Vision 2022

Re-designing your client portfolio for the post-pandemic era

The time has come for me to share my career long know-how with individuals and organisations operating within the larger meetings, events and incentive travel industry. If you are a destination expert, a hotelier, a DMC, an association executive or event pro, you may want to continue reading. In essence I want to describe in which ways I can help and support your organisation to save time and resources by developing a new roadmap to recovery and continued success. Our world has changed a lot over the last year and whilst I do not have a crystal ball to describe your future, I sure can help you in starting a process of fundamental re-development and expansion based on analytical groundwork, the re-creation of a solid foundation and a workable structure.

So how can I inspire you to improve your future client acquisition?

In a first step we will need to re-define your purpose, mission and vision of your organisation in a post-pandemic situation. What should the values be that you are aspiring to now? Before you re-build, you need to fully understand where you are now and even more, where you want to be. That’s what I call business purpose. Re-defining is all about giving you a direction; it promises to be an inspiring and energising experience. This will allow you to take fundamental decisions for your business and your community. Allowing you to (re)target and (re)prioritise who your clients are and will be and which actions you may want or need to take to re-direct your business. Choosing as well which clients you want to continue to service and which new prospects you want to pursue is a crucial question for you to answer. Questioning the mission of your company is all about the right to exist and thrive. It will lead to re-defining the purpose of how you want to be better, be smarter or be more helpful to your clients. By creating this new vision of your sales organisation you will be able to see the future through the eyes of your clients even better. That is definitely the best perspective to start from, creating a ‘painted picture’ of where your clients will see yourself in the future. It’s also a first step into a re-branding exercise if need be. This will ultimately re-define the values of how you run your business, what energises you and your teams and what inspires you. But first and foremost, why your clients will choose to work with you!

For existing businesses the above is always a difficult exercise to do but it will allow you to get an ‘outsider view looking in’ on your organisation and inspire you towards a new pathway to success. The exercise will also reveal your fundamental strengths and flaws. It’s a form of introspection with help from outside. Once these steps are taken, it will be time to re-describe your ideal client portfolio. Re-describe because change is the only constant and our client community has changed a lot over the past year. So, what was an ideal client before the pandemic may not be the same in the future and so do the services you are offering. Our world is moving rapidly and new technologies have been speeding up change furthermore. On top of it, the pandemic has made organisations to pivot to new clients and services, event pros from face2face to fully digital experiences. Our future is definitely more hybrid than digital but we will need to approach it differently as we did before. This exercise will take your sales organisation to a higher ground and strengthen it vis à vis your competition.

The process we apply will start with a scan of who your clients are, past and present. It will allow you to establish a first set of benchmarks too. As described by the selling principle Selling is not Telling but Asking, this phase will be crucial to interrogate yourself, your team and your client base and come to honest answers. It will require you to stand still for a moment, reflect and make an honest inventory on what you already have and what may be missing. An important phase because it will separate you from ‘wishful thinking’ by fully weighing in on the negatives on one side and the hidden opportunities on the other. Here you will want to define who your preferred clients will be. It’s a crucial step before we move on to the strategic phase of our consulting. It will also let you focus on a smaller number of client profiles and save you time, effort and money on lesser interesting ones. As each client group will later require its own sales and marketing strategy and action plan, it’s a necessary process to do.

All the previous steps will allow you to re-creating an offer that both appeals to your existing client base as well as to your new prospects. Allowing your clients to visualise your services offering will be crucial and a base to future success. It’s all about how you will present yourself from now on. If there is a time for re-branding, it’s definitely now.

Through the Customer’s Eyes

The process of re-designing your client portfolio is all about clearly defining and describing your pain points; pinpointing what the problems are, will or could be. And why some are not your client yet. What kept them of being a believer in your business? Or why have not they discovered you yet? Ultimately we should be able to describe how you will bring a solution to their problems or opportunities. Obviously you can do all of the above on your own as well but without the added value that we bring to the table, based on multi channel experience and combined with a portfolio of established clients and prospects. This combination sets us apart from other specialists who have not been operating in the field as much as we have and who take an approach from a pure consulting standpoint.

This all comes with a price of course. As one of my all-time favourite colleagues used to say ‘I’m not Mother Theresa’, my consulting work has a price indeed. On occasion, you can always ‘pick my brain’ but as I’ve now entered the world of professional consulting, you will appreciate that there is a nominal fee for hard work and buying years of experience. But … you will get a lot back for this. First and foremost, an outsider’s view on existing business and a crystal clear picture on where the pain points are and what opportunities of growth there are in so far unchartered territories. Secondly, the analysis will define your ideal picture of how your clients will see you and where you see yourself (through their eyes) in 3 years from now. Most of all it will allow you to tap into new markets, new clients, discover new prospects all to the benefit of your business.

Call for Action

I am Brussels based but with a global operating background so, should you like me to discuss this offer with you in greater detail, feel free to drop me a note on hugo.slimbrouck@gmail.com or contact me on WhatsApp +32475755273.

More information about myself in my LinkedIn Bio.

Published by hugoslimbrouck

I am a destination marketer with a specialisation in meetings, events, conferences and incentives. Destination marketing, training and consulting as well as business networking are the things I'm good at. For the past 14 years I worked for the MCI Group and managed our global portfolio of strategic partners for the Ovation Global DMC brand. I'm also a past president of SITE and JMIC. During my career, I travelled an average of 120 days which allowed me to build a global network of buyers, prospects and influencers. Please check me out under my LinkedIn profile as well, either under my name or my alias hugosmartypants. I'm a father of 4 and grandfather of 6. Hiking out on the countryside is one of my favourite hobbies.

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