Tips for Following Through


follow-throughDo you know what is the number one reason why people are not as successful as they could be?

It’s called – not following through….

Nothing you will do in your marketing will be successful if you don’t have a proper follow-up system.

Most women fail by thinking, that the old high-school system of keeping in touch, meaning, remembering to phone or send an email to remind prospects about previous phone call, or latest product/service will be qualified as an effective follow-up system.

A balanced follow-up program needs to be a SYSTEM, not just based on whether you remember to do things. It has to be planned and thought throughly. It should combine both phone and mail with a variety of information, which will give you a good starting point for each time you connect with your prospective clients.

I’m familiar with the usual “mantra” of many businesswomen who say to me – “why should I follow them up? If they want me they got my details and they know my service/product is great – when they want it they will contact me”.

la_la_landIf this is your mantra then you probably live in only one country in the world that this will make you a successful businesswomen – it’s called “La-La Land”.

On the other hand, there are those businesswomen that think that calling and sending emails constantly about how great their service/product is, will create more clients for them.

This also will only work in that far away country called “La-La Land”

The key to creating a great Follow-Up system starts by understanding what is the purpose of a Follow-Up system.

The purpose is to complete the cycle of trust with your prospects. That means that it should be able to move them from knowing about you, liking what you have to offer and trusting you.

Only when they trust you that you truly CARE about them will they be willing to become your client. Only when they see that you know who THEY are, that you understand what THEIR needs are will they trust you that you can help them with THEIR challenges.

Here are 4 Fabulous Follow-Up Tips That Work

Tip 1: Have a SYSTEM
I’m all about having systems, but trust me; you don’t need to have a Customer Relationship Management System (CRM).

I know that some of the experts will tell you that you MUST have one, but, unless you have more than 5,000 prospects to follow-up each month you have no need for it, so don’t throw your money on finding one.

excel-iconThe old Excel spreadsheet will be sufficient enough for what you need.

Put together a spreadsheet to track all of your warm prospects. On this spreadsheet, have the following headings as a minimum:
1. Name,
2. email and phone (preferable mobile phone),
3. business,
4. referral source
5. And status update.

In today’s world most of the time you will not really need their physical address, but if you are sending samplers or physical goods make sure you have their physical address.

Keep a note of what you both spoke about; include not only the business you were discussing but anything they may have told you about themselves personally as well.

By gathering this useful information now, you will be able in the future to tailor your follow up specifically for this individual.  Remember to keep this list up to date!

no-time-like-the-presentTip 2: Set a time to follow through
Make a note in your diary to follow up any warm prospect within 48 hours to maximum 10 days after your first contact.

I know most textbooks say 90 days – trust me after 90 days no one is going to remember you…
When the follow-up day comes, make sure you actually do follow up, then and there.

Don’t procrastinate!

Tip 3: Do NOT sell when following through
Follow up with these warm prospects. Make sure you are not “selling” anything on those follow-ups.

It can be as simple as “I’m just checking in to see how you are” call or email.

I’ll be honest with you – I’m not comfortable with a push sell, but I am comfortable following up with warm contacts to see how they are doing, updating them on what I‘m doing, and generally learning more about them.

One way I like to break up the phone calls is to send out useful information to these prospects.

After I have learnt more about what is happening in their business, if I see something that I think they may find interesting I will send it off to them.  Whether it will be an article, or a link or even just an interesting show or movie I will forward it to them. If there is a specific holiday, that I would like to recognize, then I may send off a card as well.

never-give-upThis approach mixes things up a bit, takes the pressure off constant phone calls, and is seen as a more personal approach, rather than just contacting them by mail (whether that be conventional post or email).

You’ll also find they will be surprised or delighted that you remembered something about them that wasn’t in relation to closing the sale.

Tip 4: NEVER give up on a prospect
Keep following up within every 30-45 days until your lead becomes a client, don’t take them off your follow up system if they didn’t say no. It may take time for a conversion to happen; in fact it may even take longer than a year.

Now, the only times you want to take prospects off your follow up system is if the NO becomes a definite NO, or you decide that this person is not your ideal client.

Remember at the end of the day, you can choose the clients you want to work with.

Now I’m curious…

What is your SYSTEM for following up on your prospects and clients?

Share with us in, the comment box below, your tips, experience and ideas of how follow up on prospects and clients ? 

As a thank-you gift I will send you a video about Defining Your Target Audience from the course “Women Do Business Differently”

If you find this article inspiring, please SHARE it on Facebook, LinkedIn or retweet it, by pushing the button on the left, for the right channel, so more women could benefit from it.

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Have a magical week! Vered

15 Comments

  1. Naomi Dongelmans

    on 24th Oct, 14 03:10pm

    1 stars
    (54 comments)  

    Email is the most important thing for me, I keep people up to date about what we have new for them. I know I sometimes dont see people for a long time, but after a while they show up again.

    I sent them not just info about the new courses, but also nice things to read or listen to.

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  2. Monique Blok-Wildschut

    on 23rd Oct, 14 03:10pm

    0 stars
    (1 comments)  

    Just today I made a few follow up calls.

    Prospects were a little surprised I did not ask them to send me clients, but asked them to think about how I can help them. Their response was to read my letter I sent 2 weeks ago again!

    The idea to make an Excel list is great. I Will start It right away!

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  3. EvaMaria de Belder

    on 23rd Oct, 14 09:10am

    1 stars
    (30 comments)  

    Dear Vered,
    The list represents a very good system. I am one of the persons that is hesitant to call because I do not want to be pushy.

    On the other hand, once I have the contact, I find it very easy to give priority to the personal details. Even so much that I would end up giving everything for free as they are my ‘friends’.

    So it is good to read about it and find a balance between contacting more rapidly and consistently, talking to a friend but not forgetting he or she actually is a client…

    After all we are trying to be BALANCED bussiness women, aren’t we. As always, a very nice article. Thanks and have a nice day

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  4. Melanie Lo

    on 22nd Oct, 14 07:10pm

    0 stars
    (17 comments)  

    What I learned is to give value.

    I call them up to ask how they are doing after we met. They sometimes call me for advise and I follow them up to ask how it went.
    By their reaction I know they will remember me as soon as they need me.
    It is different from before. I know I have to give value.

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  5. Karin van Toor

    on 22nd Oct, 14 06:10pm

    0 stars
    (7 comments)  

    Thank you for this blog Vered.

    The most you mentioned I do, but…when I feel like it, I think about.
    So without a system. I’m going to make next tuesday a spreadsheet with all my prospects. Thank you for this great call to action,

    Big hug,
    Karin

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  6. Alison Breen

    on 22nd Oct, 14 02:10pm

    0 stars
    (5 comments)  

    Thanks Vered, that was really useful. In the past I have been hesitant to follow up with clients, and definitely fall into the “they have my details so they can call if they need” category.

    But I really like the idea of sending information. In my field as a psychologist and coach there is so much that I could send that people would find useful.

    I like the focus on providing value rather than pushing the sale.

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    • Vered Neta

      on 22nd Oct, 14 04:10pm

      4 stars
      (281 comments)  

      Hi Alison,

      In today’s New Marketing the only way to be successful is by adding value to the market and not by selling.

      That’s the reason I keep saying that the New Marketing world is the place where women would perform at their best and could lead the way.

      Have a magical day! Vered

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      • Alison Breen

        on 22nd Oct, 14 05:10pm

        0 stars
        (5 comments)  

        I just love that!

        I read somewhere today that if you can give more value that what the cash value is, by every business transaction you do you are contributing to life expanding.

        Thanks for your work!

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  7. Angela Timmerman

    on 22nd Oct, 14 12:10pm

    0 stars
    (13 comments)  

    Thanks Vered,

    I have to be consequent in contacting in 48 hours to 10 days. I prefer once a week!

    I give valuable tips about ” creating your home” in my blogs. And I add some tips how I can solve there problem, by a link that leads them to my website.

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    • Vered Neta

      on 22nd Oct, 14 01:10pm

      4 stars
      (281 comments)  

      Hi Angela,

      First thing first – CONGRATULATIONS!!! on completing the Amsterdam Marathon last Sunday – way to go!!

      Nothing will teach you better following through as doing a Marathon! so, the good news is – you have it in you. Now it’s time to implement it into your business life.

      Let’s make a differentiation between keeping yourself in top of the mind of your clients – that’s what you do in your blog and I will not do it more frequent than what you are doing – once a week is good!

      The other thing is – following through. If a prospect said s/he is interested – follow thorough – meaning contact them on a regular basis until they either buy or say NO.

      Your website and blog are a way to bring in prospects – but once a prospect has raised his/her hand to say I am interested in what you offer you need to follow that through and be constantly in touch with them. This is when I said contact them within 24-48 hours. After that initial contact follow through according to what the client asked for.

      Hope this clarifies a bit more.

      Have a magical week! Vered

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  8. Marloes Hermens

    on 22nd Oct, 14 11:10am

    0 stars
    (3 comments)  

    Thanks, in a way I knew it already, but didn’t do it.
    Now I’m inspired again, and see more clearly the diffrent signals I can give to my clients. I recognize the diffrence in geing approached as a buying client or an appreciated possible client.

    And Claudis, thank you as well. I’m more aware of how nice it is to get a short answer after a gift.

    o00OOO Marloes

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  9. Claudia Schalkx

    on 22nd Oct, 14 10:10am

    0 stars
    (2 comments)  

    Vered, I fully share your approach of touching base regularly, and not selling anything. Just genuine interest.
    I also do what you suggest, passing on info I consider relevant to them.

    Thing is, here in NL, people barely react. Not a thank you, not a ‘interesting article” or “thanks for passing on this item, but I am not following this topic anymore”. I get the most total silence.

    I am aware Dutch culture is one of druk, druk druk… but even so, would be nice to know if they are being served or annoyed.

    My contacts in other countries are more receptive and responsive.
    Any tip?
    Claudia

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    • Kim Elsen

      on 22nd Oct, 14 06:10pm

      0 stars
      (3 comments)  

      Hi Claudia,

      Belgians are the same. It is not because they are not interested in what you offer but there is not a habit of responding.

      The same happens when I ask for reviews. I know they are happy clients (they tell me) but getting them to write a review is another story.

      Good luck with your system!

      Kim

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  10. Nicky Koopmans

    on 22nd Oct, 14 10:10am

    0 stars
    (17 comments)  

    Thank you Vered! This was missing!
    I immediately implemented a spreadsheet with these basic-info, as you suggested. Have a lovely day!
    Nicky

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  11. Marjolein Kalter

    on 22nd Oct, 14 09:10am

    1 stars
    (66 comments)  

    Hi Vered,
    Thank you for reminding this lesson.

    I am very happy to use perfectview as an online tool (it´s free)
    In addition to Excel it helps me to schedule my next activity. When a date expires the activity shows up at the top of my list.

    In Excel I am very good at making my updates a mess and perfectview helps me to keep things in order and organized.

    When you first use it they call you to make an appointment to answer all your questions about using the tool. Apparently they use their tool very well. They phone you exactly on the hou that you agreed with them.

    🙂 Marjolein

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