How to Choose the Right Client
Cover photo credit: kbdawg, @madswurms
How do you choose the right client? Are there clients that you’d better avoid and refuse their proposals? Most certainly. While a lot of photographers and videographers are being tricked by the “money making” side of it and that “the client pays”, in the long run a lot of gigs with wrong clients would cause an actual draw back in your career.
What are these instances? Who are these clients? Let’s have a closer look.
Pick the Client Wisely
You are only as good as your last project. So jumping on projects that either undermine your expertise or are out of your gear spectrum or area of expertise entirely is a bad move and usually leaves the client disappointed. Never be afraid to refuse the service if you estimate that you will not be able to deliver the highest quality.
While loosing the potential client might be seen as a potential financial loss, the art of rejecting the offer and re-channeling it might actually be beneficial for your business in the long run. If you know someone who might be the best fit for the client, make referral, connect two together. Chances are, your client would be grateful for the outcome and next time will be calling you again either for an advice or the upcoming projects that then will be a perfect fit for your expertise. But he/she will definitely be calling you first!
Fire the Client Regretlessly
What are the signs of the bad client? Firstly, it is their attitude. If the client is not set to work on good terms and friendly environment, you will end up being drained of energy completely after such projects. The gigs that cause mainly irritation and frustration are better to be rid of.
Secondly, get rid of clients who make unreasonable demands which do not reflect on the pay. Making of these demands towards you indicates the lack of respect for your professionalism, time and effort. This causes more stress and irritation than its worth.
Thirdly, clients who are chronically late on payments are no good for your business either. Free up the space on your schedule by firing bad clients and hiring good ones instead. This selective process will accelerate your business dramatically!
Choose the Client Who Loves Your Work
When you get reached out by the client you never worked with before, most like it is because you are that good to be considered for hire. Clients who see your style, your unique approach to the project, your one-of-the-kind delivery are the clients who will value you and pay you the most. Cherish the relationship with such clients and always go extra mile for them to not only satisfy but to exceed expectations.
Clients with bad reviews are to avoid
The reputation of the client plays significant role in the decision making for his approval to denial. Each client carries not only the project but the reputation of oneself in the industry. If a client has a bad rep and you decide to work with him/her, you are most like to end up in the same category of stigmatized bad rep folks. For the sake of keeping the record clean and attractive for the market it is better to turn down clients who are already known for their lack of professionalism.
Trust Your Gut
Sometimes though, while the negotiation with the potential client is taking place, there is something iffy inside you that pulls your mind away from accepting the project. Even though you cannot provide any logical explanation (yet), listen to your gut instead. If the project feels to be off, it will probably be off. In this case it is better to decline the offer.
Of course there many aspects of the business side and decision making that we did not have a chance to cover yet would have a tremendous influence on your bank account and financial situation overall. It is really about the balance you are after – if you would like to earn more but with heavier stress and more headache, doing the job you do not like, it is still your rightful choice. On the other hand, to help you sleep well at night it is better to avoid potentially harmful projects that will take away more than it will bring.