Does your contract dictate your client experience?
A contract is nothing more than legal protection that lays out the obligations of your company to your client and vice versa. In the event there is a discrepancy about the project, you can both revert back to the contract to clear up any misunderstandings.
Most companies bury the project milestones, timelines, and expectations into their contract which makes it hard for the client to find them. And typically the client and company do not go through the contract together to explain every little detail.
So how do you explain or show your client what their experience will be like throughout the project?
Brochures and demos only show your client what the end result experience will be like. What about during the project? When do they need to make payments, select colors, and model numbers, be at the job site, etc?
Since 65% of adults are visual learners, a Client Experience Map identifying the project milestones with details is the best way to show your client what to expect while working with your company on their project.
When you show your client what their experience will be like, it sets all of the expectations for the project, provides clarity on what services and products are offered, identifies timelines and deliverables, and also reduces the likelihood of misunderstands in the future.
What else does it do?
Strengthens communication – You can explain how the communication will take place throughout the project.
Transparency – They get to see the “behind the scenes” of what you will be doing when they aren’t involved which is a good thing.
Builds Trust – By explaining to them all of the details of what will be going on with the project, they see that you have nothing to hide.
Reinforces the experience – At this point, you’ve already sold them on your company so they have buy-in. This will reinforce that they made the right decision.
Set a standard – This gives them a clear idea of what to expect from your company and the project.
More Sales – There is a good chance that after you cover all of these items, they may decide to spend more with you either at that moment, later on in the project, or in the future.
So how do you build a Client Experience Map?
Sit down with your team and define your project milestones. These become the main parts of your Visual Timeline and then within those milestones, identify the details that they need to be aware of. Below are a few ideas.
- Document coordination
- Invoicing schedule
- Product selection schedule
- Construction schedule
- Project closeout
- Client training
- Project handoff and service
- A well-defined Client Experience Map is as important to the client as it is to your business.
When you sit down with your team and build one, you are raising the bar on customer satisfaction, reducing the potential for conflicts on projects, increasing efficiency, and most importantly, creating better alignment of your business goals with client needs and expectations.