I’ve got quick sales tip for you today I’ve been working from home doing some follow-up and I thought I’d share with you an idea to help with that part of the sales process.
If you’re doing follow-up it might be a bit of time since you last spoke to the other party, it could be a few weeks since you last spoke to them, sent a quote or proposal- so you want to know what’s going on in their mind -where they are in the process.
You want to get a response -so think about that when you call them or when you leave a message or when you send them that follow-up email: how are you going to entice them to call back?
What will compel them to call you back or to respond -you’ve got to get their curiosity and you’ve got to make them understand what’s in it for them! One of the ways that I recommend is to leave it a little bit cryptic: what you say to them is “since we last spoke I’ve got a couple of ideas for you and I wanted to get your opinion on them, I’m on 071234 56789…”
And you just leave it like that! Another variation is to do this: “since we last spoke (or) since I last sent you the quote/ proposal I’ve had a couple more thoughts on this for you and I wanted to get your opinion…”
People love to express their opinion! You’ve also got the curiosity factor: what are these other things you are hinting at? You’ve just left it nice and cryptic they will more likely call you back!
Now something that you must never do is never make them feel awkward about the fact that that a load of time has passed! Everyone’s busy! We don’t need to highlight the fact that three weeks has passed since they last spoke to us:
“Hey, it’s been three weeks since we last spoke! Haven’t heard from you…what’s going on?”
None of that’s helpful it just creates barriers so instead just take the blame away say to them:
“Hey I appreciate things get busy, by the way I’ve had some further thoughts for you and I’d love to get your opinion on them give me a call back on 07………”
I hope you find this useful give it a go whilst you’re doing your follow-up!
Here are some easy ways to increase the odds of being able to continue the conversations with your clients and Prospects while remaining professionally persistent:
Have you got their direct dial number or do you rely on being put through by switchboard? Even better have you got their mobile number- if you are using a CRM system and that field is blank you should see that as an objective to complete. Get in the habit of asking for mobile numbers while you are in the current conversation with your Prospect. Ask in a matter of fact, natural way and you’ll get it.
Make It Easy For Them
Getting their mobile number also creates a further opportunity- texting! Some people are so crazy busy the reason they haven’t responded to you is because they are stacked up with deadlines. Give them a quick text with a simple request and they respond in kind: For example: “Hi Jenny, how did the conversation go with the Operations Director?”
Jenny replies “I’m so sorry I haven’t got back to you- mega busy here, now meeting with Dave on Tuesday- can you call me Wednesday?”
Avoid starting a conversation/ e mail/ text with “We were due to speak last Tuesday…” This just creates a barrier. Instead take that awkwardness away: “I know how busy things get there so let’s schedule a time to pick up our conversation. I’ll call you Thursday at 2pm, or let me know if you’d like to arrange another option…”
Find out what their preferred method of contact is. They may spend time on LinkedIn so send a LinkedIn message. Do it when you see they’ve just posted something or commented. It could even be something as simple as “are you at your desk- can I give you a call?”
Use a variety of the above spaced out over a period of time, call the direct number, don’t leave a message, a few tries later do leave a message, send a text, play with the days and times you call.
Let Them Tell You
Schedule the next action by asking their opinion: “when will you have the opportunity to review the quote/ proposal?” “When will you have a chance to speak to your colleagues?” “When would be best for us to pick up the conversation?” They will tell you and you can arrange a phone appointment / confirm the next action.
There are always going to be challenges in business which mean the opportunities we are working on don’t take a straightforward direction however we can increase the odds of success by ensuring we are aligned with the Prospect’s objectives. The more compelling reasons they have to consider the solution because you have found a problem you can solve together- the better!
What do you find works for you when following up? What was useful for you in this article? Please comment and share with your connections that you feel would appreciate the content.
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