Who likes collecting money? (If you are raising your hand please feel free to contact me directly and let me know why)
Many of us small business individuals are far to lenient with our clients when they fall behind on their payments. We have to look for a way to get tougher with them.
I am way to relaxed when my clients get behind on payments. I have been hurting financially and I need to change how I handle this part of my client relationship. There is no easy way to collect money but I think these approaches work well for me when my client has fallen behind on payment:
Setting up alerts 30, 60, and 90 days
Since I use Freshbooks I can set it up once and an invoice is sent out periodically. Another advantages of using Freshbooks as your billing system is that you can also track when they viewed the invoice.
Giving them a Physical Letter
If you meet with your client, give them a Letter with the Word Final Notice written as big as possible on the envelope. This is a good way to break the ice. I caught the idea from watching Bravo TV’s Flipping Out. This sends a clear message that all work will stop if payment has not been received.
Copying Key People at the Company
If you are not getting responses from your project manager, feel free to copy key people and top management (it works better if you know them). The more people you copy the more pressure you put on the person that has not paid their invoice.
Bring it up as often as you can
I hate when people repeat the same thing to me and many people feel the same way I do. If you include the invoice on every other email they will start getting the message that you need to get paid.
Follow up, Follow Up, Follow Up
If you have done the above, continue to remind them by following up every chance you get. The more time it has been that they owe me money the more times in a week I start contacting them about when I am getting paid.
I recommend doing this with your clients. At some point they decided it is not a priority for you to get paid.
What methods do you use?