Written by Rob Malec
Looking for the best way to grow your revenue? It’s a common mistake to assume that means landing new clients. In fact, easy money is yours for the taking if you put some effort into getting new revenue from your existing customers.
In my work as a Fractional VP Sales, I regularly encounter business owners who are so busy trying to find new clients that they forget to mine their existing customer base. Further, in the rush to find those new clients they don’t realize that some of their long-time loyal customers are leaving out the back door.
Unlock Easy Money From Existing Customers
To get new revenue from your current customers, you need a systematic approach to mine your existing customer base methodically over time. Planning your work, and working your plan unlocks this vault of easy money. The tried-and-true “Land and Expand” approach to customer success generates revenue reliably and predictably.
A client will rarely raise their hand to ask to learn about your entire suite of products and services. As time goes by, it’s unlikely they will stay up to speed on your new product enhancements, additions, and deletions. That’s why it’s important to have your team stay personally connected with your customers – this will present daily opportunities to broaden your service footprint there.
A Strategy for Expanding Revenue From Current Clients
Email blasts and newsletters are nice, but you only need to look at the low open rates on them to realize that most of your customers aren’t seeing this information. Try this strategy instead…
Segment Your Customer Base and Schedule Regular Meetings
Work with your team to segment your customer base into four tiers (A, B, C, D) based on annual revenue generated. This will give you a clear baseline picture of which clients are contributing what and who could benefit from an expanded suite of products or services.
Then, set a connection cadence for each tier that will dictate how often a team member should reach out to the client. For example, tier A clients are to be personally contacted once a month, B’s every 2 months, C’s every 3 months and D’s every 6 months.
Master the Art of the Customer Business Review
The objective when meeting with these clients is to perform a Customer Business Review (CBR). During this meeting with the client, your representative will
- close out on any outstanding customer service issues
- recommend new products and services that the client would find helpful
- attempt to get connected to other parties within the buyer’s organization that could use your company’s help
The magic of conducting productive CBR meetings is in the preparation. To close out on any outstanding customer service issues, the person conducting the meeting will need to have researched your CRM to confirm if any exist and whether they were resolved.
If they are to recommend new products and services, they will need to know exactly which ones are currently being used by the customer, to what degree, and in what application. They will also need to know ordering patterns, total revenue generated, and payment history. Gathering this information requires access to your accounting software.
To deepen their connection base, your representative will need to understand who the players are they currently deal with and what their roles are. To probe for more applications for your products and services, they will need to strategize where they would like to be connected next.
These new connections may reside within the department you are currently in. On the other hand, they may be in other departments that you don’t currently service but could use your products and services. It may be that instead they are not within your client’s organization but are external to their company. Understanding who your client’s providers are may even lead to net new client acquisition opportunities.
When delivering on the sales coaching part of my consulting role I have worked with clients to help them create and streamline their “Land and Expand” process. As with most things, there are many nuances around this. If you would like to learn more so you can bring in easy money, I am happy to help. Please feel free to reach out at [email protected]