The desire for new customers is usually the starting point of conversations with new clients. Very few however have thought about how many new clients they want or how many they could cope with.
Regardless of how well you look after your existing clients, the truth is, every business needs new customers, but it’s not always a case of more is better. In fact, too many in one go can cause you problems if you’re not ready for them, and ultimately damage your business.
How many new customers could you realistically cope with?
In theory, thousands sounds great, but is your business set up to accommodate them?
If you are Amazon or an online publisher, then yes, you probably could – happy days, now go and count all that lovely new money.
On the other hand, if you are a family run bakers or a provider of specialist software then I would suggest not.
The bakers probably wouldn’t have the capacity to store twice the ingredients, enough ovens to bake twice the products, or the staff to serve twice the number of customers over night.
Integration of specialist software takes time to set up, embed into a business and train the staff to use. Would they have the skilled, experienced employees available to suddenly double or triple the number of installations?
Can you meet your customer’s expectations?
The figures vary across different sectors, but generally it costs between 5 and 13 times the amount to get a new customer than to keep an existing one, so:
The first rule when spending all that money, is – Don’t upset the customer.
The second rule when spending all that money, is – Don’t upset the customer.
If you’re spread too thinly, not only will you fail to look after your new clients properly, you may upset your existing clients and no longer give them the service they are used to. Not only will they not come back, they’ll tell everyone else to avoid you too.
As a business, you should be looking for sustainable growth, with a steady increase of new clients over time. This number will be different for each business and be dependent on a number of factors. Do you know what it is for your business?