Patience is a virtue, or so they say.
And consistency is key.
We talk a lot about how steady, consistent social media and business blogging efforts are necessary in order to be effective online. But another aspect to consistency in your business is how it relates toÂ sales and long term or repeat customers.
I am not a patient person by nature, but over the years that we’ve had this business, we’ve seen time and again how consistency in social media and blogging, plus ongoing customer service and email support, has paid off.
I feel like the trickiest part of this is being patient long enough to let enough time pass in order to see those long term gains.
Because that’s the thing…a potential customer reaching out to you today to inquire about your products or services might not be ready to act on the information they received from youÂ for 6 months or a year down the road.
This is why it’s so important to never dismiss a customer lead.
We’ve been able to track 1 client who originally contacted us for a free media kit over 3 years ago, and she became our client almost a year ago when she began scheduling time with us for training and consulting calls.
We have a client who was referred to us by another client, and spent a year emailing us a variety of questions before she was at a point in her business (and had room in her budget) to hire us for ongoing consulting and training.
We have a couple clients who have a seasonal aspect to their businesses, so they need to temporarily stop our social media management work during their slow times, but then come back to us once their season resumes.
We have a client who hired us at his previous employer, switched companies, and then contacted us again once he felt settledÂ at his new job.
Businesses of all sizes can have periods where money and budgets are tight. We find this is more likely to happen in the small business world in which we operate, so that’s why we are both understanding and patient when clients tell us they need to cut costs byÂ either cutting back on or stopping our ongoing work for them.
That’s not to say that you (or we) will win ’em all, or that there aren’tÂ clients who leave indefinitely. But know that consistently delivering on all areas of your business keeps you top of mind for current, past, and potential new customers, and that the work you are doing today might not pay off until several months from now.