Why Follow up is Critical to Success
We hear the phrase “follow-up” quite frequently in business, but what does that really mean? How is the best way to follow up? And why is following up with people such an important thing to do?
Regardless of which profession you’re in, the fact of the matter is that business (and life) is about relationships! Building rapport with people and getting to know them on a deeper, more meaningful level is crucial to the longevity of a thriving and successful business plan. Generally speaking, people don’t want to just be sold on a product or a service. If they think that you’re only out to “make a sale”, they will be instantly turned away from whatever it is that you’re offering. In a world where people feel like advertisements are surrounding them and everyone is after them to buy something, the last thing people want is another salesperson.
Who should you follow up with? Everyone! First, previous customers are some of the best people to reach out to. You want to ultimately discover if they’re still using your products/services, if they’re happy, and if there is anything you can do to help them at the present time. You don’t want to do this by bringing up your business right out the gate. You want to call them and have the intention of building a relationship! Ask them how they’re doing, if there is anything exciting going on in their lives, etc! Another person that is worth following up with are people you have sent samples/materials to (if applicable) or those who have shown an interest in your business/products/services but have not either made a purchase or formed a business relationship yet. Same protocol… reach out with the intention of gathering information and getting to know them on a deeper level. Lastly, follow up with acquaintances. I know this one can feel a little awkward, but most people are open to forming new connections and relationships, but wouldn’t take the initiative to reach out on their own.
There are tons of ways you can follow up with someone, but the best way is to pick up the phone and call them. When someone hears your voice, they will sense your excitement and feel that you are genuinely interested in speaking with them. They will feed off of your positive energy and feel at ease knowing that you’re taking the time to get to know them and serve them better. You can also send an email if they don’t answer, can’t speak at the time, or don’t have a voicemail setup. When you send an email, make sure it isn’t a template. Really take some time to think about your last interaction with this person and how you can make your message feel personalized and unique to them. No one wants to feel like they have been spammed with a mass-blasted message.
Take a quick moment to think of the people you trust in life. Why do you trust them? Is it because you have known them a long time? They’ve always been there for you? They’ve proven to have your best interests at heart? In business, relationships are no different! People will want to do business with those who support their best interests and prove to them over time that not only are they not going to pressure them into something they don’t want or need, but that they can TRUST that person to take care of them… and therefore their friends and family members as well.
Which leads me to my next point… Referrals! The biggest gift someone can give you in business is a referral. When someone refers a friend to you, it means that they trusted you enough to put their name with yours. Let that marinate… it’s a really powerful concept! You want to be the kind of person who receives rave referrals as if there is no other professional in your industry worth considering outside of you and your company. Sometimes, touching base with someone doesn’t always mean that they personally are going to want or need your services at the time. However, chances are that the know someone who could benefit from what you have to offer and would be willing to help you out if you let them know how much it would mean to you to have the opportunity to work with and serve some of their friends and family who they believe might be interested.
As obvious as it might sound, sometimes you just have to ask! We all get busy with our hectic schedules and busy lives. Most of the time, without a follow-up, people will forget all about your business for a long while. On the other hand, if they’re seeing you consistently working your business and being present in your relationships with clients and customers, they will be much more likely to remember your name and your dedication to your business when the subject comes up in passing.
There is no one perfect way to follow up, but keep in mind that the more personal you can make the interaction, the more likely you will be to not only retain your clientele, but grow your business by gaining credibility through your words and actions. When you are in sales, you want your services to be seen as a convenience to people rather than a nuisance. By proving that you care about more than just yourself and your own bottom line, you’ll be sure to get a lot further in your business by having the opportunity to utilize the “word of mouth” system, which is one of the greatest forms of advertising available! The fact is, in order to utilize this system, you have to earn it!
"A proven entrepreneur and business coach, Katie Harbison specializes in leadership and business coaching. With a rapidly growing direct sales business that generated over 60 million dollars in sales in just 2 years, Katie has established herself as an inspiration to thousands in the industry.
Her program, Designed to Advance, was assembled with the goal of helping entrepreneurs come together and grow in all aspects of business ownership. From mindset and personal development, to leadership and time management, her courses and conferences are carefully curated without all the “fluff” in order to help you advance as a human and reach for the impact you were meant to make!"
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