Friday, 30 September 2011

Maintaining and Sustaining Relationships

Happy Happy Friday everyone!! Sorry for the lack of posts but my full time job is of course taking up more of my time so my posts won't be as frequent ;)

As an event planner, you will be communicating and developing relationships with a lot of different people but mainly your customers, suppliers and vendors. Another one of the many keys to being a successful event planner is to maintain and sustain relationships with these important individuals. Having ongoing relationship management will show that you care about maintaining the relationship with the individual and you appreciate their business/doing business with them.

Here are some tips on nurturing your event relationships:

Ongoing Communication. It's important to have ongoing communication with your customers and contacts even after you have finished doing business with them. This will show that you care and are dedicated to growing the relationship. If your customers were impressed with an event you executed for them, they will probably go back to you to organize future events. They also will have no problem in referring you to others. Word of mouth is very powerful. There are various ways to have ongoing communication - regular phone calls and emails, newsletters, social media.

Referral System. Some people may not agree with this but a great way to thank your customers and suppliers for referring business to you is to provide them with a future discount on your services or a gift of some sort. Providing this will show them that you appreciate the referral and value them. Another great way to show your appreciation is to refer customers to your preferred vendors/suppliers. They will be grateful for this and will most likely refer business to you in return.

Customer Relationship Management Software (CRM). A great way to keep track of all your customers, suppliers and vendors is to have a CRM in place. Most CRM's will allow you put in all their contact details, the business that you have done with them and any related notes. Having this system in place will allow you to know who needs following up and who has had recent communication. As an event planner you will be communicating with a number of different people and it's really important to keep track of all your relationships so they can be maintained.

Appreciation Events. Organizing and hosting an appreciation event for customers and suppliers will  show you that you care and value them. This can be as simple as providing a few drinks and appies at a restaurant or you could make it more elaborate. Not only is it a great way show your appreciation for their business but it's also a great opportunity for them to network and develop other business opportunities.

When it comes down to it your customers, suppliers and vendors are the ones that allow you to continue to be a successful event planner. Maintaining and sustaining your relationships should be an important daily task and should never be overlooked.

Hope these tips have helped you! Happy weekend everyone :)

-Shira :)

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