How do you build healthy relationships with clients? Do you work harder and harder to generate prospects, those initial inquiries about your company’s products and services? After all the content marketing, social media campaigns, networking, SEO and publishing, are you pouring resources into moving prospects through your funnel in the hopes they become customers or clients?
A better question is how hard do you work to build healthy relationships with current clients and customers to keep them happy and close to the company? Nurturing current clients and customers pays off handsomely compared to gambling on prospects.
70/30 Split of Business Development Resources
Whatever resources your company devotes to business development should be divided 70/30 with the 70% going to nurture current buyers. Yep, 70%!
Don’t guess about the 70%. Do a quick estimate of what’s in your business development bucket: actual dollars spent, plus time and energy devoted to business development.
Dollars spent: Include salaries and other compensation, plus all marketing collateral in every form.
Time spent marketing beyond the normal work week (networking, conferences, trade shows, other events). Calculate a dollar amount by multiplying this number by $200 per hour.
Energy spent on business development: those hours in the shower, running, commuting, and other times when you’re thinking about business development. Again, multiply by $200 per hour.
Add up all the numbers. This is the total in your business development bucket. Multiply it by 70%. That’s what you should be spending on nurturing and retaining current buyers.
This exercise helps you clearly see the plentiful resources you have for business development and helps you use them wisely.
Best Nurturing Practices to Create Evergreen Buyers
How should you spend your 70%?
- 4-message marketing mix. We designed a marketing campaign that uses your email platform. The plan includes 4 different messages, sent in sequence, one every three weeks. Briefly, the messages are “Appreciation,” “Why Stay?,” “Top of Mind” and “Create Demand.” You can download our Evergreen Client System to get every detail. This campaign uses about 15% of your business development bucket.
- Client appreciation events. Where buyers are in proximity to each other, you can invite them to events such as breakfasts or cocktail hours, sporting events, or festivals. These must be NON-selling events. Hold 2 or 3 per year. Use about 60% of your business development bucket for these.
- Face to face. There are no better ways to nurture your best buyers than by giving your time over a meal or other activity. Golf is a traditional opportunity; if you and your buyer share another sport or hobby, invite them for that. These face to face events will take the remaining 30% of your business development bucket.
You simply can’t spend your business development bucket funds better than with a combination of these three nurturing and retention best practices.
Beyond Your Buyers
An amazing and valuable additional benefit of these nurturing best practices is that they cause your buyers to refer their family, friends, and colleagues to you. No pressure referral tactics and no special effort you have to make. By keeping close to your buyers, your company will be top of mind whenever someone they know needs what you offer.
You can calculate your business development bucket right now and allocate 70% to nurturing to create evergreen clients and customers.
- You can block off three hours this week to write the 16 brief messages for your 4-message marketing mix and schedule them for the coming year.
- Then start planning one client appreciation event for May or June and make a couple of calls for face to face meetings.
Clients and customers may do business with people they like. They definitely do business with companies who demonstrate how much they like them. Be that company and you’ll reduce the pressure to convert leads into buyers.
Need guidance? Download our Evergreen Client System to start. Get help to plan your one-year Nurturing campaign by giving us a call. 703-801-0345.