How to Succeed at Account Management
Are you doing everything you can to successfully manage your accounts? Great account management can be hard to visualize, especially if you’re trying to differentiate yourself from the customer service reps in your organization. Check out these tips from Jen Keul at leghtoninteractive.com on how to get the job done.
The Long Haul
The goal of account management is to keep the client happy. Don’t assume that clients are lazy and will continue paying you simply because they always have. Your competition is constantly pitching for their business and they could steal a customer if you’re not paying attention. That’s why your manager is telling you to think of yourself as a farmer instead of a hunter. Great account management is about relationship building and these relationships are built over time.
When you first take on an account and reach out to a customer, make sure they understand you’re building the relationship for the long term. Try to establish personal rapport by finding out what’s important to them through a casual question or two. Store that information in your CRM so you can refer to it later.
Good account managers take this concept one step further. They understand that a core part of the job is to sell the customer more. If you’re in the landscaping business, for example, you might also want to sell customers the seasonal services you’re providing, like core aeration.
They’re not going to be inclined to spend more money with you unless you’ve nurtured the relationship. Get to know the decision maker. If possible, talk with them when your team is on site mowing the lawn. Or, call and talk with them about how running their lawn sprinklers at certain times of day will benefit the health of their lawn. When you show your passion and knowledge on the topic, they’ll be intrigued by what you have to say.
When’s the last time you showed you cared about your client? If they’re obsessed with the lawn in the front of their house, make sure you do an excellent job of mowing and trimming that area. Leave them a personal note or voicemail explaining what you did so they’ll be sure to notice. Talk with them about what’s new in lawn care management when you’re not trying to sell them something.
When you excel at building relationships in account management, selling add-on services and products is much easier.