Look for New Customers or get more work from your existing Clients?

August 7, 2015

Many of our customers we support are small or medium businesses who often don’t have the infrastructure of a marketing or sales director for influence.

A repeat question I find myself discussing with our partners all over the country is increasing sales. Is it better to find new customers or diversify offerings that they can service to their existing customer base?

Sometimes this can be for growth or other times it can simply be that you have looked after the equipment so well that it is long lasting and this means that your regular work is drying up.

I’m no expert in any of the areas below but I do find it fascinating to discuss them and there is plentiful information online to further research the benefits of any of these.

More customers
Some might say “Jack of all trades, master of none”. With this in mind surely it’s just a case of sticking to what you are good at and getting more of it? I.e Automatic door repairs and installation.

The first area to start is to look at common traits of your existing clients. Type of companies, job roles, locations etc and see if there are any common patterns. Trust me it’s easier to find a customer when you know exactly who or what they are.

Time and time again, new customers tell suppliers ”I wish I had found you years ago”. They won’t use you if they don’t know who you are. So get out there and spread the word.

Common Practices include:

  • Cold Calling
  • PR
  • Social Media
  • Networking
  • Hiring More sales people
  • Emails or sales letters

In today’s modern business times, Sales and marketing of one’s small business is a requirement not a luxury.

The other argument is to keep your loyal customers happy with the same engineers in the same geography but try to sell them more product or services they already want. I mean, Why not ? They already trust you and know you can deliver your word.

There are lots of similar or related industries that often overlap or touch in our field. Shutters, Automatic Gates Access control. Intercoms, CCTV etc. etc... And without belittling these as they are in their own right professional fields of engineering; they are within your grasp with the correct investment, hiring and training.

Common Practices Include:

  • Strategic Partnerships with similar industries
  • Find new products at trade shows
  • Find training courses in the new fields
  • Ask what else your current suppliers can offer / Support you in
  • Look at your competitors - What services are they offering

My feeling is that diversification is potentially more risky than gaining more work in the same field, but who am I to say what’s correct? I have seen examples of companies excel with both strategies.

Feel free to drop me an email at any time or give me a call if you wish to chat through any further concepts on this