Yesterday I published a staggering statistic from the National Sales Executive Association - which claims that only 12% of those in the active pursuit of Sales conversion make 3 contacts with prospective clients.
The statistic engaged some interesting comments, and very notable the subject around the Value of Following Up and also then the Value Of The Follow Up. As I will point out that not all follow-ups are created equal!
Which brings me to the topic of discussion here around how to word the follow-up, whether verbal or written. (And please this is by no means all inclusive of all available options regarding following up!)
I have to be completely honest and put my hand up that upon reflecting back on my years within sales, that my follow-ups were a little less awe-inspiring than I thought! And yes often I did not do the 3 x touch points and thus was 88% less effective than my competitors. Guilty as charged!
However in my defence, I did sometimes follow up, but the quality of it was low. The words “quick” and “just” seemed to have reared their heads on many an occasion and if I were to dissect the Etymology of those two words and the power of them - and I am sure you would agree, that their poundage in persuasiveness is relatively low. "Just checking in if you received my email", "Just a quick email to ask if you still are interested"…any sound vaguely familiar?
Let us leave the premise of any contact is better than no contact, and really up the game, raise the stakes and approach our next contacts with quality in the front of mind. Mix it up, make it relevant and really make sure that the contact is one of high quality. What do I mean by high quality? Instead of an “I am just checking in”, make for an “I am curious if you have any unanswered criteria?” or “Have I given you enough information to get on with x”. In other words let us make a pact to omit the two low persuasion words of Quick and Just, and get a conversation flowing. And with this tacky one-liner I will end my standpoint, remember in the days of yore when couples courted, did you ever come across the line “I was just in the neighbourhood” (probably YES), and how often did it work…Really?
If you frequently find yourself a user of the words just and quick in your follow up attempts and are highly successful with them, by all means, enter your comments and share with me your recipe for success.
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