In this edition of the Affiliate Buzz, host and Instructor of the Affiliate Marketers BootCamp, James Martell along with his wife Arlene, talk about a project that didn't go so well. James says, "In fact, I completely screwed it up". The headline for this episode pretty much sums it up.
Before introducing the topic, James and Arlene briefly talk about their latest breakation to Oak Harbor in Washington State, and all the benefits that this type of working vacation offers. Arlene shares that getting away from your house makes a huge difference in attitude as it is a great way to refresh.
James divulges that he frequently leaves home with his laptop to spend evenings working in a local pub. When people ask him how he can work with all the pub-related noise he explains that he was home all day.
When people ask Arlene if she minds, she assures them that she has no problem having the house to herself for a few hours. James adds that after all, they have spent day after day together for at least a couple of decades.
What to Do When a Project Goes Off the Rails
Next James tackles the topic at hand, which is a project that did not meet with his client's satisfaction. Upon unveiling a site to a client, the reaction was not what James had hoped to hear.
James quickly points out that while he blames only himself, that he has never missed the mark by this far. Arlene chimes in that this type of reaction rarely happens from their clients. There was only one way to respond, and that was by making it right.
Over the past few episodes, James and Arlene have boasted the benefits of outsourcing. While James is better accustomed to being the client who gives the details, he recognizes that he should have asked for more details from his client in this situation.
Arlene says that from the start she and james did not ask the right questions, and did not ask enough questions, to get the full picture of what their client wanted. James says if he would have picked up on this, then the entire negative situation could have been avoided.
A Red Flag to Alert You to Get More Details
After a short break, James describes how he and Arlene organize their project through every stage, from initial templates to collaborating with members of their team through Basecamp. Looking back, James says something stood out that should have come up as a red flag.
"James, I trust you to take care of this for me."
In retrospect, James says this was a warning that the client wasn't sure what he wanted from the project. Arlene adds that even though the client had some ideas, he was not sure how to express them.
James points out that if you have to look up terms, such as "whimsical", then you may want to ask your client for a deeper understanding to make sure that you are both on the same page.
How James and Arlene Righted the Problem
In an effort to satisfy the needs of their client, James and Arlene went back to the drawing board. Arlene touched base with the client via telephone and, along with asking a lot of questions about what he did and did not like about the first attempt, she made detailed notes about his vision for the finished results.
The steps they took included:
- James and Arlene scrapped the initial site including graphics and logo.
- The text was all rewritten from scratch so the tone suited the style.
- James and Arlene developed a character graphic at the client's request.
- Other elements of the site were color-coded to tie into the character.
The client, James, and Arlene are all thrilled with the new results. You can see at http://thedebtninja.com/ but James asks that you keep in mind that the telephone number is still a dummy number at the time of this podcast's recording. It was a good lesson learned that good communication is the key to a successful project.
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