10 Ways to Prevent Interested Prospects from Turning into the Walking Dead
You’ve heard of Zombie Apocalypse? How about Prospect Apocalypse? This is when you have an interested prospect that becomes increasingly unresponsive. You’re not sure what to do next in your sales follow up and eventually you feel like you’re trying to resurrect the dead.
You’ve heard the expression, “Timing is everything!” Sometimes that’s true. And without some basic processes and tools in place, you will slowly lose momentum and way too many great prospects to fall through the cracks.
So assuming your incredibly relevant and compelling value proposition didn’t create an instant desire to work with you, this article contains a list of ideas you can employ to increase your chances of being in the right place at the right time … and turning an interested prospect into a new client.
10 Sales Follow Up Tips to Keep Great Prospects from Turning into the Walking Dead
- Ask your referral source, “What’s going on in her life (business) that’s most important to her?” Position both the introduction and how you reach out to your prospect in relationship to the answer. Relate what you do to your prospect’s top priority and you will be seen as immediately relevant.
- Start and remain as relevant as possible. Do your research before you call your prospects. Warm Research is using your referral source to help you learn as much as you can; per item #1. And don’t discount the value of Cold Research. Review your prospects’ website, LinkedIn profile, Facebook page, and anything else you might find online as part of your sales follow up process. Use what you can at various stages of courting your prospect.
- Do your best not to end a phone call with your prospect without being clear as to who will do what by when. Ideally, you will both have some “deliverable” as part of the next step in your sales follow up. Maybe you’ll be getting a report to them and maybe they’ll be locating a piece of information to help you help them further.
- Provide your prospects with easy “yeses.” Try not to go too far too fast in your sales follow up. For example, when you get introduced to a prospect via email, go for a 10-15 minute phone appointment, before trying for an in-person meeting. And do your best to get a clear “yes.” For example, if one of your steps is to send an article or 1-sheet for them to review, gain agreement that they’ll actually read it. “I have a 2-page article on this topic I’m going to send over right away. Will you be able to take a look at it in the next two days?” Creating mini-agreements with prospects can help move the process forward (usually).
Want more tips on sales follow up? Check out Bill’s YouTube video blog for more information on this topic:
- After you hang up the phone with a prospect, make sure you’ve recorded enough details of the conversation that you can consult at any point in time in your sales follow up to instantly remember what was discussed.
- After you record your notes, per item #4 above, plan your next contact. It might be that you already set up the next call or meeting with the prospect. Even if you have already set up the next call or meeting, you can still use one of the tools listed next in item #7.
- Have a series of value-added tools that you can send to your prospects from time to time. These can include reports, videos, links to blogs or articles, and checklists of various kinds that serve to educate your prospects.
- Invite your prospects to a Problem Solving Event. Even if you don’t usually do seminar marketing, it makes sense to host smaller educational or problem solving events for your clients and their guests. (Got this idea from Julie Littlechild with Absolute Engagement.) You can invite your own guests to these as well. So, not an open-to-the-public event, but a more exclusive event with only certain clients and prospects invited.
- Invite your prospects to a client-appreciation event. If your business model lends itself to client-appreciation events, they are a great way to build client engagement (and it is engaged clients who provide introductions). These events also serve as a great way to connect with prospects. The prospects see how your clients relate to you. That can be what tips the scale in your favor.
- Keep your referral source in the loop. While you don’t have to give your referral source a blow-by-blow account of every contact you make with your prospect, letting them know about your progress (or lack thereof) will be appreciated by your source. Sometimes your source will volunteer to help move this process along for you.
Have any good sales follow up tips to share? What questions do you have?
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I’m extremely interested in hearing from you – your reaction to this article; with what you agree and/or disagree. Let’s have a robust discussion, shall we?