Developing an effective plan to drive sales with a specific client or account is a discipline that many businesses either neglect completely, or can spend inordinate amounts of time on looking at in infinite detail (only for the plan to be obsolete before it’s been implemented). The disciplines of evaluating a client’s business and needs; defining a proposition and strategy to address; and then delivering activities that will convince the client to do business with you long-term are crucial for the success of any sales operation or organisation as a whole. The One Page Account Plan Template is therefore designed to provide a comprehensive view of a client before diving into specific commercial opportunities and the associated actions required to unlock them.
The One Page Account Plan is divided into 4 sections: Business Overview, Annual Account Targets, Revenue Streams, and Action Plan. Each section builds on the prior and drills into the fundamental elements that will lead to successful engagement with the client and enhanced new business generation.
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The first section provides an overview of the client’s business and operations, offering insights and context upon which subsequent strategies and action plans will be developed. The Business Overview focusses on 3 core areas of investigation:
Client’s Key Priorities
What are the goals and objectives that the client is looking to achieve? What are the core focus areas for the business / unit / team going forward? How much emphasis are they putting on each of these respectively, and in what order are they looking to achieve them?
Client’s Key Initiatives
What are the primary strategies that the client is applying, or looking to apply, to meet their goals and objectives? What tactics and activities are they doing to implement these strategies?
Client’s Key People
Who are the main decision makers and influencers within the client’s business? What role do they play and how do they impact the buying decision? How much influence do they have? Are they seen as supporters, advocates or detractors for you and your proposition?
Annual Account Targets
What are your specific targets with regards to the client account? Be sure to quantify these as much as possible, and provide a time period over which you are looking to achieve them.
Targets can be defined around: revenue to be generated; share of wallet (% of client’s budget gained); range of products or services sold to the client; number of new / total contacts made within the client; etc.
Identify discrete sources of potential revenue from the client that you can isolate. These could be revenue from a specific business unit, geographic region, or a known project, for example. Each stream must be definable and delimited from other areas of the client’s operations.
Estimated Annual Revenue
Against each potential revenue stream, estimate how much revenue you’ll be able to generate directly from that stream. This needs to be quantified based on your team’s forecast of the potential revenue available, factored by how likely you are to convert it.
Our Value Proposition
Define what value your organisation can bring to the client that will enable them to meet their objectives in the area of business relating to the revenue stream in question. What is the specific solution that you offer that will meet their discrete need? How are you better than what they’re currently doing / using at present, or could potentially use to meet that need?
For each stream, capture the actions that you plan to take to engage with the client, gain traction, and convert the revenue projected. What are the key initiatives and activities that you will apply? What support and resources will you need?
For each action, establish who the single business owner is (within your business) responsible for delivering that action.
For each action, define the time period or deadline date upon which that action needs to be completed.
The One Page Account Plan framework outlined above is intended to create an ongoing, living plan. It’s not a one-off exercise that’s produced for the sake of it and then largely ignored over time. Rather, the One Page Account Plan should be used to initially brainstorm and capture thinking and inputs that are subsequently refined and improved as you move forward. Print it out as large as possible and use Post-It notes to add thoughts and ideas to build an overall picture. Gather feedback from trusted peers and partners; iterate and refine as you gain new insights and results.
Let me know how you get on and feel free to send me any examples of how you’re using the One Page Account Plan template with your clients. Good luck.