The success of any marketing campaign includes the process of converting your leads into prospects and your prospects into loyal customers. One effective way of following-up with your prospects after the initial encounter is through the use of emails. However, sending emails is not without its challenges. The truth is, you don’t want your emails to be like any other email, adding to the bunch of mails in your prospective client’s inbox with no hope of commanding attention. So, how do you avoid this?
Not to worry!
You will find out how you can deal with any sales challenges that involve follow-up of prospects. After reading this article, you will have gained the necessary knowledge to increase your prospects’ response rate. Sound enticing, right? Sure it is. But that’s not all; the knowledge gained from this article may help you increase your sales and revenue exponentially.
Who, When, and How to Send Follow-up Emails?
One significant fact you should know as a salesperson is that your customers will buy only when they feel they are ready to do so. Every salesperson love to have customers who will patronize them easily without spending much effort to convince them to buy. You have to bear in mind that you can’t have such hot leads every day. Moreover, the percentage of hot leads you will have is small compared to your cool and warm leads. Cool or warm leads often result in more sales than hot leads.
Two Critical Rules That Will Guide You in Following-up With Leads
- There is a reward for your patience. Consistency and patience should not be overlooked when following-up with leads.
- There is a need for you to have an effective follow-up and data management system. Having a good sales CRM helps to prevent embarrassing situations such as email duplication and spamming.
The first highlighted point is quite convenient to implement, but many companies have struggled with implementing the second point. Executing an effective follow-up system may be difficult for some sales reps when generating sales and leads through marketing.
Close More Deals With Teamwork
To close more deals with teamwork, you will need to have a well-structured system. Ensure that both sales and marketing warm up your leads. To do this, ensure that you keep these helpful thoughts in mind.
- Do endeavor to send valuable and relevant information to your prospective clients frequently, regularly, and relentlessly.
- You have to communicate effectively with your clients. It may not be practical to communicate with your prospects individually if your prospects are many.
- Log and track. You do need a logged system that can help you to schedule and execute follow-ups. Calendar reminders and spreadsheets may not suffice if you have a business expansion plan.
- Get your materials ready. Your team should be equipped with engaging and vital information to craft out messages for follow-up purposes. A follow-up email with poor content is of no value.
Timing is Critical For Follow-up Emails
Remembering your prospects every day is great but do your prospects remember you as well? Remember, you compete with other rival companies providing juicy deals. And not to forget that your prospects as humans may have a fallible memory. You must remind your prospective clients about your service or product regularly. Let your reminder be well-planned and well-thought-out.
The KYC initiative is the golden commandment to follow in the area of sales. It is also the first rule to adopt when you design your strategy for follow-up. The second touch, or follow-up as it is called, should be more warmly and engaging than the first. It should remind your prospect of what was previously discussed and what can be done to move forward. Let there be a 2-day interval before doing this.
Are you aware of a procurement or budgeting window? Do you know the purchase circle that guides prospective clients? Or maybe you have classified information that your prospect is ending a deal with your competitor? You have to ensure that you plot and carefully arrange these events. Many sales agents have been able to close deals years or months after they made the initial presentation. Do you know why? Perseverance and right timing are the keys.
How Can You Design a Response Rate That Will Boost Your Follow-up Process?
Before you write an email, you have to design a follow-up process meant to be bullet-proof. You may also decide to improve an existing email to make it more engaging.
Are you ready for that? Good, we will begin by discussing four vital steps to boost your follow-up process. We will also highlight errors you should avoid if you want to enhance your follow-up process.
How Does the Follow-up Process Fit into Your Sales Plan?
Marketing Wizdom’s executive. Robert Clay said that the number of leads closed after the first meeting is not more than two percent of the total number of times sales agents interface with their prospects. So bear in mind that your first pitch’s end goal is to help you water the ground as you discover more about the buying process. You have to find out other parties involved and their mode of decision making. Getting a straight “no” doesn’t mean the game is over. How you follow-up afterward is dependent on your present position with the prospect.
You have to follow a particular pattern at each stage of your sales pipeline, and you can break this down into these steps:
When you first begin a relationship with your potential client, you have to respond on time since they may be motivated to act quickly at that time. You should endeavor to follow up with the prospect if there is no confirmation on the next step.
Prioritize Your Lead
The message you will send as a follow-up is dependent on what you know about the prospect and the actions they may take. You may consider leading with a strong action call if your prospect has visited your feature and pricing pages many times.
Several factors may determine how you begin to relate with prospects. If your client is a senior decision-maker, you may have to give more insights than prospects who play more technical or strategic roles. Your follow-up message should match the personality or position of your prospect.
