5 ways to stay in touch with your clients and sell more

October 3, 2006

In a perfect world, there are certain people that you want to stay close to. Your spouse or partner. Your accountant. Richard Branson. (Because he can buy you lots of cool swag and because he owns a tropical island) Alyssa Milano, Brooke Burke, Shania Twain, Halle Berry, Jessica Alba, Elizabeth Shue AND your clients. Yes, I love women AND we are operating within a perfect world so why not hang with Richard Branson? I also love my clients and this is the point of this article. I digress… Let’s get back to the real world.

In the world of business, there is one thing that you need to do and that’s make sales, but more importantly you need to keep your existing clients once you have them Your existing client base can be a revenue generator on many levels and can sometimes generate more than you can adequately handle. It’s a nice problem to have so let’s look at 5 ways that we can stay “top-of-mind” with our clients and sell more.

1. Ring-em, Buzz-em, or reach out and touch-em: Whatever you do, don’t “abracadabra, reach out and grab-em“. The first on the list is the most obvious but sadly, it’s NOT the most used. (Myself included) There is nothing more effective when trying to stay in contact with your clients and customers than to pick up the phone on a quarterly basis and just say “hi”. If you have hundreds of clients then pick the top 20 or 30 and do your best to show them the love. Call them, chat, pick their brain and take them out for some sushi and beer. It’ll do wonders for your relationship and cement them in for years to come as a trusted and devoted client. Staying in touch will also allow them to pick your brain on new initiatives, suggest referrals and it will allow you an open opportunity to upsell your services and turn that client or customer into an ongoing source of revenue.

2. Get them on the hit list! I’m not talking about hiring Tony Soprano to do a drive by or take them down to the meat market and twist they’re ankles. What you need to do is implement a permission marketing system. This can be a weekly or monthly advice column, special offer notices or targeted, personalized company news that allows you to stay in front of your clients on a regular basis. Nothing is more affordable and simple than implementing a system to send information to your clients and potential clients. The best part is, they’ve given you permission to send it! Just make sure that you DON’T abuse the relationship. Studies have shown that the more frequent a newsletter shows up in a customers inbox, the lower the open rate. Make it special. Make it timely. Make sure you send it when you really have something to say or offer. If you abuse the relationship enough, they’ll just unsubscribe and that will be the end of your opportunities.

3. Remember the U.S. postal service. Due to government postal regulations, postcards were a long time in developing. Prior to postcards came the lithograph print, woodcuts and broadsides. The direct ancestor seems to be the envelopes printed with pictures on them. The first postal type card in this country was a privately printed card copyrighted in 1861 by J.P. Carlton. This copyright was later transferred to H.L. Lipman. The “Lipman Postal Cards”, as we now call them, were on sale until replaced in 1873 by the U.S. Government Postals.

My point here is that a lot of time and effort has gone into allowing you to write a quick message on the back of a piece of cardboard and send it anywhere in the country for a few cents. Use this opportunity to write a personal note to your clients and thank them for their continued business and to stay top-of-mind. Even better, design a postcard that they will want to keep next to their desk and one that reminds them of you! Postcards are cheap to send and even cheaper to print. They’re personal and they have the ability to prompt a client to pick up the phone and call you! If they don’ call you, it gives you the open door to follow up with a call of your own. What more could you ask for? Send them to thank clients for meetings, to tell them about new services, to ask them out to lunch or just for the heck of it. It only takes a few minutes to write a quick note, stick a stamp on it and put it in the mailbox. I guarantee you’ll see results.

4. Lock yourself in the secret chamber! For those of us who type on a keyboard on a daily basis, it can sometimes be hard to go out and be social. I love to be social but I have to be in the right mood and I really have to try hard to make a date when I don’t HAVE to be at an event. That said, if you own a business and you can capitalize on your fellow local business opportunities, there is no better way than to get out there and go to chamber functions. You’ll meet new people and more importantly, you’ll get a free opportunity to sip beers and eat fatty foods with your current local customers. It’s easy to join, it’s affordable to join and there are a lot of perks to being a member. Just do it.

5. Information is king. I do a lot of reading and I come across a vast array of information on a daily basis covering many topics and industries. Whenever possible, try to think of your client base and send them an article that might benefit their business. More importantly, it will show that you care and that you’re thinking about the success of their business. Make sure you have an opportunity to type a quick note as to why you’re sending the message and use it as an opportunity to get a meeting – or better yet, use it as an opportunity to upsell your products during that meeting. Articles with statistics, professional advice and industry news and happenings that support the need for your products and services are a great way to take a potential client or an existing client to the next level or simply to stay top-of-mind when the need arises in the future.

I hope this list has helped you a little. I almost guarantee that if you start using these 5 ideas today that you’ll surely find yourself engaged with the most loyal clients and customers around.

Inspired by Instigator Blog’s Blog About 5 Things Week


2 Responses to “5 ways to stay in touch with your clients and sell more”

  1. That’s a solid list of recommendations. I think what most people forget is that it doesn’t take a ton of time to reach out to clients. It might feel like it sometimes, but if you can get a system rolling – quarterly pings, a monthly newsletter, etc. – with some automation and structure, it doesn’t take long, and you’ll benefit from the effort.

  2. […] 5 ways to stay in touch with your clients and sell more […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: