Can I start by saying there is nothing wrong with thinking about how to upsell your customers? Sales feel like yucky, icky moments in time because they’ve been co-opted and abused by wankers. But we owe it to sales to take that image back.
Upselling is surprisingly easy once you build a baseline of trust.
The key here is to look at your intention to upsell your customers is about exceeding the brief
When I quote on projects, I use a proposal instead of a quote. That way, I explain the project and take my client by the hand. The customer care story is clearly evident. The difference is in the detail.
It also gives me the opportunity to run what I call a yum cha menu. That is, I can add additional extras in to support the project that are outside of scope. They are often to build a better foundation for the work (which benefits both of us) and extend the relationship.
The aim is to give the client choice. Plus, it almost certainly directs the client to accept at least what they have suggested the project should entail without question at the original price. Why? Because it demonstrates I have thought about the client’s needs instead of just what they want.
Ways you can upsell your customers include:
- Research to make the project more competitive
- A plan such as strategy, marketing, contingency, social media etc
- Customer education for new features etc
- Dedicated load testing and large-scale product tests
- Maintenance and/or service level agreement for breakdowns
- Lead generation funnels (e.g. website with email capture, copy with eBook etc)
- Regular weekly support in a retainer
- Being the virtual CFO or CTO instead of only supplying the advice or plan
- Training – online, as a workshop or mentoring the junior in the office
- Quarterly, half yearly or yearly updates on brand, plugin, SEO or whatever
- Licensing agreements for images, sound and video
- Spill on discounts – e.g. doing HQ’s website and offering updates on satellite branch websites at a lower than usual price with a limited time
- Revision on other assets – e.g. the website design and the social media banners, the letterheads and whole brand refresh
- The requested website page – and the outline of what to do next if that page performs well
The trick is to look at the project from the perspective of seeing room for overall improvement. You can always stagger a project. Even if a client comes to you and says they only want one page on their website or a couple of social media posts or a logo. There is opportunity to get them broadening their thinking right from the beginning.
Plus, if you look at how to improve the foundation, you lower your risk because you have identified for the client that their results may be lower than expected if the baseline is not quite right. And you give yourself the ability to touch base with them again if you outline how you’d to continue to support a project in the future.
Why it matters if you upsell your customers in a pandemic
It’s a matter of continuing the trust. Most people are a little beaten around the edges at the moment. The more you can connect with and support their business, the better they will feel. Heck, this has moved beyond money and consistent work. It’s literally about telling other businesses we’re all in this together.
By being there to help with more problems, you’re taking items off their (really draining) mental to do list.
Thinking around corners is the expectation of every person in business right now. But we’re also carrying extra loads at home. We’re also glued to daily press conferences and having remember far more information.
Being able to close a few extra loops for your client is not vulgar or rude. It’s one less decision they have to scramble to make.
Make it prominent and help your customers feel supported by letting them know you have the additional bases covered.