Christmas can be a tough time for freelancers. Not only do you have to make it through the festive season on the bare minimum because the rest of your “disposable income” has been divided between the bath bombs for Aunt Lois and biscuits for the in-laws, but you have the added pressure of possibly losing your carefully built and maintained client base.
Here’s just a few ways that you can keep your clients from leaving you over the festive period.
Keep in touch
Don’t let your clients forget about you while they’re dreaming of sugarplums and decorating the tree.
Keeping in touch just before you stop working for Christmas and when you return after New Year is essential for reminding clients that you’re human too, and will be celebrating the holidays just as they will.
A simple email to wish them a happy Christmas, or a welcome back to work message can remind them of your work and keep them using your services for another year.
State your working hours
If you’ve got ongoing projects throughout the holidays (who doesn’t), clients may still expect you to keep in touch and answer any of their queries. If you don’t, you could be in for a nasty New Year email!
To avoid any unpleasantries, make sure you send an email to all your clients stating the hours that you’ll be working and accessing your emails before you stop replying. You should also clearly state the last day you’ll be checking emails before signing off to disappear into a sea or wrapping paper and ribbon.
Acknowledge project progress
Creating an end of year report to send to your long term clients could be just the snazzy form they need to keep them on side into the New Year.
Whether it’s a progress report, a look back on how your past projects have performed for them, or just a general look at the impact your work has had for your client, any lines that go up will be sure to put your clients in a good mood just before you disappear for a week or so.
Keep ’em sweet
If all else fails, a new year discount certainly won’t. Sweeten up your existing clients and offer a little something extra to new clients by having short term discounts.
It might seem counter-productive if your New Year’s resolution is to make more money from freelancing, but it’s always important to use your sales skills to the best of your ability, and offer discounts when you can.
Tip: Make sure you have an expiry date on your discount, and state this in communications with clients – they won’t want to be caught short and you won’t want an angry customer to deal with!
What are your tips for making sure your clients don’t run off with another freelancer? Leave your comments in the section below!