Earlier this year I redesigned my client welcome packet.
The old welcome packet I used to use was not doing a good job of educating my clients about the process.
Naturally, there used to be tones of email back and forth to explain the little details.
Now that most of the details and the information is being provided in a neat packet it has resulted in a much smoother client experience.
What’s Included in the Client Welcome Packet
I send in the welcome packet after the initial deposit is payed and the contract is signed. You could do it in any order you would like to, I just prefer sending in the welcome packet at this stage.
Welcome and Thank You Note
This is just a note I include to add a little personal touch.
It is personalised for each client depending on their business and their objectives but typically this is the general template of the note –
- I mention that I am excited to be working with them and can’t wait to bring about the much needed transformation in their business ( Address whatever specific pain points they have in their business related to design )
- Next, I mention what the welcome packet is about and how they should use/go through it.
- My contact information.
- I congratulate them for taking this important decision for their business and let them know that I am grateful for their business.
- Sign off
My goal with the welcome packet is to reduce all the email back forth and make sure the client and I are on the same page.
Majority of the problems are a result of lack of clear communication from either side.
When you set expectations up front you ensure a smoother communication and process between you and your clients.
Some of the things that I include into this page –
- How we are going to communicate over the duration of the project.
- Project timelines
- Policies for rescheduling meetings
- When the next payment is due
- Due date for submitting the branding questionnaire
- Timelines for providing feedback.
- How often and how I will provide updates on the project
- Business hours / days
- My response times
I have found, It’s a lot better to set these boundaries in the initial stages instead of trying to bring the situation under control when a “misstep” happens from either side during the project.
It sets you apart as a professional in your industry and helps to avoid all the potentially difficult situations.
This is where I briefly outline the process details again and also describe the one concept approach.
Even though we discuss the project details over the initial discovery call, I make sure to outline it again.
When we kick off the project at the start date it’s typically 3-4 weeks after the initial discovery call.
Small details discussed over the calls can easily be forgotten or missed, so outlining them here doesn’t throw any last minute surprises to the clients during the project.
I mention all the deliverables that the client will receive at the end of the project for whichever package they signed up for and also any add ons if purchased.
The few things I include –
- List the names of each deliverable in the package.
- Details associated with each deliverable.
- How the deliverables will be provided.
How to Guides
I use Trello for project management and although majority of my clients have heard of Trello, some of them don’t know how to use it, or why do we need it or how to communicate using it.
I include a link to a short 10 minute video tutorial so its useful for those who are unfamiliar with Trello.
I also include an FAQ page, these are the commonly asked questions form my clients ( which I note down and add them to the list as I experience them during the projects ) like –
- How to book for additional services
- Can you do X for me? or
- Can I include an add on service when we are half way through the project?
- What if I want some work done urgently?
The final guide that I include is how to give feedback on the designs.
I include this document to help clients understand what is and what is not a helpful feedback to the designer.
It helps to avoid potentially vague feedback from them and helps me understand what they are thinking.
I update this document each time I gain new insights while working on a project.
While I may not have achieved a perfect solution, it’s doing a decent job so far!
Its just my way of making the clients feel excited and give them a premium experience.
It could be something as simple as a gift card or a simple document with useful tips and information that could prove valuable them.
This is typically a way to inform them how they can further work with me. I list prices of add on services, retainer packages etc onto this page.
I must admit I used to not include this in the welcome packet just up until last year but including a pricing guide has removed a lot of friction from getting hired for more projects.
The clients don’t have to email me about extra services or maybe not enquire at all dreading the back and forth.
A Google document with a small questionnaire where you collect information such as –
- Full Name
- Contact Information
- Email Address
- Location / TimeZone
This is another link to a shared Google document which I can view as it is being completed. I use this questionnaire to learn more about the business, their origin, their values etc.
My client welcome packet has certainly come a long way from its first version.
I used to only include a welcome note and the branding questionnaire.
But as I have continued to improve upon it and flesh out the details it has made the process a lot more easier.
I am a lot more comfortable with the current amount of content in the welcome packet and I feel this is where it’s going to stay at for a while now.