When you are part of a technical team, you find yourself surrounded by people who get the hermetic jargon you use. Trying to reach a consensus with business-oriented folks using the same jargon, on the other hand, can make things complicated for both, you and them.
Just imagine you try to explain the benefits of one approach over another to someone who might not know or care about the technical whereabouts.
Usually, clients want to go with established, tested stacks. Most times, those work well!. WordPress is great, and so are other approaches to building websites. But, when you need something more reliable, secure, or faster these solutions might not be the best choices. In those cases, the Jamstack approach is perfect.
The challenge of communicating benefits, goals, and results can be overwhelming at times. So, how do we convince clients to pick novel technologies they might not get?
Sign up for Bejamas newsletter!
Join today and receive valuable, in-depth Jamstack & web.dev tips, tricks, and case studies.
Before you start
Clients want the world for their money. And they are right! They should expect the best value. More often than not, what clients want and what they need are two different things. Make sure that the approach you propose and pitch to your client always fits their needs best.
The first thing you have to do is ask a lot of questions in order to understand the client's motivation, business goals, tech, and marketing proficiency. Ask your clients what tools, apps or technologies are they using at home and in business. Listen to the feedback. It’s sort of like building a buyer's persona for just one client.
Then level the playground for your client so they too can understand what you are talking about. How do you do that?
Give them options, let them choose
Give your client a choice. Be transparent with what they can choose from. Don't only present your preferred option. Reach for their feedback and make sure they feel comfortable with the route you both agree on. Make them feel heard and valued.
Discussing the project with your client from a technical perspective has other benefits. Involving them in the process creates more interest and responsibility on both ends.
Use analogies between known tech to the client and your solutions. If WordPress is what they know, make a case with the pros and cons of the CMS. Let them know why static site generators with headless CMSs are a great alternative. Explain how different or similar those approaches are.
Focus on what Jamstack can offer to your clients: increased performance, better security, easier scaling.
While those make a lot of sense from a technical standpoint, you need to justify it business-wise. Dial down industry jargon and turn technical features into potential business gains. Make sure you draw your client's attention to possible revenue growth thanks to Jamstack's benefits.
What does the increased performance mean to your clients? Boil it down to simple terms and talk them through it. Explain that it isn't only a matter of a website loading quicker but, first and foremost, getting better user engagement. This translates to more leads or more sales - ultimate goals your clients will want to take away from migration to Jamstack.
Explain other benefits in a business-oriented way as well! Isolating server-side processes from the content itself results in fewer vectors of attacks. This means a reduced risk of losing business continuity. Dealing with security threats also causes higher costs of maintenance.
Businesses are often forced to bring in experts to deal with the potential outcomes of attacks. Preventing situations like this by using a different approach that is less vulnerable would generate fewer costs but also give the technical team peace of mind.
The same goes for better scalability Jamstack can provide for your clients. Wordpress and other traditional CMSes tend to be resource hogs and fail to perform under pressure.
Talk your clients through a potential outcome of insufficient ability to scale. Give them a practical example of how things can improve with Jamstack.
For example, a new, long-awaited product is ready to be launched. The customers want to check out the website and read through a marketing page. But instead of the page, they start seeing errors. Customers can't order or view the product. The CMS has crashed under an unpredictable load. Scaling the service will take time, which will result in lost revenue.
Illustrating an issue is much easier to understand. Besides telling stories and examples, use real case studies of how migrating to a more modern stack has helped businesses and their goals. Most likely, there are already companies in your client’s field that have undergone a migration like that. Or better yet you’ve worked on similar projects. Use these stories to boost your client's confidence in the technologies you propose.
Communication is the key
First things first, try to put yourself in your client’s shoes. Try to think like someone who doesn't know a lot about Jamstack. Explain ideas and concepts related to the approach in a way non-technical folks can understand.
Clients approach us as experts. They expect us to do our job and help them get all the novelties that will benefit them.
Over time, working with clients regularly, I’ve established four simple rules that make communication with clients that much easier:
- Be patient. Listen carefully, don't get frustrated too quickly.
- Keep the best interest of the client and the project in mind. Don’t get fixated on ideas or technologies you want to use in the project.
- Communicate positively. The project you will work on for your client is probably something they are heavily invested in.
- Be responsive! Even if you can't respond to your clients immediately, let them know when you'll take care of their request.
When interacting with the client remotely, you’ll find yourself mostly using Slack and other text-based communication channels. Building any relationship is tough if you can’t interact with each other physically. Remember that and don’t forget to be human too!
It is your job to ensure they get what they need and understand the logic and the tech behind it. Focus on how your proposed solution helps their business. It usually boils down to either revenue and/or a better experience for them, their developers, editors, and their audience.
Do you have a project at hand that is perfect for Jamstack? We can help.
CLICK HERE to schedule a 1-on-1 talk and learn more about what we can do for you and your business.