Why You Need to Use Client Binders
Communication is the one thing that really can make or break your project. If your clients feel left out of the loop, they're going to become frustrated and distrustful! I like to over communicate rather than worrying about flooding my clients with info. The more they feel like they are "in the know," the more smoothly everything is going to go! That's why client binders are so incredibly important - they are another GREAT building block for communication with your clients. I use 2 types of binders to keep my clients informed: a project binder and a maintenance binder. Here's why they are SO KEY to a successful project!
1. Project Buy-In
A project binder helps your clients feel like they are part of the project, that they are all-in as part of the team. After all, they're paying for everything! So this binder needs to showcase timelines, furniture layouts, paint selections, and the important steps in the project. During all of those long lead times where you're waiting for things to be delivered, this binder allows your clients to continue to buy into the incredible dream home that's just around the corner for them! It reminds them of the goal - and that really is important when you're in those long weeks where nothing much seems to happen. I don't include the vendor sources, but I do include photos of the products and fabric/finish options. You can also recreate this as a digital-only binder, keeping everything in the cloud where they can access it through a link or log-in.
2. Smart Communication
Have you ever had a client ding you non-stop after a project is complete, asking questions about how to clean the sofa, or how to replace batteries in the hands-free faucet?? There's a very smart way to head that off at the pass!! Create a maintenance binder that includes all the appliance manuals, warranties, and receipts. This is a great gift to give your client at the end of a project and it really gives them the info they need when or if something goes wrong in the house. I also include the paint scheme with the name of the paint and the sheen that I used. That helps them when it's time to do touch-ups around the house. I also include cleaning instructions for all rugs, upholstery, and anything else that they may need.
3. Constant Contacts
I like to share contact information for the people that I love to work with. So I'll provide the contact info for plumbers, electricians, HVAC companies, roofing companies, and more. It's such a great resource for my clients - and it is good business to refer the companies that I think are fantastic. And another IMPORTANT addition is a small stack of your OWN cards!! You can even show your clients that part of the binder and tell them that you would appreciate referrals. Remember that you always need to ASK for referrals.
4. Welcome Home
And to really WOW your clients, include other services and businesses that will welcome them to the neighborhood. That could be a dog walker, a lawn service, housekeepers, your favorite restaurants, salons, a car mechanic, and more. That makes your binders a valuable resource for your clients. And be sure you use top-notch and luxe materials for your binders, like good paper, great binders, color-coded tabs, and more.
Need more help getting these binders together? Download my FREE Guide to Organizing Your Client Binders!