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How focusing on your key accounts could be losing you business

Forrest Marketing Group Blog blog

How focusing on your key accounts could be losing you business

It’s tough to be all things to all people. As a business it’s so important to be ambitious and focused on future success, making sure you land the clients that will allow your business to grow. Recent times have been challenging for businesses in all sectors, so your salespeople can be forgiven for focusing their efforts on your big clients, the ones who spend a lot and order frequently – these are the high value deals that they feel will help keep the lights on. But what about your smaller customers, those that buy less frequently and spend less with you? They may appear to be small and lower value accounts when you look at them as individual customers, but as a group they can represent as much as 60% of your total sales revenue.

So, how do you give them the same attention as your large clients? Maybe they haven’t heard from you in a while?  Perhaps they have an Account Manager in ‘name only’. Sure, if they call in you have a contact within your business that will take care of them then. But does their ‘Account Manager’ really have the time to ensure they have an optimum experience with your business? Do they have time to delve deeper to uncover what your share of wallet is (maybe they are a big company that is only placing a small amount of their total spend with you, the rest going to your competitor)?  Are there any upsell and cross-sell opportunities?  Do your team have the time to uncover and follow these opportunities up?

For many companies it’s just not realistic to provide attentive account management to thousands of smaller customers, especially when they appear to be low value accounts. But as a group they can have a big impact on your revenue and your reputation. Plus, some of those smaller accounts may be companies on their own growth journey and attentive account management could mean you remain their provider of choice as they grow into a Tier 1 account.

Attention can unlock opportunities

 Just because a customer is only spending a small amount with you, doesn’t always mean that they are a small account – they may be only buying 10% of their total spend with you, buying everything else from one of your competitors. We ran a campaign for a client where we uncovered three accounts that were worth over $1 million in annual sales, but whom our client thought were accounts that was worth less than $20,000 each per year.  How many of those do you need to completely change your sales results and make you the hero of your organisation?

By talking to and engaging with your smaller customers, you will also come to understand them and to know which ones have the potential to spend (a lot) more with you.  You’ll also learn how you could tailor your products or services to the needs of smaller accounts. This is valuable information you can reinvest in strategies that focus on increasing your market share with businesses of their size. But you won’t know any of this if you’re not talking to these customers.

While your in-house sales team may be able to handle inbound enquiries and manage your larger accounts, reaching out to what is often a large segment of your customer base could prove labour-intensive.  It might also steal their focus away from larger clients and new business projects. You need to protect their time and expertise too, so they have the headspace to do their day jobs.

However, treating the account management of your small accounts as a project in its own right will pay significant dividends and one way you can do this is to outsource this activity. An outsourced partner with experienced salespeople will get up to speed quickly; they employ talented salespeople who will be very confident in representing your brand and interpreting your brief. And they look after all of this work for you, while your sales team remain focused on your key accounts.

A strategy for success

It takes a well-designed, collaborative approach to make projects like these a success. Done well, you will free up your in-house sales team to focus on key accounts while reinvigorating another huge revenue stream and helping you increase market share and customer loyalty.

We can help you create a winning strategy to reconnect with your smaller customers, which will add immediate value to your current sales figures. Here’s how:

  • We work closely with you to really understand your business and to create an approach that aligns with your objectives and resonates with your target market.
  • We’re experienced in developing sales messaging that reflects brand values and hits the right note with your customers, and we have the track record to prove it.
  • We can help you segment your existing customer database and identify the right companies and decision makers to contact.
  • We can confidently lead briefings with your operations teams to guide them through best practice to achieve the most profitable campaign strategy.
  • Our team will call through your list of customers, engaging with them, reactivating relationships and uncovering new opportunities that you didn’t know were there.
  • We provide transparent campaign tracking and reporting and regularly review activities based on outcomes at regular touch points.
  • And you can be assured that you are being represented by highly trained sales talent that have successfully secured millions of dollars in pipeline for leading brands.

If you’d like to know more about making this a reality, call us on: 1300 396 888 or email

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