When you’re in charge of managing accounts, annual renewals loom large on the horizon. Not every account manager has renewals that take place on December 31. But this is a perfect time of year to think about how to manage your renewals in the next 12 months.
Staying in Touch
Andres Lares, writing for SellingPower, counsels account reps to stay in touch with clients throughout the year. It’s always a good idea to track details in your CRM. Has the client scored a big sales success because of the way they used your product or service? Make sure to note that. Has the client mentioned they might want to spend more money in the future to upgrade to the next level with you? That’s another detail you won’t want to forget.
Three Months Prior to Renewals
You can use a calendar system to remind yourself about 90 days in advance of a renewal. When you reach that point, it’s time to shift away from your usual check-in discussions.
You’ll want to talk about how the client is using your product or service and what they like best. Ask if they have key milestones coming up and how you can help them achieve their goals. Once you have information about the key benefit from their perspective, you’re in a good position. That’s because you can help them envision the future, one that includes continuing to use your product.
Personalize the Renewal Document
Don’t just send out a contract. That’s not personal enough. And a contract doesn’t allow you to tout the strengths and positivity of your ongoing relationship. Take a couple of weeks to put together a renewal package. Point out how their partnership with you benefits them. The more personalized this package is, the better. And if you talk with them about the package, you’ll have the opportunity to point out important details that they might gloss over.
These kinds of discussions can also segue into the possibility of selling an upgrade. If you’ve recently added on to your product or service, you can talk about those benefits too. And that positioning should be aimed at showing the prospect how they’ll improve their bottom line by taking advantage of an upgrade.
Use the account renewal period to strengthen your relationship with your accounts. This strategy will be more rewarding and lucrative than having to start looking for new clients.