This step in the sales process is by far the one that requires the most attention. It has become known as the Achilles Heel of every sales person, professional or non, throughout the country … and I say with a high degree of confidence, “throughout the world.”
It is a common behavior pattern that implies “later” is always easier than “now.” It seems to be the initial knee-jerk reaction from just about “everybody.” Finishing what we start is a rarity today and I can only blame it on what has come to be referred to as “short attention spans.” The human need for instant gratification also might have a lot to do with it. Regardless of who or what you blame it on, or what excuse you make for it, “following up” has become the easiest way for you to differentiate yourself from the pack. Do what you say you will do, and … follow up.
Chances are good that you have heard the following percentages if you have ever heard me speak at industry conferences. I think they will help solidify today’s message.
50% of salespeople stop calling on prospects after their initial effort. When a prospect says “no” or declines their offer, they go away thinking they have tried their best. In this case, they don’t follow through.
25% of salespeople stop calling after a second attempt at landing new business. These people become frustrated after two tries and turn their attention to new targets. They quit after two calls.
80% is the percentage you need to internalize. 80% of new transactions do not come to fruition until five or more contacts have materialized. These are often referred to as “touch points” and may include emails, texts, letters, phone calls, face-to-face meetings or whatever other contact procedure you may come up with.
The key is to remember and understand the logic behind the slogan, “When you are out of sight you are out of mind.”
The specific business skill involves knowing when and how to resurface. But the important professional attribute to reinforce to prospects and clients is: When you say you are going to do something, do it.
Mike presents a business-building webinar on the third Thursday of every month sponsored by AmaWaterways. To receive a complimentary invitation send Mike an email with the phrase “AmaWaterways” in the Subject Box. You will also receive a link to the recorded version.
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