How can you make ‘dumping’ a client a positive experience AND create value?
BEFORE you ‘let go’ of a client, you need to:
- Identify the market you want to dominate
- Profile your ideal client and the problems you are going to solve for them
- Classify your clients – A-Class clients are those that you want to work with (those clients who ‘get you’, are profitable and refer you), B-Class clients who you need to work with to become A-Class clients, and D-Class clients (who tend to take up 80% of your time for 20% of the profit!) who you need to Dump.
Read our article – Getting Better Results Thanks To Better Clients
- Develop a plan to ‘let go’ of your D-Class clients
Now that you have identified exactly the type of client you want to work with, how do you say no to current or prospective clients that do not ‘fit’ into the market you want to dominate.
First of all, you need to do research
For example, if you are a plumber and you have identified that the market you want to dominate is new construction and high end renovations and you want to ‘let go’ of real estate maintenance. You may already know of another plumber who loves working with property managers and does an excellent job and you would be happy to refer them to any business. If not, ask around to find out who other tradies/suppliers would recommend. Then, do your own due diligence (whether this is a business you already know or one that has been referred to you) to make sure that the business is customer focussed and aligns with your company values. Don’t forget when you are referring another business this is your reputation on the line!
Secondly, approach the business regarding developing a referral relationship
Contact the business owner and make an appointment to discuss a potential cross-referral. At the appointment, explain that you have decided to focus on new construction & high end renovations and no longer wish to work in real estate maintenance and your research has indicated that they are the ‘go to guys’ in this area. Explain that you will refer all of your current clients (or any new prospects) to them. At this point you may want to discuss cross-referral or a structured referral program, but we would suggest working with each other for 3-6 months and then see how it goes. Put any agreement in writing and both sign off on it.
Thirdly, advise current clients
Make an appointment with your clients, explain the situation, that you are no longer working in real estate maintenance, but can highly recommend (due to exhaustive research/your experience) the new plumber. Advise you will follow up with an email with their contact details and copy in the new plumber. Make sure that you do this.
Fourth, follow up
As outlined above, referring other business puts your reputation on the line, so follow up with the client in 3 months to ensure they are receiving the best possible service from the new supplier. This is A-Game!
This way, you have:
- Created a valuable relationship with a new plumber that may refer business to you
- Confirmed in your client’s mind the value that you bring and that you have their best interests in mind – resulting in possible future referrals
- Created positivity around the whole experience
Power Up Your Business!
For any assistance in ‘dominating your market’ and ‘building your brand’ contact us on:
02 8011 4855