You know what really pumps me up?
… besides the newest season of The Crown.
Spreadsheets. Yes, I know this is quite nerdy. But I have a feeling I’m not alone. (high five if you feel me on this!)
Before I started Spruce Rd., I remember brainstorming + planning away in my “freelance finances” spreadsheet. You see, at the time I was working full-time at a studio, and desperate to start my own design business. The kicker was that I didn’t have any clients — as my contract banned any outside freelance work.
So, I took to Excel (naturally) after work to plan my dreams and present my case to my husband. “If I get X amount of clients per month, it will equal my current salary!”
But there’s some issues with this math. Something I didn’t really anticipate at the time.
If I base my income goals on booking new clients each month, there will be a time when that becomes exhausting. Constantly marketing my services, pitching my packages to potential clients, and trying to climb over the barrier and earn trust from a complete stranger. Time equals money as they say, and I was spending it promoting my business.
Yes, it’s possible — it’s how Spruce Rd. functioned for about two years. But in 2017 I changed things up a bit.
Instead of targeting new clients, I focused on courting my existing clients well. The ones that I had a stellar experience with, and truly was sad when our initial project wrapped up.
It is way easier to sell our services to existing clients — since they already trust us — than to someone we don’t have a relationship with.
Let that soak in.
I feel like this could be a turning point for many of us.
I lost clients.
Can I admit something? I’ve lost client work the past few years due to my priority on pitching one packaged service.
I used to believe that having one package for services would suit my business best. No fuss pulling together custom proposals and it’s clear to my potential clients what I offer.
But you know what? I was wrong.
While I do think this is a successful business model, I learned that it didn’t necessarily align with the vision behind Spruce Rd. We love to immerse ourselves in our client’s brands, and provide a holistic experience. I was always open to extending the brand to future collateral and continue the relationship with our clients, but my process didn’t encourage this enough to my clients.
In fact, last year I reached out to a handful of past clients to follow up and see how we could support them for the year. This worked, and we took on additional client work (which I loved!). But I got one response that made me wake up.
“I didn’t know you guys offered additional design work, I already hired another designer! :(“
Oops. Actually, a big oops since that client grew like crazy and pays for continuous design support. Big lesson learned!
Which is why all of last year I fine tuned my process to encourage repeat clients. And you know what? IT WORKED!
I’ve got all the details for you on how I increased profits significantly through encouraging repeat client work. Including two resources:
A PDF of the 2017 + 2016 Spruce Rd. clients. (includes how our clients found us & the percent increase from repeat client work).
A video where I walk through my 2017 clients in detail, share the results of my marketing and how I encouraged repeat client work.
It’s yours, friend! Just pop in your email address below, and the video + PDF will zip to your inbox shortly :).
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