Onboarding Clients like a Boss - No More Flaky Clients

Nick Armstrong, I make marketing FUN.

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8 Lessons (41m)
    • 1. Intro: No More Flaky Clients

    • 2. Vetting Clients - Build alignment and understanding

    • 3. Turning Down Potential Clients

    • 4. Fix Your Contracts

    • 5. 5 Things To Ask When You’ve Signed The Contract

    • 6. Fix Your Project Management

    • 7. Fix Your Follow Up

    • 8. Summary


About This Class

40% of freelancers entered December with overdue client invoices averaging $2,850 (source: Freshbooks)

Are you one of them? 

Doing the math, that makes a whopping total of $64.7 BILLION dollars of unpaid work for the estimated 56.7 million freelancers in the US. Outside the US the unpaid invoice percentage goes up to 58% (source: Paypal)

How do we ensure we have more good, paying clients than flaky, forgetful ones? How do we build defenses against onboarding flaky clients to begin with?

The answer: build better onboarding processes for working with new clients.

How much time, frustration, and heartache could you save yourself if you didn’t have to chase your clients to pay?

How much time, frustration, and heartache could you save yourself if your onboarding process prevented you from signing contracts with flaky clients at all?

Over the span of this class, I’m going to teach you how to build an onboarding system to:

  1. Get you paid on time most of the time
  2. Develop strong communication habits with your clients from day 1
  3. Thrill your best clients so more of them renew with you

How? We’re going to fix:

  1. How you vet your clients:
    1. What to ask, how to ask it, and how to ensure you have alignment and understanding
    2. Who is the decision-maker, who writes the checks?
    3. Knowing your client’s goals up-front and incorporating those into the contract with clear deliverables
    4. Knowing when to show potential bad clients the door
  2. We’re going to fix your contracts:
    1. Establish a contract to begin with (duh)
    2. Set payment terms, dates, consequences, and payment methods up-front
    3. Gather new client contact info inside the contract
    4. Outline your deliverables and timelines clearly in the contract
    5. Create a method for handling out-of-scope work/scope creep
    6. Create a method for firing your clients if they get flaky
  3. We’re going to fix your project management:
    1. Set up a system to keep up with your clients as soon as they hire you (I like Airtable and go through a full walkthrough in this lesson)
    2. Set up reporting so your clients always know what’s next
    3. Set up clear documentation so that if you DO have to go to court, you won’t be empty-handed
  4. We’re going to fix your follow-up systems:
    1. Set up a system to send out gifts and reminders to your clients of important events
    2. Identify upselling opportunities from the get-go so you know what your client will need for years to come
    3. Actually follow-up with your referrers and best clients on a regular basis

If you’re ready, let’s get started!

Who is this guy and how does he know about freelancing?
I’m Nick Armstrong: the Geek-in-Chief behind WTF Marketing, dad, author, Ignite, PechaKucha, Startup Week, and TEDx speaker, audio drama enthusiast, and award-winning entrepreneur. Through WTF Marketing and partner organizations, I’ve served a wide array of happy clients ranging from mom-and-pop shops to Fortune 100’s. I’ve co-organized community events like Fort Collins Comic Con, Startup Week Fort Collins, TEDxFoCo, Ignite Fort Collins, LaidOffCamp/CareerCamp, PodCamp Fort Collins, and more. My local efforts landed me a prestigious spot as one of BizWest’s 40 Under Forty for 2016 
and the Colorado Association of Libraries' Library Community Partnership Award in 2018.