For all of us in sales, it’s all about now. Making this month’s/quarter’s numbers. While there’s nothing wrong with this, we all need to step back and look at the total value of a customer. We need to realize, that even though we got this sale, it doesn’t guarantee the next one.
I know most manufacturers sell through distribution networks and often you don’t know who the actual end users are. But for those of you who offer something other than consumables, there are ways, e.g., warranty cards, that will give you access to the user and related products.
So what are you doing about keeping that lifetime customer? First of all, we need to not take advantage of or assume that all future orders are a lock for you. Remember, they do have other choices.
We need to have the mindset to earn every piece of future business. What can you do to foster and nurture those customer relationships so when the next purchase opportunity comes up, we have the advantage?
Here are some post sale things to think about:
- Follow-up with them to see how they liked the product (first-time buyers) and did it perform like they expected? If not, resolve the problem or take back the product. Ask them to rate the product online.
- Keep in contact with them via email. Touching base on industry issues or giving them a sneak peek at a new product coming out.
- Help them find solutions to make their job easier, even if it doesn’t include your product for that application.
By engaging with the customer, you’re building the three key factors of know, like and trust that will give you the edge next time.