Using Follow-Up To Reverse Roles

In my experience, the worst thing you can do is "chase" a customer. Sure, it seems a little counter-intuitive considering most sales are generated in the follow-up. I'm not arguing the importance and effectiveness of follow up. In fact, I discuss why it's vital here.

You may have even seen statistics that reveal something like 80% of sales being made after the fifth contact. I've even shared that it takes at least 7 exposures for a prospect to even consider your offer.

48%
Of sales people never follow up with a prospect

3%
Of sales are made on the second contact

25%
Of sales people make a second contact and stop

5%
Of sales are made on the third contact

12%
Of sales people make a second contact and stop

10%
Of sales are made on the fourth contact

Only 10%
Of sales people make make more than three contacts

80%
Of sales are made on the fifth contact

2%
Of sales are made on the first contact

But the days of “dialing for dollars” are over (literally and figuratively). Not only have laws adversely affected the technique but it’s simply not a good use of time.

What I’m advocating, on the other hand, is using technology to weed out unqualified, uninterested prospects… while educating, building rapport, and relationship with those most likely to do business with you.

And believe it or not, the medium makes all the difference. If someone were to call me over a dozen times, I’d consider them desperate and a nuisance. But via [contentblock id=20 img=html.png] or direct mail — another story.

My point is: Use these other mediums to intelligently follow up, ultimately causing the prospect to call (“chase”) you when and if phone is a required final step. You can take things further by having scheduled “office hours” where you only take calls between certain hours. What’s more, you could even require an appointment, where they must call in at a specified time.

The power is in the psychology of reversing roles. I’m no expert in relationships, but even in dating (men, listen up), the woman who feels overly pursued may be turned off… but magically attracted to the guy hardly trying. Even the other way around, the girl who makes the guy jump through a few hoops may be valued more than the converse.

It’s all in positioning. Someone who must make an appointment, pick up the phone and call you, meet certain requirements to do business with you, and pretty much convince you why they’re a good candidate is not only much more likely to do business with you but probably a lot more likely to respect, appreciate, and consume what you’re offering.

Using my follow-up pyramid concept, you can strategically put internal thresholds in place that let you know when a prospect is ready to get on the phone with you. Through tracking behavior (in Infusionsoft, this is easy with “tags”), increasing frequency in response to prospect activity, and segmentation, you can ascend the right prospects to the top.

While nothing has changed about the amount of follow-up needed to convert prospects, the ways and sophistication in which those follow-up “touches” occur has changed dramatically and can be harnessed to improve conversions, save time, and make more.

 

  • Julian says:

    Where do you suggest to publish these “office hours”? In the signature of your e-mail so it is more obvious, or just on your website? I say that because the client may not get around to your website early in the sales process.

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