As a small business owner, your revenue is significantly impacted by how well you (or your team) follow up with leads. We’ve all heard that the fortune is in your follow up – so why do so many of the entrepreneurial clients I mentor sheepishly share with me that they don’t really have a good follow up system in place.
Here are some startling statistics:
1. 48% of small business owners never follow up with a lead. That means that just under half of all the business owners who are going to networking meetings, attending live events and using other visibility techniques are not following up with the leads that come in. That’s a surprising waste of valuable opportunities!
2. 80% of sales happen between the 5th and 12th contact. What’s important to remember here is that most potential buyers do not buy right away.
3. 10% of entrepreneurs that follow up only make an average of three contacts before giving up. With most sales happening between the 5th and the 12th contact effort that means 70% give up BEFORE the sale!
So why is it so hard to follow up?
Jessie is a talented service professional who often speaks at live events all over the country. When Jessie came to me asking for guidance on increasing revenue, the first big red flag was that Jessie didn’t follow up with leads from the live events she spoke at. Now here Jessie has strong leads — they have made a connection in person and the lead had a powerful experience. But when I asked Jessie why she wasn’t following up, she fessed up to having all three of the core reasons a business owner doesn’t follow up.
We created a simple Infographic to help map out our own experience with lack of follow up:
Reason #1: Beliefs
Deep down inside Jessie had some mixed emotions about follow up. Pride had convoluted her process, and she worried she would come across to salesy or pushy, so ultimately she never followed up. The truth is that buyers are busy. They are often researching their options (for months and even years) before making a decision. Following up means you are staying connected and providing value during the decision making process. Think of your follow up process as a way to stay in touch with someone while adding massive value.
Reason #2: Not Enough Time
Like all entrepreneurs, Jessie was always scrambling to keep up with everything on her plate. Instead of following up with the leads who were already in process with her, Jessie was spending MORE TIME AND MONEY chasing new leads. Jessie and I talked about automation and created a standard email sequence to share with any interested buyer or new prospect. Using automated email sequences frees you up to focus on other activities (I use this system.) If emails feel to impersonal, set up a contact record system with triggers to phone or email every few weeks to stay in touch. Don’t let being busy keep you from implementing a follow up system that actually generates money for you!
Reason #3: Not Knowing What To Do
Not knowing what to do is probably the single most common reason people don’t follow up with a prospect. Not knowing what to say or even how often to contact that lead can cause you to procrastinate, then move on to other priorities. Having the right systems will help. But when in doubt, just be friendly and courteous. Ask permission to circle back in a few days (or weeks). Set up emails with valuable information that educates your prospect about how you solve their problem.
Now get into action and map out your system for follow up. Having something “okay” is better than not having anything.
Join us in the FREE Amplify Your Success Community on Facebook — each day this week get a tip to fix your follow up!