As an Account Executive, I am charged with daily communication with my clients. This generally entails contact with one, perhaps two, key people in the client’s organization. Most of the time, this is the head of Marketing. Working with someone like this requires more than just taking notes, making lists and pushing projects through the agency. A key component to successful client service is to build a relationship with my contact. And, after working with the same person for a good length of time, you develop quite a strong tie. You learn how he/she works, what they like, what they expect from you. You start to know what they will think before they even think it. As you grow together professionally, the level of trust increases and you even start to learn things about them personally, which leads to a stronger sense of loyalty and a compulsion to fulfill his/her expectations no matter what.
So, what happens when this person changes positions and I get a new point of contact? Anxiety! It’s really as if we just got a new client. A million nervous thoughts run through my mind! Who is this person? What is their background? What will they think of us? Will they like our style of work? Will they like me? AHHHH!
I have recently gone through my first experience with this. While it’s been a scary one, I decided to take it on with confidence and in turn, realized there was nothing to worry about. I have never done this before, so wasn’t sure what exactly to expect. I keep reminding myself to treat them like a new client and WOW them. I am happy to report that so far, it appears to be going really well! It really couldn’t have been better, although I will definitely miss my former contact like crazy. It is nice to have a fresh set of eyes and fresh mind working with us on the account!
San Francisco-based Goodby, Berlin, & Silverstein (now the 500+ employee-strong Goodby, Silverstein & Partners) launched their agency in 1983, running an ad with the headline: