When discussing Key Account Management (KAM) and the benefits it provides for both your clients and your organization, we usually focus on the smaller picture of the day-to-day responsibilities of key account managers themselves. While it is the key account managers that will do a lot of the leg-work, the people higher up including the CEO and senior executive of the company care a great deal about KAM as well.
While CEOs and senior executives aren’t down on the front lines of account management in the cubicles connecting with customers every day, they call the shots when it comes to the direction of your organization and must report to shareholders each year. KAM systems and practices are a small but essential component of the end of year report so key account managers must make sure that all relationships are successful and also viable for the future.
In this post, we’ll discuss the various reasons that your CEO cares about the key account management process in your business and what you can do to ensure that they are pleased with your results.
Big Customers = Bigger Revenues
Your CEO will likely be more concerned with the most significant accounts that your company has as the smaller ones are better suited for individual attention of account managers. Smaller accounts can be described as blossoming relationships that haven’t reaped all of their potential benefits while the key accounts could be long term customers that have brought in significant amounts of revenue over the years.
The 80/20 rule describes this perfectly, as the more significant clients will be the 20% that could potentially bring in 80% of the total revenue. Because of this, CEOs and executives will want to ensure that essential clients and key accounts are taken care of, and the relationship is nourished efficiently and developed to its fullest potential.
Longer-Term Customers = Higher Profits
Maintaining mutually beneficial relationships with old customers is crucial to your company’s success. They say that it’s cheaper to sell to an existing customer than to find a new one and KAM is primarily based on this common sales adage. Additionally, old customers will be more likely to purchase premium services and products from your company because of the long-standing positive relationship and their great experience with your other services and products in the past.
Customer Retention Leads to Faster Growth
If your company is experiencing a high churn rate, your growth will be severely limited. Retaining as many customers as possible and providing them with top-notch services will ensure that your organization’s client base is consistently expanding. While it is essential to focus on the most significant, most valuable clients, also pay attention to new customers that work with your business and work to make sure that a positive relationship is built with them through continuous relationship management and an accurate determination of their needs form the start.
Increased Customer Satisfaction Leads to More Referrals
When you love a restaurant, or have a positive experience with a retailer, you tell people about it. The same is true for any company, and when you keep existing clients happy, they’re more likely to become powerful advocates for your services and products. In your KAM efforts, always strive to provide each customer (especially key accounts) with an experience that none of your competitors can match, and services they can’t find elsewhere. If your services and products are extraordinary, your clients are bound to spread the word.
Make Sure Your CEO is Prepared
Have you ever walked into a meeting anticipating one agenda, only to find the discussion to take a turn for the unexpected, leaving you unprepared and floundering to find answers? If you have, you know how embarrassing it can feel and how unproductive it is as well. For those reasons alone, you shouldn’t subject your CEO to the same unfortunate experience! Chances are, your CEO will personally meet with the most important clients during the quarterly business review meetings a few times a year, and you want to ensure that they are well-prepared for the meeting.
One of the best ways to ensure that your CEO is updated with the latest data on the customer’s expectations, problems, and needs is to provide them with the information you gathered from your Voice of Customer (VOC) interview.
Voice of Customer Interview
Conducting a Voice of Customer interview will ensure that your CEO is up-to-date with the account’s goals for the future and their current satisfaction with your business’s services. What makes Voice of Customer unique is that it doesn’t rely on hindsight to formulate a strategy but instead is proactive in identifying customer’s expectations and future goals, allowing account managers to remain flexible in their relationship management activities.
In short, VOC is essential to the success of your relationships with key accounts and provides the data necessary to ensure that clients are satisfied with your products and services while helping account managers anticipate the trends and needs of their accounts before they occur. For more information about VOC, take a look at our article where we discuss the differences between Voice of Customer and traditional customer surveys along with the unique benefits of VOC for any service-based organization.
There are many surprises that account managers will encounter while working with clients, and a lot can happen in 90 days. If you aren’t consistently connecting with key accounts on a regular basis, you might be surprised to find new problems arise, or worse, they’ve left for a different vendor altogether! Your CEO cares immensely about KAM concerning avoiding unnecessary surprises that could be hurting your business, giving account managers more reason to adopt a continuous relationship management system.
How Kapta Can Help
Kapta provides an automated solution for Key Account Management, with the tools necessary to build and maintain mutually beneficial relationships with all of your clients. As mentioned above, the VOC feature is especially useful for your CEO before meeting with key accounts. Automation saves time while allowing key account managers to focus on the personal attributes that make the relationships successful. Click to request a free demo of Kapta.