How many clients do you have?
How long has it been since you spoke to each of them?
How many have you lost to the competition in the past year?
How many calls have your clients received from your competitors this year?
How many 'client emergencies' have you had in the past year?
How many referrals have you received from clients in the past year?
Do these kind of questions keep you awake at night?
When I owned my business, I catered to smaller clients. Smaller clients can take almost as much time to 'sell' as larger clients, but there are benefits to building your practice with smaller clients.
- Whether you have 200 clients that pay you $1,000/year or 4 clients that pay you $50,000/year, yo
u'll have $200K/year. If you lose a $1,000 client, you might say, "Oh well." If you lose a $50K client, you've got a problem.
- Smaller clients have fewer resources. So, it's likely that they can't do what you can do as well as you can do it. It's also usually easier to have a more significant impact. (A $1,000,000 increase in sales to a billion dollar company may not be as significant as a $1,000,000 increase to a million dollar company.)
- Smaller clients tend to be more appreciative, more loyal and more open to refer.
However, not all small clients are equal especially if you have a menu of services or a client might need you multiple times a year. If you want to build your practice around small clients, it's important to streamline your sales process and set proper expectations, but that's not what this post is about. This post is about how to make sure that all of your clients are happy, referring and don't jump to the competition. Look at the table below. When I had my business, I knew that I needed 200 'paying' clients to make my number. I also knew that the 80/20 rule would apply. So, I divided my clients into A, B and C clients according to how much they paid me in a year. I knew that I had competition calling on my clients and that the competition probably called on my A clients more than my C clients because they saw more potential. So, I decided that I was going to 'touch' my A clients every week, my B clients every month and my C clients every quarter. Note also that I put 20% of my clients in A and the 80/20 rule suggested that they would represent 80% of my business (and it was always close). Likewise, my B clients would represent 16% of my business. So, I made 60 - 5 minute calls every week (5 hours total) to manage 200 clients. I got tons of referrals. I caught emergencies before they happened. My competitors never got a foot hold. Look at the table. You can do this.
If you have questions, want explanations on how to 'touch', need help sorting, A, B, C, etc. Contact me.