The Sales Lead: Persistence Pays Off
So you received a sales lead and you’ve tried to follow it. AND, you tried again. In your mind nothing is happening: voicemails have gone unanswered, e-mails have been ignored and your drop-in ended with the receptionist telling you she’ll pass the message along. Now, you’re left wondering how many times do I try to follow up on a lead? According to SiriusDecisions, it takes on average between 8 and 12 attempts to reach prospects by phone. So, about 10 tries is the minimum amount of times to attempt before readjusting your approach. Here’s the plan: Don’t give up after those 12 tries.
Here are some things to check before trying to connect with your prospect again:
- Have you tried to make a personal connection with them and not frankly just as—the salesperson who wants their money? People are more likely to do business with people they know and like. Get to know your prospect on a personal level.
- Heinz Marketing says there are phrases you want to stay away from:
“I think you’re making a mistake.” (…by working with someone else or conducting business a certain way)
“When can I speak with your manager?” (Who wants to do business with someone who makes them feel low on the totem pole?)
“Tell me more about your company.” (This is a waste of your prospect’s time. Do your homework prior to making the call.)
“How can I help you?” (Again, homework! You should know what your prospect’s needs are!)
“You should…” (Don’t assume something about someone else’s business.)
- Follow-up. Remember the whole minimum of 10 times thing? Don’t try once and give up. Chances are your prospect will not likely be on board just yet.
- Communicate clearly. No beating around the bush! Professionals want to know intent for the call and/or meeting.
The moral of the story is to analyze your sales tactics, while using this blog as your guideline. No matter what industry you’re in, the way to approach sales is uniform throughout. Build that connection and also be persistent. Work and life happen, do not take it personal. If you feel you are not getting somewhere with the prospect, pass them off to your colleague. Sometimes others can form better relationship with people. One final tip: Lead Response Management says the best times to contact leads are Wednesdays and Thursdays between 4 and 6 pm. We hope we’ve sparked some fire in you to go out and try those cold leads again! Happy Selling!