SEO is not a set-it-and-forget-it thing, even if you or some of your clients wish it were. But all parties need to stay engaged in the project from start to finish for success. In our experience working with clients, a good communications plan keeps projects on track. Plus, having frequent touchpoints can uplevel your brand and service and make for happier clients all around. Here are eight communication touchpoints you can build into your client engagements.
1. Kickoff calls
I cannot stress enough the importance of having a productive kickoff call. Even though you may already know what to do -- and even though you may have had many conversations leading up to the client signing on -- you still need the kickoff call. Here, everyone involved in the project (on your side and the client's) gets up to speed on the scope of the work and what to expect. How often will you meet? What turnaround times will you need on deliverables and approvals?
The kickoff meeting is your chance to lay out these procedural details. Expectations are key to a successful project. The project team must understand the client's expectations before starting their work and vice versa.
2. SEO training
Training your clients on SEO is a fantastic way to keep the lines of communication open as you discuss their projects' details. How will they know what questions to ask if, for example, they have no idea what a meta tag is? Speaking the same language is very important, so make sure you have consistent training shared by all project members. The SMX Master Classes series can be a great step here.
If clients are already well-versed in SEO, your training is still key because it reinforces your approach to SEO -- no two SEO vendors operate in the same way. SEO training also helps familiarize clients with everything that goes into your SEO services. They'll know, for example, that you're not just waving some magic wand behind the scenes and *poof* rankings appear. Education builds value in the eyes of the client.
3. Status calls
Some people dread standing meetings, but they are essential for project management. And they don't have to be pointless. It is beneficial to have some structure and consistency for the project or it falls apart. Make sure you have an agenda ready to go ahead of time for each meeting so that the client knows what to expect on the call.
And then take only as much time as you need. Make sure that everyone gets their concerns or questions answered, their next steps laid out, etc. After the call, you can send notes from the meeting, so it is documented, and everyone has a record.