, customers or email subscribers that set the tone and expectation for your relationship with them.
In the video I share 3 simple steps for every onboarding process that will get your relationship off on the right foot so that you turn more email subscribers into buyers, get more enthusiastic clients, retain them longer, and get more referrals.
This is something you can implement with just a little bit of thought, preparation and attention to detail.
Hi, it's Ian.
You know, the way you communicate and interact with your new clients in those first few days after you've brought them on board can have a huge impact on how long they stay with you as a client, how enthusiastic they are, and how often they'll refer you to other people.
How you communicate with your new customers who've bought a product or joined your membership site in those first few days after they become a customer can have a huge impact in how long they stay as a member and what other products they buy from you.
How you interact and communicate with a new email subscriber, in those first few days after they sign up to your list, can have a huge impact on whether they open and read your emails, how long they stay as a subscriber, and whether they ever buy anything from you.
Those first few days of communication, that onboarding process, is absolutely vital, and in today's video I'm going to show you how to have a brilliant onboarding process in three simple steps. I'll see you in a second…
Hi, welcome back.
A couple of years ago, I signed up for a free trial of a little software tool called Link Prospector from Citation Labs. It's a little thing I got a free credit for, signed in, ran a report from it, worked really well, thought nothing more of it. Then the next day I got an email from the CEO of Citation Labs saying, “Hey thanks for taking the trial. Here' a couple of extra free credits for you to try it out a bit more. Would really appreciate some feedback.” So I tried it a bit more, emailed them with some feedback, and within a couple of hours, he'd emailed back thanking me for the feedback, and giving me a dozen or so more free credits.
Shortly after that I wrote a review of the product on my blog. Now I'd always thought it was really good. The review obviously was really good, but the chances are I wouldn't have been motivated to write that review on the blog, I'd have just kind of kept the good news to myself had they not given me the free credits, and had I not had that interaction with the CEO. It worked really well for them, because I know a number of people signed up for the tool as a result of my review. It was all thanks to their onboarding process, and you can get the same effect, because there are really just three simple steps.
The first step is to deliver what you've promised. In the case of Citation Labs, they promised a free trial, with a free credit. As soon as I got it I was able to log in and use it. If you offer, for people to sign up to your email list, a free report, or a free video, make sure people can get it really easily, or they know how to get it as soon as they've signed up. It's surprising how often I'll sign up for someone else's emails and I won't see any sight of the thing I signed up for, the free report, or the videos, or whatever it is.
Now, if you offer people a product after they sign up like I do, don't just jump straight into the sales video for the product until you've shown people how they can get the free thing they signed up for, even if they don't get it immediately. Start the video by saying, “Thanks for signing up. Your free report will be with you in ten to fifteen minutes by email.” Once you've done that, they can relax. They know they've got what they were looking for and they can watch your video.
When people sign up for your membership site, make sure they can get access to it easily. Send them an email with a link to log in, ideally log them straight in so they've got it immediately. They can start using it.
If you sign up people for one to one coaching and they've paid via direct bank transfer, give them a phone call, drop them an email, just to say that the payment's gone through, so they know they've got what they paid for. Because you don't want the relationship to start off with them thinking, “Has the money gone through? Are they going to send me what I paid for? I'm not really sure this is working.” Give them what you promised.
The second step is to build a personal connection. Now the CEO of Citation Labs did that by sending me an email. I'm sure the first one was automated, but the second one was personal. You can go even further than that. When people sign up for Momentum Club, what I do is I make them a personal welcome video. I just use my iPhone, record a little five minute video with me welcoming them as a member, giving them some tips on how to use the site and get the most from it, and then I shoot that over to them via email. I used to send them a letter through the post with a personal signature. Either of those works really well and it makes an impression because most people just don't do that when you buy something from them.
If it's a personal coaching client, or a legal client, or whatever, do something to build that connection. Give them a personal phone call. Ask them how they'd like to get started, what would make this a brilliant relationship?
Even if they're just email subscribers, make sure there's a photo of you in one of the original emails, or send them to a tip that you give on video, so again it begins to build a personal relationship with them.
The third thing is to deliver unexpected value. With Citation Labs, I wasn't expecting the initial couple of extra credits from them and I certainly wasn't expecting the extra dozen or so just for sending them some feedback.
Make sure you do something similar. For example, when people sign up for emails from you, if you send them a free report, then a couple of days later, send them something else extra for free. When I was using the Five Simple Marketing Tweaks free report, a couple of days later I used to send a link with a video called Tweak Six, which was an expansion of one of the tips in the report, showing them how to get more referrals using that particular tip.
If people sign up for coaching from you, or another one to one service, send them a copy of your book through the post, if you've got a book, or a CD with useful information. Or a workbook with some really useful stuff, a USB stick with useful information for them. If you don't have anything like information you can send them, you can get them a monogrammed notebook where they can take notes from all your sessions together, or a pen, or something like that. The cost of that is really small in comparison with how much they're paying you for for that one to one service, but it can make a really big impact. It shows you care, and you're interested in them.
Once you've got that initial reaction, that initial enthusiasm, that initial relationship off to a great start, it kind of sets the tone and usually it gets better and better and better. Of course you've got to keep delivering value, you got to keep building the relationship, but getting it right initially gets you going on a good foot. If you get it wrong initially, it's kind of they're look for disengaging, to be honest. It's very difficult to recover if you don't get it right initially.
Now there are loads of ways you can do this. It just takes five to ten minutes brainstorming, thinking when people first sign up for emails, for a product, or for personal service, “What can I do to make sure I'm really delivering what I promised? What can I do to make a personal connection? What can I do to deliver unexpected value?”
It shouldn't take you very long. The key thing is, make sure you do it. Make sure you deliver it to people systematically, so they get that value, they build that relationship, the onboarding process works brilliantly, you get great referrals, they want to stay on as a client, they buy more for you. Works really well, make sure you do it.
See you next time :)