The phone call is almost a lost art.
Ah yes, the phone call and follow through…the final frontier of one-on-one communication between salesperson and client. It’s been tried and true since the day the day Alexander Graham Bell asked for Watson’s help.
But for as powerful as it can still be, a phone call can also die on deaf ears. It’s an art, for sure, to continue communication with a prospective client. And no doubt it takes more than one call to get it done.
So what is it with the follow-up call, and how powerful can it be?
The thing to remember with follow-up calls is that they are absolutely necessary, and their payoff takes some time. It’s very unlikely you’re going to get anywhere on your first follow-up call. No doubt, this practice takes time.
“When it comes to cold sales, you haven’t truly reached out to someone until after your third follow-up,” said Dylan Bridger, President and COO at ZenRevenue Inc. “I’ve relied almost entirely on cold sales to build up a profitable content marketing company in less than a year, and I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for a disciplined follow up system.”
Bridger says they key word in building on your cold calls is, “disciplined.” Following up with a non-responsive sales prospect can feel uncomfortable and almost like nagging, especially if you’re faced with radio silence after the second follow up call.
“You need to have a schedule, and you need to commit to it,” Bridger said. “If you don’t hear back from a cold call, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your lead is not interested in what you have to offer.”
There are many factors that could delay a call back. It’s important to not get discouraged. Maybe the individual was in a meeting, or perhaps out of the country on business or vacation. Or maybe they simply forgot to get back to you.
First of all, people are busy.
“In sales, it’s critical to reduce as much friction as possible in the sales process for your prospect,” Bridger said. “That includes simplifying their decision by reminding them of your offer with a friendly follow-up.”
Therefore Bridger says following up with cold call prospects is well worth the investment of time…every time.
“I have single-handedly contributed thousands of dollars in sales to my company’s top line that would have otherwise not been there if I hadn’t sent follow-ups,” he said.
Although the prospect of follow up calls may indeed feel uncomfortable and naggy, it’s important to remember that it is indeed a craft that successful salespeople have mastered. High-level executives recognize that, and many times understand that you’re a professional on the other end of the phone, too.
As a Human Resources professional and independent hiring consultant, Wendy Alexander says the follow-up call is everything, and she appreciates the consistent follow up from her end.
“In HR, you get a ton of sales calls and emails,” Alexander said. “What has impressed me is people that really listen when you say, ‘not now, but please reach out to me down the road as I may be able to look at that in June.’ And they stick to it and call you back when you asked – even if it a year from now.”
Keep that in mind when making that call. First of all, It’s probably not nearly as uncomfortable for the person receiving the call, as it might be for you. People are busy, fielding hundreds of phone calls and emails every day.
“Follow up can feel very uncomfortable, so many people avoid it. They don’t understand how to do it well so they don’t do it at all,” said Amy Wenslow of Products to Profits, based in Southern California. “But a phone call is a dialogue. You can’t get that from an email. We strive to be genuinely warm, polite, concise and interested in serving people when we call. That pretty much ensures we will be welcomed.”
Wenslow has four tips that she uses in her company to help with the cold call. Stick to these tips, and the follow up call is sure to come.
- Be organized.
- Think of it as a fun connection game.
- Care about the well-being of the conversation participants, you included.
- Be bold & experiment with new moves. Track the results.
Most noteworthy, we at Lead Engine take the time to follow up with every lead generated. Our main purpose is to fill your calendar with qualified leads that build your topline. Our team of expert out bound callers are an extension of your team. We ask the right questions so that you are prepared walking into your meeting. Our team of expert marketers ensures your get quality leads and have brand awareness online. We look forward to answering any questions you may have.
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