SALES PROSPECTING TECHNIQUES:
HOW TO FOLLOW UP RELENTLESSLY – YET COURTEOUSLY
After using the suggested approaches for initial contact covered in other sections of the Sales Prospecting Techniques module, don’t forget to keep track of those you have tried to contact and needed to follow up with.
As a salesperson, you need to find sales prospecting techniques that will keep you and your products in the prospect’s minds and excited about the possibilities.
Notes, phones calls and emails are probably the best way to stay current in the minds of very busy people. Calls are the easiest and most common way to follow up.
According to surveys about sales prospecting techniques conducted by the Sales Career Training Institute, nowadays, busy professionals prefer to correspond via email more than any other communication method. Many tops salespeople whom we interview say that they write email follow-up notes and have a better chance at getting some feedback than using voicemails.
It is important to follow up with every prospect, but some may be more important than others. Make sure you prioritize your list of follow-up calls to better manage your time spent prospecting..
Your existing clients are the first to come to mind. A simple thank-you note or a call for feedback, questions or comments is the perfect excuse to stay current with your clients. It's an often-overlooked, yet one of the more powerful sales prospecting techniques covered here and in
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Call your referrals again if you haven’t met personally with them. Try to arrange for an interview.
Old prospects that have a new job or have gone through a departmental merger or an acquisition are also great targets for follow-up notes. These people may not have needed your product before, but their situation has changed and so may need you now.
For more sales prospecting techniques associated with RFU, check out our
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Be relentless when it comes to those hard-to-reach contacts. Anyone that you haven’t had a chance to speak to deserves another call. These may not be priority calls but should be done nonetheless. You never know who could suddenly decide that they need your product and sign that big deal.
There are plenty of excuses you can use to follow up - it is just a matter of finding the right one for your contact. You can call or email a contact many times for different reasons.
If your prospect gives you feedback, make sure that you respond to the feedback. Once you’ve moved on to the next stage, the follow-up should be related to the next step in your relationship.
If a follow-up message or call unearths a problem between your company or product and theirs, your efforts should be spent solving this problem or referring your client to your company’s customer service department.
Make sure your client’s problem has been resolved from your company’s side and then call your client again and follow-up to make sure that everything is working properly.
If your company made a mistake or is taking to long too solve a problem, follow up with a note or call that states your apologies and your assurance that something is being done now to solve the problem.
If the relationship with your client is being jeopardized by a problem, make sure you apologize for any inconvenience. In some instances, as part of your sales prospecting techniques, it may be a good idea to send an “I’m sorry” or consolation gift.
Make sure that the price of your gift is in proportion with the extent of the mistake or try to customize it to your prospect’s likes. The gift should be sent promptly and without delays.
Remember, good service means a happy client and better referrals that can translate into better sales.