- Super-upsell with paper invoices — a CX guru tells you how


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  • - Super-upsell with paper invoices—a CX guru tells you how As a global growth hacker for over seven years, I know that consistently achieving major new growth requires a holistic approach to the marketing, sales and business practices of a company. I’m always looking for new insights, so I am very pleased when I encounter professionals like Jaakko Männistö, a customer experience (CX) guru from Scandinavia. I have published several of his insightful articles. Today we’re talking about mining the upsell-gold in paper invoices. —Christian Dillstrom
  • PEOPLE DON’T LIKE GETTING BILLS! SO HOW CAN A COMPANY GENERATE A MEANINGFUL AMOUNT OF UPSELL WITH PAPER INVOICES? By changing how the person who gets the bill feels about the brand—that is, by changing the negative feeling to a positive feeling—and then and only then making an upsell offer. Of course, it is true that when a customer receives an invoice, he is not overflowing with happy good will toward the brand that just sent it to him. Who enjoys paying bills? Typically, then, upsell offers that arrive with the invoice have a very low sales conversion. The solution is switching the customer’s focus to a different brand—an independent third party—and letting the customer speak his mind to that third party. Adding a feedback query from an independent third party gives the customer a chance to purge his negative feelings by expressing them to an outsider. And he feels that you are respecting him, since you have taken action to respond to his negative feelings. Having a Feedbackly-branded customer-experience query printed on your invoice, complete with upsell offer, will make all this happen for you. Feedbackly gets a lot of feedback, in large part because each time the customer submits his feedback, he has another chance to win the latest iPhone in our monthly random drawing. You can generate a lot of upsell with paper invoices this way. I AM A BIT DOUBTFUL. WOULD A LARGE ENOUGH NUMBER OF CUSTOMERS REALLY RESPOND TO AN UPSELL OFFER ON A PAPER INVOICE? Distaste for the invoice is not the only consideration here. These recipients are customers who have already bought from you—that’s why they’re getting your paper invoice to begin with. You just need to deflect or defuse the negative feelings caused by your invoice by turning his attention to a different brand and by showing him a bit of appreciation. And remember, people love contests that give them a chance to win some luxurious item like an iPhone. So, we’re not going to have any problem getting people to respond to your upsell offer.
  • WHAT CAN YOU UPSELL IN PAPER INVOICES? ARE THERE ANY LIMITATIONS? If you mail out very few paper invoices, there’s not much you can do, and you will have to try other ways to upsell—of which there are many. Using paper invoices is just one option, an often- overlooked one. ANY OTHER LIMITATIONS? Say you have product or service that has only one quantity option. A given customer would only want to buy one thing from you, once, and that’s it. Even in that unlikely situation, you can always cross-sell for other businesses that have something to offer which complements what your are selling. You’ll earn commissions on the sales for that other company and make money that way. So, here’s an apparent limitation that turns out to be no limitation at all. You can still use the paper invoice to upsell and make money. HOW DO I OPTIMIZE SALES WITH UPSELL OFFERS? By tailoring the offer. Finding the best upsell offer is not a matter of one size fits all. If you give everybody the same offer, that will drastically limit the sales that your upsell offers can generate for you. Instead, give the right offer to the right customer. Our experienced team will help you to preset the optimal upsell offer for each of your customer groups. Our service will automatically adjust the preset upsell offers in real time on the basis of what your customers report when they reply to our feedback requests. We’ll keep track of the results and constantly fine-tune your upsell offers as needed. If your offers are optimized correctly, upsell offers can increase your sales significantly. WHAT DOES MEASURING THE CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE HAVE TO DO WITH UPSELLING? Quite a lot. Information about the customer experience is the key to making as many sales as possible from the upsell. That’s how we optimize. For example, if customers feel unhappy, we may offer them a discount on a product or service. That way, they have a sense that you care about
  • fixing the situation and improving their experience. On the other hand, if customers are happy with their experience, we may instead offer something more expensive that is related to their original interest. Happy customers are more likely to buy something of greater value if they get an appropriate offer. WELL, THIS IS VERY INTERESTING, BECAUSE ACCORDING TO MY CALCULATIONS, OVER 10 BILLION PAPER INVOICES ARE SENT TO CUSTOMERS ANNUALLY BY TELCOS, UTILITIES AND MAIL- ORDER COMPANIES IN THE WESTERN COUNTRIES ALONE. Well, you are right. The sales potential for paper-invoice upsell is huge; it is in the billions of dollars every year. Yet this sales opportunity has been almost totally ignored, in part because it requires coordinating all of the different elements I have described to make it happen. Fortunately, we have figured out how to do it very effectively. I GUESS YOU’RE CHARGING COMPANIES AN ARM AND LEG FOR THIS PAPER-INVOICE UPSELL SERVICE? Actually, no. It’s a commission-only deal. We’re very confident in the power of what we have developed that we’re happy to work on commission so that we make money only when you make money. Unless we create upsell for you, you can use our service for free and at least acquire very high- quality data about your customers’ experiences. I HAVE A FEW TELCOS, POWER COMPANIES AND OTHER COMPANIES AMONG MY CLIENTS AND THEY SEND MILLIONS OF PAPER INVOICES EVERY MONTH. HOW CAN THEY GET STARTED WITH THIS? They just need click here to book a free teleconference with us. THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME. I’m sure we’ll be hearing more from Jaakko Männistö.
  • BACKGROUND Christian Dillstrom is a global growth hacker who has growth-hacked more than 10 percent of Fortune 500 companies over the last seven years. Mr. Dillstrom is responsible for over 100 marketing and sales innovations. Over 350 million of his marketing solutions are currently active on the Internet. Every month, 18 million business people read his Growth Hacking articles at SlideShare. Click here to read them. Mr. Dillstrom has founded and managed three global startups and has evaluated and consulted with over 300 startups around the globe since 1999. To get in touch with Christian Dillstrom, book a free teleconference with him, please click here.