- Sales Follow Up Techniques
- How to follow up in sales
- Following Up With Existing Clients
- Creative ways to follow up with prospects
Sales Follow up Techniques
You have ascertained through your research that your product will be a good investment for the client company. Your next move would be to connect over the phone.
You may end up connecting immediately or it may take a few tries. But the real battle begins when one has to follow up with the client and close the deal.
Many things can go wrong during the follow-up call. One may appear to be annoying or overselling the product.
Every sales professional faces stress and anxiety daily but the fear of rejection is the sword that hangs ever so loosely over one’s head.
Amidst that, a sales follow-up throws open Pandora’s box. However, there are Sales Follow up Techniques that will assist and accompany you on the mission.
Following up leads is an integral part of sales and though the fear of rejection is a dark cloud overhead, the chance of acquiring a big client is equally present there.
Hence giving up on the first attempt itself is ill-advised. Instead learning How to follow up in sales is well-advised.
A study by Brevet has shown that 80% of potential leads acquired required a minimum of five follow-up calls. It is also noted that half of the salespeople give up after the first call while even more give up just before the fifth call. This is also seen with cold calling and follow-up emails.
Hence following up leads is an important part of the sales process. Repeated attempts may seem like an annoyance but there are creative ways to follow up with prospects.
How to Follow up In Sales?
In most cases, a new lead will not buy your product immediately. A mere explanation of the product during the first meeting will hardly convince the prospective client to buy the product pronto.
According to Hubspot, it is observed that more than 60% of the customers will first research about the product and shortlist a few vendors.
Only during the consideration stage, they will be interested in talking with the sales team. Given the situation, follow-ups cannot be ignored since many buyers will not be convinced by just the first call or mail and be ready to speak with the salespersons next.
An initial point of contact is essential for it creates an impression on the client and will lead to follow-ups.
However, it may not go as planned if the client is bombarded with a great meeting or a fantastic product demo and absolutely nothing after that. Expecting conversion in the first attempt itself is highly unlikely.
A client may seem to be ignoring you not because they don’t like your offer but mostly because they are busy people.
It doesn’t mean they are not interested but probably have too many decisions to make at the time. But a follow-up might clear any doubt and gain you the deal.
There are many methods available on how to follow up with prospects but here are 8 efficient ways on How to follow up in sales?
1. Try Different Follow-Up Methods:
In the business world, people prefer any particular form of communication. Some rather communicate via emails instead of a phone call while some others may like it the other way round. Usually, company higher-ups prefer an email than being annoyed by unsolicited phone calls.
It varies among people and entirely depends on the lead. So one will have to try different methods of communication like emails, cold calls, or via social media like Linkedin. Meanwhile, it is wise not to call a client when he has already mentioned he’d prefer an email.
2. Follow-Up but Not Too Much:
Decisions are not made abruptly, so don’t bombard the customers with 3-5 emails a day. The aim is to get them interested in the product and to chase them away.
Understand the prospective client’s timeframe and presume the time needed to reach a decision. It’s not like buying a bottle of shampoo for the deal may be expensive and will need some time to make one’s mind up.
Ideally, a break of 2-3 days between follow-ups is recommended. However, in the case of dealing with B2B companies, it may take a week for the client to raise the offer with the rest of the team.
3. Increase Value on Each Follow-Up
One might think that a “thought about just checking in” and “following up on my last message” email might suffice to get the one’s email to the top of the inbox.
However, this may be viewed as lazy since it fails to offer any additional value to the client. It’s likely to attract a cold shoulder.
Instead, try to add value to the follow-up call or email. Do additional research on the client and make an offer they cannot refuse. Provide them with a limited-time concession or target their pain points through a personal message.
4. Have a Clear Next Step
If there is no clear call-to-action or next step defined in the follow-up email, the prospect will probably move on.
