International Door & Operator Industry

JUL-AUG 2015

Garage door industry magazine for garage door dealers, garage door manufacturers, garage door distributors, garage door installers, loading docks, garage door operators and openers, gates, and tools for the door industry.

Issue link: https://idoi.epubxp.com/i/554129

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One of the most frequent questions we are asked is, "What's the best way to grow my sales?" My answer is always the same, the best and fastest way to increase sales is to sell more to the customers you already have. I have long advocated that the best customers you can get are the ones you already have. Basically, there are three ways to increase sales from your customer base. 1. Get more customers. 2. Get current customers to buy more often. 3. Get customers to increase their order size. When it comes to growing your sales, I will agree that adding new customers is important, however maximizing the sales potential from your existing customers is faster, more economical and often at better proft margins. So I believe that 2 and 3 are where you should start. Okay, let's say you agree for now. Your next question is probably, "Where do I start?" The answer is to start with the incredibly valuable, often untapped, database of customers already in your computer system. We call this "mining for gold". Effectively you are extracting selected customers from your list, looking for trends and possible fts for new products and services you could offer them. Essentially "mining" your customer database, looking for treasure in that magic box we call a computer. It's Cheaper to Keep 'Em Ben Franklin's age-old saying, "a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush" applies to comparing the cost of developing new customers to retaining and selling more to current ones. It is widely agreed SALES&MARKETING Continued on page 30 by Dan Apple that it costs companies 5-7 times more to recruit new clients than fnding new ways to hold onto those you already have. To add new customers your marketing costs rise quickly. Advertising, sales staff, administrative support, transportation and other expenses incurred to canvass for new customers can get pricey in a hurry. What does it cost you to maintain a customer that you've already paid to acquire? Very little, comparatively. "Forbe's" magazine recently reported that 80% of your company's future revenue will come from 20% of your existing customers. CRM The concept of selling more to the same customers is not new. It's been known as relationship selling, repeat business development, customer retention marketing and the like. Today it is called Customer Relationship Marketing or CRM. Google this term and you will fnd tons of information about how to do it, when to do it and who to do it with. CRM combines technology with marketing, sales, customer service and public relations. The idea is to build long-term relationships with your customers to keep them buying for life. By forming a more personal relationship supported by high quality products and service, you'll give them no reason to look elsewhere. The trick is to anticipate their needs before they know they need it. Top companies all do this. From tech giants like Apple and Comcast to beverage producers like Coca-Cola and Starbucks. They all want to make your experience more intimate, more personal while constantly proposing new products and services for you to purchase from them. V O L U M E 4 8 I S S U E 4 A U G U S T 2 0 1 5 29

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