So you have a long list of clients – that’s great – but how many on that list are really clients? And how do you find out?
Step 1: Take your list of clients and check to see who has ordered from you:
- This month;
- This quarter;
- In the last 12 months.
These are your Active Clients – so how many do you really have?
Step 2: Now take a look at the rest of the clients – these are your Inactive Clients.
Why! You need to ask yourself the following:
- When did I / we last speak to this company?
- Is the company still there?
- Is my contact still there?
- Are they ordering from my competitors?
If the answer to any or all of these is ‘I don’t know’, you need to data cleanse – check and update your contacts.
Step 3: Data Cleansing – How to do it!
- Ensure all your data is recorded in a uniform way and in one place e.g. a CRM System (Customer Relationship Management system) that can be easily updated going forward, by everyone in the company.
- Start calling your Inactive Clients:
- Check the Company details e.g is the address still correct, have they changed the Company name etc– make any changes to your CRM.
- Check if your contact is there – if they are – see if you can have a word there and then. If they are out – leave them a message and remember to call them back later that day or when they are next in – do not leave it; you could miss a business opportunity!
- If your contact has gone – find out who has taken over and ask to be put through to them.
This is important – new contacts – may have business contacts with your competitors – they may not know about you and your excellent products/services – you need to introduce yourself and your company as soon as possible – after all you want them back on the Active Client list!
- Make sure you are GDPR compliant: Seek permission from each contact – new and old – to contact them by email with up to date information on your products/services (Don’t forget to have something ready to send).
From 25th May 2018 the General Data Protection Regulation’s require all companies to seek permission to send emails – make sure you are compliant now! DO NOT WAIT UNTIL the 25TH May 2018. Not Sure what to do? Please read this – https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-reform/overview-of-the-gdpr.
By the way you will need to seek permission from your Active Clients as well!
- Make sure all changes are recorded on your CRM system, including recording contacts email permissions (the yes’s and the no’s).
What if there is no answer – I hear you say! I didn’t say it would be easy! You may need to make several calls to get to speak to contacts. You may need to become a detective and check Companies House, google websites and social media sites including Facebook and LinkedIn to see if a company is still trading, has changed its name, merged with another company, moved premises etc; all in pursuit of a business opportunity.
And don’t forget, that once you have updated all your data, you need to keep it that way!
So have a go at Step 1 and see how many Active Clients you really have and ask yourself – is that enough! If the answer is NO – I want to turn the Inactive Clients into Active Clients – go to Step 3 and start Data Cleansing.
Did you know we at TJC have a specialist team that can carry out Data Cleansing, if you need help please check out our website: https://www.tjcuk.co.uk/services/datamanagement