How many times to you get an enquiry from a prospect, send them some details and then file them away and hope they get back in touch? Too often I suspect. Some of these prospects could be good potential future clients but they do not receive enough contact to be converted to buying from you.
How many times do you think you should follow up a prospect?
People tend to lead busy lives and if the email you send or voicemail you leave arrives with them at an inconvenient time, they may forget to respond or, be full of intention to, but then something else happens that takes priority. Past research has shown that it can take up to seven touch points with a prospective client before they take action and with the huge rise in social media, this figure can now be significantly higher.
I have included a simple diagram which shows 13 touch points, but illustrates how the buying process can take time and most sales people do not make enough contact to keep in the potential client’s mind. You may not see yourself as a sales person, but in reality, yes you are if you are trying to gain paying clients.
Therefore, you need to set up a system to ensure regular activity to try to make contact and if no response is forthcoming after a set period, to at least add them to your mailing list for an ongoing newsletter (you did take their email didn’t you?).
After someone has requested some information on your business and you have sent it out, a simple seven point contact plan could be as below. Once a prospect buys from you, they would move out of the remaining sequence and be added to your client mailing list so that ongoing contact is still maintained. The types of contact you have will be determined by the information you have available so at the point of initial enquiry, get as much information as you can. Ask for an email as the bare minimum but if you can, take a phone number and mailing address.
- Attempt contact via email or phone call to see if info received and if any questions. If no response, leave message or send acknowledgement email (within 24 hours)
- Follow up call to prospect and if not there, leave a message (+24 hours from step 1)
- Send follow up email (+ 1 week from step 2)
- Send written letter (+ 1 week from step 3)
- Final phone call (+ 1 month from step 4)
- Final email (+ 1 week from step 5)
- Final letter – confirm no further contact will be made but will add to mailing list (+ 1 month from step 6)
Once prospects have moved off the main seven steps and on to your mailing list, this database of contacts can be used for sending out your newsletter, free advice and tips and for future marketing purposes including competitions/surveys etc.
To find out more about the follow-up process and how it can dramatically help you get more clients, watch my webinar recording on How To Double Your Sales In 90 Days. It may just be the most valuable 60 minutes you spend on your business!