Welcome to part 5 of my mini-series for VA Pro, and this article is about how offboarding is just as important as your onboarding process!

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What is offboarding?

We have covered Onboarding, which is when you bring clients into your business, through proposals, leads, capture forms, questionnaires, kickoff calls, contracts, payments and business procedural parts so that you then start working with the client. Thatā€™s all done at the beginning, and if you don’t know, Offboarding is your farewell to your clients, while using a strategy so that you leave the door ajar, to make it very easy for that client to come back to you for other services.

What to include in your offboarding

  • Say thank you to the client for using your services, be appreciative
  • Include a feedback form/testimonial request – include a consent box to be able to use their name etc.
  • Talk with them about a referral scheme

Business Metrics

You want to try and play into some of your metrics, the two metrics that I’m talking about are your customer acquisition cost, and your customer lifetime value.

Customer acquisition cost

Your customer acquisition cost is exactly that, how much does it cost to acquire a client?

This is your time/money spent on social media marketing, maybe you have a social media manager, or maybe you do everything yourself, and it’s taking time away from your ā€˜chargeableā€™ time. All of this plays into your customer acquisition costs, how much is it costing you to find that client? This is a really easy metric to get if you’re using Facebook ads, for example, because you have a click-through rate and it will be a cost per click. This way you can know exactly to the penny, how much it’s costing you. You can get a much more general idea when you first get in your client, you can ask them where they found you, how did they hear about you etc. and then you can dig in a little bit more into how much time you’re spending, how much money you’re spending, and start to gain an idea and understanding of how much it’s actually costing you to get this client.

You might uncover that it’s costing you Ā£1000s to get a client that’s only paying you Ā£500, but that’s a really important thing to discover even though it may be disheartening.

Customer lifetime value

This is how much a client pays you across their whole lifetime of working with you. So again, it’s not just a one-off cost of Ā£500 that they pay you, they might come back to you for another job for Ā£200 but then they might want more work and to pay a retainer of Ā£1000 a month, so their customer lifetime value is getting better and better as you go.

At the same time, you’re not having to acquire a new client each time that you contract with this current client – so you can see how those two are interlinked, and that’s why looking at your offboarding is crucial,Ā because that’s your chance to really get your message across about referrals and retaining clients once they’ve already worked with you.

Once you’re happy with everything, the final payment has gone through and youā€™re checking through the testimonials and forms, (by the time you get to offboarding, what sort of scores you’re going to come out with on your feedback form, what sort of comments you’re going to get, nothing should be a shock), you should know if they’re an appropriate client to approach about over to a referral scheme or maybe coming back to them at a later date. If you do talk about the scheme or retaining work in the future if they donā€™t need it now, add them to your mailing list so that you can check in on them and offer some support and encouragement to them and their projects. Again, it might be that they don’t need anything now might even be in 12 months or two years time, you want to still be in the back of their mind.

And that’s the point in Offboarding. Reducing your customer acquisition costs and increasing your lifetime customer lifetime value.

We are almost at the end of my Onboarding mini-series, and I hope this part has been helpful for you. I would love it if you could follow Olivier consultancy on Instagram or Facebook, and pop me a message letting me know how this series has helped you!