So back to Retention. Who would think there are so many things to consider with trying to maintain the base you already have? But that is EXACTLY the problem most Agents have is understanding and managing the complexity of retention. You have to consider the Carrier's policies, you have to develope a tracking system if you don't have access to a system like Nautilus and you have to have a pro-active way to interact with your customers to maximize your efforts. And that is what I want to talk about today - the Yearly Review.
At MicroCorp because we are Master Agent who works with a wide range Agents, we have found the most successful Agents do a yearly reviews with their customers. Seriously if you are not doing this already - shame on you! Yearly reviews are essential for many reasons.
* First and foremost you have to keep the relationship with your customer. Out of sight out of mind is a basic sales stragety you need to live by. If you are out of the customer's sigtht, they forget about you and have no loyality to you.
* Secondly the yearly review helps you understand your customer's needs so you can help them maximize their annual spend. If you are saving your customers money or helping them get the most bang for their buck, you are more valuable to them. Just showing up every year to say "What can I sell you" does not breed much loyality.
* Thirdly UPSELL, UPSELL, UPSELL. How can you upsell a customer if you don't know what they have, what they need now and what they will be needing in 6 months to a year? Do they have or need a disaster recovery? Every customer needs some sort of fail over if their network or phone lines go down. How about wireless? Most companies cover the cost of management cellular service, some offer their employees a "company plan." Conference Calling- the hidden jewel. It still amazes me how many Agents walk away from conference calling because they think it is too complicated. I will save my thoughts about conference calling for a future blog......... It is that important.
* FOURTHLY the yearly review is the perfect time to discuss retention!!!! This helps eliminate the ackward call from you to your cusotmer to discuss retention if you already have a set schedule to meet yearly.
* Lastly, this meeting needs to have an pre-established agenda that is exactly the same with every customer to ensure you are leaving no stone unturned. The agenda should go something like this:
- Review current bills for usage
- Have they experiened any challenges or pain points over the past year.
- Bandwidth needs okay
- Network Monitory
- Growth or consolidation of offices
- Ask what are they doing for disaster recovery, confernce calling, wireless, co-location and hosting.
- Ask what other groups are using services like conference calling that many not be under this persons control.
- Discuss their goals for the coming year.