Posted by Stephen M. Nipper at May 10, 2005 11:11 PM
Matt's post from yesterday has prompted me to return to my draft post on "Homework for clients."
I hate giving secrets away...but blawgers do it every day. Maybe it is low risk because most of the people reading blog posts drink the Kool-Aid too (a.k.a. fellow ostrich farmers). Either way...here's one of my better tips from the past year.
Give your clients homework. You heard me, give them homework. Sure, there are some who don't need homework...but a vast majority of them can really benefit from some assigned reading.
I have three favorites (I could go on and on about books, but this post is about the concept, on the content).
When I have a client who is struggling with branding and selling their product/service to others, I frequently recommend Karen Post's book "Brain Tattoos: Creating Unique Brands That Stick in Your Customer's Minds." I know Karen via Homann's Think Tank Tuesday, and the book is dead on. That is exactly what clients need to understand...the importance of having a brand and burning that brand image upon the brains of your customers. Amazon.com Link
Another great book that you should consider recommending to clients is "Creating Consumer Evangelists: How Loyal Customers Become a Volunteer Sales Force." Most of your clients have customers who are rabid. Why not suggest a book that would help your clients harness that power? Amazon.com Link
Finally, a blog post that is a psuedo-book. Paul Graham's "How to Start a Startup." Oftentimes, I have clients who are at that point of learning "Venture Capital 101." Graham's article/post is one of the best I have ever read for explaining the process, not in legalese, but in plain English.
So there you have a handful of my favorite resources. Now, do your clients a favor and invest some nonbillable time in recommending to them books, articles and blog posts which can help them. You will be amazed with the "thank you" responses your clients give you.
The comments are open (until I start getting spammed) if anyone else wants to plug their favorite client resources.