Sales management and compensation plans often make it easy to ignore small customers. After all, the best returns come from the largest customers, right? Small customers are too small to need managing, right?
According to Jonathan Bein in Making Money with Small Customers, that way of thinking could be leaving a lot of money on the table. If acquired and serviced in the right ways, the results could actually lift net profit more than 50 percent, he says.
That doesn’t mean distributors should send out field sales reps to every account – that’s just not a sensible approach to servicing this group of customers. But distributors should consider adopting a strategy that includes a focus on making sure needs of these customers are met.
Bein says there are three main channels that are cost-effective for selling to mid-market and small accounts:
- Functional, easy-to-use e-commerce sites
- Proactive outbound inside sales teams
- Direct response marketing programs, including print and electronic touch points
Most people know that sales can’t be a “one size fits all” endeavor. But at the same time, it’s important to make sure you’re not leaving money on the table by approaching it that way.
Improving the returns on small customers can also be approached through price improvement and reducing cost-to-serve. Read how in Making Money with Small Customers.