Sometimes the best work you can offer a client is a strategic plan that will help solve a problem or take advantage of an opportunity. Here are some tips to make the planning process more beneficial for you and your client.
Give your client deliverables.
Sometimes strategic plans can lead to your client feeling overwhelmed with how much information was just given to them. To keep your client feeling excited and engaged with what you’ve planned, provide them with examples of what the work will look like. Make mock-up posters for events, write a sample blog post for the new website or draft a couple Tweets to send out. Even if it is just a sample of what the work will look like, it will put your client at ease and will make it easier for them to see your vision. It will also give them a good opportunity to give you feedback.
Don’t reinvent the wheel.
Make sure you are knowledgeable of what marketing or PR efforts your client already does. That way, you will be able to tweak what they have and make it better rather than creating something from scratch. For example, don’t jump straight to planning a brand new event for your client if they already have an established yearly event. Instead, have an in-depth discussion with your client on the details of the event and think of ways you can improve it.
Keep the budget down with partnerships.
Is one of your strategies planning an event for your client? Collaborate with a restaurant to cut down the cost of catering. Having a social media contest giveaway? Partner with a business in town and give away a gift card. Nothing worries a smaller client more than hefty costs. This will be especially important to keep in mind when working with nonprofit or pro bono accounts. Working with businesses will keep costs low, give them some advertising and create connections for the future.
Sydney Andree is a junior PR student and an account executive on the Eugene Education Foundation account. She plans to work in an agency after graduating next spring, but her dream job is to be in casting for reality TV.