When you work with the "perfect" client, life is wonderful and business is simple. The perfect client pays on time, is thrilled with your work, tells all of her friends about you, and makes doing what you do easy. If you could replicate the perfect client, then business wouldn't be difficult, right?
Let's discuss how to locate more perfect clients so you can increase your income and decrease your not-so-perfect client drama.
First, define your "perfect" client. Write a list of specific items that makes (or you think would make) a client great. Is the client male or female? Does he have children? Is she married? In what area does the client live? How much money does the client make? What type of car does he drive? What type of personality does the client have? What age range does the client fall? What does she do for a living?
Once you have a list of criteria that make up your perfect client, find out what the client does in his spare time. What are her hobbies? Does she do charity work? Is he involved with coaching sports for his children? Is she a member of any professional organizations or chambers of commerce? Does your client like to entertain guests in her home? Where does your client shop?
Knowing what your client does with his time will help you know where to market and where to find more perfect clients. For example, if your perfect client is involved with a local charity, you may also want to become a part of that organization to meet other potential clients. If your perfect client is a member of a professional organization, you may be able to write an article or speak for that organization. If your perfect client shops at a particular store, you could make arrangements with the store owner or manager to have flyers about your company at the check out counter or you could do a joint promotional mailing together. The possibilities are endless - if you understand specifics about your perfect target client.
Also, ask the clients who already fall into the "perfect" category, for referrals. My personal favorite way to ask for referrals is to say, "You are my perfect type of client to work with and I'd love to work with more people like you. If you have friends and family who need similar projects, please have them call me. You've been such a joy to work with." Then give them a business card or a flyer or other piece of marketing material they could pass on to their perfect friends. You can also include this information in a thank you note or follow up letter.
The more perfect clients you work with the more opportunities you will find and have to work with other perfect clients. Keep in mind, if you have clients who have been less-than-perfect, they are more likely to refer you to other less-than-perfect people. So, do everything you can to surround yourself with perfect ones, and your business will be wonderful!