Good old-fashioned follow-up is still one of the best ways of keeping in touch with your prospects. Often failure to follow-up is due to the fear of rejection or simply not having a good follow-up system in place.
As mentioned previously in my blog, generally 80% of sales happen between the 5th to 12th contact. This statistic was part of some research carried out by The Association of Sales Executives. To be good at follow-up you need to be methodical and often by having a good old-fashioned hand-written list of people to contact in front of you can be the best aide-memoire to ensure you know exactly where you are with each of your prospects or customers. All you need is a simple spreadsheet with space for name, phone number, how you met, comments and then some additional small columns at the end (with 8 as a minimum and a maximum of 12) to tick each time you follow-up.
After the first call always send a thank you note or e-mail, or you may prefer to text, to show your appreciation for your prospects time. A handwritten note is even more powerful as it is just that bit more personal. Don’t worry if you feel that writing notes will take-up too much of your time, there are automated systems in the marketplace which make it look as if you have personally written the note without having actually done so.
If when you speak to your prospects or customers about your product/service and the time isn’t right for them to make a buying decision, ask them if they are happy for you to call again and, if so, for them to suggest when a good time to call back would be. By doing this you will ensure that the next time you make contact with them they will be happy to receive your call as they will be expecting a call back from you.
The most important point of all is to make your prospects feel appreciated each time you make contact with them. This will reap huge dividends in the long run as the more appreciated they feel the more likely it is that they will buy your product/service for the first time or re-order from you.
Good luck with your follow-up. I hope these tips have been helpful. If you have experience of this type of system working well for you please do comment below.
Until next time,