Public Relations is an industry where gaining coverage for your clients is the main focus but as we have discussed before, sometimes convincing an editor to write a story can take some time.
Many companies hire PR firms but not all are aware of what publicists do all day long and in turn if there is a lull in gaining coverage (which can be normal from time to time), clients may become unhappy. The best thing to do in this case is to make sure they know that you are on their team.
Here are a few key tips for dealing with unhappy clients:
Think before reacting: Listen to you client, it is human nature to react but make sure you listen full to you client’s complaints before responding. Make sure you come up with and methodical answer touching on all of their points that do not sound like you are disagreeing with them but rather finding solutions.
Be honest and evaluate their expectations: If your client is asking for something that is absolutely unattainable, make sure to be honest with them but be sure to have other alternatives to share with them.
Ask questions: make sure to create a list of questions focused on what they are unhappy about so that they can better describe their concerns
Give personalized attention: If things are not going well with a client, make sure to make them a priority and give them personalized attention for the time being so they feel the love.
Do not lose your confidence: do not show a client you are losing confidence in a specific project, if they feel like you are concerned, they will become more concerned
Provide clear resolutions: this goes back to being honest, make sure you are honest if things are not attainable but do provide clear and substantial resolutions
Have good energy: energy shows and rub off on others so make sure your energy is always upbeat when you are talking to your clients as it will help them be in a better mood
Provide advice: If you think their brand could use help in other departments and it is stifling you PR efforts, feel free to give your client friendly advice on how to restructure or change some things in order to see better results