[thelist] losing irritated / arrogant customers off my books

Bob Meetin ontheroad at frii.com
Mon Aug 6 19:21:12 CDT 2007

Yes - and it does work.

Maybe not 1000's but certainly a bunch.  I've got some clients who are 
wonderful people but they are horribly distracted and so they don't even 
do the simple things, their part in updating content uploading images, 
updating specials, etc.  Their sites go lame, quietly off into the 
sunset.  I can explain (a.k.a. splanning) until I'm blue in the face 
what needs to happen.  Blah blah.... I have one that I've now been 
waiting for 8+ months to obtain her networksolutions passwords so that I 
can switch hosting companies.  If it's not important to the client.....

When we (at least me) first get into the business we're ecstatic to get 
any client, to get a testimonial, to see a link back to our site, to see 
our name in lights.  Betwixt that and not understanding the importance 
of business processes, agreements, setting expectations, we fall victim 
to ourselves. 

We learn, we learn how to set expectations better, including what to 
expect with hosting, networking, timeframe, costs, much more.  The big 
thing in my mind is that we learn how to interview clients for their 
habits.  We learn to spot those who will be difficult to satisfy.  We 
also learn to identify those who will be dedicated, thus leading to 
quality referrals.

Part of the battle is setting the expectations of world-class, 
enterprise-level, vs small business, mom-pop, shops (many of mine).  If 
you are paying rackforce prices then you should expect rackforce 
service.  We as developers cannot guarantee uptime; we can only explain 
as best we can the differences and suggest who 'might' offer a fair 
price and good service for the buck.  Listen to the needs and set 


Joel D Canfield wrote:
>> It seems that to get to the good clients you have to wade through
>> 1000's of utter failures along the way, failures of both myself and
>> failures of them
> Change your process.
> Different marketing. Different client interaction. Something.
> If you feel like a salmon swimming upstream just trying to make a
> living, *you* need to change something about your business methods.
> (I've been going through the same process the past nine months, so this
> is me preaching to me, as much to anyone else.)
> If you're a one-man shop (in our case, we're a one-man, one-woman shop,
> 'cause Best Beloved works with me nearly fulltime now) your primary job
> is marketing. Not coding, not accounting, not customer relations, but
> marketing.
> Marketing is not just how you get new business, it's how you get *the
> right* new business. Read every book Seth Godin has written and really
> learn how to sell the right services to the right clients.
> It *has* to work, or I'm in big trouble . . . 
> joel

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