Therefore it is vital to provide them with maybe a link to schedule a call or a meeting. People like something when it’s easy, so keep it simple like providing a button for yes or no to a free trial sign up.
5. Attractive Subject Lines
The chances a prospective customer will open a follow-up email will depend on how attractive the subject line is. “Following Up” or “Checking In” and such subject lines will not possibly make it through.
But a personalized subject line with a hook or an offer will surely grab the eyes. The subject line needs to be concise, conversational and can be as simple as a limited-time offer for that week only.
6. Keep It Concise
Prospective clients are busy people and cannot spend time on long emails or calls. So cut to the chase and make the follow-ups concise, brief.
Ideally, a follow-up email or call should not be more than 6 lines or 10 minutes respectively. Do not waste time on glorifying the company or its product but instead grab the client’s attention and make them want to take action
7. Personalize the Follow-Up
Value the prospect’s unique needs and let the email or call work on their pain points. Providing a solution to the problem would be better than too much promotional material. Research on the client and personalize the follow-up in such a way as to make them tick.
8. Know When To Give Up
You might have attempted to follow up with the prospect for the umpteenth time but received no response. You cannot keep following up forever.
It’s wise to know when to stop. Generally, a prospect’s interest can be gauged within 5 follow-up calls or emails.
Beyond that, the number of chances of getting a response is next to slim or none. However a “break-up email” might entice a response.
When sending the last follow-up email inform the prospect that it is your last one and this just might re-ignite interest in the offer.
Meanwhile, don’t go hostile if the prospect does not reply. Also, if they say a firm “no” do not pester them with follow-up again.
Following up With Existing Clients
Following up with new leads and existing customers is a bit different. The latter are your repeat customers and have the greatest potential of even getting you a new client.
Although there is no hard-set way to follow up on existing clients here are 3 Sales follow-up tips that are handy while following up with existing clients.
1. Customer Satisfaction
Once the deal has been closed and the customer has bought the goods, make sure to give them a call soon and check if they are happy with the product and taking full benefit of it. A customer satisfied with the first purchase is likely to provide repeat business.
2. Build Strong Relationships
Signing up existing customers for your newsletter and inviting them to in-person events for your business will maintain a healthy rapport and connection with them.
Also, you will be able to gather more data from them and send them targeted offers and content.
3. Referral Incentives
If the client is satisfied and happy with the first deal they got from your company, then they are likely to recommend you to others.
This can be made more effective by requesting the customers to leave back a review or testimonial of your products and services online. Additionally, offer referral incentives and bonuses to customers who get you, new clients.
5 Creative Ways to Follow up With Prospects
The initial call or meeting with the prospect went well and you are waiting to hear from them soon, but there is no response.
In some cases, you might need to up your game and make use of some creative ways to follow up with prospects.
Here are the 5 best (creative) sales follow up techniques that will help you gain an edge
1. Connect with Interesting Link or Article
Sharing an interesting industry-relevant article via email will remind the client of your offer but not in a selfish manner. In other words, you become more than a salesman by providing them with added value.
2. Refer a Vendor Outside Your Services
Naturally, the prospect has needs beyond the services you provide so passing them with a contact to help them in a separate issue is highly appreciated.
By helping them beyond your business needs you have created an opportunity for the customer to provide future referrals.
3. Invite the Prospect to An Event
Whether you are hosting an event or not, inviting a prospect to an event you are attending can benefit you in the long run.
4. Share a Review, Testimonial
Share a review or testimonial or even some case studies of benefits others have found by doing work with you. Such proofs can get your prospect back on track by showing them what they can expect from you.
5. Share a Free Download or An Ebook
Everyone likes something free. If you have a free ebook or a link to some free download, send it along to your prospect. It will be helpful to them and may also get you back into the picture.
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Making that first call or sending the initial email is only the beginning of a relationship with a customer.
The aim is to get them to close the deal and also inculcate brand loyalty. This can be achieved by implementing the sales follow-up tips explained in this blog.