Fellow AllBusiness.com blogger Lori Richardson recently was a guest author on Jonathan Farrington’s Blog — topic, Follow Up Touches for Sales Pros. I was grateful for her reminder of how many touches it can take to build trust in a prospective customer, and the more complex the sale and higher the price, the more touches are needed.
New entrepreneurs often have little prior sales experience. They either underestimate how many contacts it takes to make a sale, or they are afraid that if they keep checking back, they’re too pushy. But checking back doesn’t have to be pushy…it can be a different touch different times. Try, for instance, a follow-up thank you letter or email after a first visit. Then perhaps forward a copy of a relevant article. Check in afterward with a cheery voice message saying, “I hope you saw the article I sent you,” and ask if she has any questions. Etc., etc.
Even veteran sales people and experienced entrepreneurs often don’t do all they could do to follow up. Lori’s right: “Many of us are guilty of it. We are not following up with people we meet. We’re not following up with potential referral partners, and prospective “someday” customers. Some of us are not even following up with the more “probable” prospective customers who are likely to do business with us soon. We are leaving money on the table, every day.”