With a new year in full swing, it's time to perform some routine maintenance to ensure a strong first quarter (Q1) . A great place to start is taking a second look at your account list. Follow these ten steps to get your sales organization’s account list cleaned up and ready for a successful year!
10 Steps to Clean Up Your Organization's Account List
- Generate a top-down listing of all clients, local and national, for the last 12 months. Edit the list so that each client appears only once on the list (combine any duplicates as needed).
- Determine the “Key cut-off” by counting down through the top 25% of the number of your clients. For example, if you have 500 clients, the first 125 accounts are the top 25% (500 x .25 = 125). The Key cut-off is the dollar value of the smallest account to appear in the top 25%. So, in our example, if account number 125 (out of the 500) spends $50,000, then $50,000 is the Key Account Level.
- All accounts above the cut-off are Key accounts; all those below are Secondary accounts. Until the next review, this cut-off will determine which clients are considered Key and which are Secondary.
- Note that the cut-off level, and therefore these account designations, are based on the entire client base, not for each individual salesperson.
- Give each salesperson a list of their own accounts, in order of their billing for the last 12 months, showing which are designated as Key and Secondary.
- Meet with each seller to determine the appropriate number of Target Accounts for their individual list (not more than 9, usually 3-4 is better). Have the salesperson identify their Target Accounts and up to 10 Leads.
- Place all accounts which no longer spending or designated as a Key, Secondary, Target, or Lead onto an alphabetical LKA (last known assignment) list, noting in each case the name of the seller to whom it was previously assigned. Such accounts are available for reassignment.
- Maintain your system, assigning responsibility for changes and updating to one specific person. Publish current account lists as needed, and review with each Account Executive at least once a month.
- Use the Account List Management Strategy designations in your CRM to ensure high focus on Key and Target accounts.
- Repeat this process and set a new Key level every 6 or 12 months.
The Operating System for Your Sales Organization
Your account list management strategy has a direct relationship with the performance of your sales organization. It is easy to overlook this important element, but virtually impossible to exceed revenue goals without it!