Guiding Clients Through the Decision-Making Process

Client team running and brainstorm meeting
Culture

Guiding Clients Through the Decision-Making Process

November 19, 2019

In today’s deadline-driven environment, client service pros are tasked with everything from creating strategic communications plans to launching complex activation programs for clients across the globe. We like these efforts to be on time, on budget, and on target. To ensure this trifecta of goals is achieved, sometimes our client partners need a guiding light through the detailed decision-making process.

Discover Decision-Making Styles

Most of us have a distinct decision-making style, even if we don’t realize it. Part of our job as client service pros is to uncover those styles to create more harmonious communication paths — the more in tune we are with our decision-making processes and communication styles, the faster we all move through the creative process.

Data-Driven or Feelings First?

If someone loves to chat facts and figures or dive deep into the research and analysis phase of a project, odds are they have a data-driven decision-making style. This style makes working through things like budget proformas or complex reporting a breeze, but it can be tough when nailing down decisions on visual work like logos or creative campaigns. If this is your client’s style, make sure you share the research that supports your creative work. Understanding the supporting facts behind the stunning visuals will help connect the dots for data-driven clients to make quicker strategic selections.

If one quickly zeros in on an intended consumer, their behavior, or how they will respond to a built environment or creative concept, odds are they have an emotionally driven decision-making style. This style focuses on how people will feel about a decision. Will they feel motivated? Inspired? Distressed? If this is your client’s style, placing a pile of spreadsheets filled with numbers in front of them won’t help your case. Make sure you paint a clear picture of the intended consumer’s habits, preferences, and motivations. Understanding those qualitative measures will help these clients arrive at a decision that feels good and aligns with a clear strategy.

The Medium Matters

Regardless of the decision-making style, the communication medium matters greatly. It’s a good rule of thumb not to force a complex decision over email. Pick up the phone, launch that video call or, better yet, pay a visit to your client to discuss the decision in real-time. 

 

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By Patty Delk, Managing Director, Global Customer Care