When it comes to business, client relationships are your most important asset. Your long term clients know who you are, understand your full scope of services, and know what you can do for their company. But what happens when a new generation of customers ladder up. Don’t assume they have been briefed on your great relationship or how you have come to their company’s rescue on more than one occasion.
In fact, even if they are aware of your company and its services, this next generation client might not value the company you are today or the way you present your services. They might seek a company with a more innovative approach. The truth is, when it comes to the next generation client – perception is reality.
Identifying and nurturing a new generation of customers is imperative and will require you to take action:
- Don’t assume your current contact will be there forever. Communicate your brand on an ongoing basis to relevant players in the department even those subordinate to your point of contact. You never know when they’ll move up.
- If a new player enters be sure to introduce your brand and services. Don’t assume they have been briefed on your company’s greatness.
- Connect with your new contacts on LinkedIn and if your company has an LI Group invite them to connect there as well. Follow their companies FB pages.
- Most importantly evaluate your brand every two years. If you haven’t evaluated your brand in the last 5 years you are on the verge of extinction. The next generation customer has a whole new set of values and needs that might not line-up with your company’s offering and brand.
- Conduct customer surveys and/or focus groups (be sure to include non-clients in this research)
- Afterwards, adjust operations and service offerings if needed
- Re-align your brand based on customer insights and retooled services
- Develop strategic messaging for each audience
Remember, if you don’t define who you are to your next generation client, your competitor will do it for you.