Virtually every time I speak to sales organizations, I get asked, "What do I do when I don't hear back from people? I don't want to be a pain in the you-know-what." Keeping in touch is so darn hard!
So I ask to see what they're doing now. Usually it looks like this:
I'm checking in to see if anything has changed since we last talked. I suspect you're probably busy.
If you have time in the upcoming week, I'd love to chat. Let me know!
Big UGH! Boring, pathetic, deletable.
With today's savvy buyers, we can't do that if we want to be seen as a credible resource ... someone actually worth talking to about important business objectives. That's why we need another approach to our sales strategy.
1. Be Helpful
It sounds too easy. Not like a salesperson -- who's supposed to always be pitching. But honest to goodness, it's what works.
For example, one of my clients sells a product that significantly improves customer service. I suggested that they send out an email as simple as this:
When I read this article today on the Harvard Business Review, I immediately thought of you.
It includes info on social media trends related to customer service.
Notice how you’re not asking for anything — just providing value — which positions you/your company as a credible resource.
2. Pique Curiosity
Another great sales strategy is to send people to a resource on your own website. I'm not talking about a place that touts your product our services. Gag me! Doing that is so 1970s.
Instead, I'm talking about something that could help your prospect achieve their objectives. Like a white paper, case study, article, or interview that's informative — or shares insights. You could send an email like this:
Last week, I sent you info on how XYZ company is leveraging their online community to drive incremental revenue.
I thought you might also be interested in how Generic Systems reducing customer churn by 17%. Here's a link to their case study: www.linktocasestudy.com
I think you'll be impressed with all the results they're seeing.
Tempting? It should be if you've found the right resource for your prospect. Again, there's no pathetic "circling back" or "checking in."
Every email (or phone message) you send to your prospect has to stand on its own as VALUABLE. Once you get the hang of it, it's easy. And honestly, you feel better communicating this way.
Submitted by: Jill Konrath, an internationally recognized sales strategist and author.
As author of three bestselling books, “SNAP Selling,” “Selling to Big Companies,” and “Agile Selling,” she's a frequent speaker at sales meetings and conferences. For more fresh ideas, visit her website at www.jillkonrath.com.
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