Looking up over his drink, Paul smiled ruefully. “It is just tough luck, I guess” he declared to Carl, his friend and senior in Business School. They were discussing their sales careers. “I would have so loved to have got institutional sales, Carl” Paul explained, “I chose supply chain and finance as electives so that I could get to manage a client portfolio of key accounts for a large company. After a year of on job training, my company assigns me to mid-corporates. That’s just a nice word for sundry and all!” Carl nodded in empathy. “Look at the positive side Paul”, he reasoned with his friend “Big accounts aren’t always a breeze. Think of the longer sales cycles, the frequent and cumbersome requests for proposals and the gaping holes they punch into your quotas when they fall through. Mid might be a good way to start”
Paul wouldn’t agree. “Most of my Customers account for a measly 3% to 5% of my annual sales and my plate is overflowing with them. How do I succeed with this kind of a Customer portfolio?”. Carl responded “From what I have seen of sales in these 5 years, I have found that many seasoned sales professionals make a big impact even with not so large accounts. Would you like to learn 4 hot tips that a senior in my company shared?”
Any guess what they are?
4 easy to implement tips for a big impact with mid-sized accounts
There are 2 distinct benefits of selling to mid sized accounts that will help you see them for the gold mine they are:
- Most Customers in this category work with a one year time horizon – This makes it much easier to take care of margins per customer
- Total purchases are split by such Customers between a pool of vendors – Current volumes are therefore not hard to defend and improve
You can leverage the growth and revenue potential and sell more products per Customer to your mid sized clients by making them come back to you. This can be done with a framework of 4 easy to implement tips:
- Analyse and understand where you stand with each Customer – What is our present status?
- Be aware and alive to your present way of working with every Customer – How do we usually deal with this Customer?
- On a planning horizon of 3 to 5 months decide what are your strategic result objectives – Where do we want to be in this account?
- Within that same time horizon, identify the strategic effort objectives with the Customer – What will we do get there? What competitive tactics will we use?
These 4 tips, diligently implemented, will draw existing Customers back to you in droves. You will make a huge impact with mid sized accounts as you watch your re-buy and range-sales grow exponentially. You can access a ready-to-use bank of options in putting these elements to work available in the Mercuri Insight document on Are your existing Customers coming back to you in enough numbers? here
Now you know the framework that Chris wanted to share with Paul.