I was opening the mail the other day when a message struck me as odd.
It said something along the lines of . . .
We value your business and wanted you to know that we have moved to blah blah blah.
I have no clue what it said after the “We have moved part” because I was busy!
Busy trying to figure out who the hell this dude was!
So I did what any aspiring sales rock star (who wants to illustrate a point) would do . . . I called the mystery dude.
When I got him on the phone, he gave me the old “I’m sorry, who is this?”
“Paul Castain. You sent me a letter that you value my business and you were moving”
“Oh yes (like he really remembered me) we sent those out because we moved to blah blah blah.” I still wasn’t hearing him because of the “Who The Hell Are You?” mechanism in my brain.
So I told him I knew all that and that I had an important question.
“Shoot” says the mystery man.
“I have no clue who you are or how or in what lifetime we may have done business”
He asks me to spell my last name.
Somehow I make it through the exercise without cheating and looking at my business card.
“Ah yes. You and your wife have your life insurance with us.”
“No we don’t!”
“Oh I can understand the confusion. You bought the policy from so and so who lost it to Jack in a poker game who left it in the restroom at the Sheraton and now we own your policy” . . . or something like that!
“Gotcha! Just out of curiosity, how long ago did all this take place?”
“About 10 years ago”
I let there be a pregnant pause that went for at least a term and a half!
“You there Mr.Castain?”
“Sure am! Can you do me a favor?”
“Hang your head dude! You should be ashamed of yourself! 10 years as my insurance agent and I don’t even get an intro call, a freakin card at the holidays. This is a joke right?”
Now the mystery dude embraces the pregnant pause.
I can’t remember what was said next but I do believe I thanked him for “valuing my business” so much and wished him an afternoon of explosive diarrhea.
I may have also called him the traditional nick name of someone who sports the first name of Richard. I still can’t be sure, because I think I went into some kind of trance.
But seriously . . . I guess I became an “orphan” at some point in this relationship!
An “orphan” is an account that basically belongs to no one. No one services it. No one calls to see if needs have changed . Some businesses fool themselves by calling them “house accounts” but they’re basically orphans!
Time Out: Do you think my insurance needs have changed over the last 10 years?
Well they have and the fact that I now own a business has added even more things that I could be buying . . .
From the mystery dude!
Here’s the point . . . Nobody likes to be forgotten about!
This is one of those topics that we all label “Sales 101” and yet . . .
There’s way too many orphans out there!
That means your work is simple . . .
1) Make sure none of your accounts ever become orphans. Show the love!
2) Keep picking up that phone and calling businesses because there are mucho orphans out there who could use a new family!
Your turn . . . How do you keep your accounts from becoming “orphans”?