Build the commercial skills to manage and retain clients

In the ever-competitive world of research and insight, a key advantage lies in our ability to build strong relationships with clients and stakeholders – relationships that extend beyond project-based work to become integrated within and add value to a client’s business.

Building strong relationships isn’t about taking a client to dinner every couple of months – it’s about developing a deep commercial awareness and understanding of the challenges and opportunities clients face, as well as learning the skills to both manage and grow relationships more effectively.

Learning outcomes:

  • Develop a relationship management approach to build more business from clients
  • Maximise the effectiveness of contact initiatives, telephone calls and meetings
  • Capitalise on business opportunities with clients and contacts
  • Secure an ongoing pipeline of business with existing, occasional and lapsed clients

Who will benefit
Senior supply-side researchers, managers and directors whose role is to develop and/or retain existing clients.

“Lots of practical advice and very motivating.”

Rebecca Allen, Marketing Sciences Ltd
13 May 2016

“A great look at how to advance your knowledge of client relationships.”

Gareth Williams, ResearchBods
13 May 2016

“Barbara was excellent, her experience was highly relevant and she articulately talked in thorough new but simple strategies to build client relationships.”

Claire Purchase, FreshMinds Ltd
22 April 2010

Barbara Wilmot is a business consultant and trainer with over 20 years’ experience in the market research and professional services industries.  Her work encompasses marketing and communications, business and account development, training, as well as research.
Before establishing her own consultancy in September, 2001, for over 10 years Barbara was a researcher herself and developed commercial opportunities for the then TNS group. In addition to consultancy work, Barbara Wilmot designs and delivers bespoke training courses to meet the objectives of individual organisations.  These courses are based on her own, hands-on experience of building business and leveraging client relationships, especially within the research sector.
Barbara Wilmot has been a business skills trainer for the UK’s Market Research Society since 2006.
Other research clients that have commissioned Barbara’s courses include:
BMRB, Ipsos-MORI, FreshMinds, Millward Brown, GfK, Winkle, Opinium Research, Kantar Operations, Lucid, NatCen, MMR Research, FlyResearch, BDRC-Continental, Breaking Blue, Accent Research, ESOMAR, Blueprint Partnership, Acumen Field

9.30am        Introductions and Objectives

The Value of Information and Understanding Client Needs:

  • Segmenting and classifying clients
  • Identifying “hot buttons” & how these help CRM
  • Information sources to find out about clients and provide valid reasons for having new conversations
  • Dynamic account planning to track contact points and provide evidence of success metrics


11.00am        Coffee Break (30 minutes)


11.30am        Exploring the Key Drivers of Clients:

  • Key client analysis and strategic mapping
  • Debrief


12.30pm        Lunch (one hour)


1.30pm        Driving the Relationship through Ongoing Communications:

  • The Proactive Contact Process (step by step guide)
  • Maximising existing resources / information / case studies etc. as contact hooks
  • Emailing dos and don’ts
  • Telephoning clients: the ice-breaker technique


2.30pm           Coffee Break (15 minutes)


2.45pm        Meetings preparation

  • Effective networking at conferences
  • Developing strategies for meetings outside of projects or research presentations


3.30pm           Coffee Break (15 minutes)


3.45pm        The Dynamics of Communicating Confidently with Clients:

  • How proactive, personal contact sets you apart from competitors
  • Following up, keeping in touch and remaining engaged
  • Action planning


4.30pm           Close

Additional Information

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