A couple have been dating for several years and now want to commit to spending their lives together. One goes out shopping and comes back with two rings which they will wear to symbolise their life-long commitment to each other. She’s pleased with her purchase, a 2-for-1 special from the bargain box at the local jeweller. $12.99 per ring!
But wait, is this a two week commitment or a life-long commitment? At $12.99 per ring, maybe she has got it wrong? Maybe the cheapness of the rings does not match the commitment they are making to each other? Is this a good start? She didn’t exactly put a lot of thought or time into getting this right.
Is this similar to the way that you treat your customers? As resellers, you want a long term relationship with customers. But do you go about establishing relationships with customers in a way that shows this?
Can you use Customer Contracts to create a good impression (and establish trusted advisor status with Customers)?
A good customer contract will establish the way that the relationship will work and how the customer can order from you. A good customer contract will make things easy for the customer to order additional services. As you expand your cloud portfolio, the customer can easily purchase more from you. As the customer’s business grows, they can easily order more from you.
You start to create trust by the way you go about establishing the relationship. You start to create trust by the time and effort you take to ensure important aspects are easily understood by customers.
You do not do the equivalent of buying them a $12.99 ring when you intend to be their long term trusted advisor.
The opposite: the $12.99 option and how this makes your customer feel (and how it impacts your reputation in the market)
A reseller recently told me ‘we use a one-page contract and if they don’t like it then we don’t want them as customer’.
This reseller is telling their customers: ‘we don’t know (or care) whether you are our customer for long or not’ and ‘we really don’t think we’re going to sell you much so we’re not going to spend much time bringing you on board’. Wow!! Are these the sorts of messages you want to be giving your customers?
And what about your reputation in the market? If a customer has this experience of using (or not using) your service, they may well tell others. That is not so good…
What the reseller in the example above is forgetting (and what they are missing out on in revenue)
While this reseller says they want to be a ‘trusted advisor’ they are forgetting the value of this status. They do not put effort into establishing themselves as the trusted advisor. Their customer most likely does not see the reseller as they want to be seen. As a result, the customer senses no commitment to the reseller. When the customer wants additional cloud services, they look at options from various resellers. The original reseller has not established themselves as the ‘go-to’ and certainly has not made it easy for the customer to purchase from them.
The customer may or may not choose to meet future needs by purchasing from the original reseller. Even if they do, the reseller has lost valuable revenue while the customer shops around looking at options available from other resellers. And the reseller does not connect their lack of good process and lack of good Customer Contracts to this lost revenue. Worse still, they don’t even realize this is lost revenue…
Wondering how much revenue you might be missing out on?