The customer portfolio is a living organism that is constantly changing. You can't think of it as something static - as if the indicator you work on today needs to be worked on forever.
Have you ever caught yourself thinking of ways to organise your team's client portfolio efficiently?
It throws the new customer to a salesperson, changes the attendance of the customer who stopped buying, takes the list of one and passes it on to the others, distributes customers when the salesperson goes on holiday... There are so many situations and questions on this subject. Well, let's get to it. For an efficient client portfolio management you basically need
- Create an action plan.
- Determine an external agent.
- Always evaluate.
What characterises each type of customer? Make it clear what an active customer is (in terms of time and frequency of purchase), what a pre-inactive and an inactive one is. Also what is a prospect, etc.
More important than the number of customers you have, is the way in which you organise them to make the most of each one's particular potential. After all, what good is a salesperson's portfolio if he or she is unable to attend to customers with the necessary frequency and attention? A portfolio that is too big will result in dissatisfied customers, unmotivated salespeople and a drop in sales.
Portfolio management is important precisely because it helps your company recover in time customers who are no longer buying. To do this, you need to create a plan about what kind of action to take when the customer starts to become inactive.
Who will contact him? What communication will you make with this customer?
Whose responsibility is it to look after the customer portfolio? The salesperson's? The manager's?
Both, in fact! However, it is the manager's role to closely monitor the movement of customers and encourage salespeople to pay attention to those who are no longer buying.
In most cases, the salesperson alone will not follow up closely and call the customer who has stopped buying - he will prefer to give attention to those who are buying.
When focusing on the goal of positivation of the customer portfolio, many salespeople can end up worrying only about the quantity, forgetting the quality of sales. As a result, they may even sell a lot, but they are orders that generate low sales and even lose good opportunities. In addition, it is necessary to ensure the service of all customers in their different types of phase in the portfolio.
We made a short video talking more about servicing the portfolio based on each client's potential and stage. Click here and watch it.
How many customers do you have at each stage of the portfolio? That is, how many are in:
- In pre-inactivity?
Each phase demands a group of variables to be analysed to set up a sales plan with a commercial route or a contact agenda, and the service for each client is different in each phase. A client in the "Prospecting" phase is different from an Active client, in relation to priority, time spent with the client, etc...
Know that 80% of cases of positivation rupture occur for 2 main reasons: Default, or the salesperson was not there to visit (was not attended within the desired standard)
3) Create an action plan
Knowing how many customers fall within each of these levels, do the following: separate A, B and C customers by volume or by profitability (if this is the most interesting indicator for your company) and make a three-dimensional reading of the portfolio.
Remember: a C customer inactivating is one thing, an A customer, is another. You need a different posture for each customer profile. If the A is to inactivate, for example, the director can enter the scene. After all, he has to understand what is happening. In other words, that is one action plan. For B clients you will have another action plan and for C clients one more.
It is not only with new customers that your company can increase its sales. Making better use of the opportunities your existing customers present, selling more to them, is also an excellent way to improve your profitability.
The action plan usually defines frequency of contact and communication channel. How will I deal with this customer?
- Will it be by e-mail?
- By letter?
- By telephone?
- Will it be a personal visit?
- How often will we communicate?
- What will be covered in each contact?
- What is the objective of each contact?
Organise this information and create a routine, a pattern. This will make the process of customer portfolio management much more natural and productive.
But watch out! Without a sales plan updated every day, generating a new route or a new service schedule for the internal salesperson, they will not be able to guarantee a constant, high quality standard of customer service. It is humanly impossible.
Below a video of our CEO talking about this subject and how we use A.I. to do all this planning on a daily basis.
4) Determine an external agent
It could be one person or one department responsible for keeping track of all this information and making the action plan work.
You need to create a structure that does this management for your salespeople. After all, if you leave this management to the salespeople and you have a team with 20 professionals, you will have 20 different ways to manage portfolio.
A well-done standardisation helps to improve your results. Bet on it!
Thanks to technological advances you can count on an arsenal of tools to help you with reports, but reports and analysis do not solve problems. For example, GoVendas' Artificial Intelligence, which analyses each customer in the portfolio to set up an action plan for the salesperson: who to visit (or contact), when and what product mix to offer with the greatest sales potential, every day automatically.
Have a monthly or quarterly evaluation of results, to say what is working, what is not and what can be improved. These are periodic review and improvement meetings so that the process always evolves.
It is very important to make this work with a lot of discipline. Management depends on discipline. And you really start to manage by indicators. More objective, less subjective. If you do that, you have a portfolio management that is already very advanced compared to what people do today.
Remember: The secret to true success may lie in the courage to change.