FIRST IMPRESSIONS COUNT: If you create a great customer onboarding experience, you more than likely will have a great customer.
When working with companies, I put a great deal of emphasis in this area. I think doing it well creates growth opportunities and doing it poorly is a significant hindrance to growth. If we create that experience it creates more opportunity and an easy job to address what I call the 5 Rs of Growth:
- Retain: We all know keeping a customer is less expensive than acquiring new.
- Renew: This is a little different than retain since we have to be still solving customer’s problem. Do we have an ongoing active relationship and a reason to continue to use us.
- Regain: We have invested a great deal of effort in lost customers and prospects. A “no” given at one time may not be a “no” at another time.
- Resell: The easiest people to sell is someone that already has purchased.
- Refer: This is the easiest path to acquire a new client.
This seems fairly easy to understand and most immediately grasp the idea. However, there is another underlying theme to this exercise. The idea stems from my work in what I call the Funnel of Opportunity. Always working from the known to unknown. The simple premise is that marketing is much easier when we start with our customers.
More than likely, key accounts have been properly onboarded, and participants in at least 4 of the 5Rs of growth. We probably do not have to regain key accounts. However other customers are at various stages in each of the 5Rs. We create sales and marketing opportunities and collateral to meet their needs. This material is targeted and relevant to these people and organizations. We know their roles, positions, etc. If we complete this effort, I can assure that you will have most of your marketing material and needed knowledge to pursue new prospects.
The simple fact is that if we get onboarding right….growth becomes much easier.
The greatest growth opportunities are on the edges of the use of our product/services. Or, on the edges of the 5Rs of Growth. If we make a concentrated effort to identify and participate in relevant knowledge flows on the edges of these 5Rs, we will envision tomorrow’s best product or service being used in our customer’s future. It creates far-reaching possibilities. It is this type of thinking of our customer’s business, the edges of their business, the edges of the 5Rs that is needed for growth.