This time last year, my business was a hot mess. I didn’t have any systems in place to help me manage my projects, my finances or my clients. I was stressed out, burned out, and losing track of the clients I was working with and the potential clients I needed to follow up on.
When I went through my inbox at the end of last year, I realized I had missed out on a dozen potential clients because I simply hadn’t remembered to follow up. That means that thousands of dollars went down the drain because of how unorganized I was.
Here’s what I didn’t realize back then: you don’t have to remember everything in your business. There are tools to help you.
Since then, my business is super streamlined. And one of the tools that helped me accomplish this is Streak.
How To Use Streak
Streak is a free (yep-FREE!) Client Relationship Management tool that integrates with Gmail. I use Streak to organize my client intake process and keep on top of following up with clients.
I use 3 main features of Streak to manage my client intake process, and here they are:
Streak allows you to create an unlimited amount of ‘pipelines’. A pipeline is basically a process- your clients start at the top of the process and eventually work their way down it.
Take a look at my Client Intake Process below. This is the process my potential clients work their way through. I chose to use my pipeline to outline every single step me and my clients need to take to get them from ‘potential client’ to ‘paying client’.
As you can see in the screenshot, I have potential clients that are in various stages of this intake process. Streak allows me to instantly see what I need to do next to get potential clients closer to becoming paying clients.
When a new inquiry lands in my inbox I create a box for it, give it the clients name and place it at the start of my Client Intake pipeline.
As me and the client communicate, the box collects all email threads, attachments, reminders and tasks we’ve shared so all communication is kept in one tidy place.
If you mainly communicate with your clients via email, sometimes the client can get into the habit of starting lots of new email threads. When that happens, it can be hard to keep track of all their feedback, but not with Streak.
Their box will collect all the email threads in one place so you don’t have to spend ages searching through your inbox to find something they said.
Inside each client’s box, there’s an option to add a reminder.
I like to use this feature to remind myself to follow up with the client. For example, after I’ve sent the potential client their first email, I’ll schedule a reminder to follow up if they haven’t replied within 10 days.
The same goes for my paying clients; when they reach the end of their design process, I’ll add a reminder to follow up 30 days later to see how they are.
Streak simply emails you the reminder on the date you specify!
Do You Need Streak?
There are lots of CRM (Client Relationship Management) tools available, such as Contactually, but Streak is the only CRM tool I’ve found that integrates with Gmail and offers a free plan.
If you’re looking for a way to organize your client intake process, organize your follow-ups and ultimately build stronger relationships with your clients then I definitely recommend trying Streak. It’s an extremely versatile tool, and you don’t have to use it the way I use it; you can use Streak for whatever you want!
I not only use it organize my client intake process, I use it to outline and organize refunds, cancellations, and collaborations with others.
Now that I use Streak, I don’t worry about the number of clients I’ve missed out on or forgotten to follow up with, because Streak doesn’t allow me to forget.
If there’s one tool you should try for your business, it’s Streak.