Don’t take existing customers for granted

A few years back, one of our clients said to me: “I have a management meeting next week. What do you think is the best way to show how our website performance is improving?” Now, you don’t need to have been working in business long to know that the question “What do you think is the best way?”, not followed by a list of options, is shorthand for “help – I don’t know any way”. So I took a look at the company’s Google Analytics and uncovered a couple of impressive trends, which (if I recall correctly) were steadily increasing search engine traffic and a good rise in “quality” visitors. I assume the reports proved useful in the subsequent meeting, and I’ve regularly provided this sort of help to clients ever since.

Of course, our clients don’t pay us to provide services such as looking at their website traffic, they pay us to run Google AdWords campaigns. That’s what we do. But if we can offer help “over and above”, especially in related fields, then we’re always happy to do so. We now have a whole string of free add-on services on offer, such as our brilliant landing page generator, our weekly Google Competitor Performance report and more. Sure, they cost us money and effort, but we’re providing something which the client wouldn’t get if they didn’t use us, so it’s an investment in customer retention which easily pays for itself.

Commercial over, my point is that have you asked yourself if you’re offering existing customers enough to differentiate your company from the competition? It’s an area which it’s all to easy to cut back on, yet there was a reason why you once sent out unexpected corporate gifts or ran an annual golf day. Good sales managers don’t take existing customers for granted, and consider retaining them to be as valuable as getting new ones. That means they need an equivalent investment.

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