Join The Top 20%
For years, I have taught salespeople this very important truth:
There is a name for salespeople who fail to follow up—former sales people.
– Jeff C. West
Robert Clay, founder of Market Wisdom says that 80% of all “yes” answers from prospects happen after they have already said “no” four times. And yet 92% of all salespeople give up before they get to that point.
It is that lack of follow up that explains why 80% of all sales are made by only 20% (or less) of all sales people.
Skill sets are very important. You must develop them and become good at your job. But the greatest of skill sets will still be completely wasted if you do not take the time to follow up in your sales process.
Over the next few posts, we will be discussing how to follow up effectively in various parts of your sales process.
Follow Up In Prospecting:
Provide value before you ask for anything—even the appointment.
In prospecting, making a few contacts and providing value prior to requesting your appointment will turn cold calls into warm visits quite often.
Lay the groundwork with a minimum of three value contacts before you ask for anything—including asking for that first meeting.
Then, from the first request for a meeting—follow up with additional contacts until you get a “yes”—a “no”—or you make a minimum of three to five attempts. Be like a machine. With today’s technology you may even continue to make contact electronically far beyond this point. But as for face-to-face contacts—I’d limit myself to five attempts unless the feedback I received gave me clear indication to continue.
Use a good contact management system that facilitates your calendar and brings your sales leads back to your attention at the proper time based on your plan for the next contact. There are too many systems available in the marketplace now for you not to be able to find one that meets your needs. Salesforce, Franklin Covey and Sales Fusion are all great brands. In my early days I simply used my Daytimer Calendar and a good paper filing system. But with today’s automation you should take full advantage of the tools that are out there.
Whatever system you use, the key to your success is the ease of use. And you must always know who, what, when, where, why. And most importantly—you must know your next step in the process.
QUESTION: When have you said “yes” to buying something, when you had previously said “no”?