Account management is one of the key aspects for a services company’s growth & profit enhancement. Account management has moved from just being an extension of sales and retention, to more of a strategic function that requires abilities such as understanding your organization’s business priorities, developing solutions jointly with your customers & managing relationships. It is a responsibility to continuously create a valuable engagement for your organization and the customer.
It’s not just about sealing the deal & developing the product for your customer. It should be a smooth journey with your customer, from the initial phase of product discussion to product launch, sometimes going an extra mile to do what they’re not expecting. An account’s capacity to do business with you, comes from the customer’s growth & from your contribution in helping them win.
So how do you make the journey engaging and valuable?
Listen to their story.
Understand your customer’s short term & long term objectives & lead their thought process.
Give them some benchmarks.
Research on their competitors and share the positives & deltas with the clients. This illustrates your intent to help them build a sustainable product. Also, builds the trust factor.
Give time and attention.
Invest time in engaging with your customers. Keep in touch with them on a regular basis, throughout the journey. Just by proactively asking – “hey, how is it going?”, is often the most valuable thing you can offer.
Provide thought leadership.
Bring to the table innovative ways of solving the problem, whether or not it needs technology & help in maturing their offering.
Keep them engaged.
Involve your customer pro-actively from planning to execution, share updates, get feedback and keep them productively engaged in conversations.
Deliver on time.
Focus on delivering their product on time to ensure your customer is able to take it to market effectively as per their plans.
Check market feedback.
Stay in touch with your customer to gain feedback from the market, how users have used the product and how your customer sees it evolving.
Being genuinely interested in your customers’ growth and productively engaging with them is key to account management and you know you’re heading right when your customers refer your business to friendlies.
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