Cross-selling is a major challenge for many companies.
Bringing in new customers is expensive.
According to research by Bain & Company, it costs 6 to 7 times more to acquire a new customer than it does to retain an existing customer.
So why do so many companies still have untapped opportunities for growing existing accounts
and yet they find capturing those opportunities so difficult
and What is it that the successful cross-sellers do differently?
Here are our views..
1. Asking more Questions than their Competitors
Giving key people good sets of questions that will uncover opportunities
This rather than trying to get them to learn ALL about YOUR many services and their respective benefits
By doing this you force your team to be Interested in your clients businesses
This will feel really great for your clients
Your team will uncover buyers’ needs and drive demand for your existing services offerings.
After all there is No point asking a question about a service you don’t offer.
The most successful companies at cross-selling know where they provide value.
They discover what the customers issues are and they by asking questions create opportunities to connect the two.
2. Develop Strong Relationships up and down and across your clients organisation
Have objectives for account team members that measure how many relationships they’ve established
Viewing relationships as “our company to their organisation” as well as “me to my client.”
Develop deep relationships with their customers. That way when someone leaves the business still flows.
Your team are viewed by the clients as essential, Trusted and the “GoTo” people.
3. Have the Right Team and add to it if opportunities emerge
Once you discover an opportunity you need a great process for co-creating value with customers:
Successful Cross-sellers quickly assemble the right players on their team and work collaboratively with the client to construct new ways of delivering value.
High performers are much more likely to cite “creating team-based approaches” as effective for growing accounts.
4. Use Account Management Processes and Planning Tools
Having an effective strategic account planning tool and process is essential.
Develop the plan , execute the plan, review the plan and learn and repeat
5. Develop both Account Management Skills and Sales Skills
You will need strong sales skills somewhere on the team to be able to close the opportunities you create or your process and plan may fail
For many companies trying to adopt this approach may well mean an overhaul of culture and processes…
Maybe that’s perhaps why companies find cross selling so hard.
What do you think?