How to build lasting relationships with your clients

Long-standing clients form the backbone of a strong, well-established business. And for anyone wanting to build real value in their practice, client retention is crucial.

I have been fortunate in my own business when it comes to client retention and service many clients who have been with Bookwiz for over 15 years. 

In this article I am going to provide my top tips on how to build lasting relationships with your clients.

Why is it so important to keep existing clients?

Winning new clients is costly! It’s a much cheaper to invest in an existing quality client than to try to win a new one.

There are some real advantages to investing some time and effort into existing clients. You already know these customers, they have a better chance of increasing their recurring spend with you and recommend your business to others if you:

  • Solve their problems
  • Meet their needs
  • Exceed their expectations

Your existing clients already have personal experiences with you, so when it comes time to increase your fees, or offer some additional services, they will be more inclined to accept if you have built trust and shown real value.



  • Clear proposals and engagement letters are a must! They help ensure clients know what they can expect from your business.
  • Check in regularly – especially if the client is assigned to another team member.
  • Ensure emails are clear! Where possible, set up an email template for regular communications (automate it if you can!)


  • Simple gestures such as a card or chocolates on their 12 month anniversary, birthday or Xmas
  • Feature them in any newsletters you may run – there is nothing better than supporting your own clients


  • Create and document clear customer service policies for your practice. Be clear on everything, some examples could be: phone manner, dealing with with errors or complaints, tone of emails, how to liaise with clients staff/customers/suppliers.
  • Use these policies as part of your employee training
  • Ensure your Team are adhering to these policies


Regard a complaint from a client as an opportunity rather than a frustration. If they complain, it means they care enough to tell you. It’s the way you deal with it that will make the difference in the long run. The below steps should be taken if there is an unhappy client:

  • Listen carefully so you can fully understand the issue
  • Own that mistakes if you are at fault , and apologise. The word SORRY goes a long way!
  • Make amends quickly!
  • Put steps in place to ensure that mistake does not happen again
  • Follow up with them after resolved to ensure they are happy


There are a number of ways to find out if your clients are happy, and if your Team are delivering services in the required manner.

  • Ask your clients! Ask for feedback. Most are happy to provide.
  • Surveys – sometimes clients are uncomfortable to answer face to face – using your website or something like Mailchimp, you can send an online survey to them
  • Ask your team, they are the face of your business and probably have some great ideas on how to improve.

Martine Hoosen

Bookwiz Academy


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