Lucy Birtwistle joined Purple Agency in March, just as the global pandemic hit. Working as an Account Executive within the B2B team, Lucy has learnt a lot about the role client services plays in a marketing agency, whilst also coming up with new and innovative ways to build relationships virtually! We asked her to share her top tips for the skills you need to be a successful member of the team in a client services role.
I’ve now been working at Purple for three months, and from my time here – and working in similar teams previously – I have learnt a lot about the importance of client services within a marketing agency, and the part these teams play in its overall success. When I was asked to provide my advice, I was delighted to bring my knowledge together and offer up my top five tips and tricks for succeeding in a client services role:
- Communication is key
Having regular communication has been key for building relationships with my clients and the studio team. These marketing communications have included weekly calls with the client team, project kick-off calls with the creative studio, and regular emails/Teams chats on a one-to-one basis to check in on progress with projects.
It is also important that I communicate clearly, especially when briefing our copy and design teams on what the client has asked for, to ensure the brief is met, and the studio can complete their work without an issue.
- Stay alert! Be ready to react
I’m sure we’re all probably a bit sick of being told to ‘stay alert’ these days, but putting the global pandemic aside for one second, it is something that those of us in client services should always be doing. We never know when we’re going to get that email through with a new task … or for a change of scope to an existing project.
Being ready to deal with these requests when they arise (and being quick to put a plan in place) shows that we are reliable, which, in turn, builds trust with the client.
- Start organised and stay organised
When I’m setting up a new project it is important that I organise myself so I have somewhere to monitor the job’s progress through the studio, keep a record of any communications that have taken place, and keep an eye on key project deadlines. Sounds easy enough, right?
The bigger challenge is keeping organised throughout the whole project. Once all the parts to the job get moving, it can feel like there are a million tasks to keep on top of, and you just want to stick your head in the sand. Trust me, I know the feeling. For me, the best way to get around this feeling is having a routine for how and when you will check the job’s progress.
It’s all about good project management in client services!
- Be personable
It can be quite intimidating when joining a new company to put yourself out there – especially when all your contact with colleagues is taking place virtually! But showing my personality over calls and emails has been a good way of relationship building with both my clients and the wider team.
In client services I work with many areas of the agency, so it is beneficial to build positive relationships both professionally and personally to help build my profile.
- Future planning
You might have guessed already, but in client services we like to plan ahead – and this doesn’t just apply to our projects. We’ll also work with our clients to make the most of their budgets and to help content planning. In everything we do, we like to be forward-thinking and search for new opportunities to develop the account.
As I continue to settle into life at Purple, initially I am looking forward to meeting and getting to know more of my colleagues. But, in the long-term, I am also hoping to put these tips into practice and support the B2B client services team to develop and grow our accounts further.