I have always said it takes 6-7 times to touch a prospect before they become a customer. Most sales people give up way too soon. After reviewing several sales account profiles, I am amazed at the marginal customer engagement with prospects. Everyone is a prospect that has been profiled for your organization. If you just wait for the ‘sweet deal’ and fail to follow up with everyone constantly, you will lose your edge.
I believe that you should touch your prospects and customers every six months without fail. Even if a client tells you in January that they won’t be making any decisions until October, you can still reach out to a client with a note about a trend, an idea, a birthday or a congratulations on something – anything to keep you top of mind. Who is in charge of your prospecting plan, the client or you?
Repeat business and referrals play a big part in most of my clients’ business, but attracting new clients from these existing customers is also considered new business development. Don’t ignore your best customers. Constant attention and follow up is key with these clients.
“If you don’t ask….you don’t get!”
So is my list of ideas for you this week:
1. Selling is not selling if you are genuinely interested in your prospect. If you have something valuable to share with them, they will consider you a resource. Study their business.
2. Be quick, agile and sharp. Beat the competition by being first.
3. Constantly touching the prospect with intriguing and exciting news makes them excited for your next interaction.
4. Always try for the phone appointment – it works – believe me!
5. Don’t read from a script - you should feel good about what services or products you are selling and therefore the prospect has every reason to want to talk to you at some point.