At Fire Inc (Atlanta, GA), we train individuals to be successful managers of sales and marketing channels for Fortune 500 companies throughout the United States. In our many years of training, we constantly see this little hiccup in the sales process. Any professional sales person knows that getting a prospective client to verbally agree to a deal is very different from having them sign on the dotted line. Once you leave that initial sales meeting, the impact you made starts to wane almost immediately.
This is why the follow up with prospective clients can be just as important as your first meeting. So how do you go about following up to ensure that they stay interested? Follow these great tips for an effective means to stay in control of the sale:
1. Assess Your Client
Few sales people realize that they may be wasting precious time and energy on clients that aren’t really interested in what they have to offer. First assess the client and determine whether they qualify as a prospective sale. Determine whether they have a need for your product or service, if they have the funds or budget available and if they really are interested. A qualified client is the best prospect.
2. Send A Follow-up Email
The follow-up email should be sent as soon as possible after a meeting but no later than 24 hours to have the greatest impact. Thank your prospect for their time and cover any personal information in your opening paragraph (how is your wife?). Then quickly and concisely cover the points that you went through in the meeting.
Ask them to get back to you with any questions or queries. Tell them you will be available at any time to assist them. End the email by suggesting a meeting date to go over any other information they need or to finalize the deal. You should receive a response almost immediately but if not, give it a couple of days.
3. The Follow-up Call
Don’t harass your clients with calls. Rather let them stew over your email for a couple of days before calling again. You don’t want to come across as desperate. Be friendly when you call and remember that the receptionist or secretary is your gateway to the person who really matters – so be personable.
On your call, always ask if your prospective client has a few minutes to chat. If not, tell them you will only take a moment of their time. Ask if they received your email, if they have any questions and if you can set up a meeting to cover these. Remember, you want to get that second face-to-face meeting.
Gage their responses. If they keep chatting, make time for them. If they seem hurried, ask if you can call or meet at a more convenient time. Call again in a few days if you get nowhere. After a few weeks, stop calling and just email them once a month as a reminder. After this, they probably aren’t interested and it is best to move on to better prospects.
Always remember to reaffirm your client’s needs and any points of agreement. The more you and your client have in common, the more likely they will be to buy from you. Read more about Fire Inc Atlanta on our website.