12 Things You Must Never Say To Any Local Or International Client
What to say to prospects or existing clients could either improve or diminish your relationship with them. It could turn them into one of your best loyalists or into one of your company’s worst critics.
Treating and speaking to your clients the right way is key to building great relationships with them, and ultimately growing a successful business.
If you’re running a local or international business and want to ensure you never knowingly or unknowingly pushing your clients away with your words, here are 12 things to never say to a client or prospect:
1). Quoting A Price Range:
Always give a specific timeline for a deadline or price for the product or service you’re offering because if you give a price range of say anywhere from $1,500 to $3,000, the buyer will hear the lower price and you will hear the higher price, and the existence of the prospective lower price will cause the buyer to want to get the best service at that price, which would cause problems with the deal moving forward.
It’s always better to give a fixed price and justify it.
2). Mangling A Client’s Personal Or Company Name:
People don’t like their names misspelt or pronounced poorly. They want it done right as it shows you’ve taken out time to learn about them and are willing to accord them with the right respect they believe they’re due.
When you mangle their names or their company names, they take it as you do not care enough to learn the proper spelling and/or pronunciation, and as result, would probably not care enough to attend to their needs.
When you meet people newly, make it a habit to write down their names or to politely ask them how best to pronounce it, so that you don’t unknowingly disrespect them.
3). Showing Or Sounding Desperate:
People want to only do business with other stable businesses, as it means they could potentially have a long term relationship without the need to go in search of a new partner all over again. But one red flag that can mar the prospect of getting and securing long-term clients is to show or sound desperate.
Desperacy shows that all is not well, and while you might think that sounding desperate will make your clients believe you’ll do everything to make them happy, they’d understand it as they’re your life saver and would either walk away from you or try to exploit you.
4). Bad-Mouthing their Current Vendor:
Never badmouth a competitor who is currently serving your client or prospect irrespective of what you know about them because it would not just come off as you being a person of poor character to the client, but it would mean you’re saying the client is a poor decision-maker for them to still be in business with those people.
There’s always a reason a client chooses to do and remain in business with a company, and as such, you must ensure that you treat every knowledge of their existing vendor with respect, while you show the client how much more value they get by working instead with you.
5). Comparing Your Client To Someone Else:
No one likes to be compared with anyone else. We all want to know that we have the potential to be great in and of ourselves, and so, will not want the emotional distress of experiencing a direct comparison with another person.
This also applies when doing business with a client. They don’t want to hear they’re like any other client for whatever reason. Even worse, they don’t want to hear they’re like a terrible client you once had.
Treat your clients with respect and never compare them to anyone. Comparison is a thief of joy, and once you start to do that with your clients, you start to set yourself up for failure.
6). Telling Them “You’re Not Listening To Me”:
Never tell your client that they’re not listening, because they expect to be listened to and not the other way round. Active listening is one of your most powerful weapons in negotiations, and the more you show your clients that you listen to them and care about their thoughts, but creatively introduce your own solution, the more they’d be happy to want to do business with you.
If you impose and say your clients must listen to you, you’d be coming off as disrespectful and they wouldn’t want anything to do with you.
7). Telling Them Not To Feel The Way They Feel:
People react to different situations in different ways because of how they perceive what is being done, their level of emotional intelligence, and much more.
When a customer is overreacting to a situation don’t tell them how to feel or tell them “that’s not so bad”, instead ask them what they need to make them feel better. By doing this, you show them that you care about their emotions and are willing to do what you can to make them happy.
8). Cursing In Front Of The Client:
When talking with your clients, either stay professional or stay friendly, but never use curse words whether at them or at someone else.
Cursing in front of your clients shows unprofessionalism and the type of moral standards you have. Stay friendly with them and use great words throughout to make them feel like family.
9). Outrightly Saying “That’s Against Our Policy”:
When customers lodge a complaint or request, they want to see you try to make an effort to help them. If you instead tell them outrightly that it’s against your policy without trying, they’d take it as you do not care about their needs or time, and would take their business elsewhere to someone who does.
Always try to make an effort even when you know it’s impossible so that your clients can know you’d always try to help them even when the situation is unworkable.
10). Asking The Client “Are You Sure?”:
To ask a client “are you sure” is to question their intelligence and that’s a huge turnoff.
Yes, customers can be wrong and are usually wrong most of the time, but pointing it out to them is pretty much the same as saying they’re foolish and are making a fuss over nothing, and that would only drive them out the door.
If a customer is saying something you know is wrong, simply ask them to walk you through it and introduce your solution slowly into the journey. This way, they’d think the solution is theirs and would be happy to work with you.
11). Telling Them You Learnt It In School Or A Training, So You Are Right:
Getting a college degree or a specialised advanced degree does not qualify you as an expert. Even worse, saying you learnt something in school and so, should be listened to will only make you come off as a jerk to anyone you’re addressing.
If you’re trying to influence a customer, you must actively listen to their needs, label their concerns, summarise the entire thing said, and then show how your experience can help them achieve it easily.
If instead, you make them feel unintelligent because of your qualifications, they’d simply walk away to the next person.
12). Asking “What Does Your Company Do?”:
Before having a meeting with a client, you must do well to carry out research on them and to clearly know what they do and what their vision is. Asking them what they do in a meeting shows that you did not do your due diligence on them, and as such, do not actually care about them.
People want to only do business with others who care about them, understand them, their goals, visions, pains, and as a result, would be willing to do everything they possibly can to help them achieve their dreams. If the client feels otherwise, especially by you still asking them what they do, they’d be gone to someone else who cares to know.
See Also: How Much Should You Charge Your Clients?
What are your thoughts on these 12 things to never say to a client? Let me know by leaving a comment below.
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