Last week I was meeting up with an acquaintance. He is a partner with one of the major accountancy firms in Europe. Among other things, we talked about how sales has changed over the last six years. It became apparent that his idea of sales development is; the process of getting more sales. On the surface, this is correct. But he didn’t realise that sales development is really much more than that. If he only wanted to increase sales, he could simply offer steep discounts, increase customer support or shorten delivery times. Unfortunately each of these options involve a loss of profit.
Last week I was traveling by train from Schiphol Airport back home to Amsterdam Central. The train was completely packed. The conductor was not able to pass through the aisles, that’s how crowded it was. The conductor did his job with passion and wit despite the circumstances and complaining passengers. He suggested to leave the doors shut and drive straight to Naarden-Bussum skipping the next five stops. His approach to Customer Retention, he said. Of course, leaving the doors closed and passing by the various stations is not the right way to handle the situation, but he did have a point. If you are able to hang on to your customer after the deal is done it’s much easier to sell to them again. You know them, they know you.