Your hard work, tenacity and superior professional selling skills have paid off, and you have finally secured Preferred Position at ABC client. Congratulations! Now what? What does a sales professional need to do to keep his/her coveted spot at the top of the customer’s resource list? Here are 3 Tips for Maintaining Preferred Position with customers:
Stay tuned in.
The only constant in this world is that nothing stays the same. The challenges your customers face today are different than the challenges they faced two or five years ago, and their landscape will be further altered two years down the road. It is imperative to stay in touch and hyper-aware of shifting circumstances and challenges that affect your customers and continually bring valued insights and solutions to address those challenges.
Network within the client organization.
It is in our nature as human beings to want to help others, and in our best interest to bring value to others in our own organization. A customer with whom you have secured Preferred Position is more likely to refer you to others in their organization if they see the benefit in doing so. Articulate with your customer contact the value you could bring to others in their organization and their central role in doing so. Successfully networking throughout the client organization creates more value for the client company, increased credibility and relationship health for your initial customer contact among his/her own team, and more business for you!
Never stop courting your customer.
In this respect, customer relationships are very similar to our personal relationships. Nobody likes to feel like they are being taken for granted, and we all like to feel appreciated and adored. We need to make our customers feel appreciated and adored. Every. Day. Doing so, in words and in actions, feeds and energizes the customer relationship and prevents it from withering on the vine.
After having worked so hard to secure Preferred Position, we can be tempted to rest on our laurels and enjoy the perks of the position. Resist that temptation! That would be like training toward a personal fitness goal and then stopping once you reach your goal. How long would your fitness last? Like any relationship, customer relationships require continual care and feeding (with valued insights and solutions) to stay strong and healthy.