At the risk of oversimplifying it, the typical business must manage costs and revenues uniquely well to survive and thrive through a recession. While many of the steps may be too late to enact once a recession has hit, there are very effective ways to get on track. Here, we’ll address a few specific to your clients on the revenue side in a B2B environment.
This is in many ways a perfect time to review all client relationships. Here’s why:
Starting with yourself, through what paradigm do you view your customers? If only as a revenue source, work here may be fruitful, but well short of optimized and certainly not from the paradigm of stewardship. I can be of terrific help on this item, via another conversation, but even if only to protect revenue, do read on.
Your clients are likely eager to hear how you plan on treating them, how you are doing, can they count on continued support at the same levels in coming months? Are you in a position to help them in any unique ways? Foremost however in your approach, should be the mindset of finding ways to serve them.
You may find your clients now shopping the market in pursuit of reducing cost. Unless your model is one of being the low-price provider, you will want to ensure your value proposition is still being valued. If not, modify as needed. If you’ve done your homework, you know what their needs are and will be able to quickly adapt your offering to their current changes.
And how might you grow your business while better serving your customer?
Look for services you can provide that are currently being provided by other vendors that may be having a hard time delivering to your client’s needs. This may give you the benefit of scale to reduce your price to your client, creating another win-win.
Offer to update their contract specific to terms and conditions, such as invoicing, quantity commitment levels, etc.
If you have a contract renewal coming up, offer to make the renewal month-to-month if doing so will keep them from avoiding the renewal.
Now is the time to make yourself invaluable to them, so take the long view and provide what you can, whether it be SLAs (service level agreements), cyber security language rider, etc.
Look for services you can offer that may be needed now, but not previously. The idea here is to offer these services on a temporary basis for little to no cost, which will be of great value to your client. This may be letting them use some of your excess storage space, allowing your customer to cancel a storage building lease. Get creative. This will make deposits in the goodwill bank account.