Industry research reveals that it costs 7x more
to acquire a new customer than it does to retain an existing one. Additionally, a 5% growth in customer retention can increase profits up to 125%. Your current customer base is your business’ biggest asset. But, still, you could be failing to capture new revenue opportunities. This problem can be fixed through “expand” selling tactics. Expanding selling means finding ways to increase the lifetime value of your customers by helping them reach their business outcomes.
Unlike subscription renewal sales, upsell and cross-sell opportunities (i.e., expand sales) aren’t timeline based. Rather, they’re a function of understanding when a customer is approaching full utilization capacity or there’s a new product or feature that aligns with their business goals. These expand sales can happen any time there’s a customer need.
Where expand sales opportunities start
Customers don’t always tell you when they’re ready for new products or services, but there are various data points that do reveal expand sales opportunities.
- Consumption data. Understanding customers’ product consumption trends (e.g., when, where and how often they buy) may create an opportunity to convince them when it’s the right time to buy.
- Routine reviews. Regular business reviews with customers helps identify the need for new products and services.
- IT health monitoring. Partners can achieve new sales opportunities — and higher retention rates — by actively monitoring customers’ IT environments, tracking net promotor scores and driving proactive engagements.
- CRM. Besides your RMM (remote monitoring and management) repository, your PSA (professional services automation) tool, which includes CRM, purchasing, and marketing automation data can reveal a wealth of information.
High touch and low touch cross-selling resources
Cisco and Ingram Micro offer a wide variety of resources to help partners identify upsell and cross-sell opportunities that complement their growing services businesses. Here are two resources to consider — one to help with presales (high touch) and one for post sales (low touch).
- Cisco IMPACT. Channel partners have seen hardware sales stagnate in the last decade, and we’ve witnessed the rise of enterprise software, SaaS, and hybrid cloud. This new breed of value-driven business outcome solutions is changing the dynamics of the market. We’ve developed a partner sales training initiative that will help your sales team focus on your clients’ digital journey, becoming a trusted advisor, and enhancing business acumen skills called IMPACT. This business outcome selling program will ensure Cisco partners learn how to develop new line-of-business relationships, understand the benefits of leveraging the Cisco ecosystem, and understand your customers’ financials. The program comprises three parts:
- Digitization. The required pre-work videos in this part help partners understand the fundamentals of the Cisco DNA (digital network architecture) as well as the impact of digitization and how to have business outcome conversations.
- Line of business. This component helps partners identify and profile the key LOB executives and to create a stakeholder engagement plan.
- Financial profile. The final part of IMPACT training is designed to help partners analyze customers’ business and financial information, understand key financial metrics and represent yourself as a trusted advisor.
- Cisco Lifecycle Advantage. After an initial sale, Cisco Lifecycle Advantage (LCA) is an excellent tool to help partners with post-sales upsell and cross-sell opportunities. Using a combination of Cisco and partner data, LCA automatically sends personalized cobranded messages at key milestones over the life of a customer’s purchase. By contacting customers with relevant information about solutions they own at the appropriate time, they’re more likely to realize the full value out of their investment and become more loyal. Automated notifications include:
- A second chance at attaching services
- Onboarding information
- Adoption of key features they may not be using
- Recommendations for additional solutions that are relevant to them
- Reminders of expiring contracts and subscriptions
- Refresh notifications when products near end of life.
Cisco Lifecycle Advantage makes it easier for partners to digitally manage customer relationships and develop in-depth customer engagements, maximizing the value customers receive from their solutions and the revenue that partners earn. To sign up for the program, visit Cisco Lifecycle Advantage
, and a business development manager will contact you.