I have been fortunate enough to travel a lot this summer to visit clients that I haven’t had the privilege of yet meeting face to face. I fully believe this is a necessary step to help your relationship grow.
1. You get a better understanding of how they communicate. Do they have a short attention span? If so, sending them a lengthy email is probably not the way to go. You might be better off with a call or brief summary that is straight to the point.
2. It makes them and you feel human again. It’s much easier to communicate via email when you can picture who you are talking to instead of a mysterious person behind a keyboard somewhere. It will also help both you and them to feel more comfortable reaching out.
3. Trust is established. Similar to the point made above, it’s a lot easier to trust someone that you have actually met and looked straight in the eye.
4. You learn about their sense of humor and what their interests are outside of work. A client relationship should be fun! It gives you a better glimpse at their personality, what they enjoy and what you have in common.
5. It helps you determine where their passion lies. There is an unmistakable moment when you see someone’s eyes light up when they talk about something that they care deeply about. Speaking to a client in person will help you identify these points of interest and make it easier to understand what they want to accomplish.
6. Visiting a client gives you the opportunity to learn about their community, their work space and the team that they spend all day working with. It is a lot easier to make recommendations when you know exactly where they are working and who they are working with. This is especially true if the client is located in a different part of the country. Taking that extra step is necessary in understanding their area and the customers they draw in.
7. It proves to your client that they are a priority. Your client is very important to you, so make sure they know that! Taking time out of your week to go visit them will make them feel appreciated.