If you provide any form of consulting, one of the most neglected (and arguably easiest) ways to grow is to go back to your previous clients, telling them what else you can help with.
A client recently did this and out of 6 people he contacted, 5 are more than happy to funnel more work to him, resulting in proposals. And he hasn’t spoken with the 6th yet.
Another hadn’t spoken with a previous client in 4 years. When he did, the previous client said they’d just put out a tender and had completely forgotten to include our client in the list. This was even though they loved the work that had been done.
Suffice to say, they put in a response and won.
Another missed opportunity comes from assuming our clients know everything we do. They don’t – unless you tell them.
I have a number of war stories where vendors have lost out on business as their clients didn’t know the breadth and depth of services that could be provided.
Which brings me to the 90 day rule. In our sales webinars and training participants always have light bulb moments when I explain that you must keep in touch with prospects and old clients at least once every 90 days to stay top of mind.
On day 91 should someone suggest a product or service that is of interest, and your client will go there forgetting you exist. (This was shown to be true by Wendy Evans who worked for the likes of Sachi & Sachi, Thomas Cook International, Proctor & Gamble and Intercontinental Hotels).
And naturally this applies to current clients as well. Your mantra should be “delivery is a growth strategy”.
One of the smartest things you can do is look for opportunities within the current projects you’re working on. And if you have consultants working with the client, have them keep their eyes and ears open.
Employed consultants often feel sales is not their job. But I beg to differ. Sales is everyone’s job. If you see something where you could add value – say something!