The follow-up is therefore a defined and repeatable action that kicks-in whenever an opportunity needs to be moved through the pipeline. For instance, when you meet someone at a networking event your follow-up might be a) send an email saying how much you enjoyed your conversation about topic x and b) add them to your database for future newsletters.If someone subscribes on your website your follow-up might be an automatic email with latest offers.
If you finish a job for a client your follow-up might be a phone call three months later to discuss any other requirements.An effective follow-up will be:
- Consistent and controlled rather than left to chance or whim
- Persistent (without being irritating)
- Personalised, even if automated
- Related to the prospect’s needs, not your product’s features
- Designed to move the opportunity on in a specific way. For a suspect, say, to establish whether they do in fact have a need for your service. For a prospect, to establish whether they have the money – and so forth
- A call to action
- Intriguing and original
- Via an appropriate medium, or mixture of media
- Recorded, analysed and the results fed back into the design of the process
A CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system will help you define and control this process – but you can do it quite simply without one. What you can’t do without is a documented sales process and a bit of organisation.
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