One area I’m always asked by sales managers and national account sales people, is how do I grow my business when I’m spending so much time with my existing account.
The answer is to grow the existing account using different strategies.
Now that may sound rather simplistic and well it is. Yet, I find that most b2b sales people get into a rut of doing the same things everyday with their current customers. They visit the same people, talk about the same topics and forget to look outside their box of certainty.
It is time to expand the business. First think about your customers – each one – and answer this question…
Am I currently selling all I can to this customer?
If the answer for any account is no. Then, the next question is…
What are you doing about it?
Now, you need to go back over the list and use a different type of question.
Does this company have other divisions, subsidiaries or business units? And, can they use what I’m selling for my company?
Now, when you get a positive answer to the last question it is time to use one or all five of the methods to grow sales in your large account customers. Here are the five methods…
- Ask if possible
Here you are asking for the personal opinion of the customer about the value of making contact with this group. Are they similar or totally different. Would they have a need for what you sell? Base insider information is extremely valuable info.
- Ask for Names and Phone Numbers
It is always better to have names of people in a company or area you have not been involved with up to now. Having a direct phone number or even a cell phone number improves your chances of talking to the right person from the start. By the way, think possible coach when reaching out to new departments or areas of opportunity.
- Get some Information about the New Opportunity
Here you are focused upon learning more about their focus and priorities including their corporate year end, cyclical schedules of work flows, etc. Insider information is usually more accurate and current than what you find on the internet.
- Ask for a Personal Introduction
This can be a critical factor to your ultimate success particularly if you need to meet at the highest levels due to what you sell. Research has shown, their is a 68% positive factor the high level officer will meet with you due to the personal introduction of a current staff member. This is huge! Get the introduction – particularly if you know your current contact is highly respected within their organization. Remember this rule of thumb – you get associated to the person who brings you into contact. If low, you get a lower value and have to climb the mountain – while if high, you begin at the mountain top and get the real vision and views.
- Write Thank You Notes to Referrer
This is more of common sense or courtesy thing, yet, it usually pays big dividends in the future. By taking the time to “hand write” a thank you for the referral you will get major points with your current contact. Then, by keeping them in the loop of progress – they will see you value them at a higher level. Again, you may be developing a new coach for future opportunities and additional introductions.
Major account selling is more than just showing up and asking for the business. You need to have insider assistance. These people will help you stay in the right places at the right times to grow your business. Have fun and make this system work for you and grow your b2b sales results significantly.