Good Client vs Bad Client...
The world of Digital and Social media for an entrepreneur can be a world of blooming buds or a horror scene from a Hitchcock film and there are a lot of variables that play a role in this process. One of the areas that often is an area of struggle is, drum roll, ......CLIENTS!!! Since entering the wonderful world of entrepreneurship in 2011 I have noticed that good clients are like looking for the best choice of food on a vacation.
Let's look at the difference between a good client versus a bad client and when to just fire a client altogether, like any good relationship you will ever have in life it is built on trust and good communication. Good clients know how to communicate their vision, budget, goals, and their desired outcome. Good clients understand that time is money and they have good time management skills, they also know how to cooperate without going overboard with revisions.
Good clients are passionate about their business, brand, product or service and are willing to invest in deliverables that increase their opportunities to gain long-term returns and farther their reach. The bottom line is, good clients have a budget and value the outcome more than the price tag. They understand that good marketing is an asset and not an expense. Good clients speak a different language, their language is more focused on results than cost.
Over the years I have worked with good clients and bad clients and let's just say I would rather work with good clients rather than bad clients. The thing that you have to remember is that every client is not your ideal client and you might not be the right service provider for every client. In any situation, it has to be a mutual understanding in place.
One of the signs to be cautious of when dealing with a bad client is they will complain about price before they even attempt to comprehend the value of the service that they are interested in. Bad clients don't care about value, trust, relationship, or even the process, bad clients want everything cheap, fast and professional. It's almost like going to fast food spot with cheap prices and expecting 5-star service, it's not going to happen as the old saying goes "You get what you pay for" and that's a fact. Another sign of a bad client is that they will want to pay you in increments instead of a deposit or full payment, it depends solely on the cost of the services.
In 2017, I had a client that I quickly fired because they complained about a $50 dollar deposit, needless to say, they never got the project complete and lost the money due to the time I spent on the project. Bad clients don't respect your time they call you at weird times at night asking about the time frame of the project with poor behavior or even threatening language about the entire process. They will also compare your prices to other people who work a 9-5 job and frequently dabble in the same area, most of the time they don't even have the same skills or professionalism that you offer.
Another area to be mindful of is bad clients don't understand the Digital or Social media world and will ignore any recommendation that will help them grow and expand. One of the key questions that you should always ask yourself before firing a client is...Can I maintain my everyday business needs without this client and is it worth the hassle? If you have paying customers lining up for your services give that bad client the pink slip you will save yourself in the long run.
No one wants an unnecessary headache from dealing with clients that don't understand business and who focus entirely on making fast money. One last thought any time a potential client approaches you about doing work for a charity situation my best advance is run, you will be more tied up with frustration than anything. When doing charity, pro bono, or even collaboration work make sure it is on your terms and always understand the pros and cons of the situation before you get involved...Good clients understand the relationship and bad clients want fast service and cheap prices.