Follow up is a major role in sales. In a call center many many years I was basically forced to develop the best habits I have today and didn’t even know it. It’s all because the CRM I was using placed the next person for me to call right in front of my face. All I did was hit next. What I will detail in this article is the best follow up methodologies I’ve learned.
In effort to be timely on emails and responsive to fresh leads I would call them as soon as they hit my inbox or queue. I would leave a message or often times get someone that answers the phone shocked that I’m calling them because they just hit the button 10 seconds ago to have someone call them. Still to this day instead of responding to emails with another email, I pick up the phone. It’s one of the best ways to respond with the “ante to play”. I learned this as a young gun in the mortgage industry and still to this day respond that way every chance I get. People on the receiving end love it. As far as follow up after the first initial ask for contact, well being timely can make all the difference. I would call a fresh lead the moment I got it. If I left a message, I would call three hours later or make sure it was past “work hours”. If during dinner time I didn’t get an answer I would again call before 8pm. In some days I would call a fresh lead 3 or 4 times to attempt to get that “Lower my bills” lead on the phone. It was strategic to get to the client first. I knew if I got that chance to get them on the phone and deliver information about a mortgage to them, that I would WOW them in my attempt to custom tailor a mortgage and it would be a remembered conversation.
In fact for years I had others tell me that they got 19 calls and it’s between me and one other guy/gal for them to get the “best deal”. You know what’s funny, I was picked more often than not, and I didn’t have the best price. I just added more value. Why, because my follow up smooth. Having follow up reminders and a plan in place to follow up for everything will make a difference in your sales. You want to strategically place calendar reminders to follow up with your clients in process, to past clients asking for referrals. This is true for B2C and B2B sales. The follow up timing with B2C is definitely more often for those on B2B in my opinion. But the concepts work hand in hand. B2B I transitioned too over a 7 years ago as an account executive to help mortgage Brokers close loans. The Law of Averages in B2B from what I’ve found is that every 10-14 days a follow up call should be placed. I wish now I had a CRM that put those clients in front of me. If I could instill one best practice out there today, is create some sort of TIME BLOCK daily to follow up with past clients or clients in process, or clients pitched but not bought. That’s the key to sales in efforts to add value and customize your sale to the end user. The follow up “law of average” will be different for each industry or client type, it’s your job to determine what that may be. No sales guru can tell you when that magic number is.
It’s funny how when planned right, I find that Brokers that aren’t using me and I do a strategic follow up with all the sudden call me a few days/weeks later with news that the other lender dropped the ball and they have a loan for me. Same with car sales, and the shopper of mortgage rates, sometimes its not the fact you have the lowest rate or the cheapest car, it’s about your follow up being timely and the need to pull the trigger. There is such a thing as calling too much, but it’s strategic, and you will have to find your own balance. For every one person that says you call too much, there are three sales made due to follow up habits being timely. That’s a great number to live by.
I wish you luck in your timely follow up – Create time blocks for this and it will make a difference in your sales numbers.
Sell Well – Juiceman