You’ve been working with Emissaries to help you win new business, but did you also know that they can help you grow your existing book of business just as well? It may cost up to 5 times more to acquire a new customer than to keep an existing one., so focusing on account expansion can be a real boon.

Unfortunately, it can also be a real challenge. But that’s why you have Emissaries. Here’s a closer look at all the ways their expertise can help you renew, upsell, or penetrate new teams at your existing client’s businesses.


What is Account Expansion?

Account Expansion is a sales strategy aimed at increasing revenue by capitalizing on existing customer relationships. The objective is to identify new opportunities for sales within current accounts, whether it be through upselling, cross-selling, or expanding into new divisions, regions, or business units.


What is Account Upselling?

Account upselling refers to the practice of mining your current customers for areas of opportunity to expand and trying to increase the revenue and lifetime value of that account. This can be an effective strategy as you are more likely to be familiar with the needs and pain points of the customer, as well as have a built-in advocate that may connect you to decision-makers.


What is Upsell vs Expansion?

Upsell involves encouraging existing customers to purchase a higher-value product or upgrade their current purchase, while account expansion focuses on identifying new opportunities for sales within an existing customer relationship. The main difference lies in the focus on either increasing the value of an individual sale or maximizing the overall value of a customer relationship.


Why Account Expansion is Difficult

While expanding within an existing account can often be easier and more lucrative than closing new business, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t come with a host of challenges.

For starters, buying cycles are long, and that killer contact you made years ago may no longer be in that same position of power—if they’re still with the company at all. Maybe they’re still around, but now you’re trying to sell to a completely different team, and in large enterprises, where different teams can often feel like different companies, your champion’s recommendation may carry precious little weight.

That was the case recently for one of our clients, a marketing technology services company who felt stranded after their client, a Fortune 50 telecom provider, underwent a massive reorganization. They had had multiple contracts with this telecom giant in the past, but with such an extensive realignment, all their past advocates were gone. Fortunately, their Emissaries were able to help them understand the new organizational structure, consolidate old contracts, and develop new relationships with current senior-level stakeholders to start expanding the relationship and actively grow revenue on the account.

But each case is different. When it’s time to break into a new line of business or present a new strategy to win a renewal, there’s no universal solution. You’ve got to customize and develop a tailored plan in partnership with insiders like your Emissaries who have the knowledge needed to help you crack the code on your existing accounts.

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How Emissary Makes Upsells Easier

If you already have a target in mind, your Emissaries can help you develop a plan to position your solution to address your prospects needs—but you can enter the engagement blind as well. As former insiders at your prospect’s organization, your Emissaries can help identify new departments that could benefit most from your services and give you new targets to pursue who may be more receptive to your advances.

For upsell opportunities, where you already know your prospect well and your client is content, your Emissaries can assist in creating a sense of urgency as to why additional services would be in your clients’ best interests.

“The upsell renewal process is challenging because you’re probably being told everything is fine from the stakeholder you originally sold,” said Emissary Customer Success Manager Brad Frenier. “How are you accounting for the hidden decision-maker or process that may have a different set of criteria?”

With insight into your client’s most pressing business challenges and an understanding of who calls the shots behind the scenes, your Emissaries can help you craft an effective upsell message that’s tailored to both the needs of the department and the stakeholder who leads it.

You’ve sold successfully to the client before, but negotiating past a new contract will often require a different strategy. Lean on your Emissaries for insight into what you can expect to make the new deal go smoothly.


The Value of Inside Insight

So much of the value that Emissaries can bring to an expansion effort can’t be quantified because they haven’t had a chance to demonstrate it yet—the insights and revelations they’ll provide will be unique to your own selling strategy and the individual needs of your buyers. Take, for example, this surprising revelation that one of our Emissaries made for a client that completely reenergized their renewal effort.

The client, a high-growth technology company, was having difficulty renewing an annual contract with a massive media conglomerate, so they turned to us for help. We put them in touch with a former engineering executive at their target’s business who immediately assessed the situation and identify areas where the client could alter their approach.

After some digging, one of our Emissaries discovered that the client’s sales and customer success teams had actually sold the wrong solution to their client in the first place. The media organization was, understandably, unsatisfied with the current offering as it didn’t align with their needs, and much of the difficulty in securing the renewal stemmed from this point.

Armed with this new knowledge, the tech company was able to swoop in and do some much-needed damage control. They paired their buyer with the right solution, secured the renewal and improved their client’s satisfaction.


Need Help Unlocking the Full Power of Sales Team for Account Expansion?

Selling to enterprise and having the strategy for account expansion can be a struggle. Emissary’s advisor network can help you gain valuable insights into your target accounts and develop the right strategy. Contact us today to get started or call us at (646) 776-0510 to discuss your business needs.

Selling to an account you’ve sold to before sounds simple in theory, but expanding on existing business presents its own set of challenges. Between departmental reorganizations, a revolving door of decision-makers, and identifying the right teams to target, there’s a lot of variables to take into account before you can break into a new account. Working with your Emissaries can make the process less painful and get you the inside insight you need to overcome the obstacles standing in the way between you and a new deal.


More Resources on Account Expansion