No, we at Rebel don't believe the world is coming to an end, but it did get us talking about our client relationships. Nothing worse than being told it's over and 12 out of 12 times (see what we did there?) it's usually something that could have been avoided. Full disclosure, we've been guilty of a few of these.....
Make a racist (or otherwise insensitive) Twitter post on your client's behalf.
Don't return a call for more than 24 hours.
- There is no 9-5. Clients expect responses in the immediate. Can't call back? Then send an email, text, tweet, an intern singing telegram.
Ignore your client's objectives. Focus instead on what you do best, whether it helps their business or not.
- The customer is always right. They may not know the best way to execute it, but that's your job.
Sell your client something he doesn't really want. After all, you're a great salesperson.
Tell your client her stupid idea is, well, stupid.
- Trust me there have been times we have wanted to do this. Many times. Instead we found a way to change the way a client thinks with0ut saying "Honestly I have no idea how you made it this far in life"
Demand to get paid upfront, even though your client pays net-30.
- Tacky. Also, If you need to get paid upfront you need someone else managing your company's books.We heard long ago that big companies work with big agencies in part because they don't get hassled about money. That's what clients want — no hassles.
Know less about your client's target consumer than she does.
- Do your homework.
Be late on deliverables.
- If you are 5 minutes early, you're on time. If you're on time, you're late. If you're late, then you've got a lot of explaining to do, and in the words of a former client, "Don't apologize. Don't explain why. Just do it right."
Be great in the boardroom when you're presenting, but useless out in the field where it really counts.
- You never want to be known as all flash and no substance. That kind of rep travels fast and this world is pretty small. We don't want to name names but we could.
Get caught trying to sound like an expert (or maybe a "digital native") in areas where you don't really know what you're talking about.
- Most likely there will be a question you can't answer or worse you will come across someone who is an expert and then it's just all kinds of awkward.
Get drunk at an event you're producing for a client.
- A lot of our events involve alcohol. A lot of our clients are booze or booze related. Regardless we have a no drinking policy. It wasn't always like this, but there was an incident. It became a she said she said type of thing. Eventually there will always be an incident.
Take poor care of your staff and/or vendors, and hope it never gets back to your client.
- Your entire reputation can be ruined by one small bad review. The way you treat your staff and vendors is a huge reflection on how you run your business. Clients have known to end a relationship when they see internal conflict. Don't pay your vendors on time? It's a small fraternity and it will eventually cost you business.