Progress With Each Opportunity You Get
You should schedule a pitch or presentation after the first conversation, after which you can then organize a second meeting or call to continue discussions, Understand timelines and clarify objections. Try to lead your prospect by progressing from one stage to another through effective follow-up.
Feel free to ask your prospects what their next step is. You may even ask them to give you their preferred follow-up schedule or pattern. Although the discussion may not always go as you envisage, you should try to end your call with a well-defined next line of action. A conference call or meeting is a good avenue to do this because it allows you to compare schedules instantly.
Try to summarize your previous meeting because it gives you an excellent reason to send an email after ending the call. The highpoint of doing this is that it makes your clients have you in mind before the next call.
Now that you understand the connection between follow-up and your sales pipeline, let us now discuss “timing,” which is a critical element in lead conversion. Are you ready? Let us begin.
When is the Right Time to Send Follow-up Messages?
Timing is essential when you send follow-up emails. You should know your wait time, a particular time of the day, and the most suitable days of the week to send your follow-up emails. Doing this will help to improve your response rate.
How to Use Follow-up Emails to Generate More Sales
Email Few Days After the First Pitch
It is recommended that you send a follow-up email a day or two after your first presentation. You can use the avenue to review their reservations or objections. You can end by thanking your prospective client(s) for their time and do not fail to include an action call for future steps.
Review With Decision-makers
If other stakeholders are involved in the process of buying, the sales cycle may be extended. Endeavor to send an email with a four to five days interval after your presentation. So they can have ample time to discuss with other team members.
Develop a Follow-up Pattern for Unresponsive Leads
When there are no responses to your emails, it is best to have a follow-up pattern. You can offer your prospects extra resources and find out from them if they are still keen on your services or product. You can also find out from them what they feel is the best approach to move forward.
The Point of Break-up
If you do not respond after several follow-up emails, then the final thing is to call it a wrap. You can choose to inform your prospects that you are closing their file, or you may use this last avenue to stir them to act.
The perfect time and day for you to send follow-up emails to your prospects vary with the industry. Your own CRM is the best place for you to look. Find out the emails that have the highest response rate. Moreover, carry out an analysis of the time and day you send the emails. By so doing, you can better time your follow-up process.
Five Mistakes You Should Avoid When Sending Follow-up Emails
These are the five common follow-up mistakes made by salespeople.
It is believed that follow-ups should be done at least five minutes after an inquiry is sent. However, this timing may be unrealistic because you may not be on-site when the email was sent. It is critical to follow up quickly because waiting for too long may reduce your chance of getting a response. Ensure that you have the right arrangement that will enable you to respond quickly.
Lack of Focus on the Company
Most sales reps put their energy entirely into convincing only one person. What if you were interfacing with a large organization that has multiple decision-makers? Endeavor to get enough information on the buying process in your target company to accommodate other decision-makers. Communicating with all the necessary decision-makers will give you more advantage of winning the prospect.
Lack of Follow-up Frequency
A study conducted by Velocify reported that about 93% of all converted leads are gotten after five to six attempts. Ensure that you follow up frequently enough after starting a relationship with your client.
The Use of the Wrong Channels
About 90% of prospects will prefer to communicate with you via email. However, some prospects may prefer to communicate via phone call or any other convenient means of communication. It is good to ask your prospective client the communication channel they prefer.
Lack of Adequate Data Accumulation and Analysis
Without measuring the performance of your sales, you may not be able to rate your success. Using a CRM to collate and access your response rate after sending each email is very important.
How to Optimize the Response Rates of Your Follow-up Emails
Here are viable ways you can enhance your follow-up emails’ response rate.
Start With a Value
Once you have a new trend, you may be tempted to go straight to the pitch. Try to present the value to your client upfront before the pitch. You need your prospects to trust you, so try to guide or advise them first.
Avoid Automated Emails
Automation is great for streaming some processes. However, using automation for follow-up may not be advisable because you need it to be personalized.
Keep Your Prospect Coming Back
The complexity of what you are offering will determine the number of meetings or calls you will have with your prospect. Endeavor to keep an open conversation and lead your prospects to the next action line.
Show a Great Personality
Most people love to do business with individuals they respect. Try to be yourself always during the sales process and follow-ups. Senior decision-makers will respect you for holding up to what you believe.
You have to learn and adapt. Do not bore your prospects with a wall of texts, as that can be a turn-off. So you have to be precise. You can add a link to information that is too large for you to send. With these tips, you can enhance your sales and increase your revenue.