The best tips for strategic account management involve finding ways to develop, maintain, and expand relationships with customers in order to help a company or organization meet certain goals. It's all about managing key customer relationships to help the customer make more money and doing what is necessary to maintain those relationships. Organizational strategy and planning may be the most important tip for successful strategic account management. Making a complete assessment of the competition allows account managers to impede any plans by competing companies to lure away business. Finding out what new products and services a client may offer over the coming year is another important aspect of successful strategic account management.
An old model of keeping business clients involved having a staff of salespeople who made calls on those clients. A new way involves creating a strategic plan to identify and select the clients who are responsible for the most volume. Account managers then create a strategy to focus all efforts on those clients. Large clients typically require a continual supply of new and fresh ideas to help a business succeed and make more money. Strategic account managers who supply these new ideas bring in more profit and provide added value to the business relationship. If an account manager can devise a strategy to help a client make more money, then the account manager and his company will make more money as well.
Strategic account management involves finding out what the competition is doing and what they might have to offer a client. Account managers develop methods or processes designed to assess the strengths and weaknesses of any competitors who may want to take a client away. Once the strengths and weaknesses of a competitor have been determined, pre-emptive steps can be taken to strengthen the relationship and stave off any attempts to gain access to a client. For example, if a competitor offers a better price for a service to an existing client, strategic account management finds a way to match that price or to add other value in order to maintain the current relationship.
Another tip for successful strategic account management involves finding out what new products or services a client is going to offer in the coming months and years. Helping a client get their new products or services to market and to make more profit can only help to strengthen the relationship between the strategic account manager and client. An account manager may help a client find a more suitable manufacturer or introduce a new marketing agency to help promote a new product or service. Strategic account management finds ways to become indispensable to their clients. These strategic account management tips can make a real difference in a client's overall success.