The Follow Up
Try this test the next time you are looking for any type of service:
- Visit several companies’ web sites.
- Fill out their contact form explaining what you are looking for.
- Count how many of these companies reply.
According to AMR Research, you can expect only 30% to follow up. Why is follow up so rare?
- Your request falls outside of the scope of the company’s services.
- The size of your potential business is lower than their minimum threshold.
- There was no way to determine your level of interest or ability to purchase.
- You have a lazy sales rep.
- The company doesn’t instantly forward leads to sales reps for follow up.
If the company’s online form did not collect enough information, it might be hard for a sales person to know whether you are ready to buy. Commission-based sales people look for a return on their time quickly so they filter out unqualified leads to focus on ones that can result in real business opportunities.
Unfortunately, a delayed or non-existent response can be frustrating from the buyer’s perspective. This can create ill will that affects the company’s reputation.
Put Yourself in Their Shoes
You may not be a sales person, but all of us receive requests by people that require a response. How quickly do you follow up when a colleague or acquaintance contacts you about an opportunity or needs assistance?
When you respond fast in every case, even if the answer is “can you send me more information, it will help me to give you the right answer” or “sorry, I can’t help you” you solidify your reputation as a trustworthy person who can be relied upon for timely follow up and honest feedback.
It is a competitive world and creating a personal brand of integrity has the ripple effect of increasing your day-to-day luck because people will remember their experience with you.