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Protecting client relationships
Your existing client base is the most important asset in your business. Protecting and building on your key relationships is essential to both your immediate and long-term success.
Increasing business with existing accounts
Many companies make the mistake of concentrating too hard on winning new business instead of cultivating additional business with their existing clients.
The matrix below explains the notion that selling existing products and services into existing relationships is the easiest sale to make. After all, if your client is familiar and comfortable with your offering, they’re more likely to increase their business with you. Furthermore, selling new products and services into these existing accounts is also a relatively easy sale to make.
|Existing products/services||New products/services|
Strategic investment in existing accounts makes good business sense for a number of reasons:
- Existing accounts tend to be more profitable than new business
- Key accounts are usually large generators of top-line revenue for companies
- Long-held, prestigious accounts may enhance credibility with potential new clients
- There may be strong personal relationships in place at high levels
Whatever the reason, these are the accounts that you never want to lose. They are accounts that are extremely valuable to your business both now and in an uncertain future.
How do you protect these important accounts?
When it comes to the protection and growth of your key accounts, a positive move is to ask your clients the following questions:
1. Where is their business going?
2. How can you help them get there?
3. What can you do together to make it happen?
By leveraging your existing relationship with this type of analysis, you can really focus on building a partnership with your client.
Where do you stand with your key accounts?
Procurement practitioners sort suppliers into categories and adopt a different approach for each. There are many models used but they usually look something like the below matrix.
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Eddie Smith is the Founder of Sales Schematics Australia, and an accredited MathMarketing Funnel Coach. To read more of his insights, go to the SSA Technical - Sales Insights blog.